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Dig camera question for the pros

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 
I'm thinking about buying a new camera, i want to make sure that it will do what I want it to do (take crisp clear pics )
these are the specs
Warranty 1-Year Limited
Compatibility Mac and PC
Model Number PhotoSmart 935
Manufacturer HP
Optical Zoom 3x Optical/7x Digital (21x total)
Interface USB
Auto Focus Infinity Focus
LCD Monitor Size 1.5", LED backlit, polysilicon
Memory 32MB Secure Digital
Flash Built-in automatic
MegaPixel 5.3
Digital Zoom 3x
Media Type 32MB Secure Digital
Media Size Included 32MB Secure Digital
Battery Type Included 2 AA Photo Lithium batteries
Battery Type Optional Optional AC adapter, or optional dock
Connectivity USB, SD card slot, mini-b dock

I think 5.3 mega pixels is good, I beleave the one I have now is 2 or three are the most.
post #2 of 23
I can't help you with your camera choice. I'm not even a novice! But I can tell you from experience that you'll be much better off if you get rechargable batteries. Whether via a dock or other method. Batteries don't last long in a digital camera at all!
post #3 of 23
Princess Purr,

What are you intending to do with the cam (ie closeup, sports, candids, just shooting the kitties etc.) the most. I know we tend to do lots of things with our cams, but what type of subject matter are you intending to shoot, and are you intending to print, if so, how large is the largest print you'd reallistically do? The main reason I ask is that you mentioned going to a 5 mega pixel camera and print ends up being the only real advantage if going strictly by the pixel count of the camera. I currently shoot on a 3.2mp Nikon Coolpix and a Canon Digital Rebel (6.2mp). Honestly, unless I print 8x10 and larger or try for solid depth of field shots) it's tough to tell which cam I used for the shot when comparing 4x6 and 5x7 prints. Come to think of it, when I did product shots for my wife's business, I got as many useful shots out of the little Nikon as I did from the big Canon.
I've had a couple of HP cams in the past, and my only real complaints were the slow cycle times on the flash and hotspotting with the flash when shooting macro shots. They provide great value for the dollar, but if you're going to be demanding of your cams or do some specialized shooting, there are better alternatives.

Hope this helped a little, lemme know if I can help.

p.s. If you want examples of the low res shots you can get off of both cameras. Just look in my profile, under home page I have the site I designed for my wife, most of the product shots were taken with the little nikon coolpix 3200, the model shots were taken with the Nikon and Canons (I can't even remember which shot came from what cam anymore) I'd post the link directly, but I don't want to break the advertising rule
post #4 of 23
Thread Starter 
Hi! I'm going to be using the camera to do mostly jewelry picture taking. The problem with my camara now is I just do not get the quilty of pictures I need. I want the pics to be very detailed. Also normally my kitties do modeling for me, and unless they stay still (not going to happen) the pics just arent what I want. I'm going to take a look at your site now. thanks!
post #5 of 23
Thread Starter 
This is what my current camara takes. I just want more details

(this item is already sold and a one of a kind item so i'm not advertising!)

post #6 of 23
Ahh, I'm thinking I'm seeing some of the problem. Off hand I'm guessing you're using your flash, and what looks like direct non-diffused lighting for your shots, from the color I'm guessing you're using either a Sony camera, or a flourescent light source. LOL Or I could be way off base. If you are going to go for a camera primarily for your product shots, the best thing to look for is one with a good macro function. I shot the product shots with macro on, tripod set, no flash, 2 cheap halogen lamps for lightsourcing ('cause I'm too lazy to unpack the "good" gear) and like 2 dollars worth of felt. LOL real high end setup there, 20 bucks worth of lamps, 2 dollars worth of felt, and a 10 dollar tripod hehe. Without knowing if you're going to do a print catalog, or just shots for the web, it's tough to say whether or not you'd need to go that high pixel count wise. To give you an idea of how much detail you can get out of a low count camera, check out the rings page and mouse over the different colors, they were taken with a 3.2mp Nikon Coolpix camera, nothing special or expensive. If your goal is strictly for the web, lemme know your current setup, and maybe we can get you some better shots with your current cam. LOL on the other hand if you're a gadget and toy freak like me, there are quite a few cameras out there that can take great shots.
post #7 of 23
I will have to totally agree with erictk. Unless you are planning on printing out pictures larger than 8x10, there is no need for a digital camera with a resolution greater than 3.2MP.
The resolution that comes from a 3.2MP camera is more than sufficient for almost any need.
Unfortunately, if you are getting inferior pictures, it may be due to your photography techniques. [Don't mean to sound rude]
The clarity and resolution I get from my Olympus 550-Zoom 3.2MP camera is outstanding. Altho many people have gripes about Olympus cameras, I don't.
One thing to consider, never use the digital zoom on any camera since it is an artificial zoom. If you need a zoom feature make sure you are looking only at the optical zoom features of the camera.

post #8 of 23
I tend to agree. My HP 735 is only 3.2 Meag pixel and I'm very happy with the quality of the pictures.

