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Need camera suggestions for outdoor use

m9000m9000 Posts: 2,191 Captain
My wife and I have just booked an Alaska trip and need some advice on purchasing a camera. We usually shoot pictures with our iPhones, but would like to purchase a digital camera that will do the scenery justice. We are not looking to get into serious photography, but need something several steps up from an iPhone.

We would like something relatively compact that will not require its own separate camera bag, will shoot pretty good pictures outdoors under conditions with light and dark areas in the field of view and has pretty good zoom. This camera will be used primarily in outdoors and on a boat, so it needs to be at least saltwater spray proof. I would also prefer cameras and has been automatic mode that will do a good job with changing light. I have no idea if all of these features are available for the $500 range.

Suggestions?

Replies

  • JI SnookJI Snook Posts: 672 Officer
    Canon. Go to BHphotovideo.com and find what your looking for. Best camera store in the U.S! Canon has many point and shoot cameras with auto mode in your price range.
  • mississippi macmississippi mac Posts: 4,222 Captain
    you might want to buy a mirrorless system that has interchangeable lenses...
    fugi and sony make some pretty good offerings....
    they are relatively small and deliver great images...
    they also shoot in a RAW format so you can do better post-processing, and even save an image that would be junk....

    check the "dpreview" site for reviews....

    tim
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
    The Real White Dog

    if you can't catch a fish...catch a buzz....
    #12976, joined 8-17-2002
  • WaterEngineerWaterEngineer Posts: 24,412 AG
    I agree with Mac on the Fuji or perhaps an Oly. I would own and use an Oly OM-D 10 II if I wasn't a bird shooter and was looking for a sweet travel set up.

    Also, over the weekend I was at the Space Coast Birding Festival, at Merritt Island with a person who couldn't afford a DSLR and lenses. Said person had a Nikon P900. An amazing camera for the money. You can reach way out there. Worth all the good reviews it is getting if you ask me. I was shocked....for the money. Would be great travel camera.

    Oly. >>>> http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1026111-REG/olympus_v207020bu000_om_d_e_m10_mirrorless_micro.html

    Nikon. >>>>> http://www.imaging-resource.com/PRODS/nikon-p900/nikon-p900A.HTM
  • GardawgGardawg Posts: 17,516 AG
    "Forgiveness is a strange thing. It can be sometimes easier to forgive our enemies than our friends. It can be hardest of all to forgive people we love." Fred Rogers  
  • m9000m9000 Posts: 2,191 Captain
    Thanks for the suggestion guys – they were very helpful. The zoom lens on that Nikon P 900 is truly amazing. I'll do some more investigation before getting my credit card out.

    Thanks again.
  • Mister-JrMister-Jr Posts: 30,406 AG
    m9000 wrote: »
    My wife and I have just booked an Alaska trip and need some advice on purchasing a camera. We usually shoot pictures with our iPhones, but would like to purchase a digital camera that will do the scenery justice. We are not looking to get into serious photography, but need something several steps up from an iPhone.

    We would like something relatively compact that will not require its own separate camera bag, will shoot pretty good pictures outdoors under conditions with light and dark areas in the field of view and has pretty good zoom. This camera will be used primarily in outdoors and on a boat, so it needs to be at least saltwater spray proof. I would also prefer cameras and has been automatic mode that will do a good job with changing light. I have no idea if all of these features are available for the $500 range.

    Suggestions?

    I was in the place you are 2 years ago, going to Alaska and didn't own a camera and unqualified to do anything but push a button. I ended up with a Cannon Power Shot SX260 HS with 20X optical zoom. It's small, will fit in your pocket, and for my purposes it worked perfectly when set on automatic.

    My advice is to take as many photos as you can and at the end of the trip you can delete the ones you don't want. Oh and a spare, fully charged battery.
    Vote for the other candidate
  • FlashFlash Posts: 12,662 AG
    Mister-Jr wrote: »
    My advice is to take as many photos as you can and at the end of the trip you can delete the ones you don't want. Oh and a spare, fully charged battery.

    As to the batteries, try if you can to use AA batteries. You can find them pretty much anywhere, where as the other types, no so much.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

    Never seem more learned than the people you are with. Wear your learning like a pocket watch and keep it hidden. Do not pull it out to count the hours, but give the time when you are asked. --- Lord Chesterfield
  • Mister-JrMister-Jr Posts: 30,406 AG
    Flash wrote: »
    As to the batteries, try if you can to use AA batteries. You can find them pretty much anywhere, where as the other types, no so much.

    I tell you something you already know, but I had to find out. Owning a camera does not make one a photographer.

    The photos I took in Alaska were pitiful.
    Vote for the other candidate
  • FlashFlash Posts: 12,662 AG
    Mister-Jr wrote: »
    I tell you something you already know, but I had to find out. Owning a camera does not make one a photographer.

    The photos I took in Alaska were pitiful.

    What the snow grey looking??
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

    Never seem more learned than the people you are with. Wear your learning like a pocket watch and keep it hidden. Do not pull it out to count the hours, but give the time when you are asked. --- Lord Chesterfield
  • Mister-JrMister-Jr Posts: 30,406 AG
    Flash wrote: »
    What the snow grey looking??

    Yes and no composition, no focal point in any of the photos. Just some guy pointing a camera and pushing a button.
    Vote for the other candidate
  • FlashFlash Posts: 12,662 AG
    Mister-Jr wrote: »
    Yes and no composition, no focal point in any of the photos. Just some guy pointing a camera and pushing a button.

