New to photography - buying camera - need advice

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by majkom, Jul 9, 2016.

  1. majkom macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    May 3, 2011
    #1
    Hi, I would like to buy new camera - all around worker (for vacations (sightseeing, landmarks...) - most important, for people photography, maybe some nature photography) - I am completely new to photography, actually my only camera (as for now) is my iPhone:)

    So, I want some good compact camera and I don't want to buy the best one in the market - because of budget. All i want is some camera, that is significantly better than iPhone one. I would choose Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ70, but I am not sure if:
    - it is significantly better than iPhone?
    - if for approx. same amount of money there is no better one?

    Thx.
     
  2. robgendreau macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    #2
    That camera was included with some others in a compendium of travel cameras at http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/dpreview-recommends-best-compact-cameras-for-travel-2015

    While some would probably be massive overkill for you, the article does sorta show the different types available over a large range of price.

    Used correctly it is better than an iPhone, at least in terms of giving you a lens that has a bigger focal length range (meaning some zoom for bringing objects closer in the image), and it would be able to produce more "keepers" in demanding conditions (especially if you shoot in RAW format). Generally the bigger sensor would produce images that are sharper in larger sizes. And it has more customization in shooting modes.

    Whether in that price range something is better probably depends a lot on how you use it. Start by looking at the other models in that comparison.
     
  3. elf69 macrumors 65816

    elf69

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2016
    Location:
    Cornwall UK
    #3
    possibly look for a bridge rather than compact.

    They offer slr settings and such without slr prices.

    alot of bridge cameras do raw but not sure on compacts.
     
  4. majkom thread starter macrumors 65816

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    May 3, 2011
    #4
    Thx but i definitely dont want anything bigger than compact... Maybe lumix tz80?
     
  5. OzBok macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2016
    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    #5
    Is the compact restriction, based on budget? or size you want to carry.

    If you really want to get into photography, you want a camera that gives you some manual control.
    If you think you would want to get into some serious editing after taking, you want RAW capability.
    This can often improve a photo that takes on the average side, by giving you the most control to tweak.
    (Until I learnt how to use my camera, this saved a lot of my first photos).

    www.cameradecision.com put in a few model numbers here, and you can compare features quite easily, some sites better for reviews, but this is a good way to directly compare a few you like quickly for the features and basics.

    Also, head to Flickr and type the model number in search. You can see the quality of the images the camera will take, find the one that you like the most with kind of shots you want to take, the average look of images is what you will shoot, and when you see some that really stand out, you'll see what the camera is capable of when you learn how to use it. Also, look at sample images on manufacturer sites.

    The above is part of what I did to research my dslr.
    If you think you will get into photography more, it might be worth looking at small body mirrorless systems and micro four thirds systems, which minus lens don't weigh too much more than the compact you mentioned and not much difference in size either, but they will have the capability of growing to your style with an extra lens or two (which are also smaller and lighter than full blown dslrs) e.g. my dad was after an all purpose like you, and he is happy he went with an olympus OMD with 2 lenses which he just got back from a month around europe with. you could possibly find a second hand one of these in good condition somewhere.

    Panasonic make good cameras, and looking at flickr, the one you mentioned is capable of some good shots. If you do get into photography the way some of us have on here, you will one day want something more, but a good compact is always a good grab n go camera as well. Looks like good manual control and RAW capability so this or newer models of it will work fine. Just be wary of difference between optical zoom and digital zoom, I haven't looked in detail, but some "big zooms" are part lens, and then digital takes over past a certain point, and the quality isn't the same in a lot of cases.

    Whatever path you take, you will be glad to have stepped up from an iPhone, when you learn how to use it.
     
