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Compact Cameras

Discussion in 'AP Magazine Feedback & Suggestions' started by Roy5051, Jan 21, 2021.

  1. Roy5051

    Roy5051 Well-Known Member

    It was good to see the article from Derek Braid (AP 23 January 2021) about using his compact cameras for panorama pictures. We do not seem to have many such articles in AP these days, and even when we do, it is about compacts costing several hundreds of pounds.

    I started in photography in 1980, and had all the gear and became quite proficient at the art; however, with advancing years, I found that I could not carry all the kit any more, and started to use compact cameras more and more whilst out walking and was very satisfied with the results obtained, such that, about 10 years ago, I dumped the kit and used compacts exclusively.

    I have taken some quite satisfying panoramas over the past few years, as well as normal-format photos, and have several hanging on the walls of my house.

    My current kit includes a Sony HX60, a Sony HX350 and a Sony RX100 which I bought recently second-hand. I am very pleased with the results from these cameras, and as I rarely print bigger that A4, the quality is very good. I do have some A3 enlargements made through Snapfish, and these I mount and hang on the walls.

    So, more articles of this sort, please.
  2. Andrew Flannigan

    Andrew Flannigan Well-Known Member

    Compact digital cameras provide a lot of bang for your buck! I use a pair of compact superzooms (Sony HX90 and Panasonic TZ70). They aren't perfect but they can get me a picture when I'm not in a position to carry something else.

    Three men on bench outside Sidmouth Market TZ70 P1030382.JPG

    Man by window in Driffield Cafe TZ70 P1030296.JPG

    BAE 146 over Exeter HX90 DSC00825 2.JPG

    Sony HX90 8GB 09 00273.JPG
    Roy5051 likes this.
  3. Chester AP

    Chester AP Well-Known Member

    Whenever somebody without much experience or technical knowledge starts a new thread to ask for advice about buying a camera, before rushing to suggest something I might buy with their budget (if indicated), I usually ask the question 'what do you want to do with your images?'. If they will only ever been seen on a PC monitor, or on a handheld device with a small screen, then an expensive camera (of any type) if probably not what they need. Often a second hand compact is more than adequate, but they believe they need to buy something newer and with a higher specification (to use the cars comparison, they believe that only a 7 Series BMW will be adequate, when all they really need is a second hand Nissan Micra). Often I suspect that the person who asked the question has never even considered getting a large print done for their wall, which is when a more advanced camera with a larger sensor becomes more important (but it still might be a second hand model). But such a camera may be more complex to learn to use than a compact.

    I think what your post shows is that the quality of the images from compact cameras (like all cameras) depends a lot upon the experience of the person using them, and that having that experience you can make a sensible judgement on what specification you need to get the results you want. This is what many people new to photography do not have, and are looking for a quick answer to a very difficult question when they ask what they should buy.
    Roy5051 likes this.
  4. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    There is a big gap between what someone might want and what will "make do". There is nothing wrong with wanting to "buy once" and grow into it as it were. I agree compacts can do the job a lot of the time and some 1" sensor bridge cameras today are remarkable for what they can produce.

    I used a compact for a while when travelling on business, but it was absolutely horrible to use even if it did turn out reasonable results. I've just bought another hoping time has brought improvements but, thanks to Covid, it has only been out of the house once.
  5. Chester AP

    Chester AP Well-Known Member

    How big the gap appears may depend on the experience of the user. Somebody like Roy5051 or Derek Braid is more likely to get the best possible results from a compact than a user without the experience. Sometimes I suspect that this is the best way to judge the experience of a photographer - see what can they do with something older or a lower specification than their ideal camera. They will understand its limitations, and work within them.
  6. IvorETower

    IvorETower Little Buttercup

    Reminds me of the "Pro photographer, cheap camera" challenge series on YouTube. It's quite surprising just what a real pro can get out of old, basic digital cameras with very limited controls (and hardly any megapixels)
    Roy5051 and John Farrell like this.
  7. Chester AP

    Chester AP Well-Known Member

    I vaguely recall an advertising campaign for the Olympus Trip, and somebody complaining to a BBC consumer programme that the advertising was misleading because he couldn't get decent pictures with the one that he had purchased. The BBC persuaded a famous professional photographer (Lichfield? I'm not certain about this) to use one for a day and he produced perfect results and explained that there were some types of shot it couldn't possibly do, but he had worked within its limitations and thought it was capable of taking very good shots.
    IvorETower and John Farrell like this.

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