Camera Recommendation!

Discussion in 'Photography' started by dingerr, Sep 22, 2010.

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  1. I'm a complete novice when it comes to photograpy, but I had loads of decent pictures on my fuji compact camera. That got destroyed in the blast.

    Having no thumbs and limited use of the hands I think an SLR is out of reach for me (unless someone can suggest one). What do you think would be a good camera that I could use (even with minor mods).

    Thanks in advance.
  2. Ravers

    Ravers LE Reviewer Book Reviewer

    My old man has quite a lightweight Olympus with a built in zoom lens. It's really easy to use with minimal fuss and it takes great pics, might be worth a look. I'll try and find out what model number it is.
  3. Dingerr,

    I bought my wife a Canon G10 (There's a G11 out now). It's an awesome compact camera and, to be honest, often outperforms my SLR. It's probably not the easiest compact if you have limited use of your hands, but I reckon it might be a damn sight easier than many SLRs due to its relatively low weight.

    One thing I have noticed having upgraded (after it was nicked) from one Canon SLR to a Guccier version is that the difference in quality becomes more an more difficult to distinguish the higher up the range one goes. In other words, buying the best bit of kit doesn't necessarily make your pictures better.

    After seeing the wife's camera's performance, if I were burgled again I'd probably forgo the SLR route and buy a G10 or equivalent. Alternatively, there are quite a few cameras that have excellent SLR sized lenses, but are far more 'point-and-shoot'. I find, with a full compliment of fingers and thumbs, that changing lenses can be a bloody fiddly task - line up lense covers; line up camera and new lens; change over the lenses and covers in the shortest possible time. Obviously it can be improved with practice - a bit like charging a magazine, loading, making ready, and firing - it's just a dam sight easier to have a good quality all-in-one.

    Sorry I can't steer you in the direction of a camera that might be ideal, but I thought I'd share my views. Perhaps Auld Yin's suggestion might bear fruit.
  4. For those that may struggle with disablities, there is a disabled photographers' society at

    Disabled Photographers' Society

    A couple of people I know with different problems have found the site helpful. It might be a good stating point.
  5. Gents, thanks for the response,

    AY - I'll compose an e-mail and send it to a few companies and include a description of my hands and their limitations, I'll also stick a few piccies in. Hopefully I'll get a response.

    Ravers - TY, I'll have a look when you get the model number.

    Oyibo - I'll have a peek at the G11, didn't think Dcompacts were a patch on DSLRs.

    Tool - I have the ball of my R thumb, but not the left. I'll have a search for camera adaptations.
  6. would it be easier to use a tripod and one of them switches on a wire (god knows what the techie name is) which would leave you both hands to operate the actual shutter
  7. This is by far my favourite review site for cameras - it's written for techno-biffs like me, yet still goes into great detail (page is for G11):

    Canon PowerShot G11 Review: 1. Introduction: Digital Photography Review

    BTW Dingerr, G11 will be more expensive than some digital SLRs.
  8. Ravers

    Ravers LE Reviewer Book Reviewer

    I think the Olympus is similar to this, it's a fixed lens so no fannying about with changes etc. It takes really nice pics and is pretty simple to use.

  9. Dingerr,
    Having closely followed, and contributed to a fund that members on a photo website set up for a guy on there who had a stroke.
    One of the guys on there set up a system for him, it was attached to his wheelchair, and had a remote touch screen fitted, he now has a decent SLR, with remote screen & release, allowing him to continue his hobby.
    I will get hold of the guy who did it, get the specs and let you know.
  10. Just another thought.

    I just bought a sony cybershot TX5, which seems to take pretty good photos without much involvement from me. It has a touch screen and comes with a little stylus that attaches to the strap so as long as you can hold that you don't have to operate buttons and wheels.

    Getting the battery in an out could be a bit of a bastard and I don't know if you can plug the whole thing in, but I imagine this could be the case with most of them.

    Oh, and its waterproof and shock proof as well, which is lucky because I am a clumsy idiot.
  11. Gremlin

    Gremlin LE Good Egg (charities)

    One of the first things that needs to be ascertained when someone asks for a camera recommendation is "what sort of pictures do you want to take"? The follow up to that is "what's your budget". Without those answers recommendations are hard, but the following is an overview:

    I've seen the SLR set up that AMR617 is talking about, and it's truly fantastic, but the guy in question is far less mobile than you are at present, and certainly less than you intend to be! He's also a complete 'toghead (meant in a good way), whereas I suspect that your photography will be a bit more casual.

    I'd say that Ravers and Oyibo are spot on in that they've both recommended high end compacts and superzooms. Both cameras are also chunky enough for you to be able to handle without too much assistance, which is the point after all! I'd also think that a compact would be better as they predominantly use the LCD screen as an interface, rather than the eyepiece, which would again be a touch more awkward for you in handling terms. Compacts also tend to rely more on menu driven commands, as opposed to small buttons (although some DSLRs do this as well), which would be easier for you to access.

