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    Howdy. I have a large Sony SLR camera that is brilliant. I also have a small point and click Kodak which isn't. The SLR is what I use for photography, but I want something very small and light (and cheap) that handles archive photos of text documents quickly and clearly. The point and click I currently have takes about ten seconds to process each shot, which is a problem when I want to get through 500 documents, and can get blurry on text if there's even minimal shake in low light. Anyone got a suggestion for under about £80-90? It won't be used for much else, so how it handles landscapes is of relatively little interest.

    (for those unfamiliar, archives often don't allow flashes, and not many will have tripods to keep cameras still if trawling through hundreds of pages of 1920s letters)

    Please and thankyou.
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    (Original post by 0404343m)
    Howdy. I have a large Sony SLR camera that is brilliant. I also have a small point and click Kodak which isn't. The SLR is what I use for photography, but I want something very small and light (and cheap) that handles archive photos of text documents quickly and clearly. The point and click I currently have takes about ten seconds to process each shot, which is a problem when I want to get through 500 documents, and can get blurry on text if there's even minimal shake in low light. Anyone got a suggestion for under about £80-90? It won't be used for much else, so how it handles landscapes is of relatively little interest.

    (for those unfamiliar, archives often don't allow flashes, and not many will have tripods to keep cameras still if trawling through hundreds of pages of 1920s letters)

    Please and thankyou.
    My honest opinion is you should use your SLR. £90 won't buy you want to need, so it's just a waste of money, and an SLR with ISO turned up and using a large aperture, combined with a decent memory card, will the best thing for the job.
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    (Original post by TheSownRose)
    My honest opinion is you should use your SLR. £90 won't buy you want to need, so it's just a waste of money, and an SLR with ISO turned up and using a large aperture, combined with a decent memory card, will the best thing for the job.
    Thanks- I know that, yeah, for quality it's not going to be anywhere near it. It's more about what will do and is about 100g in weight. I'm travelling around between archives and apart from a notepad, my netbook and a camera, I want to be as light as possible because space is an issue. SLR plus my stock lens once cased up is probably an extra kilo and a lot of extra room that I don't really have. There's also the issue of walking around with £700 of kit that I'd rather not carry if I could avoid it.

    I use the SLR in the archives/libraries near me, but this is going to be an epic trip around Newcastle, Derby, Cambridge, London & Portsmouth out of a backpack (if possible) in as short a time as possible. Problem seems to be that without handling the camera, it's hard to know if it's quick enough at image processing that I can fire through lots of stuff quickly. The Kodak means it's taking 20 seconds to check if the picture is up to scratch, and then 1/4 of them require re-taken anyway. That's 2006's £80 for you!
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    (Original post by 0404343m)
    Thanks- I know that, yeah, for quality it's not going to be anywhere near it. It's more about what will do and is about 100g in weight. I'm travelling around between archives and apart from a notepad, my netbook and a camera, I want to be as light as possible because space is an issue. SLR plus my stock lens once cased up is probably an extra kilo and a lot of extra room that I don't really have. There's also the issue of walking around with £700 of kit that I'd rather not carry if I could avoid it.

    I use the SLR in the archives/libraries near me, but this is going to be an epic trip around Newcastle, Derby, Cambridge, London & Portsmouth out of a backpack (if possible) in as short a time as possible. Problem seems to be that without handling the camera, it's hard to know if it's quick enough at image processing that I can fire through lots of stuff quickly. The Kodak means it's taking 20 seconds to check if the picture is up to scratch, and then 1/4 of them require re-taken anyway. That's 2006's £80 for you!
    It's not just not going to be near the SLR, I don't think it'll even be that much different from the Kodak. You need manual control so you can put the ISO up and get a wide aperture, plus some sort of image stabilisation. Off the top of my head, I can't think of any compacts that are under £90 that will do this. Is there any more money you can put towards it, because I can think of a few more in the region of £150-ish? The time to take it is always a bit longer than an SLR, but (generally) the more you spend, the quicker it gets.

    The other way to go is possibly making it easier to travel with the SLR. I've travelled with an SLR and clothes in one bag before for several days, and it does all come down to the bag. What are you currently using?

    Regarding the price of the gear, try not to worry about it too much. :p: They're built to be hardy enough to carry around, and unless you just carelessly leave it lying around out of your sight the chances of it getting stolen are no higher than something else getting stolen (again, it comes down to bag to reduce this as well and not advertise 'Look, expensive camera gear in here', plus you can get designs that make it nigh on impossible to just steal it from your bag without you noticing.)
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    (Original post by TheSownRose)
    It's not just not going to be near the SLR, I don't think it'll even be that much different from the Kodak. You need manual control so you can put the ISO up and get a wide aperture, plus some sort of image stabilisation. Off the top of my head, I can't think of any compacts that are under £90 that will do this. Is there any more money you can put towards it, because I can think of a few more in the region of £150-ish? The time to take it is always a bit longer than an SLR, but (generally) the more you spend, the quicker it gets.

