consumer digital camera that shoots in raw?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by bennetsaysargh, Jan 15, 2005.

  1. bennetsaysargh macrumors 68020

    bennetsaysargh

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2003
    Location:
    New York
    #1
    are there any? i'm really wanting a camera that can shoot in raw now that iPhoto supports it. if there's not a consumer one, any ideas of where i can find a cheap one? i'm going to try and avoid ebay unless if it's hard to find a good reliable affordable one.
     
  2. crazzyeddie macrumors 68030

    crazzyeddie

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    Dec 7, 2002
    Location:
    Florida, USA
    #2
    The Nikon 8800 is a VERY good consumer camera with specs better than most dSLRs that you find, including a very expensive 35-350mm Vibration Reduction lens.
     
  3. Daveway macrumors 68040

    Daveway

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    Jul 10, 2004
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    New Orleans / Lafayette, La
    #3
    No offense but I don't think thats what he had in mind. Great camera I think this is what he was looking for.
     
  4. bennetsaysargh thread starter macrumors 68020

    bennetsaysargh

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2003
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    New York
    #4
    wow daveway, i think you hit the nail on the head right there. thanks to you too of course crazzyedie, but 1000 dollars is out of my range right now.

    now that i was looking at the powershots from canon, there's this one too.

    http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp?id=1087341193579&skuId=6742251&type=product

    same price, a bit uglier, but still. there are also some other differences, like the 5mp one has 32mb internal memory, while the 7.1 has none. anyone have a suggestion for which to get?
     
  5. Daveway macrumors 68040

    Daveway

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2004
    Location:
    New Orleans / Lafayette, La
    #5
    The Canon S series was what I was considering to purchase until I decided to wait for the Olympus C-5500. I am a huge Canon fan and this camera had rave reviews, it was just a wee bit to much for my needs. Here's a great link. Go here for all indepth camera reviews, this guy is great. http://www.steves-digicams.com/2004_reviews/s60.html

    It basically comes down to price and how many pixels you need for your uses. Going from 5 to 7 megapixels is a big leap I would imagine.
     
  6. JFreak macrumors 68040

    JFreak

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    Jul 11, 2003
    Location:
    Tampere, Finland
    #6
    it seems that usability of powershot s60/s70 is WORSE than the previous generations... :( why did they have to move the multi-button placement?

    luckily i now have no incentive to trade my s50 :D
     
  7. Benj macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2004
    Location:
    London
    #7
    Might be a silly question but is there a reason you want to use RAW?

    It is only the interim format - not one you will want to view on an ongoing basis. In fact - RAW images usually look very odd with strange blue hues etc.

    I use RAW and then convert and edit using Capture One (and very occasionally a bit of photoshop) and the put the end product into iPhoto if I want to use it for screensaver, .mac etc.

    Most RAW conversion software has a way to download and display images, or there are some very reasonable third party options - I use qpict which is excellent.

    The problem I envisage with iPhoto for managing digital work flow is the dire file structure, which won't be great if you have RAW and TIFF/JPEG versions of the same image floating around.

    Apologies if you know all of this and I am telling you nothing new (or helpful).
     
  8. gwuMACaddict macrumors 68040

    gwuMACaddict

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    Location:
    washington dc
    #8
    i was wondering the same thing... why RAW on a consumer camera? you're going to spend more on memory cards to store the huge data files than on the actual camera...
     
  9. Benj macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2004
    Location:
    London
    #9
    Agree 100%.

    RAW is just plain awesome on a DSLR, particularly with great software like Capture One. Case in point - I shot a bunch of shots in a large, dark restaurant on Saturday, using a fairly offensive flash (other patrons very happy). All of the photos looked way better underexposed by half a stop (or more). This is so much harder with a JPEG.

    The problem is that even fairly expensive "prosumer" all-in-one cameras (like the Canon G series) are pretty poor with RAW.

    If you fancy using RAW, you are better off with something like the Canon EOS Digital Rebel/300 D. Getting cheaper and takes fantastic shots.

    The point with storage is also a good one. A 6.3 MP camera shooting RAW is only going to get you about 60-70 shots on a 512 card.
     
  10. Lau Guest

    #10
    I can second a big thumbs up for the S60, especially if you want the flexibility of an SLR, but pocket sized (big pocket). Only criticsm I have is some purple fringing against skies, sometimes.

