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I want a new point and shoot

post #1 of 26
Thread Starter 

On a recent ski jaunt, my friend's iPhone shot better video than my old Canon PowerShot SD880 IS. Maybe it's time for an upgrade. I'd like a point and shoot where I really don't have to fiddle with any settings (I have never progressed beyond the icon with the flower vs the icon of the mountain with the person in the foreground), that has real buttons so that I don't need to pull off my gloves. Ideally not so expensive I would be distraught if I dropped it in a river, and not too big to shove in a decent sized pocket.

 

Suggestions?

post #2 of 26
What was "better"? Just wondering, as I have the same camera. Plus how important is a viewfinder to you? That's huge to me and narrows down the possibilities enormously.
post #3 of 26

Check out dpreview.com or dxomark.com they are both major camera review websites.

 

Depending on your budget you may be surprised how much you are going to have to spend to get a better camera than in an iPhone 6 or the new 6s.

post #4 of 26

My Galaxy S4 takes good enough pictures that I rarely carry my point and shoot anymore.  It can use the volume button for the shutter.  Apparently the newish S6 Active has an extra physical button that can bring up the camera directly, no touch screen interaction needed.

 

I don't pay attention to the Apple universe, so I don't know what the newest iPhones can do.

 

I got a cheap "case" -- really just a collar -- that lets me attach a lanyard to my phone.  That solves the biggest worry, dropping it from the lift.

 

 

I'm sure phones are eating into the point and shoot camera market.  The ones that are left will be niche products, and more expensive as a result.

post #5 of 26

I am a bit of a Luddite and I don't own a cell phone. I do have a Flip HD video camera. It has one big red button to start and stop recording and a zoom button and that is about it. Built in memory is good for 2 hours of filming. When I plug it into my computer a window opens that allows saving, editing and the ability to go through the vids frame by frame to select and save snapshots. Perfect for vidiots like me.

post #6 of 26

I

I take relatively high number of photos when skiing for sharing on web.  I use cheap (~$100-175) point and shoot cameras in non-technical mode and replace every four of five years.  In my ignorance one attribute I like better than high image resolution is a modest little camera that can fire-up quickly when I push the power button so I can take shots within a couple seconds without hardly thinking about my subject.  This is how I get some of my preferred action shots or impromptu/unposed subjects.  I would go to Best Buy, Walmart, etc. and just start examining digital cameras in your price range for one that is small and easy to operate.  My camera (mid-range Nikon Coolpix) has a lot of subtle features I never use.  Main thing is to switch easily from action to landscape to snow modes.  I carry camera all winter and it takes a beating, so I agree with you, don’t want something you can’t afford to fall out of your pocket in the middle of a ten acre black diamond glade (been there/done that):-)  I usually don’t review my pictures until the end of the day when I’m back indoors, when something simple as Microsoft office picture manager can cover a multitude of sins.  I might get a couple good images from taking about 50-100 per day.  Use lithium batteries for much longer life in winter temps.  I usually download my photos on a laptop every night or two and start with a clean memory card next day.  Remember to put memory card back in camera!

 

A few examples of photos taken only seconds after camera pulled out of my pocket, later edited with simple MS Office pic manager:

Large groundhog darting across slope at Wintergreen, VA

 

 

EpicSki member HotChocolate at Blue Knob, PA

 

 

member Freeski919 on Paradise at MRG, VT

 

member Johnl in glade at Timberline, WV

 

 

VinceK at Mt. Bachelor, OR

123946 

post #7 of 26

I generally use my relatively old Canon S100.  For your needs, the SD880 should be fine.  For snow and simplicity, you will generally want something that either has a snow or beach mode, or the ability to easily increase exposure compensation, because snow often fools cameras' auto exposure settings by underexposing.  

 

If I were buying a new point & shoot to be used for skiing and other outdoor activities, I'd probably get an Olympus Tough TG-4.  See the Wirecutter review: http://thewirecutter.com/reviews/best-waterproof-camera/

post #8 of 26

I will say some of the pics that @MastersRacer takes on his Samsung phone and what I see others take on theirs are amazing...and I am an Apple zealot. 

post #9 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Philpug View Post
 

I will say some of the pics that @MastersRacer takes on his Samsung phone and what I see others take on theirs are amazing...and I am an Apple zealot. 

 

Apparently the camera on the Samsung Galaxy S5 is better than the S4, and the S6 is better than that.  (Based on on-line reviews).

The S6 has bigger glass and a "Pro Mode" that works sort of like the "manual camera" app.  When I recently wrecked my phone I was tempted to upgrade rather than replace.

post #10 of 26

Thanks, @Philpug.

 

I never carry a camera, just my phone which is still the Samsung S4. The only two things I miss are a viewfinder (for which I may google to see if there is an attachment for my phone) and optical zoom. If you zoom my phone, you get a closer picture but reduced overall resolution, so I just shoot at 1x and crop as appropriate.