    The other way to go is possibly making it easier to travel with the SLR. I've travelled with an SLR and clothes in one bag before for several days, and it does all come down to the bag. What are you currently using?

    Regarding the price of the gear, try not to worry about it too much. :p: They're built to be hardy enough to carry around, and unless you just carelessly leave it lying around out of your sight the chances of it getting stolen are no higher than something else getting stolen (again, it comes down to bag to reduce this as well and not advertise 'Look, expensive camera gear in here', plus you can get designs that make it nigh on impossible to just steal it from your bag without you noticing.)
    Cheers- in short the issue regarding transport is that I'm going to be bumming it around in cheap hostels to get this done as quickly as possible. If it was a hotel room, I'd not be too fussed. The camera is in a standard Jessops bag that's pretty large- but if I could get it into something safe that's smaller I'd carry it around (typically it's on my neck when it's out). TBH, if it was going to cost me much more I'd end up taking the SLR, but that's lower down on the options that a slightly better point and shoot right now, given what it's needed for.

    The Kodak is an M753, which just about did the trick for £80 five years ago, but I was thinking at that price point I should be able to get something better now- MP isn't an issue providing it's about 8 or so. I handled a Canon S95 which was very impressive- good in low light and very quick to process and move on, but that's about £250.
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    (Original post by 0404343m)
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    I may have found the solution. I don't know quite why they've discounted it so much, but that's Amazon for you. :dontknow: It is £10 more than your budget, but it is actually better than the ones I was thinking of if you could push it up a bit: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Canon-PowerS...777478&sr=1-43

    You can get it up to an f2.8 aperture, although it is variable on focal length (if you zoom in fully, maximum f4.5), ISO goes up to 1600 if needs be (won't provide great quality, but does having a noisy image matter for the purpose), shutter speed can get quite fast, with 1/2500 as a maximum (although the conditions you're shooting in may mean it can't reach that.)
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    (Original post by 0404343m)
    Cheers- in short the issue regarding transport is that I'm going to be bumming it around in cheap hostels to get this done as quickly as possible. If it was a hotel room, I'd not be too fussed. The camera is in a standard Jessops bag that's pretty large- but if I could get it into something safe that's smaller I'd carry it around (typically it's on my neck when it's out). TBH, if it was going to cost me much more I'd end up taking the SLR, but that's lower down on the options that a slightly better point and shoot right now, given what it's needed for.

    The Kodak is an M753, which just about did the trick for £80 five years ago, but I was thinking at that price point I should be able to get something better now- MP isn't an issue providing it's about 8 or so. I handled a Canon S95 which was very impressive- good in low light and very quick to process and move on, but that's about £250.
    Hmm... I'd perhaps be a bit less keen in that situation, admittedly. I was fine carrying my gear around, but I was based in hotel rooms that I shared with just my friend; I'd be far less happy if I were using hostels.

    I was actually going to go larger, but more comfortable with bags. http://www.amazon.co.uk/Lowepro-Flip...9778395&sr=8-1 Best bag I have ever used. I have a camera, multiple lenses, and a tripod ... and it feels weightless when it's in this bag. The camera storage area is large, but with just one body and one lens, the remaining space could be given over to a small netbook or clothing. The design of it means the flap you open to access the gear is against your back, so when carrying it around people can't just open it without you knowing.

    However, the reasonable compact may have been found. What do you think of that camera?
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    (Original post by TheSownRose)
    I may have found the solution. I don't know quite why they've discounted it so much, but that's Amazon for you. :dontknow: It is £10 more than your budget, but it is actually better than the ones I was thinking of if you could push it up a bit: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Canon-PowerS...777478&sr=1-43

    You can get it up to an f2.8 aperture, although it is variable on focal length (if you zoom in fully, maximum f4.5), ISO goes up to 1600 if needs be (won't provide great quality, but does having a noisy image matter for the purpose), shutter speed can get quite fast, with 1/2500 as a maximum (although the conditions you're shooting in may mean it can't reach that.)
    Terrific, thankyou. I could definitely stretch to that. As a final point, you reckon that would be a better option over the smaller and £20 cheaper Nikon and Canon S3300s? (why they both have the same model name, I don't know). They aren't as heavily discounted, but are tiny. There's also a very inexpensive Nikon L25 for £40.

