Help! I need a camera for a trip to DC this weekend!

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Dick Whitman, Mar 27, 2016.

  1. Dick Whitman macrumors 6502

    Dick Whitman

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2012
    #1
    So long story short I recently sold my Nikon D5300, which, in hindsight, I should have kept at least until after my trip. Now I'm without a camera and don't want to rely on just my iPhone so I need to make a decision fast.

    The reason I sold my D5300 is mostly because it wasn't a camera I would take absolutely everywhere. The only times I really used it is when I went away on vacation or on long day trips.

    The camera I'm most leaning towards now is the Sony RX100 III. But what I'm wondering is if that's a smart option considering that I will probably get the iPhone 7, which will likely have a better camera and more closely close the difference in quality between the iPhone and the RX100 series. I've heard the argument that IQ from the iPhone is similar to the RX100 so it's not worth it. But I've also heard the argument that the the IQ from the RX100 is significantly better than the iPhone, making it worthwhile.

    For $800 though I'm wondering if it would perhaps be smarter to invest in a mirrorless option like the Fujifilm X100T, the Olympus E-M10 II, the Sony Alpha a6300, or even the Sony Alpha A7. I would also like to get IQ that is close to the D5300. I had the D5300 in DC last year and it took excellent photos. Finally, there's the dilemma of not having a whole lot of time to become familiar with the camera before using it this weekend.

    Please help, Macrumors!
     
  2. Illuminated macrumors 6502a

    Illuminated

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    Denver
    #2
  3. LiveM macrumors 6502a

    LiveM

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    Oct 30, 2015
    #3
    I strongly advise getting the Leica D-Lux Typ 109. As an Apple owner, you will appreciate the quality, design, and well-balanced package, plus the amazing resale value.

    Failing that, the Sony RX100 series are good but just feel soulless by comparison with the Leica and Fujifilm options.
     
  4. phrehdd, Mar 27, 2016
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2016

    phrehdd macrumors 68040

    phrehdd

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    #4
    You are in quite a soup now with wanting a camera in short order.

    There are so many decent "point and shoot" cameras out there. If you want a more advanced camera, you would have to learn the ins and outs of the camera to fully access the capability of the particular camera.

    While I am a strong advocate for some of the Fuji line up, you may find that Olympus, Panasonic, Nikon and others make some easy carry around cameras as well. Perhaps a visit to a good store that offers these various cameras is in order so you can get the feel of them, a look at their controls and menu systems etc.

    As I said Fuji - That would be my* first choice but for others it might be Sony or Panasonic etc.
     
  5. OreoCookie macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2001
    Location:
    Sendai, Japan
    #5
    I have three cameras: a dslr (Nikon D7000 + several lenses and flashes), a Fuji X100s and my iPhone. Nowadays I almost always use the Fuji for serious photography — unless my wife steals it from me (which happens invariably when we travel together) or I need a longer focal length. The image quality is on par with a dslr (it has a proper APS-C-sized sensor), and it feels amazing in the hand. I really love, love, love this thing.

    If you want a light travel camera, getting an X100T feels like a great choice.
     
  6. kenoh macrumors demi-god

    kenoh

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    Jul 18, 2008
    Location:
    Glasgow, UK
    #6
    I have an RX100 III. Brilliant little camera, better than iPhone IMHO.

    However, I do get a tad frustrated with it when I use it rather than my A7Rii or Leica M9. I adore using them.

    So, based on your comments, budget seems to be available. Maybe consider the X100T or if you need the option to interchange lenses, consider an A7 series knowing it will likely become like your d5300 in that it will stay home as it is close in size.

    I too would suggest an Olympus gets a look in, maybe an M10 or EM5 level, or even the PEN-F which has my camera lust fired up right now...
     
  7. Fishrrman macrumors G3

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    Feb 20, 2009
  8. retrocool macrumors newbie

    retrocool

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    Jan 29, 2004
    #8
    If I had the same requirements as you, I would be very tempted to buy the Panasonic Lumix LX100, which is slightly bigger than the RX100 but has a much bigger sensor and better zoom. You would never regret having the RX100, which I have often recommended in the past, but the LX100 pips it in my view, as this fellow points out:

    If absolute pocketability is your thing, then maybe the Sony is right, but if you are willing to carry something very small compared to a dSLR, but value the quality enough, consider the LX100. The fuji which others have recommended is a great camera, but it feels much bigger than the LX100 and it has a fixed lens, which is slower than the LX100's.
     