    The RAW files seem really good quality. I don't use RAW that often, as the compressed ones seem fine for most things, but its useful to have the option. One useful thing about it is there is a button you can press immediately after you've taken the photo to make it a RAW file, even if you've been shooting on standard. Means you have the space for more shots, but if you take an amazing one, you can keep it RAW by pressing this button. Other cameras may also have this feature, so might be worth checking it out.
     
  11. bennetsaysargh thread starter macrumors 68020

    bennetsaysargh

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    Jan 20, 2003
    Location:
    New York
    #11
    well, i wanted a consumer camera that shoots in raw because i wanted to experiment with it and stuff like that. i would most likely shoot in jpeg a vast majority of the time, but i just wanted to play around. my current digital camera is a really really bad fujifilm one, and i can't do anything to the ISO and almost nothing with the white balance, it doesn't take pictures clearly at all inside without a flash, and the lense cover thinks it's closed. figured it's time for an upgrade to something better.
    does anyone else have any first hand experience with the s60 or s70? how easy are the menus to navigate?
    really, thanks so much you guys. :)
     
  12. Blackstealth macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2003
    Location:
    Bradford, UK
    #12
    If you can find a second hand Powershot G3 then you'll get a fair amount of manual control and RAW support. Resolution is only 4 megapixel but it's good for A3 sized prints. Controls are easy to use and the menus are a piece of cake.

    Auto-focusing can leave a bit to be desired at times (sometimes it can refuse to co-operate and needs switching into manual focus and then back into auto to kick it back into life), but other than that it's a great little(ish) camera.

    I've been shooting RAW with mine since I bought it (2 yrs ago) and it'll squeeze 260 on a 1Gb compact flash card (at the highest resolution JPEG setting it's capable of fitting jsut shy of 500 shots - raising to about 9000 at 640x480...)

    The new G6 is an excellent camera too - but may be a little out of your price range. But if you see a Powershot G5 going for a good price I'd avoid it - it suffers terribly from purple fringing...

    I'm planning on upgrading to a 20D in the next month or two but I'll certainly be keeping the G3 as a backup...
     
  13. OutThere macrumors 603

    OutThere

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    Dec 19, 2002
    Location:
    NYC
    #13
    Hehe - no more 500 shots on the cf...:D
     
  14. stoid macrumors 601

    stoid

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    Feb 17, 2002
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    So long, and thanks for all the fish!
    #14
    I have a Canon PowerShot S45, and I absolutely love it. My dad, after having looked at different cameras for 6 months, tried it out for a weekend, he immediately went and bought one for himself. If the S60 has kept the powerful features and ease of use, it gets my full recommendation.
     
  15. Thomas Veil macrumors 68020

    Thomas Veil

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2004
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    Reality
    #15
    Amazing we got through 14 posts without anyone making the obvious joke:

    Can't you shoot naked with any camera?
     
  16. G4scott macrumors 68020

    G4scott

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2002
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    #16
    I've just gotta add my $0.02 USD to this discussion...


    I have had a Canon S50 for over a year now, and I've gotta say that it's almost a perfect combination of features and size. I think the S60 and S70 models just made them better.

    The camera is very good for just plain 'ol point-and-shoot pictures. Most of my pictures like that come out just fine, with no real need for adjustment. It's also easy to use other features to get the best out of your photos, like changing exposure, or using a fill-flash to get people's faces under the shadows of their hats on a sunny day. The flexibility to shoot aperture or shutter priority (and manual, or both at the same time) are also useful for different effects or lighting situations.

    As for RAW, I have no complaint's about the RAW files from my S50. They open easily in Photoshop, and offer all the quality I would expect from a 5 megapixel camera that fits in my pocket.

    The camera does have issues because of it's size, like the lens for instance, but there's a tradeoff between size and quality, and I chose size. Either way, though, the minor things with the lens are not a problem for me 99% of the time.

    My Conclusion: I would definitely recommend the S60 or S70 for the average consumer who wants a camera that's easy to use for point-and-shoot occasions, yet powerful enough for someone who wants to try their hand at amateur photography.
     
  17. bennetsaysargh thread starter macrumors 68020

    bennetsaysargh

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2003
    Location:
    New York
    #17
    thanks all. i think i'm gonna go for either one, but which one? they're the same price. should i go for the 7 megapixel or 5?
     
  18. G4scott macrumors 68020

    G4scott

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2002
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    #18
    Same price? I thought the S70 was more... The S70 would take higher res pictures, at the cost of more memory...

    And the Best Buy site is messed up, because the S60 doesn't have 32mb of internal memory... It just comes with a 32mb card, as does the S70.
     