    RE: Bag, yep, I should really invest in a new one. The SLR isn't super high end (Sony alpha 55, which I preferred to the similar priced Nikon and Canon variants), but still expensive enough to not want to take it where image quality isn't an issue anyway. I just bought a reasonably expensive £50 Eastpak backpack for space and laptop protection though, so the savings need to occur for a while before I blow more money!

    Eds: one is an A3300, one is an S3300.
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    (Original post by 0404343m)
    Terrific, thankyou. I could definitely stretch to that. As a final point, you reckon that would be a better option over the smaller and £20 cheaper Nikon and Canon S3300s? (why they both have the same model name, I don't know). They aren't as heavily discounted, but are tiny. There's also a very inexpensive Nikon L25 for £40.

    RE: Bag, yep, I should really invest in a new one. The SLR isn't super high end (Sony alpha 55, which I preferred to the similar priced Nikon and Canon variants), but still expensive enough to not want to take it where image quality isn't an issue anyway. I just bought a reasonably expensive £50 Eastpak backpack for space and laptop protection though, so the savings need to occur for a while before I blow more money!

    Eds: one is an A3300, one is an S3300.
    Yes, I reckon it would be the better option - the disadvantage of all of those is you don't get manual control, therefore you can't do things like shove the ISO up and make the aperture larger ... which is what you could do with being able to do due to your needs for the camera. They're smaller, but there comes a time where you need to compromise a bit on size in order to get the quality you need; the PowerShot 120 one isn't huge and is still much lighter and small than an SLR.

    That bag is fine for what you're doing (I used to have one), I was just thinking about you could put the 'new camera' money into a new bag instead and make travelling with the SLR easier, but storage doesn't seem to be the only problem with that solution so a decent compact is the better route to go down.

    Yeah, they do make their names similar... Canon and Nikon use a similar system to each other for their DSLRs as well; Canon do [Number]D (like Canon 7D), whereas Nikon do D[Number] (like Nikon D700.) :rolleyes:
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    (Original post by TheSownRose)
    Yes, I reckon it would be the better option - the disadvantage of all of those is you don't get manual control, therefore you can't do things like shove the ISO up and make the aperture larger ... which is what you could do with being able to do due to your needs for the camera. They're smaller, but there comes a time where you need to compromise a bit on size in order to get the quality you need; the PowerShot 120 one isn't huge and is still much lighter and small than an SLR.

    That bag is fine for what you're doing (I used to have one), I was just thinking about you could put the 'new camera' money into a new bag instead and make travelling with the SLR easier, but storage doesn't seem to be the only problem with that solution so a decent compact is the better route to go down.

    Yeah, they do make their names similar... Canon and Nikon use a similar system to each other for their DSLRs as well; Canon do [Number]D (like Canon 7D), whereas Nikon do D[Number] (like Nikon D700.) :rolleyes:
    So, thanks again for all of your advice. Jessops had the Powershot S130 for a little more than that in the sale (and I was there to buy an f1.8 portrait lens anyway), and, after playing around with them, I ended up buying something different. Please don't kill me!

    I plumped for the cheaper and smaller Samsung WB690, which also has manual control. Been mucking about with it all day and really pleased with my £70 outlay. It's exactly the same as this except a 12.1 rather than 14.2mp sensor. That being said, I'd never have gone in looking for the Powershot if it wasn't for your words, so I owe you in a way- even if I did walk out the shop with something completely different than what I went in to buy...

    (oh, and the f1.8 lens is amazing as well!)
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    (Original post by 0404343m)
    So, thanks again for all of your advice. Jessops had the Powershot S130 for a little more than that in the sale (and I was there to buy an f1.8 portrait lens anyway), and, after playing around with them, I ended up buying something different. Please don't kill me!

    I plumped for the cheaper and smaller Samsung WB690, which also has manual control. Been mucking about with it all day and really pleased with my £70 outlay. It's exactly the same as this except a 12.1 rather than 14.2mp sensor. That being said, I'd never have gone in looking for the Powershot if it wasn't for your words, so I owe you in a way- even if I did walk out the shop with something completely different than what I went in to buy...

    (oh, and the f1.8 lens is amazing as well!)
    :woo: No killing - I'm glad you got what you wanted. Also, glad you're enjoying the f1.8 lens.
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    Woops- didn't link it in. Anyway http://reviews.cnet.co.uk/compact-di...view-50005476/ http://www.photographyblog.com/revie..._wb700_review/ I reckon does most of what the Canon SX130 does, except is probably 30% smaller and 40% cheaper (it's on sale down to £75 ATM). 18x zoom too.

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