  9. LiveM macrumors 6502a

    LiveM

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    Oct 30, 2015
    #9
    I would get the Leica version of the LX100 as it looks better, comes with Lightroom and has better UX plus better accessories and is cheaper in the long run as its resale value is much higher.
     
  10. Ray2, Mar 28, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2016

    Ray2 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2014
    #10
    I have an RX100 III. I'd take a major league pass. It's a small sensor camera and it's sensor has all the issues any <APS sensor will have. Noise. I was so astonished at how poorly it stood up to my Fuji files, I limited ISO to 800. I'm now down to 500 and still tossing away good compositions due to noisy files. Coming from a dslr, I think you'll find it's a daylight cam only. And you'll still be struggling with low shutter speeds at times to tame the noise.

    I would not rush into a new camera purchase. If you must, an option would be a Fuji XE2 with either the 18-55 or the 35/2 (50 eq.) if you prefer primes. You would have to go full frame to beat the files and, for JPEG shooters, the OOC files are gorgeous. Complete with very good headroom for post. RAW files are the same size as my D800's. Plenty of data to work with. White balance actually works (not to knock Sony but I started with Sony 11 years ago and find the RX00's white balance still off in all bandwidths of light and way off in artificial lighting -- 11 years later). Metering is superb, ala Nikon. I've had 2 X100 series. They are a lot of money for a fixed lens cam. Lovely in hand, lovely files. But in DC you need reach that goes beyond a 35 equivalent.
     
  11. Ish macrumors 68000

    Ish

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    Nov 30, 2004
    Location:
    UK
    #11
    Talking generalities, phone cameras are often fine in good light but don't hold up under dim lighting conditions. I don't use my phone camera so you'd need to check on your particular one.

    I agree with @LiveM when he talks about the Fujifilm mirrorless cameras taking pictures with soul. I have an X100T and love it for travel. If you're going to get one though, get it asap so you can have some practice with it before you go. It's definitely not a point and shoot camera and it's got plenty of differences from a DSLR too, it's well … it's itself. The manual is only online too and you haven't got much time so if you want one don't hang around here too long ;)
     
  12. Dick Whitman thread starter macrumors 6502

    Dick Whitman

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2012
    #12
    Hey everyone. Sorry to have gone MIA. Thank you for all the suggestions. I'm going to research these more thoroughly and then wait to make a decision. I wish I wasn't going to DC with just my iPhone 6 but I guess I'd rather do that then rush and buy a camera and risk not being entirely happy with it or not really know how to operate it. I'm going back to DC again in two weeks after tomorrow though so hopefully I've made a decision by then.

    I was really leaning towards the RX100 because it seems like a very popular camera but if I'm going to spend $800+ I figure I might as well get something that is stronger and can provide better IQ in the long run.

    Sometimes I feel like my iPhone 5s took better pictures than my iPhone 6. I always wonder why Apple elect to handle shadows with no much noise and smudging in the iPhone 6's camera.
     
  13. Ish macrumors 68000

    Ish

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    UK
    #13
    Good idea on holding off for further research. Twice I've bought a camera and realised within two weeks it wasn't for me and mistakes like that don't come cheap. Let us know what you decide!
     
  14. harleymhs macrumors 6502

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    Jul 19, 2009
    #14
  15. bandrews macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 18, 2008
    #15
    Just don't get paralysed by indecision. There are a lot of very good cameras out there and there may not be The One. So long as you stick to a sensor 1" or bigger you can't go far wrong.
     
  16. Ray2 macrumors 6502a

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  17. mofunk macrumors 68000

    mofunk

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    Aug 26, 2009
    Location:
    Americas
    #17
    I would go with the renting idea too. Lensrental.com is another great rental company.

    @OP Even though you've read that a camera has a better IQ, you still need to learn how to shoot. I look at online reviews as someone's opinion. Find a camera that fits your needs. If you just need something for when you travel, stay with your iPhone or just get a point and shoot camera. The Camera+ app is a great tool to use. And also learn how to use a camera, like using the AF lock or choosing the right aperture.
     
