Ẁhat is better - Compact Camera v iPhone 6s or 7?

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by WeegyAVLover, Dec 21, 2016.

  1. WeegyAVLover

    WeegyAVLover
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    Hi All,

    my wife and I are planning a trip to Singapore and Oz in February.

    We plan to do lot of stuff one of the highlights being a walk over Sydney bridge to get the Harbour and Opera House, etc.

    My wife and I are not great at taking pictures at the best of time and normally only use our iPhones. I have recently upgraded from iPhone 4 to 6 and my wife has an iPhone 5 and is about to upgrade to a 7.

    We have an old compact camera (abou 5 years old) but I feel our iPhones have long since surpassed this.

    So I am wondering is there any value in investing in a decent higher end compact camera compared to the pictures you can take with an iPhone (epecially the new 7 plus)?

    An SLR I know would be better but I think they are a bit bulky for us and I know we would not get the the value that the price of a good one demands.

    I am no camera person at all and I have no idea what price point I should be looking at however I was looking on Amazon this morning and seen this Lumix:

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/d/Camera-P...5?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1482319014&sr=1-5

    I remember seeing this camera model (Lumix) being advertised on the TV and the reviews in the main are positive but that is where my knowledge ends.

    Any advice you could give me would be appreciated.
     
  2. imightbewrong

    imightbewrong
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    Probably worth popping over to the photography forum to get the lowdown.

    One of the main things I would have thought you would get from a camera like that is an optical zoom - that is 24-75mm. With a phone you cannot really zoom, only crop. Fine if you want the image you see on the phone, but as you 'zoom' you lose quality.

    Having said that phones are very good now. We have ditched our compact camera and use the phones - we take the SLR if we want really nice photos though as they have that extra quality feel, particularly in low-light conditions.
     
  3. Sandman

    Sandman
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    The cameras in the newer iphones are great but the lack of zoom will very limiting to use it to capture what sounds like will be a great holiday.
    In saying that, I would also avoid a compact and instead go for a decent bridge camera with bigger lens and a longer optical zoom range.
     
  4. WeegyAVLover

    WeegyAVLover
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  5. Sandman

    Sandman
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  6. WeegyAVLover

    WeegyAVLover
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    I just stumbled across Bridge cameras and being a total uneducated oaf in photography I have never heard of them.

    Are they a "bridge" between compact and SLR or a "Bridge" between SLR and video-camera?
     
  7. bluedroog

    bluedroog
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    I have a fairly decent DSLR but use my iphone a lot more because it is always handy. Of course it doesn't compare the my proper camera but for snaps out and about it is great but I've actually got some really great shots on it too.

    I doubt there is a huge amount between a good camera phone and a compact camera. As mentioned you can get lenses to add, my sister had some fixed attachable set and got some great close ups on her phone. Also the iphone has some very clever auto features for white balance etc.
     
  8. MrSossidge

    MrSossidge
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    We took a DSLR and our phones to Florida earlier this year. We printed out some of our 'best' shots and there were a few that we chose from our phones due to the 'selfie' ability. They printed fine at 7x5.

    Why don't you go out for the day somewhere with your phones and take some tourist type shots. Then upload them to photobox or somewhere and get some prints. There are quite a few online places that will do 20 free prints or so when you first sign up.
     
  9. Ste7en

    Ste7en
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    Mrs is a photographer and she has various Nikon 35mm, Hasselblads etc. she uses a Cannon 5D MKIII for work stuff.

    She bought the Fujifilm FinePix X100 after recommendations on the Photography thread.

    I am constantly amazed at the x100. Gorgeous camera with amazing results.
     
  10. Access

    Access
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    I used to own a FinePix, forget the model but something similar to the S9900. It used to take stunning photos for the money, around £150 if memory servs, and had an excellent zoom.
     
  11. IronGiant

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    The former. They are more like an SLR than a compact but without the ability to change lenses, so if you go for one make sure it's lens does everything you might require of it.
     
  12. GaseousClay

    GaseousClay
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    'fraid not IG. They are very much more like compact cameras. It's down to the fact that they have small sensors fitted as fitted in compacts. And because of this they are often pretty poor in low light conditions.
     
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  13. IronGiant

    IronGiant
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    I was answering his question, so I meant: they are more like an SLR compared to a compact camera than they are like a video camera.

    But you are correct they are more like a compact camera but with a bigger lens :thumbsup:
     
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  14. nheather

    nheather
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    The best camera is one that are likely to have to hand when you need it.

