Looking to upgrade my digital camera

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Forum topic by Don Kondra posted 12-08-2007 04:52 AM 1948 views 0 times favorited 21 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Don Kondra

117 posts in 4124 days

12-08-2007 04:52 AM


I’ve been using a 2 mp Kodak with fair results but want to upgrade to 12 mp. Hopefully the last upgrade for quite a while.

Kodak has a model for ~$220, Canon has one for ~$330 but darn, wouldn’t you know it. I like the Nikon for ~$400

yeah, yeah, I know you get what you pay for, but….

Anybody have any experiences to share?

Cheers, Don.

PS. Majority of use is taking pictures of furniture pieces with backdrop. I’ll take my 2 mp Kodak when I go fishing…

-- Don Kondra – Furniture Designer/Maker

21 replies so far

View Thos. Angle's profile

Thos. Angle

4444 posts in 4201 days

#1 posted 12-08-2007 03:56 PM

We have a Pentax istD SLR. It is 6.2 MP. I was tempted by the Cannon Rebel at 8.? MP but after I viewed some 16×20’s shot with the Pentax we went with it. It came with a 16-55mm lense and we added a 50- 120mm. It is the best thing we could have done. Our daughter uses it to shoot weddings and other events and has added a bigger chip. With the 2 chips we can shoot just under 1000 frames. I think the photos from this camera would blow up to poster side without losing resolution. It is auto everything and really does product photography very well. The cost is a little more than you are talking but I think it is a good investment. Most of the shots on my projects page were shot with the Pentax. I hope this doesn’t muddy the waters for you . Good luck.

-- Thos. Angle, Jordan Valley, Oregon

View rikkor's profile


11295 posts in 4113 days

#2 posted 12-08-2007 04:05 PM

I bought a Canon because of the 10X optical zoom. It is 6.2 Mpx, which has been more than adequate for what I want to do. I have a 512 MB chip. On a recent trip I took 185 pictures and the chip was 37% full. (Sure glad I bought a spare 512 chip!)

View Bob #2's profile

Bob #2

3810 posts in 4260 days

#3 posted 12-08-2007 04:10 PM

A big factor for me in my next camera will be the viewfinder. If this is not accurate you dont have a chance in hades of getting an accurate focus .
Wtihout a decent focus all the megapixels and resolution of image are waisted.
There is a tradeoff vs megapixels and artifacts on the picture sensor. Several models fudge the range of the cameras by using interpolation to describe the acutual megapixel capacity of the units.

If that info baffles you then I suggest you go to a good camera dealer and make him walk you through the advantages of diferent brands your price range.

As for me , I have my sights set on a new Nikon D80 or better.

Remember your pictures are usually the first impression people with have of your work.

If your pics suck – what are they to think?

Good luck


-- A mind, like a home, is furnished by its owner

View MsDebbieP's profile


18618 posts in 4399 days

#4 posted 12-08-2007 06:50 PM

my suggestion: go into the store and try them out, taking pictures equivalent to how you will be using the camera.
For me one of the key elements is how it feels in my hand and how accessible the key buttons are.

(oh yes.. fishing and cameras—as we were flyfishing in our new canoe several years ago, the seat broke (no wise cracks on that, thank you very much .. ) .. and over we went. My $1500 Nikon digital went to the bottom along with my $150 binoculars. It was my favourite digital camera for macro. Nothing since has come close.

Now I have a Konica-Minolta 7D digital SLR and love it. As for smaller cameras, I have the Nikon Coolpix 2200 for those times when I want something light and can fit in my pocket.

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (, Young Living Wellness )

View Dadoo's profile


1789 posts in 4229 days

#5 posted 12-08-2007 07:50 PM

I’ve had great luck with Fuji Finepix and am getting ready to upgrade to the Fuji S9100. Most of my photos though are of a landscape type, and for that you need a film camera. Digital is great for portraits and closeup stuff. Couple all of this with a good Photoshop program and you’ll turn out some fine work.

-- Bob Vila would be so proud of you!

View Don Kondra 's profile

Don Kondra

117 posts in 4124 days

#6 posted 12-08-2007 11:05 PM

Thanks for all the suggestions…

Unfortunately I haven’t quite reached the RICH and famous level yet so a SLR is out of the question, sigh..

I may try looking at used but at this point today I am thinking of the Kodak Z712. It’s 7 mp, the CCD is 1/2.5”, the iso 80-3600 and the LCD is 2.5” and it’s ~ $250.00

Weight and size don’t matter because almost all of my shooting is with a tripod. The big LCD is a plus though, my original camera is 7/8” x 1”.

I am truly amazed at the variety of camera’s out there. Buying a new woodworking tool/machine in comparison is a breeze :)

Cheers, Don

-- Don Kondra – Furniture Designer/Maker

View Thos. Angle's profile

Thos. Angle

4444 posts in 4201 days

#7 posted 12-08-2007 11:09 PM

Hey, Dadoo, I’ve got a Pentax K-1000 I’ll sell ya. Good set of lenses too.

-- Thos. Angle, Jordan Valley, Oregon

View Dick, & Barb Cain's profile

Dick, & Barb Cain

8693 posts in 4538 days

#8 posted 12-08-2007 11:25 PM

I have a Fujifilm S5000, it’s 3.2 mp. The best thing I like about it is the 10X optical lens.

I also like the LCD eyepiece viewer.