I love taking macro shots - you just gave me a good excuse to show you some of them. I'll be posting some here now. BTW, while it's true you don't need a high resolutiong for the internet - it does let you focus on details. I'll show you some examples.
post #9 of 23

post #10 of 23
Val, I just wanted to add that a lot depends on how you save the images to the web without losing picture quality.
post #11 of 23
those are awesome pics Anne,they are so clear
what kind of digital camera took these pics?
post #12 of 23
I'm looking for one too. Right now I'm leaning towards a Canon Powershot G2 or G3. Anyone have either of these?
This will be my first digital, but I did a lot of photography with my 35mm, slr when I was younger, so I thought the Canons sounded like a good place to start.
post #13 of 23
Thread Starter 
WOW an those are the kind of pics I want!!! I used no flash, and I'm not sure what kind of light. It is really bright but I think it might be flourescent.
I only use the photo's for the web, no printing. So how do I find a camera with good macro that a dummie can use I don't have alot of time on my hands to try to get the perfect shot and what I do know is take about 10 pics and go through them until I find an okay one....way to time consuming!
post #14 of 23
Thread Starter 
here is another pic, kind of okay but still not as sharp as I want
post #15 of 23
Originally posted by Sid_the_Cat_Man
I will have to totally agree with erictk. Unless you are planning on printing out pictures larger than 8x10, there is no need for a digital camera with a resolution greater than 3.2MP.
The resolution that comes from a 3.2MP camera is more than sufficient for almost any need.
Actually, digital cameras are far inferial to SLR cameras in regardes to pixel resolution. An end market SLR camera has over 5 megapixels, an end market dig has less then 2. An top market SLR can have as much as 10 megapixels. Plus you cn get many different telephoto lens and other gear for a SLR camera. Not that I'm saying digy ones are no good, I would be lost with out my dig. cam.

My recamendations are a Canon G3, a Nikon Digital SLR or the Minolta Dimage A1.
post #16 of 23
Originally posted by kitkatz
My recamendations are a Canon G3
Just wondering why you recomend Canon G3 instead of Canon G5?
post #17 of 23
Originally posted by Anne
Val, I just wanted to add that a lot depends on how you save the images to the web without losing picture quality.
Anne, your pics are amazing! So, what is the best way to save the images to the web without losing the quality?
post #18 of 23
I use photoshop's "save to web" feature. It lets you see how much quality you lose with either format and play around with the different aspects.

Photoshop isn't cheap - but it's worth it IMO.
post #19 of 23
Originally posted by Pollyanna
Just wondering why you recomend Canon G3 instead of Canon G5?
Actually, I didn't. I meant to type G5. don't know what I was thinking when I typed 3. It isn't even close to the 5.
A blond moment and I'm not even blond
post #20 of 23

I have some photography review sites linked off of my "Web links" page:


Digital Photography Review (DPReview) and Photography Review are recommended resources.

And you could always ask in the forums (it sorely needs some starter members) and sometimes I hang out in the live chat room off of the home page.

I personally favor the Canon and Nikon lines. The G-series of cameras is excellent, and the G2-G5 cameras are primarily variations on the same theme.

Regarding megapixels, you'll want the highest you can afford. There will always come a time when you'll want to tightly crop an image, print it large, etc...

Another thing to look for is a camera that will take compact flash cards, because they tend to be at the front of that pack for storage capacity, and a camera that will accept lens attachments or an external flash. An external flash is a biggie, because the on-camera flashes always suck (in a word). Using an external flash, you can soften the output quite a bit.

For examples, see THIS thread.
post #21 of 23
Also, if you buy from an online vendor, check their reviews at:


There are a lot of online scams.

I personally recommend B&H Photo Video, which is the primary vendor for professionals in this world.


You can see their reseller ratings here:

They used to be a hole-in-the-wall place when I was a student 14 years ago; now they've got a big store in Manhattan that looks like the photography version of Santa's workshop. 99% of pros shop there.
post #22 of 23
Now that I thought I'd narrowed my choices down to a Canon G3 or G5, Canon came out with a new camera with a 10x lens and image stabilization, plus it can do 60 min. movies of better quality than most with only a few minutes (so they say). So I'll wait around some more and see what people have to say about them. I forget when it's supposed to be in stores, though. It will go for around $500.
post #23 of 23
So who has a Canon G5? I've read mixed reviews on them. Some love them and others feel the G3 is better.
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