I Need a Digital Camera Recommendation

Updated2: Well I am grateful for everyone’s advice both on-blog and via email. However, looks like the camera money will be going to pay an unexpectedly large bill. Alas. I’ll be coming back to the recommendations in a few paychecks from now. :)

Updated: Many thanks to the suggestions so far. I might be able to swing this if I can sell my digital camcorder on eBay.

While post titles seem to be on an “I…” roll this week, it isn’t the start of a new theme.

For the first time ever, I will be traveling while Claire and Sagan are traveling. The first time ever part is that we are going in different directions. I am going to Montreal. They are going to Seattle and Eugene.

I am only gone for a week. They will be gone for a month. The title of this post comes in because Claire wants to take the camera with her, and I want to take it with me. Which translates to I need to get a camera for me.

I haven’t been paying attention to the digital cameras of late, since our camera, a Canon A75, does very well for us. So I need some help. Do you have a recommendation?

Here’s my criteria:

  • I am traveling and will be at a conference.
  • It can’t be too expensive (unless I start a Dropcash campaign).
  • It has to take great pictures in potentially not well lit rooms.
  • It needs to be light.
  • It needs to be at least 3 megapixels.

I leave on June 25th, so your recommendations are welcome sooner than later. ;) If I don’t get a camera, blogging from UPA 2005 will be text only.

Which would be sad for all of us.


  1. I’m planning on getting the Fuji S5500 pretty soon. Its a nice camera for your buck

  2. Canon Powershot S2. It fixes everything that made the S1 almost-but-oh-so-not-perfect. Small (not a whole lot bigger than the A75). 12x optical zoom with image stabilizer. Low-light focus assist lamp. USB 2.0. 4 (5?) megapixels. SD instead of CF. Oh, and the DIGIC II engine — the same one in their DSLR line. So very fast, and great pictures.

    Four years ago we bought a Powershot A20 that has served us well. We’re buying a house in the fall so a new camera can wait, but my wife is going to find an S2 under the Christmas tree this year.

  3. I agree about the Canon S2 IS…Pick it up if you can. All I have heard is good things about it (other than it being a mid-high price prosumer camera).

  4. Panasonic Lumix DMC FX7 or FX8. Great for snap shots and at 5 mega-pixels, the image quality is excellent. It uses SD rather then CF much like the Powershot. Although its only a 3X Optical zoom, I find it to be a great light-weight, small, handly camera. Has some great pre-set features too.

  5. Casio have released some very nice camera’s that are not as expensive as similar products

  6. The S2 looks nice, but I think it is a little out of my price range. I know I didn’t specify, but that is because initially I want to go for quality, then look at price.

  7. Here’s my opinion… I have tried 7 different cameras so I can give you my point of view on each make.

    Nikon: Great image quality.

    Pentax: If your on the move a lot maybe you are more interested in one of the tiny ones.. if you are looking for a small camera this is a great option.

    Kodak: Price is fine for the quality but I’m not sure that I’ll buy one again.

    HP: Good quality and the price is good, this is a good option but it deppends on the model.

    Canon: I really don’t like the quality on the smallest models… but the big ones are great.

    I really don’t find one better that the other… it all depends on what your looking for.

  8. If I were in your shoes, I’d go with the slim Canon Powershot SD series. There’s a tiny SD20, 5 megapixels, takes great pictures (most of the stuff in the PHOTOS section of my website was shot with it’s 4 megapixel predecessor, the SD10.)

    Slightly larger is the SDX00’s – ranging from the SD200 at 3.2MP on up to the SD500 at 7.1MP, ranging from $250 – $500 respectively. The flashes on these cameras will probably deliver a bit of redeye since they are so close to the lens. You can switch them all from 50ISO (shooting in bright conditions) to 400ISO (shooting in low light) if you are in a situation where you can’t use the flash. You’ll get some grain around 400 ISO, but that’s the tradeoff.

    All of these cameras take the SD card, and I think they’ll all handle up to a gig. Also, what’s cool about these cameras is the INCREDIBLE movie mode that Canon built into them – 640×480 at 30FPS! I think they even have a 60FPS mode suitable for shooting for slow-motion.

    No, I don’t work for Canon. But I probably would. I’ve had nothing but success with the Powershots – check out the PHOTOS section of my site, and feel free to contact me w/ any questions you might have!

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