Forums > Photography Talk > Best "point and shoot" under $400 ish?

Photographer

pacman829

Posts: 297

Boston, Massachusetts, US

I have a friend looking to pick up photography as a hobby and asked me for some suggestions... but these days i barely look at anything other then dslr and video cams ...

any good suggestions ? .. possibly something with a few pro features... as I might be looking to pick up something small to carry as well


Thanks

Jan 04 13 10:13 pm Link

Photographer

pacman829

Posts: 297

Boston, Massachusetts, US

and with a hot shoe

Jan 04 13 10:16 pm Link

Photographer

Park Avenue Pin-ups

Posts: 476

Waverly, New York, US

Why not a used entry level DSLR?

Jan 04 13 10:30 pm Link

Photographer

Sand Angel Photography

Posts: 569

Phoenix, Arizona, US

Park Avenue Pin-ups wrote:
Why not a used entry level DSLR?

+$350

Lots of them around.

Jan 04 13 10:48 pm Link

Photographer

Steinberg Photo

Posts: 1135

Boston, Massachusetts, US

Based on your description, my first thought is the Canon G15. Will prob cost btn $400-450. Worth spending the extra few $$, IMHO.

Jan 04 13 11:39 pm Link

Photographer

Arznix

Posts: 517

Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Keh.com has some of the older G-series cameras used, some like the G10 for about $250. The noise in the blacks can be bad, but for someone starting out it gives them enough flexibility to allow them to learn the basics of manual shooting with a decent megapixel count and it is small enough that they might actual have it with them for more spontaneous shooting.

I think you can get some of the original micro 4/3 cameras in that price range used also.

Jan 05 13 01:02 am Link

guide forum

Photographer

CHAD ALAN

Posts: 3809

Los Angeles, California, US

I got an Olympus PL-2 with kit lens for pretty close to $300 if I remember correctly.
It's a micro 4/3 camera with a hot shoe. It's pretty nice for the price.

Edit: it was brand new, got it right before the holidays

Jan 05 13 01:06 am Link

Photographer

Jason Haven

Posts: 38336

Washington, District of Columbia, US

X10 can be had at around that price at times.

But yeah, a used DSLR seems logical.

Jan 05 13 06:50 am Link

guide forum

Photographer

Robb Mann

Posts: 10671

Baltimore, Maryland, US

The 'premium point n shoot' category, which is where a $400 P&S falls, is pretty quickly becoming redundant. Squeezed out by smartphones on the left and compact mirrorless cameras on the right. I loved my LX-3, but quickly got bored with the Lx-5, and totally missed the launch of the LX-7.

I think nowadays you can spend $400 better and still stay portable.

Jan 05 13 07:26 am Link

Photographer

GM Photography

Posts: 6100

Olympia, Washington, US

For the times when I don't want to carry around a DSLR, I really love my Olympus XZ-1.  It's not something I would use for llama shoots, and if you pixel peep, the image quality isn't on par with a DSLR, but for stuff like vacation photos or even street shooting, it's very small, light, and fast.  You can shoot RAW, it has a fast (f1.8) sharp lens, and is pretty easy to use.  ISO past 800 is pretty noisy, but with the f1.8 lens, you won't need to go there in most situations.  It's max shutter speed is kind of low (1/2000), but it has a built in ND filter to compensate for that.  It will also do video.  I can't speak to that, since I never use it.

Here are a couple of sets of vacation photos I've taken with it.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/geeman39/s … 8048/show/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/geeman39/s … 6004/show/

Jan 05 13 08:07 am Link

Photographer

billy badfinger

Posts: 830

Tampa, Florida, US

The Olympus XZ-1 is getting closed out right now for around
$270 @ most places...Superb pocket camera w/28-112mm 1.8 Zuiko zoom,
large sensor (for it's class!),lot's of Pro level controls,hot shoe AND built-in flash,
and you can add an EVF if you want a viewfinder.
It's a very cool little camera!!!...DPReview gave it a gold award...good enough for me!

Jan 05 13 08:11 am Link

Photographer

Virtual Studio

Posts: 5838

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

chadsimages wrote:
I got an Olympus PL-2 with kit lens for pretty close to $300 if I remember correctly.
It's a micro 4/3 camera with a hot shoe. It's pretty nice for the price.