  6. majkom, Jul 9, 2016
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2016

    majkom thread starter macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    May 3, 2011
    #6
    Both, i don't want some chunky big camera, i know that i won't use it... and don't want to invest too much at the beginning, therefore I am looking for some decent camera to start with:)

    thx for your comment, i will definitely check both web pages... that lumix i sent last time looks promising to me:) but i found good deal on Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-RX100
     
  7. OzBok macrumors regular

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    Mar 15, 2016
    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    #7
    Did you end up getting that? Or now deciding between the two
     
  8. majkom thread starter macrumors 65816

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    May 3, 2011
    #8
    still deciding... will buy in a week or two
     
  9. OzBok macrumors regular

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    Mar 15, 2016
    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    #9
    The Panasonic has more optical reach, depending on which Sony rx100 it's either 30x vs 2.9 or3.6x
    That said, the extreme of that would need a very steady hand to make use of.
    The Sony does have a faster lens ( wider aperture) and a bigger sensor which are good for image quality,
    If it's in budget, the DMC tz100 has a large sensor and a good balance on the zoom being 10x optical.

    Worth heading in store to hold them in hand as well, the feel of holding one might sway you, and they might have another recommendation as well. Good luck with the decision
     
  10. kenoh macrumors demi-god

    kenoh

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2008
    Location:
    Glasgow, UK
    #10
    Hi.

    I am going to chime in and say that the RX100 is a cracking camera. I shoot full frame digital (i say this for no other reason than credibility) but as a carry around everywhere I have been using an RX100 for years. I travel alot with work and a lot of the time lugging a camera around is not possible but the RX means I can carry something better than my phone all the time.

    I recently considered something else like a panasonic LX100 but just didnt gel with it. So I am still with my RX100 and while yes, it doesnt take pictures quite as good as my heavy artillery, it is a great camera. I have a Mki and a MKiii. Honestly, doesnt matter which one you get... the differences are minimal between them at this stage for you. I think the MKii can be had real cheap right now and it is great.

    If you want a viewfinder then the MKiii or iv have that but it is fiddly. I bought my MKiii thinking I would use the viewfinder but I hardly ever do.

    Hope this helps.
     
  11. majkom thread starter macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    May 3, 2011
    #11
    thx... very appreciated insight. well, mk3 is over my budget and mk2 seems to add very little to mk1, so why spend 100 use more? thats why I choose mk1, will do some more reading and then make decision:)
     
  12. Apple fanboy macrumors P6

    Apple fanboy

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2012
    Location:
    Behind the Lens, UK
    #12
    If budget is a concern, look at second hand. Lots of people buy cameras and use them very little before moving on.
    If you buy from a camera store most will have a limited warranty with them.
    As others have said try and get to a proper camera shop and try out different models.
    If you go to a big electrical store they are usually attached to cords or behind glass. The staff generally know nothing about the hobby or the equipment.
    Do you have a dedicated camera shop in your area? Those guys are usefully knowledgeable as most are photographers.
     
  13. kenoh macrumors demi-god

    kenoh

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2008
    Location:
    Glasgow, UK
    #13

    Wise choice. It is a great camera. Only issue is it is a dust magnet so dont make a habit of putting it in your pocket without a cover or bag over it or eventually you will end up with dust on the sensor. Easy to remedy but a pain none the less.

    Yes i agree with your logic, where you are in your journey, that 100 cash is better spent on books to learn to use it optimally.
    --- Post Merged, Jul 10, 2016 ---
    Good shout... and if any salespersons opening gambit is the mega pixel count, then chances are they are not worth your time.
     
  14. Apple fanboy macrumors P6

    Apple fanboy

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    #14
    You been listening to my sales pitch? :D
     
  15. OzBok macrumors regular

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    Mar 15, 2016
    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    #15
    Where abouts are you based Majkom?

    There are some absolute shockers around, I had some muppet try to talk me into an 810A when I asked about 810.
     
