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OfflineLeablas
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Ideal camera for mushroom hunters?
    #2978547 - 08/08/04 04:34 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

Just like the title says, I was wondering if you guys could share some ideas on what to look for in a good camera. I've recently started shroom hunting as a hobby and doing I.D's without pictures doesn't work too well(ie:my last post), so I've decided to start saving up for a decent digital camera. Feel free to post your own model name/price too if you have your own. Thanks :smile:


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OfflineGumbyM
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Re: Ideal camera for mushroom hunters? [Re: Leablas]
    #2978734 - 08/08/04 06:03 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

I've got a Sony CyberShot F828 and I bought it for $793 but it goes for about $999 at most places. It's an 8 mega pixel camera, has night vision, a laser based focus system(for focusing in complete darkness), 7x optical zoom and 7x digital zoom.

The main thing you're concerned with when photographing mushrooms would be the camera's macro abilities... the abilities to take pictures close up.

The Fuji FinePix S602z can focus at 1cm from the object. It's an excellent camera for mushroom hunters... Although it might be a bit overkill for your average user.

Check out http://www.steves-digicams.com/ for camera reviews.

Here's some pictures I took with my camera: http://www.impakt.net/~tyler/


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OfflineGatorB
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Re: Ideal camera for mushroom hunters? [Re: Leablas]
    #2978867 - 08/08/04 07:09 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

I have an Olympus C-750 Ultra Zoom (10x optical, 40x digital) and its macro abilities are outstanding. With the right lighting, it can focus on an object while nearly touching it. 4 megapixel, outstanding quality and creative control, $500-600.


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Invisibleangryshroom
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Re: Ideal camera for mushroom hunters? [Re: Gumby]
    #2978887 - 08/08/04 07:16 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

Ive got the older version of Gumby's sony: DSC-F717. I love it. Takes some great pictures.


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OfflineLeablas
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Re: Ideal camera for mushroom hunters? [Re: Gumby]
    #2979043 - 08/08/04 08:24 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

Those are some kickass pictures gumby. I wish I had $1000 to throw down on a camera, but unfortunately I think I will end up in the $300-400 range. It would seem that the best company for these kind of things would be Sony? Or are there some good companys out there that aren't widely known?

Quick Edit: Gator, whats the difference between Optical/Digital zoom? If it helps, I plan on using my future camera mostly on macro shots(shrooms and herbs) :smile:


Edited by Leablas (08/08/04 08:25 PM)


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Invisibleangryshroom
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Re: Ideal camera for mushroom hunters? [Re: Leablas]
    #2979146 - 08/08/04 09:26 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

Optical zoom is much clearer than digital. Digital is basically just zooming into the picture artifically.

You want the most optical you can find.


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OfflineGumbyM
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Re: Ideal camera for mushroom hunters? [Re: Leablas]
    #2979233 - 08/08/04 10:00 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

My favorite brand names:

Sony
Fuji
Cannon
Nikon


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OfflineLeablas
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Re: Ideal camera for mushroom hunters? [Re: Gumby]
    #2979370 - 08/08/04 10:53 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

Thanks Gumby! Off I go to compare/contrast hundreds of cameras!

P.S: Does it help to close my threads after I get what I'm looking for? Or would it be a something-to-keep-for-others-to-see kind of thing(and does the same go for I.D threads?).

Edit: Well unless I'm missing the option somewhere I'm guessing that I am unable to close my threads, nevermind then :smile:.


Edited by Leablas (08/08/04 11:01 PM)


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OfflineAnnoA
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Re: Ideal camera for mushroom hunters? [Re: Leablas]
    #2979407 - 08/08/04 11:07 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

If you are on a relatively tight budget, I would recommend the Canon Powershot A80 .

A good website for reviews is www.dpreview.com .


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OfflineGatorB
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Re: Ideal camera for mushroom hunters? [Re: Leablas]
    #2979580 - 08/09/04 12:08 AM (12 years, 3 months ago)

My ideal camera? Sony Cybershot, with all the fixin's. Or a Rebel.


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OfflineLeablas
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Re: Ideal camera for mushroom hunters? [Re: Anno]
    #2979708 - 08/09/04 12:49 AM (12 years, 3 months ago)

Quote:

Anno said:
The Canon Powershot A80 .




I was comparing this and the A75:
A80:
3.9 million effective pixels
4.1 million sensor photo detectors
38 mm - 114 mm (3x) zoom lens
$330

A75:
3.1 million effective pixels
3.3 million sensor photo detectors
35 mm - 105 mm (3x) zoom lens
$200

Does that difference in amount of pixels really increase sharpness enough to cost another $100? Then again, cameras are usually something you want quality from...Since they (hopefully) last long.