    I have a middling DSLR and a good range of middling lenses (about £3000) I also have a fairly decent compact (about £250) and a Samsung S7 (£340).

    The DSLR should beat the other two hands down, but it is a faff to cart around, change lenses etc. So I only tend to use it when on trips that are going to be photo heavy - airshow, museum, zoo, city sightseeing etc.

    But mostly I just need a camera just in case and then I use the compact.

    Having a decent phone camera is relatively new to me. I am shocked at how good it is, especially in low light where it out performs even my DSLR with a F1.8 lens (how , I don't know, on paper it shouldn't, but it does). But I still find the camera phone more awkward to use than my compact and and the lack of an optical zoom on the phone would be a no go for me.

    So I would say a decent small compact with a good optical zoom.

    Cheers,

    Nigel
     
  15. imightbewrong

    imightbewrong
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    Maybe some lenses for the phone is a compromise? Just looking at those for SWMBO's S7. One thing that hits me when I use a camera (SLR or compact) is how much of a faff it is getting to the photos. If I'm out and about I can take a photo of the kids with the phone, check it, crop it, do a few twiddles and send it off to the grandfolks or family whatsapp group from a field in the middle of nowhere in this country or up the swiss alps.

    When I take a photo on the camera it seems so stuck in there until I get back to a laptop. Now I could probably get a wifi sd card or something, but this is another area (coming back to Nigel's point) where the phone is so convenient. Not only is it always there, but it has all the tools right there on it, from viewing and editing to sharing and backup - the works.
     
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2016
  16. WeegyAVLover

    WeegyAVLover
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    Bridge cameras look really bulky, almost the same as an SLR but maybe that is because the pictures make them look massive :)

    I checked out the camera @Sandman sent a link to and plum is a bit Jazzy for me :) But I see they have it in black. However I had an online chat with Jessops and they suggested a few others at different price points:

    Nikon Coolpix B500 - £299
    Nikon Coolpix B500 Digital Camera in Plum - Jessops - Digital Compact Cameras
    Features:
    Digital Zoom - 2x
    Optical Zoom - 40x
    f3.0 aperture
    16MP - again seems decent
    weight - 542g

    Panasonic Lumix Bridge DMC-FZ200 - £280
    Panasonic DMC-FZ200 Digital Bridge Camera - Jessops - Digital Compact Cameras
    Features:
    Digital Zoom - 4x
    Optical Zoom - 24x
    24x zoom
    f2.8 aperture (which I think is good for night time / low light photos).
    12MP - again seems decent
    weight - 588g

    Nikon Coolpix P900 - £479
    Panasonic DMC-FZ200 Digital Bridge Camera - Jessops - Digital Compact Cameras
    Features:
    Digital Zoom - Unknown
    Optical Zoom - 83x
    24x zoom
    f2.8
    16MP - again seems decent
    weight - 899g

    These actually all look like solid cameras with the P900 looking like the best, however I am not sure x83 zoom is something I need to invest so much more money in.
     
  17. WeegyAVLover

    WeegyAVLover
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    The faff bit is something I fully aware of and something I want to avoid that I why I do not want something that is mental big but I do not want to get something that is not as good as my phone.

    So for everyday normal shots the phone will get used. However for night time or zoom shots I want something that can handle that as I feel the iPhone really struggles when doing one or both of these at the same time.
     
  18. GaseousClay

    GaseousClay
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    Have read through this thread in the photography section, should help with any decisions about buying gear.

    Camera Buying Guide

    :smashin:
     
  19. soupdragon

    soupdragon
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    I was tasked with finding a bridge camera for a work pal for their safari holiday. They went with the Panasonic FZ200 (cost £400 ish at the time) and they were delighted. I had a play with it too.

    The 2.8 aperture across the zoom range is the unique selling point. Some cameras will say 2.8 but its only at short range - any zoom and it will go to something like 6.0 or worse. The Panny is 2.8 at no zoom right through to full zoom. For night shots in Sydney, using a large amount of zoom, most lenses will shut down the aperture (ie, the hole the light comes in) whereas you still get good light coming in with the FZ200.

    This means you get enough light onto the sensor so that the shutter can close faster, whereas on another bridge camera, it might need to stay open a bit longer so that the sensor has been 'tickled' with the correct amount of light.