  18. Cobalt50 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    #18
    Ricoh GR /GR II. Wonderful, wonderful camera. Pocketable. Fixed lens. Unobtrusive. Excellent image quality. Slip it in your jacket pocket and forget about it until you want to take a picture.
     
  19. Micky Do macrumors 68000

    Micky Do

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    Location:
    An island in the Andaman Sea.
    #19
    Every camera is a compromise in one direction or another. Rather than seeking perfection for all situations, get something that seems likely to fit your budget and your needs, then learn to live with it. My first digital camera was a little Olympus Tough job, drop and water resistant. It certainly has it's limitations, but it is one that I can, and still sometimes do take everywhere, and gets pictures that my Fujifilm x20 cannot.

    PC100007.jpg

    On the other hand, the X20 gets photos that would be way beyond the capability of the TG3:

    DSCF4725.jpg
    DSCF7047.jpg
     
  20. Dick Whitman thread starter macrumors 6502

    Dick Whitman

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    Oct 16, 2012
    #20
    Hi guys, quick update. I'm finding myself drawn to Fujifilm's X100T and XT1 but I'm a little confused about the differences between the two other than that the former has a fixed lens and isn't weather sealed. The XT1 is also a good bit more than I wanted to spend but it's rated as one of the best mirrorless cameras on several popular photography sites. Unfortunately, however, neither of these are supposed to be great for video. I don't think I would be shooting a lot of video but it'd be nice to know that whatever camera I got was capable in this area. I'm amazed by the video quality of Sony's RX100 III but, again, if I'm going to spend $800 on a camera I think that maybe that money would be better put towards something beyond a point-and-shoot.
    --- Post Merged, Apr 7, 2016 ---
    How do you like having a fixed lens? Do you use the camera for any video? How's the video quality? Also, is the X100S a camera that were able to pick up and most rely on automatic mode before learning more about photography?
     
  21. TheDrift- macrumors 6502a

    TheDrift-

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    Mar 8, 2010
    #21
    less than a DSLR more than a phone?

    Check out micro 4/3
     
  22. LiveM macrumors 6502a

    LiveM

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    Oct 30, 2015
    #22
    Micro 4/3 is dead. XT1 is good but too big and with poor video.

    Once you start buying lenses you will not stop. Many of us who have owned all the gear have come to appreciate the experience of a smaller camera with a fixed zoom.

    I still have my Fujifilm X10 as it is so beautiful and convenient. I have all the best lenses with the best interchangeable camera but if I can't bring just the 85mm f/1.4 then I prefer to leave it at home.
     
  23. OreoCookie macrumors 68030

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    Apr 14, 2001
    Location:
    Sendai, Japan
    #23
    The XT1 is a system camera, meaning you can change lenses. Fuji's lenses have a very good reputation as striking a balance between weight, image quality and cost. The XT1 is a replacement for a dslr.

    The X100T is a fixed lens camera, so the focal length is what it is. It is a bit less wide than what you get with an iPhone. But it is much smaller, you can simply throw it in the backpack and take it with you anywhere.

    Fuji cameras are made mostly for still photography, so while the video mode works, that's hardly a focus of the camera.
    I love the X100S, it's a great, extremely capable camera. You can put it in full auto mode and leave it there. Since it is very simple, it would also be a good platform to start learning the ins and outs of photography — if you are interested. The camera itself is very easy to use, unlike a dslr, for example, you can in the simplest case give the camera to someone, point to the shutter release and say “press here”.

    I don't use it to take videos, so I can't say how well it works.
     
  24. Dick Whitman thread starter macrumors 6502

    Dick Whitman

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2012
    #24
    Thanks so much for the insight. The X100 series is really appealing to me. I like the idea of the camera being easy to use but also something that you can learn and grow on. I wish the video functionality was better though from the samples I've seen. It seems like a lot of people that are into photography have a very capable point-and-shoot (like the RX100 series) and then something more powerful as their main camera. This was sort of the dilemma I was hoping to avoid but it seems like finding a nice middle ground is rare.

    Also, super jealous that you're in Japan. It's my dream to get over there one day (maybe even in the next year or so). Japan has been one of the things in the back of my mind in thinking about a new camera. It'd be nice to know that whatever I get is a strong option for any future plans there.
     

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