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OfflineGatorB
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Re: Ideal camera for mushroom hunters? [Re: Leablas]
    #2979778 - 08/09/04 01:15 AM (12 years, 3 months ago)

Be careful when selecting a camera based on megapixels. It's not how many... it's the quality of the pixels. Make sure you do research before you buy to see what others say about the camera. Use the links given here, and a lot of consumer reviews are at Amazon.com.


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Invisiblespores
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Re: Ideal camera for mushroom hunters? [Re: Leablas]
    #2979813 - 08/09/04 01:25 AM (12 years, 3 months ago)

I've had a Powershot A60(2 MP) for about a year, check my past posts for lots of pics with it. it's pretty nice, it doesn't focus or do macros as well as some other cameras I've used, but once you figure out how to use it you can get some pretty nice pics. Haven't used any of the newer ones, maybe they don't have the same problem...

DH


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InvisiblePinback
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Re: Ideal camera for mushroom hunters? [Re: Leablas]
    #2979831 - 08/09/04 01:31 AM (12 years, 3 months ago)

Another difference between the A75 and A80 is that the A80 has a smaller, but swiveling LCD.


I am very satisfied with my A80.


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Invisiblekoraks
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Re: Ideal camera for mushroom hunters? [Re: Leablas]
    #2980207 - 08/09/04 03:30 AM (12 years, 3 months ago)

You can either drive down to the local mall and pick up a camera or spend months going through information and reviews and then buying your new cam. As for myself, I guess I'm one of those people endlessly reading through forums and whatnot to find any information on a particular camera or technology. The bottomline is, however, that the photographer takes the photograph, and not the camera. A good photographer will take stunning pictures with a crappy cam, while a lousy photographer will only get worthless snapshots from his Canon 1D-II.

Nevertheless, there are of course things you should account for choosing a new camera. As you will be photographing mushrooms, a decent macro capability would come in handy. Luckily, most (if not all) of the decent (> $ 300) digital compact cameras (like the Canon A80, Sony DSC-V/W1, Sony F717 etc.) provide a very reasonable macro functionality.

Quote:

Leablas said:
Those are some kickass pictures gumby. I wish I had $1000 to throw down on a camera, but unfortunately I think I will end up in the $300-400 range. It would seem that the best company for these kind of things would be Sony?



Sony makes some very nice cameras, yes. The F717 is a totally kickass product which is absolutely capable of producing beatiful macros. The F828 isn't much of an improvement in comparison with the F717, as Sony crammed 8Mpix on a sensor the same physical size as the sensor in the F717, resulting in much noisier images than those from the F717.

This brings me to another point: more megapixels is not better! All digital compact cameras (the F717 and F828 are still essentially compact cameras!) use tiny CCD or CMOS sensors. As many consumers think that a camera is better if it has more megapixels, sensor producers are tempted to cram as many pixels on a sensor as possible, resulting in the tiny 8Mpix sensors we see today in the Sony F828 and Canond Pro1. A nasty drawback of this megapixel-race is that due to the physical size of the sensor and the humongous number of pixels, every single pixel doesn't receive that much light to convert into an electric signal. More amplification is needed to rework the signal from the sensor into a signal that can be used in the camera logic and, as you mich suspect, signal amplification means loss of quality. That's why the ultra modern (and ultra expensive) 8Mpix sensors of today have much higher noise levels than the older 5Mpix and 3Mpix sensors.

You won't need 8Mpix unless you're going to make poster-sized prints of your photographs. And even then you can get acceptable results from a 5Mpix camera. Don't spend money on megapixels. Spend money on decent optics.

[Note: the story is somewhat different for dSLRs (like the Canon Rebel, EOS 10D, Sigma SD10, Nikon D70 etc.) as dSLRs use much bigger sensors than compact cameras. This enables cameras like the new EOS 1D-MII to produce virtually noiseless 10Mpix images even on higher ISO rates. But I assume you don't have the cash for a dSLR, so I'll not go into this matter much deeper.]

Quote:

Quick Edit: Gator, whats the difference between Optical/Digital zoom? If it helps, I plan on using my future camera mostly on macro shots(shrooms and herbs) :smile:



Optical zoom means zoom accomplished by the zoomlens on your camera. The lens projects a magnified picture on the image sensor, so the quality of the magnified picture relies on the quality of the lens.
Digital zoom however takes a non-magnified image from the camera's image sensor and extracts the middle part (e.g. 1/4 of the total surface) of the picture and interpolates this image until to a larger version, so you'll end up with a 3Mpix or 5Mpix (depending on your camera) 'magnified' picture.
Digital zoom offers much less quality than optical zoom because digital zoom doesn't add information. It takes a picture of inferior quality and 'stretches' it to a larger size so you the user thinks he gets an image of better quality.

