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Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX9V

The HX9V's shooting options for both photos and movies are plentiful, going from fully automatic point-and-shoot to full manual with control over shutter speed and aperture. There's a lot to play with here, making it a good option for anyone who would like something that's equal parts gadget and camera.

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Canon Vixia HF G10

A great prosumer camcorder, with excellent video quality and a flexible feature set, the G10 would make a great gift for someone you know looking for a compact model with pro features and performance.

Published:Caption:Photo:Sarah Tew/CNET

Nikon D7000

If you can afford it, the D7000 is a great gift for any creative photographer. Its combination of design, feature set, performance, and photo quality is hard to beat, especially as a gift for a Nikon shooter who wants something a bit better.

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Canon PowerShot S95

If your budget stretches to about $400, the PowerShot S95's full set of manual controls and excellent low-light photo quality make it a can't-miss ultracompact gift choice for advanced photographers, as long as they don't shoot a lot of action. By the time you read this it may have been superceded by the more expensive and feature-rich S100, but the S95 remains a solid gift buy.

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Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF3

If you know someone who's been complaining that her point-and-shoot (or phone) isn't fast enough, good enough, or flexible enough, this camera is the perfect next step. It's relatively compact, but delivers SLR-quality photos and speed in the interface and design she's used to.

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Sony Alpha SLT-A35

With excellent photo quality, better continuous-shooting performance than a lot of the dSLRs in its price range, and solid autofocus behavior during video capture, the Sony Alpha SLT-A35 has a lot to recommend it as a step up from a point-and-shoot.

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Canon EOS Rebel T3i

A great pick as a first dSLR, the Canon EOS Rebel T3i suits if your recipient wants a camera with an optical viewfinder that also works for shooting HD video or if he already has some Canon lenses.

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Olympus PEN E-PL3

If you know someone who wants to step up from a point-and-shoot but doesn't mind trading off a little more complexity for advanced creative controls, this is a great option.

Published:Caption:Photo:Sarah Tew/CNET
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