    Snow, being so bright, will always cause the camera to underexpose anywhere from 1 to 3 stops. Beach sand does it also. I would suggest you go to Amazon and locate the book "Understanding Exposure" by Bryan Peterson. I tend to warn my friends about buying a new camera before a major trip, especially if it is a DSLR type and they have only been use to a Point and Shoot.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

    Never seem more learned than the people you are with. Wear your learning like a pocket watch and keep it hidden. Do not pull it out to count the hours, but give the time when you are asked. --- Lord Chesterfield
  • LunchmeatLunchmeat Posts: 51 Deckhand
    Love my new Sony A6000 mirrorless. Takes amazing photos, is smaller and lighter than DSLR's. great travel camera. Skip the kit and buy the body only, then get the lenses you need.
    HuH??
  • ChuckcChuckc Posts: 4,397 Captain
    Regarding composition, you might consider shooting a wider frame than you intend and then crop to the desired composition. You may find that you want a bit more in the image than originally thought.
  • WaterEngineerWaterEngineer Posts: 24,412 AG
    Junior, you have gotten lots of good advice on this, second page, of comments.

    All I have to add is, most of Bryan Peterson's tips on on his you tube channel, if interested. You just need to dig through a bit.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8SataIqfXuU&list=PLC807CCF3F5186201
  • mississippi macmississippi mac Posts: 4,222 Captain
    Jr,

    we've been critiquing each others work on this forum for years....
    very, very few take offense, take some of the offered device, then post up improved images...

    Dave has offered good advice to you and I'd take it...
    he's a pro and made a living with a camera...
    he does indeed know what he's talking about...

    tim
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
    The Real White Dog

    if you can't catch a fish...catch a buzz....
    #12976, joined 8-17-2002
  • tk's joytk's joy Posts: 2,490 Officer
    WE, why do you not like the Oly mk 10 for birds ? Also, opinions on the Oly Mk 5 II. I've been giving serious consideration to that camera as a travel camera for several trips coming up, and don't want to lug around my Nikon D7000 and associated lens. The Mk5 II starts getting reasonable if I buy refurbed from Oly.

    tk
  • WaterEngineerWaterEngineer Posts: 24,412 AG
    tk's joy wrote: »
    WE, why do you not like the Oly mk 10 for birds ? Also, opinions on the Oly Mk 5 II. I've been giving serious consideration to that camera as a travel camera for several trips coming up, and don't want to lug around my Nikon D7000 and associated lens. The Mk5 II starts getting reasonable if I buy refurbed from Oly.

    tk

    Tim, do you want to take this one? Never mind, I will handle it.

    1. Low burst rate.

    2. Electronic viewfinder is not up to the task.

    3. Buffer not deep enough.

    4. Lenses. The recent release of the Oly 300mm f/4 is untested but probably fine. It would be 600mm equiv. on a 35mm full frame. It costs $2,500. are you ready to do that?

    5. File quality is not as good as Nikon or Canon. Wildlife shooters are notorious for cropping. At the pixel level the files aren't so great on the micro 4/3 sensor. Yes, I have been known to pixel peep.

    Let me know what you think. With all that said, I want an Oly OMD.
  • tk's joytk's joy Posts: 2,490 Officer
    WE, Thanks. I've had to assimilate all that and I can understand most of it. My needs are no where near as critical as yours but I still want very good image quality w/ a quality camera that represents more than good bang for the buck. It's really a matter of which one. The Oly MK 5 II sure looks like it could fill the bill.
    4. Lenses. The recent release of the Oly 300mm f/4 is untested but probably fine. It would be 600mm equiv. on a 35mm full frame. It costs $2,500. are you ready to do that?

    No, not likely. Forget exactly but would probably start w/ the 14 -40 and the 40-150.

    I did go back and re-read the reviews on the Mk 10II and the Mk 5II. There's enough differences to make the Mk 5 II worth the difference......just still on the fence.
    With all that said, I want an Oly OMD

    If you feel like it or even want to, please expound on that. That might be the tipping point for me.

    I appreciate your input or I wouldn't have asked.

    tk
  • tk's joytk's joy Posts: 2,490 Officer
    I ordered the OM- 5 mkII. Have it next week.

    tk
  • m9000m9000 Posts: 2,191 Captain
    The P900 was delivered this week. Here's a pic of an eagle at 347 yds from my back porch.
  • WaterEngineerWaterEngineer Posts: 24,412 AG
    M9K, how do you know it was at 347 yards? did you put a laser range finder on it? At 347 yards, and that camera on a gloomy day you should be happy. Hand held, I assume. Well done.
    tk's joy wrote: »
    I ordered the OM- 5 mkII.

    Good camera. If I didn't need big, long glass I would shoot this camera. Good video on this machine, BTW.
    Lunchmeat wrote: »
    Love my new Sony A6000 mirrorless. Takes amazing photos, is smaller and lighter than DSLR's. great travel camera. Skip the kit and buy the body only, then get the lenses you need.

    This is all true. Good camera. Third parties are making better lenses for this mount than sony.
  • m9000m9000 Posts: 2,191 Captain
    Distance was via Google Earth. The tree is very prominent in the salt marsh and easy to locate. I was happy with the picture, which was about the 20th picture taken. The light was low, no tripod and there was a lot of mist in the air.

    This one is better- shot at about 75 ft.
  • WaterEngineerWaterEngineer Posts: 24,412 AG
    Nikon did right by that camera. I have used one and it is impressive. I was turned on to it by a pro photographer who shoots Canon and bought one for his wife so she could have some fun in the field with him. I have used there camera. Impressive, as I said.
  • m9000m9000 Posts: 2,191 Captain
    Back from Alaska- an amazing chance of real estate!

    A few pics taken with the new camera.
  • FlashFlash Posts: 12,662 AG
    Very nice. Maybe someday. This year I will have to settle for West Virginia.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

    Never seem more learned than the people you are with. Wear your learning like a pocket watch and keep it hidden. Do not pull it out to count the hours, but give the time when you are asked. --- Lord Chesterfield
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