    Although not an exhaustive list I'd look at these compacts (prices are approx only, and you should find cheaper ones):

    Canon G10 (£399)- best all-round compact on the market and leaps ahead of it's G10 brother in terms of image quality.
    Fuji Finepix HS10 (£350) Great zoom camera, and one of the few compacts to be OKish at sport.
    Canon SX20 IS (£320) Probably the best superzoom on the market, with one exception.....
    Panasonic Lumix FZ45 (£320) Excellent upgrade of the FZ35 (see test below)

    This test is worth reading WRT Superzooms, and is one of the most up-to-date reviews:

    'Super Zoom' Camera Group Test (Q2 2010) Review: 1. Introduction: Digital Photography Review

    Also worth looking at are two of the less fiddly Micro four Thirds cameras, ie the

    Olympus Pen and Sony Nex-3 (both around £500)

    Both offer a bit more creativity as you can change lenses, but they are robust(ish) and have few fiddly buttons.

    DP Review mentioned by Denis, and linked to above for the compact test, has excellent in depth information about each individual camera, and will also let you search by feature or compare specific cameras side-by-side (both under the Buying Guide drop down menu).

    For a little less technical overload, it is worth reading the suggestions at What Digital Camera, who have a good buying guide, albeit 6 months old:
    What Digital Camera buying guide - what camera to buy and how to choose it | Buying Advice | What Digital Camera

    and if you prefer to get your paws on printed material, WDC has a list and rating of virtually every camera currently on the market, plus a brief description (WH SMith £3.99).

    If you want any expansion on the about just ask, or call email/PM if you still have my details.

    One last thing, before you actually take the plunge and buy, get in touch as I may have an idea that could get you a freebie! :-D

    One last minor point:

    When you do buy, make sure that you get a large memory card of at least 16Gb. They can be very fiddly to change, and that size should see you through a day of taking 500+ pics without the need to swap a card out!
  12. Dingerr, I bought a Casio Exilim the other day. It is light, compact, shock resistant and waterproof to 7ft (so rainproof). It has a nice big screen at the back and the lens is static (it doesn't come whirring out when you switch it on). There a threaded hole in the bottom for sticking it on a stand/tripod - (or a flexible mount for your wheel chair) and the the shutter button has a threaded collar for a coax fitting. All of the controls are push button except for the hatch where the usb and memory stick go, which has a knob to turn. It cost me about 200 Euros. Just a thought.

    Edite to add: EXILIM G EX-G1 Black- EXILIM
  13. It's bloody hard to argue with that recommendation. I nearly bought myself one simply because it's nearly 'soldier proof'.
  14. Dinger, you'll not have to worry about your lack of thumbs preventing you from getting into the DSLR game. Get a good tripod and a remote shutter release. That'll sort you out. All decent 'with thumbs' photographers use them. No reason why you can't get the same benefit. As for cameras, if you really do hanker after a DSLR, any Canon or Nikon at the lower to mid range will suit you to start with, and be up to date enough to stop you falling into the trap of upgrading to the next body every year, if the camera 'bug' takes you, which it most likely will as your skills improve. Buy one which will give you at least three years of good use and which will survive the technology drive for that period. I could recommend a number of cameras which would suit, but you'd be better off speaking to a reputable photography shop. Ignore Jessops (although they are quite good), find yourself a good shop where the owner/staff are photographers who you can chat with and explain to them what it is you feel that you'd like to get out of photography and ask for advice. In your circumstances you need to have a face to face talk with someone that you are most likely going to develop a business relationship with. You're really looking to find a shop where you will return time and again and where you end up on first name terms. They tend not to offer the same deals as Jessops, due to the difference in turnover, etc, but they tend to be involved in local photography clubs. Don't buy second hand kit, buy the best you can afford and if it's a DSLR that you want, get yourself some decent lenses. There are a number of good 'stabilised' lenses out there, which will suit. If you stick with one brand though, say perhaps Canon (my preference), then as and when you do upgrade, you'll only need to upgrade the body, there'll be no need to continually change lenses as well. Your lens collection will grow however, as you get further into photography. As you become more experienced, you'll know a good lens when you see one and some of the smaller manufacturers actually make lenses to fit Nikon and Canon bodies, but aren't as expensive as the leading makers. If you've got time on your hands (pardon the pun), it's a very productive interest to get involved in. Once you start dabbling with Photoshop, etc, and you can see the improvement, it's something you might actually make a couple of bob out of as well. Get into a club if you can, you'll learn more from the mistakes of others than you'll ever learn from on your own.

    Apologies if this appears patronising in any way, shape or form. It's not intended to, but have a look. It might give you an idea of what's possible in your circumstances:

    Disabled Photographers' Society