Edit: it was brand new, got it right before the holidays

This.

It's an awesome compromise between size and features.

Competes image quality wise quite squarely with the entry level DSLR's and tiny.

Jan 05 13 09:02 am Link

Photographer

Jim Lafferty

Posts: 1948

Brooklyn, New York, US

ASYLUM - Photo wrote:
a used DSLR seems logical.

I disagree. A quality P&S with manual controls is plenty for a hobbyist. Getting roped in to spending an additional $200+ per lens is unnecessary.

This just got an upgrade, but I hear it's good: http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/OlympusXZ1

Jan 05 13 04:59 pm Link

Photographer

Leighthenubian

Posts: 2967

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Jim Lafferty wrote:

I disagree. A quality P&S with manual controls is plenty for a hobbyist. Getting roped in to spending an additional $200+ per lens is unnecessary.

This just got an upgrade, but I hear it's good: http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/OlympusXZ1

+1

my G11 is always in my pocket

Jan 05 13 05:33 pm Link

Photographer

Photo36 Models

Posts: 26

Franklin, New Jersey, US

Never ever buy a Nikon point-&-shoot. Panasonics are good.

Jan 05 13 06:25 pm Link

Photographer

Jon Macapodi

Posts: 289

New York, New York, US

I'm a huge fan of the Fuji X10.
http://content.reviewed.com/products/13487/Vanity.jpg

Very compact, stylish, great image quality, fuji skintones, incredible dynamic range (a little over 12 stops when shot in the 6mp pixel binning modes), exposure compensation dial, AF mode dial, dials for aperture and shutter speed, standard hotshoe, leaf shutter (up to 1/4000th sync speed with strobes, depending on the capabilities of your triggers/lighting), real and usable optical viewfinder, fast glass that STAYS fast on the telephoto end (f2 - f2.8). The sensor may not be as large as a G1X, but then the G1X is also considerably bulkier and a little over two stops slower on the telephoto end.

Samples:
http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8201/8275547690_d3c650c4c2_b.jpg
http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8078/8263060446_239b432091_b.jpg
http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8189/8129363837_5f5e25563f_b.jpg

Jan 05 13 06:31 pm Link

Photographer

Eyesso

Posts: 784

Ormond Beach, Florida, US

Yashica T4 Super?   

Google:   Ryan McGinley, Victor Vauthier, Terry Richardson

Jan 05 13 09:00 pm Link

Photographer

Zack Zoll

Posts: 2643

Glens Falls, New York, US

Eyesso wrote:
Yashica T4 Super?   

Google:   Ryan McGinley, Victor Vauthier, Terry Richardson

The T3 is pretty good too.  I have a few friends, all anal artsy-types, that use that.

The XZ-1 is probably the best bet.  I think the G15 is a better camera, but it's a lot more right now, assuming you can snag an XZ-1 before they all go away.  When it was new, and the same price at the G12, not so much.

Jan 05 13 09:12 pm Link

Photographer

Eyesso

Posts: 784

Ormond Beach, Florida, US

Jon Macapodi wrote:
I'm a huge fan of the Fuji X10.
http://content.reviewed.com/products/13487/Vanity.jpg

Man....you should check out this guy's website.  Nice stuff!

Jan 05 13 09:19 pm Link

Photographer

You Can Call Me Pierre

Posts: 761

Montreal, Quebec, Canada

I got a bundled deal on liquidation for the Panasonic GF1 with 20mm f/1.7 kit lens.
MFT prices new and used are great value for $400.

Jan 05 13 09:56 pm Link

Photographer

pacman829

Posts: 297

Boston, Massachusetts, US

Thanks for the replies everyone

Jan 17 13 09:40 pm Link

Photographer

pacman829

Posts: 297

Boston, Massachusetts, US

Thanks for the replies everyone

Jan 17 13 09:40 pm Link

Photographer

JBPhoto

Posts: 1102

Belleville, Michigan, US

Amazon had some great deals around the holidays, don't know if they'll be repeating them anytime soon.
Got a Panasonic LX7 for $299, and a G5 Micro 4/3 body for $250.

Jan 20 13 08:30 am Link