what digital camera?

Discussion in 'General Mac Discussion' started by OSX Panther, Dec 16, 2004.

  1. OSX Panther macrumors member

    Aug 4, 2004
    I have been looking on some digital cameras to use with my mac, does anyone here have some tips on what camera to choose? I am not going to spend so very much money on it, I just want an OK camera.

  2. Chappers macrumors 68020


    Aug 12, 2003
    At home
    Check out http://www.apple.com/macosx/upgrade/cameras.html to see if any camera you might buy is compatible.
    Spend as much as you can afford on a well known brand (Canon, Pentax, Fuji) . Buy a camera with as much optical zoom as possible (digital zoom is not really zoom). Read reviews of cameras.

    Good luck.
  3. cluthz macrumors 68040


    Jun 15, 2004
    If you are looking for a new camera www.steves-digicams.com is the place to check out. Almost every camera is reviewed there.

    If you are looking for a small digital camera these could be worth looking at:
    Sony P150
    Konica Minolta X50
    Pentax Optio S5i
    Casio Exilim Z55
    Panasonic Lumix FX7
    Fuji F450

    I've been Canon fan before, but their latest Powershoot S500 is a step backwards for Canon. The camera is good, but has a horrible shutterlag and lous battery life.
  4. jxyama macrumors 68040


    Apr 3, 2003
    bypass the hype and stick with a 3 megapixel camera. unless you'll be cropping and printing pictures of 20 cm x 25 cm or so, there's no point in getting more pixels.

    remember to factor in about $20-50 extra for flash memory cards. if you want the cheapest option, get a camera that uses Compact Flash cards.

    ignore any claims about "interpolated XX megapixels" and digital zoom.

    if you further want to save money, get a camera that uses standard sized batteries and purchase rechargeables on your own.

    i have Canon S230. two years old now, but still an excellent 3 MP camera. if you invest in a decent one, it will last you quite a while.

    it may not be a choice for you, but also consider getting a used camera as i'm sure many people are wanting to get rid of their 2 year old cameras (like mine) with more recent ones.
  5. OSX Panther thread starter macrumors member

    Aug 4, 2004
    Thanks for the link chappers, but the list of cameras where those who worked with iPhoto, maybe some other cameras work with mac os x but not with iPhoto?
    So that finder recognise it as a removable disc or an volume?
  6. jxyama macrumors 68040


    Apr 3, 2003
    if finder recognizes the camera as a removable disc/volume, then i'm fairly certain iPhoto will recognize it...

    in any case, i imagine image capture will be able to pull pictures from most cameras...
  7. zarathustra macrumors 6502a


    Jul 16, 2002
    Philadelphia, PA
    I wouldn't worry too much about a camera not being compatible. As long as it uses a standard memory card you can get a media reader for roughly $20 and not have to plug in your camera at all. This is what I do and the transfer rates are much better than through the camera.

    Besides, the software that usually comes with the camera is pretty useless. I had to uninstall all of the software that came with my camera (HP R707) because it was just plain annoying. Most of it was bad Windows programs converted really badly into Mac programs.

    When you use the memory card reader, iPhoto will recognize the fact that it contains pictures and will import them 99.5% of the time.

    Regarding the 3MP comment above, yes he is correct to an extent. I had excellent results with a 3MP Sony camera when printed at 4x6. However, when I decided to do some photo manipulation or crop in in photoshop, the grain and lack of detail was difficult to circumvent.

    I am very happy with my 5MP HP camera. I always thought that I needed an "anal-retentive-manual" setting on my camera, but after missing shot after shot because my shutter speed was too low for the ISO setting and my aperture was off, I really enjoy the AI of this fully automatic camera. 9 out of 10 times the picture turns out the way I want it, as opposed to 5 out of 10 with my previous camera.

    /rant over/ :eek:
  8. cluthz macrumors 68040


    Jun 15, 2004

    iPhoto will work with any device certified as "USB masstorage", i can use my sandisk reader just fine with iPhoto, it also works with my Minolta DiMage XT.

    About the megapix hype, more is merrier and 5 MPix cameras aren't much more expensive than the 3 and 4 mpix ones nowadays. The 7 mpix is still a lot more expensive than the 5 mpix are. 3mpix is good on print up to A5 size. (half A4 or ~half Us letter).
    All new well know brands have discontiniued 3mpix cameras, it was last years technology, the new standard is 5 mpix.
  9. ftaok macrumors 601


    Jan 23, 2002
    East Coast
    As with many things in life, more is merrier. But in the digital camera realm, that's not always the case. There comes a point where having too much resolution overwhelms the camera's CCD and the quality goes backwards.

    I don't pretend to be an expert on cameras, but I do a lot of reading. The camera in question was the Sony DSC-878 (I think) and the 7.2MP combined with a regular sized CCD caused much purple fringing.

    While I don't doubt that the 5 MP cameras out there are great, I'd be weary of jumping to the 7MP ones until they start putting in larger CCDs.

  10. cluthz macrumors 68040


    Jun 15, 2004
    Thats true, but 5 mpix is the standard and 7 mpix is going to be the next years standard. To buy a 3mpix today is buying last years tech. I bought a 3mpix almost two years ago, and its been a great camera, but todays 5mpix cameras are cheaper than it was...