    In practical usage terms, this actually means:

    You don't need a tripod/steady place to hold the camera when using zoom - you can just hold it in your hand

    You still need a steady hand as per any photo, but for the other models, when using the camera in your hands, any minor movement will be picked up due to the shutter being open longer whereas on the Panasonic, the shutter will be faster giving you a better chance of getting the photo sharp first time :)
     
  20. imightbewrong

    imightbewrong
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    I think you would struggle with any camera for night shots without a tripod realistically - I use one with the SLR - maybe my hand isn't steady enough - very possible. May be okay if it's very bright.

    Another option, depending on the length of the holiday, is to hire some kit. I hired a telephoto lens (400mm Canon L lens IIRC) when I went to photograph the penultimate shuttle launch. Not worth buying one but for a once in a lifetime trip was worth a bit of hiring cost. It will be bulky though. I guess you are looking for that perfect sweet spot between convenience, quality and price. Good luck :)
     
  21. WeegyAVLover

    WeegyAVLover
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    Exact-a-mundo my friend.

    Hiring is probably not a bad option but then I would worry about breaking it or it getting stolen. I would much rather own it and those things happen than just be renting it.... For me that is one less thing to worry about but a good option nonetheless and no one I had thought of, considered or known about.
     
  22. nheather

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    Problem with a bridge is that they are, as you say, quite bulky - they seem to be for those that fancy a DSLR but don't want to spend that much or put up with changing lenses.

    I would go with a compact, the Nikon Coolpix that you link for example. Have a look at the Canon ones too. Canon and Nikon are comparable and equivalent to the Apple vs Microsoft so have massive fanboy following.

    I have a Canon compact from some year ago. Not as wide or long as my phone and only just over twice as thick. So very easy to soip in a pocket.

    Have a look at the Canon Powershot SX620 or SX720.

    Cheers,

    Nigel
     
  23. nheather

    nheather
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    Also don't get too hung up on magnification. The compacts have massive zooms.

    For example the Canon Powershot SX620 is a 25x zoom and that is equivalent to 25mm to 625mm on a DSLR. That is HUGE.

    So a 40x is more like 24mm to 960mm - you don't see many people with DSLR lenses that big.

    That is a big ask for a lens and there will be tons of compromise. A phone camera gives excellent results because it is one lens, one focal length, one magnification, one speed. The lens can be optimised to do that one job.

    As soon as you make a lens do more jobs (a zoom lens) then it needs a system of lenses inside not just one. That means more light lost, poorer low light performance and it can't be optimised for every position. So they tend to set it around the middle and the the performance of the lens drops off at the bottom and top.

    DSLR guys often buy lots of prime single focus lenses to address this.

    But have a big zoom range is great, just saying you don't need to get carried away, 25x is huge, 40x is massive.

    If you are buying a compact then just as important is how it feels in the hand so pop down to Currys or Jessops to puck a few up.

    That's how I ended up with the Canon. I narrowed it down to a Nikon, Panasonic and Canon, all pretty much the same on spec - picked them all up and the Canon felt nicer.

    Cheers,

    Nigel
     
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2016
  24. Dony

    Dony
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    I'm out of the loop when it comes to upto date features, but I think the newer DSLR's are wifi enabled. Mine doesn't have that feature, but I can crop and do a quick edit on the camera as easy as doing it on a phone.
     
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  25. imightbewrong

    imightbewrong
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    Do they have touch-screens now? Can you facebook/whatsapp a photo direct from the camera? Off to do some research!
     
  26. Dony

    Dony
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    On local radio recently they had a competition for a Canon DSLR. Part of the blurb was that you could send pictures direct to Facebook/Instagram. I can't remember the model, but I think the prize was worth £1000.
     
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  27. soupdragon

    soupdragon
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    Absolutely. Good point about zoom range. Once you get into those massive zoom ranges, it might look a good spec on paper but in a practical sense, it's a bit like trying to use a telescope handheld after 10 pints - zero chance of keeping it steady :)
     
  28. soupdragon

    soupdragon
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    Panasonic DMC-FZ200

    You can also search on Flickr for different cameras and the shots people are getting from them, plus discussions. Nothing better than owner insight.
     
  29. djt111

    djt111
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    i like the pansonic compacts
    took some good shots with a tz6 few years back
    love my dslr now but it is big

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  30. nwgarratt

    nwgarratt
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    I have a Nikon Coolpix L120 from 5 years ago and it still beats phone cameras today. The B500 is same but with a superzoom. The latest version of the L120 is the L340 at around £150 and has a 28x zoom and 20mpx. Best camera I have had and not that bulky.
     

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