Do not choose a camera because of its digital zoom; you can always crop a picture in Photoshop and enlarge it, as this is exactly what digital zoom does. No-one I know uses digital zoom. Digital zoom is for selling cameras, it has nothing to do with photography.

Hey, read on, I'm not finished yet!! :smile:

Last, I'd like to say something about macro. As you will use your camera primarily for macro photography, it might come in handy to know one or two things about it in terms of choosing equipment.
AS I said, most decent digicams offer macro functionality. You can expect the technical quality (i.e. in terms of resolution, sharpness, colour accuracy) of your macro photo to be better on a more expensive camera. Expensive cameras (like the F717) employ better lenses than the cheaper models and better lenses means better pictures. But it is still possible that your camera just isn't technically capable of producing the image you want. For example, very tiny plants and insects (and mushrooms of course!) may be too small to capture even in macro mode. If you find yourself photographing smaller subjects than your camera really allows, you can consider buying a macro/tele-conversion lens. Raynox is one of the most popular makers of these lenses. A macro-conversion lens allows you to get even closer to your subject and essentially make larger pictures of smaller subjects than your camera was capable of without the extra lens.

That's about all I'm going to tell you right now. There's a lot more you could learn, but the essentials you can find in the text above. If you're interested in more information on photography, just drop me an email (rsmals &at& albi $dot$ nl).

And don't forget: spending more $$$ doesn't essentially improve the quality of your photos. I use a 20-year old analog SLR myself and I use a $ 300 slidescanner to scan my pictures. For my complete setup (SLR body, tripod, a shitload of lenses, scanner etc.) I didn't pay more than $ 600. If I had chosen for the same quality in digital, I had have to spend about ten times as much. Still, my photographs wouldn't have been any better...


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Offlinebutterflydawn
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Re: Ideal camera for mushroom hunters? [Re: Gumby]
    #2980493 - 08/09/04 06:05 AM (12 years, 3 months ago)

i've checked the photos
really nice cam
:thumbup:


--------------------
lucidal expansion


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OfflineLeablas
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Re: Ideal camera for mushroom hunters? [Re: koraks]
    #2980884 - 08/09/04 11:09 AM (12 years, 3 months ago)

Quote:

koraks said:
Very informative post




Wow, I feel like I know a little about cameras now :smile:.

So, it seems that my ideal camera would include decent optical zoom, around 5Mpix(to save on price), and would hopefully include a 'Raynox' lens for increased macro capabilities.

I'm still a little blurry on the pixel part. When the reviews note:
"x million effective pixels
y million sensor photo detectors"
Are we looking for the most sensor:least pixel ratio? Or kind of an even ratio?

Edit: It seems the best type of camera for me would be some type of SLR. But loaded with all of the other extras, they become too expensive :frown:


Edited by Leablas (08/09/04 12:12 PM)


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OfflineMad_Hatter2004
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Re: Ideal camera for mushroom hunters? [Re: Leablas]
    #2981109 - 08/09/04 12:36 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

Quote:

Leablas said:
Just like the title says, I was wondering if you guys could share some ideas on what to look for in a good camera. I've recently started shroom hunting as a hobby and doing I.D's without pictures doesn't work too well(ie:my last post), so I've decided to start saving up for a decent digital camera. Feel free to post your own model name/price too if you have your own. Thanks :smile:




For your first camera go with either Nikon or Cannon...they ARE the camera people.And with cannon the possibilitys are endless.You can buy different lenses and filters and they aren't that expensive!

If you decide cannon,start out with the 2.1 megapixel 3x Optical zoom,7x digital zoom.I used this camera when I had my surf report website up and I took pics of the surf every morning and afternoon to post on myb site.

Nikon.Go with the 3100 coolpix.

A few pics from my cannon I had when I ran my website:







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InvisiblePrisoner#1M
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Re: Ideal camera for mushroom hunters? [Re: Gumby]
    #2981348 - 08/09/04 01:34 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

Quote:

Gumby said:
I've got a Sony CyberShot F828 and I bought it for $793 but it goes for about $999 at most places.




you got a deal and you have a great camera... because there are are filters and stuff available it has tremendous flexability...

a few photos as well... the quality is reduced a little because of the image hosting... they reduced them from a 3mb file...







these are dont with night shot and sepia on with a 1000nm IR filter



this is my garden coyote


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OfflineLeablas
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Re: Ideal camera for mushroom hunters? [Re: Mad_Hatter2004]
    #2981353 - 08/09/04 01:35 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

Wow, the Nikon Coolpix 3100 seems absolutely perfect. Avaliable for $150(wow!), Image quality seems very nice, and I like the design/zoom capabilities. Thanks for the suggestion! :cool:


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