Which compact to buy? I want manual controls and decent video capture.

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by bananabar, Oct 19, 2008.

  1. bananabar macrumors regular

    Sep 10, 2008
    I have a Nikon D80 but now want a good point-and-shoot digital compact to use day-to-day. I'd be very grateful for any suggestions or opinions (I've come to MR cos it's the only forum I really know and use, so apologies for the non-Mac related subject).

    I'd like it to be as compact as is realistically possible but would still like good quality, full manual control (PASM ideally), ability to shoot RAW (ideally to SD card), prefer as wide a lens as I can get and I'd like to be able to shoot good quality video. I'd also like 3:2 ratio.

    I'll gladly spend up to £500 (about $850) so please, I'd love to hear your suggestions, experiences, ideas and comments...

    Thanks to all.
  2. bananabar thread starter macrumors regular

    Sep 10, 2008
    By the way, the Panasonic Lumix LX3 ticked most of the boxes, but the zoom ratio was a bit pathetic, so I decided against it for now...
  3. bananabar thread starter macrumors regular

    Sep 10, 2008
  4. wheelhot macrumors 68020

    Nov 23, 2007
    I thought the Canon G9 or G10 should be able to do what you want.

    Oh yea, well this is the photography section of the forum :)
  5. bananabar thread starter macrumors regular

    Sep 10, 2008
    That's ok isn't it?
  6. PCMacUser macrumors 68000


    Jan 13, 2005
    It's tricky to give a good answer to this question without doing a huge amount of research - there are just too many compact digitals on the market at the moment. :eek:

    Ask about SLRs and it's a different story... :)
  7. bananabar thread starter macrumors regular

    Sep 10, 2008
    I was hoping someone would have already done the research and purchased a compact they were happy with.
  8. wheelhot macrumors 68020

    Nov 23, 2007
    Yeah :D
  9. ftaok macrumors 603


    Jan 23, 2002
    East Coast
    For P&S cams, I like the Canon line(s). However, there's always a tradeoff. Canon's most compact series (digital Elph) do not have manual controls. The bigger ones have manual controls, but aren't as compact. Pretty much all Canon cams have lousy movie modes (my opinion), except for the $2700 5D MkII. Most of the Canons also do not have very wide lenses, although you could get an wide angle adapter.

    It really depends on what you prioritize most.

    I'm actually thinking about getting a Panasonic TZ-5. It has almost everything I want ... but since it will mainly be for the wife, the manual modes aren't really a necessity. It's got a huge and wide 10x lens (28-280) and a great HD (1280x720) movie mode. And surprisingly, it's pretty compact.

  10. bananabar thread starter macrumors regular

    Sep 10, 2008
  11. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California
    You've already decided against the camera most would recommend based on your usage. You don't want a huge zoom ratio, those lenses are always an optical compromise. Use your feet.
  12. ajpl macrumors regular

    Oct 9, 2008
    Not any more, one was given manual features. Sadly not the one with the 28 mm wideangle and still no RAW.
    Though that can be hacked I seem to recall.

    The first thing to do when deciding which compact is wether you want RAW or not. If you do, you have very little choice. Also P+S are usually pretty crap as they have lots of MPs on a teeny sensor and anything over 200ISO is a usually waste of time.
    I just got a Ricoh GX200 as my Cano S70 died and it's extremely well designed. Sadly, the fact that anything over 100ISO is awful quality lets it down. It goes up to 1600 ISO. :eek: Shockinging poor. I may have gotten a G10 if it had come out a bit sooner and if it had left pixel count where G9 was.
  13. FrankieTDouglas macrumors 65816

    Mar 10, 2005
    I don't own a compact camera, but if I did I would probably buy the Lumix. The g9 isn't bad, either, but something about the Lumix keeps pulling me back to it.

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