  16. kenoh macrumors demi-god

    kenoh

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2008
    Location:
    Glasgow, UK
    #16

    Nice! I work in IT so a trip to our local PC World is always entertaining when they try to talk tech... not being funny but I design computer systems for banks and hospitals... please dont try and tell me I need anti virus for my ipad! :)
     
  17. majkom thread starter macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    May 3, 2011
    #17
    Near Prague - czech republic.. I will visit some specialised shops, but i would say that sony rx100 mk1 may be way to go;)
     
  18. jerwin, Jul 10, 2016
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2016

    jerwin macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2015
    #18
    Reach for the stars, man!. Sure, you'll have to use some funky filters to photograph terrestrial objects, but just imagine the Hydrogen Alpha spectral line! Can't photograph that with an ordinary D810, no siree.
    --- Post Merged, Jul 10, 2016 ---
    DPreview has a small gallery of rx100 shots

    http://www.dpreview.com/products/sony/compacts/sony_dscrx100/sample-photos

    And for the Lumix DMC-TZ70
    http://www.dpreview.com/products/panasonic/compacts/panasonic_dmczs50/sample-photos

    The trouble with buying a camera for "reach" is that frequently the images at the extreme telephoto end come out fuzzy, and lack the vibrancy of wider angle images. Maybe I'm just picky, but it depends on whether the urge to shoot deer and birds and such is so compelling.

    And to be completely honest, that's what I enjoy about photography
    [​IMG]

    My setup is big and heavy though.
     
  19. soulreaver99 macrumors 68020

    soulreaver99

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2010
    Location:
    Southern California
    #19
    I found a great deal on a used Sony RX100m3 about six months ago on eBay so I'm sure with some patience, you would probably find a deal as good as I did. I got mine for less than $400 on eBay, great condition with case and a 32GB memory card. Out of all my cameras (besides the one on my smartphone), this is the camera I use the most. It has travelled all around the world with me and was hit by waves at the beach and it is still going strong! It can take a beating!

    I have mirrorless cameras such as the NEX 5T and even the new A6300 but the RX100m3 is the camera of choice for hikes and traveling because of how portable and durable it is and it takes absolutely fantastic shots that can rival the bigger cameras. Plus the wireless capabilities are extremely handy too when you want to share an awesome photo on the spot with your friends or social media :)
     
  20. seggy macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2016
    #20
    TZ100 / ZS100's looking good. Same sensor as RX100, much more zoom, TOUCHSCREEN (touch to focus, instead of the laborious D-pad focus point movement on the Sony, same for image review / zoom), cheaper new.

    RX100 III/IV are more powerful in theory, better optics, have flippy selfie screens, better viewfinders.

    As a travel camera I think the Panasonic looks great, but I've not used one yet. As a DSLR companion / occasional main carry the III/IV Sony's are great cameras, and the original RX100 (still available) is a great budget travel camera - though somewhat displaced by the TZ100 for value now I think.

    I'm just not a huge fan of the controls of the Sony's. They're great in full auto and they're capable of making smart decisions by themselves, but when you get down to manual control they're really hard to use, with only one control ring + another at the back doing double duty as a key UI element, and no touchscreen to make up the lack-of-dials shortfall. And the app ecosystem that Sony have tried to create within the cameras themselves (you can install apps on them to extend functionality, and essential features like smartphone control is also an app) is a total UX disaster.

    Aside from that, as a snapshooter and a camera that I hand to other people to take pictures for me (duct taped to full auto) the RX100 III and the IV gets a lot of use. I don't actually use them very much tho - I'd generally prefer to use a smaller Panasonic Micro 4/3rds or an LX100 for something smaller, if not pocketable, though the image quality of the Sony's is incredible for the compact size.
     