    Also search around abit, camera prices seems to vary alot from shop to shop, atleast here in Norway..
  11. Colonel Panik macrumors regular

    Feb 23, 2004
    Dublin, Ireland
    Just to add my 2 European cents, one of the key features I was looking for in a digital camera was size. I have a Canon Ixus i, and it's tiny, smaller than a pack of cigarettes, and I love it. While others hum and haw about whether or not to take their camera with them, I can just slip mine in my pocket and I don't notice it. It's a 4MP camera, and it has a lovely lens. It has digital zoom, not optical, but being a semi-pro photographer, I always encourage the photographer to move closer to the subject anyway. Optical zoom will change the photo by making it flatter and loses a lot of the curvature that the lens gives at it's natural focal length. Try it and see. The wider a lens is, the more dynamic the photo is. I really dislike optical zoom (and digital zoom). I hate zoom!
    The camera responds quickly, and with cheap 256MD SD cards available now, you can always shoot in highest quality. I have a Nikon D70 as well, but I'm happy with the quality of the ixus i.
  12. Duff-Man macrumors 68030


    Dec 26, 2002
    Albuquerque, NM
    Duff-Man says...I just got a Canon G6 7.1 megapixel a couple days ago and so far (I have not had enough time to really delve into all the features and settings yet) I can say it's a fantastic camera...quality of the pictures - even in auto mode - is great. Not really in the "inexpensive" price range though...but I would highly recommend to anyone looking at a mid-high range camera......oh yeah!
  13. bousozoku Moderator emeritus

    Jun 25, 2002
    Gone but not forgotten.
    Putting 5 MP on a 2/3 inch CCD is bad enough. Most inexpensive cameras have noisy shots anyway. Pushing it to 6, 7, or 8 MP? Too much, indeed, and it shows.
  14. Mechcozmo macrumors 603


    Jul 17, 2004
    Our family has a C-50Z made by Olympus. It has to be one of the greatest camera's I've used.

    All manual settings for control freaks, or full auto for laid back types (me)
    There is also a hybrid mode that is great to work with. The menus are a tad bit confusing at first, but once you get the feeling of them, they aren't that bad and actually pretty nice and fast to navigate.

    I think it was recently upgraded to a C-60Z which just added one more megapixel.

    The quality is great. On a 3 MP camera you have issues sometimes with quality if you want to crop out a family member from the side or if you want to zoom in on a face. The 5 MP camera's that I have seen rival film for quality.

    EDIT: That Steve's Digicam link thing allowed me to find this: linkety
  15. tech4all macrumors 68040


    Jun 13, 2004
    I have a Sony DSC-717 5MP and its given me great photos. Course that was last year's model. Check out dpreview.com for some cool info.
  16. jxyama macrumors 68040


    Apr 3, 2003
    guys... this poster asked for an OK camera. the one he's not going to spend very much money on. that's why i recommended 3MP camera because it will be cheaper and i believe, for most uses, MP is an overrated measure of "quality." 3 MP is sufficient for most people for most uses.

    will it do everything better cameras can? of course not. but again, he's looking for an "OK camera" and as such, willing to accept some short comings, i assume.

    discussing the merits of 7 MP vs. 5 MP or recommending a 6 MP camera that's out of his price range probably isn't very helpful. (of course, the orig. poster can help us by telling us about his budget...)
  17. Jo-Kun macrumors 6502a

    Dec 20, 2003
    for the Mpixel people here, forget budget and buy a 22Mpixel digital back (I know I want one when I find the budget :p) but for people who want to stay in a lower budget and no need for big prints (as95% of the people who buy them do) indeed 3Mpixel is fine, just watch out for interpolated 3Mpixel or digital zoom, get real optical zoom and real 3Mpixel and you'll be just fine...

    Learn about color management and some proper Photoshop use and you'd be amazed what you can get out of a simple 3Mpixel... forget about the more the merrier... my D100 has 6Mpixel, but if you don't know anything about color management or Photoshop corrections, you will be dissapointed maybe about the results, remember Digital is less point & shoot than film... and corrections can be a hassle if your screen is not well calibrated and so on... :)
  18. mrgreen4242 macrumors 601


    Feb 10, 2004
    I would recommend a Sony CyberShot P41. I have a CyberShot (older model) and I love it. My sister has a P41 and it's a terrific camera.

    -VGA video at decent FPS, w/ SOUND (video length limited only by available memory space)
    -very small form factor, fits in the palm of your hand
    -uses standard AA batteries, or a Lithium Ion pack from Sony (NiMH rechargables are cheap and work fine!)
    -Cheap price - $170 at Circuit City right now.

    -Uses Memory Sticks, which are the most expensive memory cards out, but that really only adds about $5 or $10 to the overall cost
    -Lacks optical Zoom, which REALLY sucks. has 3x digital zoom, which sucks. With 4.1MP, tho, you can use the digital zoom w/ some effect, and still take nice pictures. Leaving this feature out is really what helps keep it small and cheap.
  19. Benj macrumors regular

    Oct 9, 2004
    Don't buy anything without checking out the excellent www.dpreview.com.

    My two pence is also that you should buy a camera from a camera manufacturer, not a company which makes cheap digital watches or radios. The most important thing is that they understand about cameras (and lenses in particular).

    Canons and Nikons are pretty much good across the range. (As are Minoltas).

    Casio and Sony make some decent cameras and some pretty horrible ones.
  20. gwuMACaddict macrumors 68040


    Apr 21, 2003
    washington dc
    nikon is offering large rebates right now to make way for newer models

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