 

Latest pictures include:

Mt. Sheridan from the Leadville Backcountry Yurts (www.leadvillebackcountry.com

 

From the Yurts

 

Biking in Breck

 

The standard size photo is 4128 x 2322 (16:9). It has burst shot mode so you can take a quick succession of photos and choose the best, good for skiing when you want the perfect still but can't be sure you'll click at the right moment. Also fun is Drama mode where you click and it takes a series of photos and stitches them together automaticall, on the spot.

 

The world famous @HippieFlippinNM

 

It does pretty nicely with movies, too.

 

Golden Eagle jump, 2015 World Ski Championships at Beaver Creek

 

This is the best shot video, but it shows how fast and good it can be. This was 1080p video and plays back full screen on a 1920 x 1080 computer screen beautifully. I chose it because it gives you a bit of the feel for the on-course activity.

post #11 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdf View Post
 

 

Apparently the camera on the Samsung Galaxy S5 is better than the S4, and the S6 is better than that.  (Based on on-line reviews).

The S6 has bigger glass and a "Pro Mode" that works sort of like the "manual camera" app.  When I recently wrecked my phone I was tempted to upgrade rather than replace.

 

I'm not surprised and as good as the S4 is the S6 must be phenomenal. I'm always a generation or two behind because I'm frugal.

post #12 of 26
Thread Starter 

I apologize for not responding further on this thread to the great input.

 

I have no doubt that many phones have great cameras, but mine doesn't seem to (HTC One), and I also don't want to have to deal with touch screens. (Despite those gripes, I'm not replacing it any time soon.)

 

Later today, I'll post a video my camera took to show the problem. 

post #13 of 26

In that case, I think the big issue is whether you are willing to deal with a camera that does not have a real viewfinder.  Ski slopes usually have so much light that the size of the lens is not relevant.  I have an old waterproof Panasonic Lumix that still takes good pictures, and is easy to use.  Its one big drawback is the lack of a viewfinder, so I essentially shoot blind and hope.  (Between bright sun and needing reading glasses, the screen viewfinder is hopeless.)

 

The second choice is waterproof or cheap-and-don't-worry-about-it.  I chose waterproof.

 

Also, I strongly endorse the recommendation to read dpreview.com -- I used it when I bought that camera.  Here's a more recent update:

http://www.dpreview.com/articles/4286844398/waterproof-compact-group-test-2014

 

Oops - wrong link.  That was one test of a series.  We want the final round-up,

http://www.dpreview.com/articles/2491269399/2014-waterproof-camera-roundup

 

and more from the prior year,

http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/2013-waterproof-roundup


Edited by mdf - 9/27/15 at 8:43am
post #14 of 26
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdf View Post
 

In that case, I think the big issue is whether you are willing to deal with a camera that does not have a real viewfinder.  Ski slopes usually have so much light that the size of the lens is not relevant.  I have an old waterproof Panasonic Lumix that still takes good pictures, and is easy to use.  Its one big drawback is the lack of a viewfinder, so I essentially shoot blind and hope.  (Between bright sun and needing reading glasses, the screen viewfinder is hopeless.)

 

The second choice is waterproof or cheap-and-don't-worry-about-it.  I chose waterproof.

 

Also, I strongly endorse the recommendation to read dpreview.com -- I used it when I bought that camera.  Here's a more recent update:

http://www.dpreview.com/articles/4286844398/waterproof-compact-group-test-2014

 

Oops - wrong link.  That was one test of a series.  We want the final round-up,

http://www.dpreview.com/articles/2491269399/2014-waterproof-camera-roundup

 

and more from the prior year,

http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/2013-waterproof-roundup

 

Thanks! As my friends can attest, in the choice between cheap and what I really want, I always end up buying what I really want - even if I start out buying the cheaper option, I generally get hung up on what it could have been until I upgrade.

 

Ski slopes do have a lot of light, but ideally I could use this camera for hikes, as well, and I tend to hike where there is shade (my black dog's kryptonite is heat).

post #15 of 26
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by bounceswoosh View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdf View Post
 

In that case, I think the big issue is whether you are willing to deal with a camera that does not have a real viewfinder.  Ski slopes usually have so much light that the size of the lens is not relevant.  I have an old waterproof Panasonic Lumix that still takes good pictures, and is easy to use.  Its one big drawback is the lack of a viewfinder, so I essentially shoot blind and hope.  (Between bright sun and needing reading glasses, the screen viewfinder is hopeless.)

 

The second choice is waterproof or cheap-and-don't-worry-about-it.  I chose waterproof.

