Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Buying a New Camera or How to Make a Compromise!

Old Camera, neat, fits in handbag

You know what it is like when you have made the decision to buy something and the money is burning a hole in your pocket but you can't find exactly what you are looking for.

This was my dilemma this past week. I have loved my Canon Powershot A620 camera, my very first digital one, ever since I acquired it 3 years ago. I wondered why I had taken so long to make the change from film to digital image. I'm not the greatest of photographers but I have really enjoyed taking photos with this and playing around with them on the computer with editing software in a simple way.

The one thing I sometimes missed was a longer range zoom as this had only 4 times optical and seeing some heron on the edge of the water or eagle in a tree made me wish for something a bit better. So when the zoom on this camera began to malfunction on occasion I thought, time for a new one with a longer range.

I knew exactly what I wanted. Yes I know that SLR cameras are best but carrying around a bag full of lenses and changing them is not my idea of fun. I did not know it when I got my Canon but I soon discovered that a viewfinder is a must as the LCD screen is virtually useless in full sunlight. Luckily the A620 had that so I knew this time to make it a requirement. I wanted to stick with Canon to make it easier to learn and ten times optical zoom sounded about right for my requirements.

But guess what? That camera does not exist. Canon cameras with ten times zoom don't have viewfinders. Supposedly they have been sacrificed to make the LCD screen larger. But the LCD screens, while somewhat better still are not good enough on many occasions. Searching online one sees the same thing over and over. Many people would like to have a viewfinder but no one is listening. Or perhaps they cannot make a camera at a reasonable price and size which incorporates a viewfinder. All the sales people said they complain continuously to the camera representatives who just shrug. Apparently younger people are so used to taking photos with their cell phones they would never think of using a viewfinder.

New Camera, large with separate case.

So I had to make a compromise. Viewfinder or twenty times zoom and a camera which weighs twice as much. Or ten times zoom with no viewfinder. Well for better or worse I got the larger one and now I have to truck around this heavier piece of equipment in its own separate case. I don't know if I will be sorry and very soon looking for a small one to tuck into my handbag while the larger one sits in the car. Time will tell I'm sure. Sigh. I'm trying to jump start the economy but it isn't easy.


Dragonstar said...

Choosing a new camera is so difficult. I agree about the viewfinder - it's essential! I want a small camera, with a huge zoom and good macro ability too. They just don't exist. Instead I have one with the ability to set my slide-shows and videos to music!!!

I hope you get on well with your new camera.

CherryPie said...

I hope it works out for you. It seems like they have discontinued the type of Canon camera I have too. So I am not sure what I will do when it needs replacing.

jams o donnell said...

I hope you get on well with your new camera. I generally us an SLR but a compact is so convenient

Sarabeth said...

I predict you will buy a smaller one to put in your bag. That's what I've done. A small one for quick shots and the larger one for when I know I will be taking important photos.

Carver said...

That's exciting that you have a new camera JMB. I will look forward to your photographs with it. My camera is a similar canon to your old one but my model has the option of buying an adapter and adding a powerful telephoto lens and also a wider angle than is built in. The problem is by the time I bought the adapter and new lenses, I could almost buy a new camera and since mine is 3 years old I'm afraid to invest in the lenses. Oh well, decisions, decisions. I'm glad you've gotten your new camera. Enjoy!

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

I love my simple digcam and I'd be scared of changing it so I think you are very brave!