I’ve taken some great wildlife pictures with it.

They have some better ones now for a lot less than I paid for mine.

-- -** You are never to old to set another goal or to dream a new dream ****************** Dick, & Barb Cain, Hibbing, MN.

View douglbe's profile


370 posts in 4199 days

#9 posted 12-09-2007 01:51 AM

Shopping for a new digital camera? WOW, there are a lot of choices out there today and I had a lot of fun shopping for myself. I am not going to say what I bought, because, as you know everyone has their favorite and to them it’s the best, as well it should be. Whatever you buy, it only needs to please you. You decide what you want in or from a camera and start checking off the ones that fill the bill. I will say that mine is not an SLR, I’m like you, more than I wanted to spend, yet it has full manual control and a hot shoe should I ever want to add an external flash. Most of my pictures are taken in manual mode, I like the control I have over the exposure and focusing. I am very happy with my choice and have taken a lot of very good pictures. Good luck and happy shopping.

-- Doug, Reed City, Michigan

View Bob Babcock's profile

Bob Babcock

1809 posts in 4325 days

#10 posted 12-09-2007 05:58 AM

Here’s a good review website.

My next one is going to be bulletproof. It’s gotten to the point that a small, waterproof, shockproof, 7 MP, that takes nice pictures and can hold 60 mins of video can be had for $350. I have my long lenses and a few different digitals but something small that I can have with me everywhere is next.

-- Bob

View Dan Lyke's profile

Dan Lyke

1520 posts in 4363 days

#11 posted 12-09-2007 05:59 PM

Don’t confuse raw megapixel count for quality. I’ve got a Canon D60 SLR and an HP point-n-shoot, both 6 megapixel, and while I wouldn’t expect the image quality between those two to be similar (especially when I’ve got a $1500 lens on the SLR), I also went through a couple of older 2.1 megapixel Canon point-n-shoots, and in most situations I’d put the end printed image on those up against the 6 megapixel HP any day. Those extra pixels are still pretty soft, and depending on the lighting conditions can have lots of noise in them.

The cheap HP serves its purpose, I won’t cry too hard when I do something stupid and reduce it to rubble (as happened with those two previous Canon point-n-shoots), but it’s for shots where I’m lucky to be carrying a camea, not for good shots.

So when you go to your camera store, take some pictures with each, take ‘em home, and look at ‘em at 2x magnification and see which look better on the details, and then step back and see which looks better on overall color, before you make your choice.

-- Dan Lyke, Petaluma California,

View Dadoo's profile


1789 posts in 4229 days

#12 posted 12-09-2007 10:59 PM

I’ve had good luck shopping with these people: . Maybe you’d like to check them out sometime.

-- Bob Vila would be so proud of you!

View jaws's profile


4 posts in 4060 days

#13 posted 12-10-2007 08:42 AM

I heartily agree with recommendations to try different models out in stores. I tend to look at quality of the optics and available accessories.

My personal choice for a pocket portable camera after checking out reviews and visiting a couple of stores to try out my candidates, was the Panasonic DMC-TZ3. It sports a Leica 28-280mm equiv. lens, and has a host of preset modes for picture taking. It’s main drawbacks are: it doesn’t have manual settings (f-stop and shutter speed), nor a viewfinder, and image quality suffers at fast shutter speeds (as many cameras in this class). However I wanted something to toss in my pocket/satchel for leisure photos. There are a few accessories, and this excellent wide angle/zoom lens covers a lot of situations. There is also a rather pricey underwater shooting case available for those desiring shots in the drink. The picture quality is very good with very minor drawbacks. It has a built in flash, does movies with sound (or stills with sound), supports pictbridge printer interface (you can print directly from the camera to any printer with this feature) and it has excellent image stabilization for telephoto or slow shutter speed shots. So far the battery life is excellent too. Oh, and it is a 7 Mp CCD which is near the middle to last part of my needed feature list (e.g.- I like a small camera that is large enough for my big klutzy hands to hold & operate – top priority). One of many reviews of this camera can be found at It sells around $300, but 42nd Street Photo had them around $280 –

Happy hunting!

-- Joe, Oakland, CA

View Moron's profile


5032 posts in 4132 days

#14 posted 12-15-2007 01:55 PM

I’m happy with my SONY Cyber Shot. 12X… accepts a lens adapter for a wide angle and an extra zoom albeit I didnt buy the extra adapter lens.

Lots a places that sell them also do “courses” for cheap that teach better use of the camera and the web has lots of sites for help as well.

I really wanted the Nikon D80 because I have several Nikon lenses from my 35 mm camera but the “Auto focus” feature wouldnt work so like you…........opted for the Sony.

As far as I am concerned it takes a fantastic photo and the problems with my camera isnt from the camera, its from the operator. Lighting is my next purchase…........gotta get rid of the shadows.

-- "Good artists borrow, great artists steal”…..Picasso

View Don Kondra 's profile

Don Kondra

117 posts in 4124 days

#15 posted 12-15-2007 07:44 PM

Thanks Roman,

I’ve narrowed it down to two or three models in the $300 range but I am still lusting after a SLR with live view.

Olympus Evolt E-510 is $570 plus card plus taxes, sigh…

And a real backdrop and lights, double sigh…

This is the best I can get with my 2 mp Kodak CX 4230, not bad but no where near submission for publication quality.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Cheers, Don

-- Don Kondra – Furniture Designer/Maker

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