  19. aswitcher macrumors 603

    aswitcher

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    Oct 8, 2003
    Location:
    Canberra OZ
    #19
    My S70 has served me well on a recent holiday. I really like its portableness and excellent optics (especially the 28mm wide angle). With a 1 gig card and a spare battery I have been easily able to shoot 350 shots between downloads of jpegs, so it should be fine with RAW with the new iphoto.

    For the money I could have got a pseudo SLR with 10x optical and image stabliser BUT I doubt it would have been taken everywhere that the highly portable S70 was.
     
  20. bennetsaysargh thread starter macrumors 68020

    bennetsaysargh

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2003
    Location:
    New York
    #20
    ok, prices are definitely variable here. best buy has the s60 and the s70 both for 500 dollars. circuit city has the s60 for $600 and no s70. b&h in the city (new york) has the s60 for roughly $400, and the s70 for about $440.

    who do i believe? haha. i like b&h for the s70 :)
     
  21. mersea macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2005
    #21
    I'm looking into buying a digital camera and I have a couple questions. First off, what I want in the camera. I basically want a consumer camera that takes really good pictures, I have no idea what the RAW format is/does, but it doesn't seem as though its something I need. As for how many megapixels, I'm not quite sure. I want to be able to print regular sized pictures (replacement for a film camera) and perhaps do a bit of messing around on my computer. My major concern is picture quality, I don't want any noise, and I want crisp colours. So basically what I'm asking is what resolution (?) would do me best and any reccomendations? (Oh, and of course I don't want to spend too much money...)
     
  22. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #22
    This is something that is somewhat difficult to grasp about digital cameras (was for me), but, especially at 5 MP or more, the resolution is NOT the determining factor in picture quality. When my Powershot S50 (good, btw, for an all-in-one, but I am definitely getting a DSLR this summer, because I am too used to using primes and manual-everything) gets the focus and f/ratio right, and produces a sharp image, I can crop out a fairly small portion of it and still get a very detailed picture. Getting a sharp image, though, is the problem.

    The hardware aspects of a camera that impact getting a good image are probably more like:

    - Big lens / good optics -- the mid-grade cameras that have the physically large-diameter lenses will probably take better pictures in a lot of circumstances by virtue of collecting more light, again being able to get a good picture in a shorter exposure, etc.

    - light sensitivity -- a camera that performs well at short shutter times / low ISO will take sharper pictures (esp. of people) by virtue of the fact that there will be less motion blur

    - good autofocusing mechanism

    I think you will find that most all-in-ones take really good pictures in bright lighting, telephoto, scenery kind of applications, but are a lot less good at indoors, people (esp if they're not posed), etc. So a lot of the question will depend on what you want to take pictures of. I've found myself recently mostly taking pictures of children I play with at camp, indoors, cinema verité, and point-and-shoot pocket cameras are really not the best for that. :( OTOH, if its outdoors, bright light, scenery and people posing, the 5MP and above point-and-shoots, like anything in the Sxx range starting with the S50 (or even the S40 and 45 -- but you can easily get the S50 or up for a low price now, I think) will service you very well.

    Anyway, if you are really concerned about picture quality in the sense of sharpness, I think you will be happier with a cheaper one of the non-pocket cameras (the ones that have big lens barrels, and don't fold together into a tiny shape like the Powershot Sxx or the Optios) that has a lower number of megapixels (4 or 5) than a Powershot S70 that has more resolution but optics that are not well-suited to as many challenges. Definitely, a Digital Rebel (6.3 MP) will take better pictures than an S70 (>7 MP) in almost any circumstance.

    Anyway, I'm not an expert, but I think most of that is correct. :) Hopefully MoxieMike or iGary or one of the other real pros will pop in here! :D
     
  23. Inspector Lee macrumors 6502a

    Inspector Lee

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2004
    Location:
    East Lansing, MI
    #23
    My G1 is still kicking after 4 years (at least kicking how I want it to kick). I've never shot in RAW but should give it a try. I'll be looking to drop some coin on a DSLR in the near future and I will use my G1 as a backup.

    My only concern with Canon is their fascisti repair policies. From what I've gathered, they make it difficult for people to do their own repairs (including the camera guru who runs the small shop in your town). They'll charge you $150 to send it in and fix it even if the cost of parts/labor is significantly less than $150.

    As a result, I would approach the purchase of a used powershot with caution.

    On the whole, this has been one of the best purchases I have made.
     

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