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looking for a compact camera with high image quality

by Nucas / December 22, 2006 10:02 PM PST

at the moment, i own a sony cybershot dsc-t5, and the image quality is fairly poor, to be honest. slight low-light produces very grainy shots, anything darker is unworkable, and redeye is constant. on a recent trip out west, i ended up using my girlfriend's powershot s60 the whole trip since it was simply producing the only good photos.

i'll be going into europe to join her in a few days where i'll be for several months, and i'm looking for a solid compact camera to take with me. i can spend as much as 300 bucks, maybe 350.

i've been doing my own looking around, but i don't have much time left so any suggestions to get me looking in the right direction are appreciated.

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compact = compact performance
by BowerR64 / December 23, 2006 3:43 AM PST

Most of those smaller cameras just dont have the ability to get good shots because they are so small. For 1 anything in low light that requires a flash forget it. The flash on them is so small its like a smot light it just doesnt spread the light out good. BUT they are small and portable. Best for outdoors in good lighting.

I would sugest the canon A6xx series, the A610-A640 i have 2 now and these cameras are really good. The image quality is super. The flash is still a bit small but better then the SD series. They are a tad larger because they use 4AA batteries but that helps the speed from shot to shot and also helps the flash refresh times. IMO this camera is hard to beat for its size and peformance.

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by Nucas / December 24, 2006 6:48 PM PST

i was looking at compacts simply for portability, but your suggestion is quite nice. the a630 looks quite impressive for it's price, very featureful. a bit larger than i was looking for, but not hinderingly so. the lack of a rechargable battery both sucks and is handy.

that said, any other suggestions, or is this likely the best i'm going to find (it does admittedly look fine)? i've got one more day to research and actually pick up a camera. the a630 is the upper end of the size spectrum i can tolerate, since this is going to be a camera for us to be able to foot around with and for me to keep inside my coat.

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by BowerR64 / December 24, 2006 7:13 PM PST
In reply to: interesting

I will admit it is a bit large but that is only because it uses 4 AA batteries. The refresh time is good because of this. You can shoot more shots in less time this way. Most people think of the AA batteries like this. Everyone uses rechargables in canon cameras that use standard size they are simply the best battery for digital cameras you can get bar none. THey also have a set of alkalines on hand if you get in a pinch you know you have a few more shots with the alkalines. If you read on steves canon A630 review it says this camera shoots 500+ shots on a single set of rechargable NiMH batteries. If you ask me thats really good.

If you ever hold one of these cameras the feel of it screams quality. Its a very solid camera. I have 2 now, i found an A620 on e-bay last week for $120. and i jumped on it. Even though i already have an A610 its just to good of a camera to pass up. Ode love to have the A640 just because its black.

If you look at any other cameras, look at the CCD first, i really think the heart of this camera is in the 1/1.8" CCD.

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Fuji F30
by BRosario / December 25, 2006 6:25 AM PST

If the Canon A6x0 is too large you may be interested in the Fuji F30, which is about 40% smaller and is very well rated. Here's a comparison of the two cameras:

Canon A620 vs Fuji F30:

The Fuji F30's sensor is superior - very low noise compared to other digicams, great indoors. You can save a couple bucks by going with the Fuji F20, which has the same sensor but lacks a couple updates like face-recognition for better exposures of people.

Fuji F30 vs F20:

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suggestions appreciated
by Nucas / December 26, 2006 3:39 AM PST
In reply to: Fuji F30

i really liked the look of the f30, good low light performance and low noise level were really what i was looking for. but unfortunately it seems availability is an issue. may have to go with the a630.

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Fujifilm F30
by pdxmatts / December 27, 2006 5:00 PM PST

You can get the Fujifilm F30 at if you are a member and you can get it at If you go to cnet review and bring it up, it will show you all the stores that have it and the prices. Costco has the best return policy if you need to use it. That is where I got mine. LOVE IT!

The F30 has a 50.00 rebate right now. Total price would be around 200-229.00 w/rebate. That is an excellent price for this quality camera. Leaves you extra money to buy an XD memory card and the Olympus mausb-200 card reader..

You may also want to research the new F31fd. It costs more though..

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Canon SD600 is hard to beat
by toddtee / January 6, 2007 8:42 AM PST

It's a very compact 6.1 MP camera with everything you might want except image stabilization. It fits in any pocket and I love the quality of the images I've taken. Amazon sells it for around $210, shipping included.

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