Monday, June 29, 2009

What's the Highest Rated Mid-Range Digital Compact Camera?

I'm thinkin' the highest rated mid-range digital camera might be the Panasonic Lumix DMC TZ5.

The ratings I'm referring to are from those who have actually purchased and used the camera on a day-to-day basis.

I value the input of users like me and you. OK, I value the camera geeks' ratings too, but they are not every day users who have trouble figuring out how to change settings away from total camera control to, let's say, a higher Aperture. Don't know what an Aperture is? See, that's what I'm talkin' about.

So, I look at the user ratings at places like Amazon, B&H Photo, and DPReview to see what the real users think of a camera. If there are no ratings, I pretty much steer clear of that product. Or, if there are a bunch of folks who didn't like the way the camera handled, I might think twice about making the purchase.

But the Panasonic Lumix DMC TZ5.. practically everyone who ordered it (and took time to post a review) LOVED it!

And, I'm just gonna throw in my personal favorite here. It's the Canon Powershot SX110 IS.

Research shows that the family that takes pictures of each other while enjoying fun activities stays together. (I just made that up, but it must be true.)

I have been finding out so much about digital cameras of late, that I'm compiling all this information on a new web site: It has a nice ring to it, huh? Hope you stop by.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Top Rated Compact Digital Cameras

Which is the absolute best digital camera on the market?

That's kind of like asking which is the best vehicle on the road, isn't it? What do you want the vehicle to do?

Same question for a compact digital camera... what do you want it to do?

"Take pictures, of course," you respond.

I know that, but there are too many people with different requirements to nail down one camera as the best for everyone.

So, I began thinking about the reasons for folks buy a digital camera. Then I sought out the best possible digital camera a person with those requirements could purchase.

My method of research was to find the cameras that are recommended by the most respected digital camera reviewers on the Internet. I looked at sites like,, and

Then, armed with that information, I went to the places that sell the cameras and looked at the user reviews on those sites. Users are usually very honest about whether they think they get value for their money. Sometimes is a review mixed in where the buyer either did not get a good camera (it happens), or the buyer's expectations for the camera were not realistic, but for the most part, the users' reviews are quite helpful. These reviews can be found at, dpreview, and B&H photo.

These sources were pretty consistent with each camera I reviewed.

OK, so here are the results (drum roll, please):

  • Best Budget Compact Digital Camera: Panasonic DMC LZ8
  • Best Mid-Range Camera: Canon SX110 IS and Panasonic DMC FZ5
  • Best Pocket Compact Camera: Canon SD 790 IS and Panasonic DMC FX37
  • Best Over-All Digital Camera: Panasonic DMC TX3

Take a closer look at the stats on these cameras before making your choice. This is a big purchase, so you can also see much more information about each of these cameras HERE.
Happy imaging!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Canon Digital Rebel XSi (450D) - a great choice

Let me start by saying that the Canon Digital Rebel XSi is a great camera as an entry level DSLR.

Did you know that Canon comes out with newer, replacement models every couple of years?
It's true. Most camera manufacturers do it. Especially if the camera has a fantastic track record, as the Digital Rebel certainly does. It was my very first DSLR, and I took many many wonderful photos with it. This woodpecker is one of them.

But I digress.

This year, Canon came out with a replacement for its Rebel series after only 1 year.
They did it to incorporate some features, such as video, so they could keep up with the Joneses (the "Joneses in this case are other camera manufacturers).

OK, so what does that have to do with anything?

It has a lot to do with price. All of a sudden the price of the Rebel 450D (aka Rebel XSi) dropped $200!

Has the feature package been upgraded enough for you to pay an additional $200 to get the latest model?

Only if you must have video. The video package is pretty good on the newer Rebel 500D (aka Rebel T1i).

Now, there are a couple of other upgrades in the newest release, and you can see the comparison at But the features on the Rebel 450D were already awesome, and the camera had only been on the consumer market for a year. When you consider the price difference and the quality of the camera along with its photographic output, I think you may agree that the 450-D is a fabulous deal.

The Canon Digital Rebel SXi really rocks!

More information about the two cameras is available HERE. Do yourself a favor, if you are interested in a truly great entry level DSLR and check it out.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Canon Powershot SX200 IS with Face Detection Self-Timer

I find this feature extremely impressive. Not only does the Canon Powershot SX200 IS have some fairly common (for newer releases) features, such as 12.1MP resolution, 12x wide-angle optical zoom (28-336mm equiv.), optical image stabilization, 3.0-in. LCD , HD movie (1280×720) @ 30fps, Smart AUTO, Intelligent Contrast Correction, Motion Detection, Blink Detection, and Face-Detection, just to name a few, BUT there is also a feature called Face Detection Self-Timer.

The Face Detection Self-Timer automatically detects an increase in the number of faces and makes the appropriate adjustments. For instance, to include the photographer’s face in a group shot, there’s no need to rush in. Just put the camera on a stand or tripod, specify Face Detection Self-Timer, and the camera will wait for the photographer’s face to get on-camera before it takes the shot. Now is that cool or what?

I continue to be in awe of the Canon advances in technology.
Get your Canon Powershot SX200 IS at Amazon (great price; good service; strong reputation).

For more about this fantastic camera see my review at