 

Also, I strongly endorse the recommendation to read dpreview.com -- I used it when I bought that camera.  Here's a more recent update:

http://www.dpreview.com/articles/4286844398/waterproof-compact-group-test-2014

 

Oops - wrong link.  That was one test of a series.  We want the final round-up,

http://www.dpreview.com/articles/2491269399/2014-waterproof-camera-roundup

 

and more from the prior year,

http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/2013-waterproof-roundup

 

Thanks! As my friends can attest, in the choice between cheap and what I really want, I always end up buying what I really want - even if I start out buying the cheaper option, I generally get hung up on what it could have been until I upgrade.

 

Ski slopes do have a lot of light, but ideally I could use this camera for hikes, as well, and I tend to hike where there is shade (my black dog's kryptonite is heat).

 

Oooh, I just remembered wakesurfing. I was doing a lot of it on a friend's boat until I busted up my shoulder - no wakesurfing this year, I'm afraid. But next summer - and now I have a full-on excuse, er, reason for waterproof!

post #16 of 26
Thread Starter 

From dpreview.com , it sure sounds like the TG-3 would be a good fit, and it's available in black on amazon for a palatable price. What bothers me for all of these are the comments about image quality at full size. Are they going to be so much better than my phone and my old Canon that I should not even worry about it? Are they going to be good enough to use as a crisp wallpaper on a large monitor? These are my questions. Waterproofness may turn out to matter, as I'd like to do more wakesurfing and get into SUP once my shoulder is healed, but if waterproofness is the reason for lack of sharpness, maybe that's not as important to me. Even snow isn't *such* a big deal if you snag the thing and wipe it off quickly.

post #17 of 26
My impression is that they are comparing them to real SLR cameras. We need to engage one of our full-on photo geeks for an informed opinion on IQ.
post #18 of 26
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdf View Post

My impression is that they are comparing them to real SLR cameras. We need to engage one of our full-on photo geeks for an informed opinion on IQ.

 

*nod* That's what I suspect, too.

 

Husband says if I'm considering getting the TG-3, which seems to be available used, I should just go ahead and get the TG-4. So that's the new target, although it doesn't change the actual lens etc.

post #19 of 26


Indeed, s6 camera is quite nice. Also, as someone mentioned the home button is physical, and doubletapping it brings up the camera, and volume button does capture.
post #20 of 26
Thread Starter 

Oh, hey, this thread! I got a TG-4, but haven't really exercised it yet.

post #21 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by lliu View Post



Indeed, s6 camera is quite nice. Also, as someone mentioned the home button is physical, and doubletapping it brings up the camera, and volume button does capture.

Or turn on the voice option and say 'cheese'
post #22 of 26
A contrarian opinion is that a cheap point and shoot or a waterproof point and shoot are worthless because they do not take a picture that is any better than a cellphone shot. If you buy a point and shoot either buy a superzoom or a nice large sensor point and shoot what gives almost DSLR quality. Sony RX100 and Panasonic LX5 are the kings of that segment. These shots you will get will look noticeably better than the cellphone. Apologies to the TG3/4 owners, but I felt that that camera was worse than the iPhone, which makes sense since Apole and Samsung spend way more R&D dollars on their cameras.
post #23 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by bounceswoosh View Post
 

On a recent ski jaunt, my friend's iPhone shot better video than my old Canon PowerShot SD880 IS. Maybe it's time for an upgrade. I'd like a point and shoot where I really don't have to fiddle with any settings (I have never progressed beyond the icon with the flower vs the icon of the mountain with the person in the foreground), that has real buttons so that I don't need to pull off my gloves. Ideally not so expensive I would be distraught if I dropped it in a river, and not too big to shove in a decent sized pocket.

 

Suggestions?

 

We go this to replace our old P&S a few months ago.  Love it.

 

http://smile.amazon.com/Sony-DSCWX500-Digital-Camera-3-Inch/dp/B00VWJOLI0/ref=sr_1_2?s=photo&ie=UTF8&qid=1444991314&sr=1-2&keywords=Sony+DSCWX500%2FB+Digital+Camera+with+3-Inch+LCD+%28Black%29

 

Simple to use. You do need to learn a couple things in case you tend to fat finger buttons like I do and have to get things back to where they were :o

 

Nice video too.

post #24 of 26
Thread Starter 

Hey all - I'm the OP, and I did already make my choice. Anyone saying the TG-4 is as good as a cell phone hasn't used my cell phone, and I won't be getting an iPhone in any case, for reasons unrelated to the camera.

 

Now carry on discussing the worth of various cameras ... three weeks after I already made my decision, but maybe it will help others.

post #25 of 26
Oops sorry, misread the latest post date before I posted.
post #26 of 26
I like the new links, as I'm always on the lookout for point and shoots with viewfinders. Was sort of stunned to see the price of the RX100 III & IV. But they're on the shortlist waiting for the price to drop a bit. For a "skiing camera" I start choking as things climb in price.
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