  21. 3568378 Suspended

    3568378

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2015
    Location:
    Orlando, FL
    #21
    Sony all the way - they're just hitting it out of the park right now with their image sensors and camera tech. The RX100 is good but, and especially if you're looking at the RX100IV which I believe goes for close to $900 right now (?) consider the A6300. MUCH bigger sensor size and the fastest auto focus system on the planet. I picked one up a few months ago after looking hard at the Panasonic GH4--upgraded kit lens to a f/1.8 Sony 50mm (will be looking to get a zoom and a macro in the next few months) but here are some shots I took a few weeks ago on a camping trip out west (Grand Canyon, Zion, Bryce). That lens has awesome bokeh by the way and is pretty cheap. My advice would be to buy the camera body only (rather than the more expensive camera + kit lens option) and then grab a good lens like the aforementioned which will run you about $250 from B&H. I'm a big fan of B&H because their prices are always good, plus no sales tax if you live outside of NY state. The A6300 body is about $900 I think - maybe $1000, plus $250 for the lens and you've got a rock star set up for $1250 that not only takes great photos and has lots of expandability options but shoots killer 4k. This camera actually uses the equivalent of a 6k recording format and downscales so essentially it captures even more detail than standard 4k and then downscales it to 4k. Quality is awesome - really couldn't be happier with this camera and it's well built.

    And to add to my Sony comment, I don't work for Sony or anything like that! I've been a Canon guy for years. A good product, however, is worth mentioning.
     
  22. Micky Do macrumors 68000

    Micky Do

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    Location:
    An island in the Andaman Sea.
    #22
    My first dip into digital photography was a water and drop resistant Olympus Tough (cannot remember the model) that I picked up as an end of line special several years ago for about $US 120. It was a great start, and went places most other cameras could not go. I still carry it from time to time, though would be loathe to take it under water now as the O-rings sealing it are past their use by date.

    @ Ao Sane.jpg Kings Cup yachts at sunset; Kata 5 Dec '12.jpg

    It's main limitation from my point of view was shutter lag; I wanted to take photos of action at sports events. I didn't have the budget for DSLR, nor the inclination to lug one around. I now use a Fujifilm X20, which cost five times as much as the Olympus, but shutter lag is non-existent for all practical purposes, and image quality is far more satisfying. Quite a few of my shots are used in the local press for reports of spots events.

    Anand on gutair.jpg Catch & Bowled1.jpg Catch & Bowled2.jpg
    Squrriel.jpg
     
  23. mildocjr macrumors 65816

    #23
    My dad was a photographer for 13 years and I've learned quite a bit from him. Almost every professional photographer will tell you, it all comes down to the glass.

    More important than the camera you choose is the lenses that you buy for it. Determining what lenses you buy is based on what kind of photography you want to do. (Sports, portrait, low light, and macro to name a few)

    When buying a camera I typically look at how many lenses are available for it, the second thing I do is look at how many MegaPixels (MP) the camera is and how many lenses can actually take advantage of that. The last thing I do is compare prices. Something you might consider buying with your camera would be a second battery, which any professional photographer will agree. The last thing you want is to be leaving a national park and see yourself standing 15 feet from a bald eagle, quickly pulling out your camera for the shot and realizing your battery is completely dead, and the feeling gets worse when the bald eagle just sits there giving you enough time to have replaced your battery and taken a few good shots.

    Once you've bought your camera, before you go out and shoot, learn how to use the camera to it's best ability, learn about ISO, shutter speed, and aperture; how they are all related and affect one another, and then start working on getting out of Auto.

    The quick layman's rundown in case you don't know is this:
    ISO - low in daylight, high at night. The lower it is the softer the image is, the higher it is the more grainy your image is.
    Aperture - camera focus (F-Stop) use this to blow out (blur) the background or capture a full landscape.
    Shutter Speed - how quickly the image is captured, turn this down low 1/2000 to capture moving objects, turn it up high 1/20 to blur rushing water and make it look like a mist, but best to use a tripod at lower settings.

    Auto is nice for quick shots, but you'll have more creative and sometimes better looking pictures if you do everything in manual, or at least Aperture/Shutter priority modes.

    My dad has owned a lot of cameras and he swears by Nikon, mostly because that is what he is familiar with, but you can get good photos on any brand.

    I own a Nikon D3300 and he has a D3100 and a D7100. The standard lens that comes with it is good for outdoor portrait shots, but I quickly bought a micro lens and a 200mm lens bundle shortly after to get a wider range of shooting.
     

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