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View Full Version : P&S Cameras with Best Macro AND Best HD Video


drewprops
2010-04-09, 22:42
I really love my Casio Exilim camera's video mode... it delivers beautiful 1280x720 video and I always hear the question "What did you shoot that video on??"

However.

It has a shitty, shitty, shitty macro mode.

My trusy old Canon SD400 would let you practically put the lens on top of a subject and come away with a great photo.

The Casio makes you stay over 10 centimeters away, and by then how "macro" is it really?

So I'd like to hear some advice about my NEXT take-along camera!!!

Cue Dorian in 3..... 2..... 1......
:p


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Dorian Gray
2010-04-11, 06:51
Hmm. Sony Cyber-shot HX5V (http://www.sonystyle.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?catalogId=10551&storeId=10151&langId=-1&productId=8198552921666077169)? This camera focuses to 5 cm, so not as close as some from the past, but better than your Casio (however look into this in more detail because I don't know how good the macro is). It has a Full HD AVCHD video mode at 60i, or 720p MP4 at 30 fps. It also has a wide-angle, optically stabilised, 10x zoom lens that's probably better than your Casio's, and a back-illuminated CMOS sensor ("Exmor R") that's certainly much better. The HX5V also has a huge range of cutting-edge features including full-resolution stills at 10 fps, a GPS and compass (with location metadata embedded in the images), HDMI connectivity, tons of "smart" features, a 3-inch LCD, and much more. It certainly looks good on paper.

I have a Panasonic LX3 (http://panasonic.net/avc/lumix/popup/lx3_interview/), which does 720p video and has a 1 cm macro mode. I haven't tested either, but the functionality is there.

Super-close macro functionality has been dropped from most compact cameras in the drive to cut costs in a cut-throat market. Close macro modes require more expensive lenses, and lenses are one of the most expensive parts of a good compact camera. So the lenses are an easy target for cutting costs.

drewprops
2010-04-11, 12:13
Thanks Dorian, these are good leads.

I wonder how well the Sonys play with Macs these days.
Better than ever, one would hope.

I see that the Sony allows you to use SD cards (holy cow, about time).

I'll have to see if I can look at one of these up close.


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Dorian Gray
2010-08-15, 07:26
Maybe you got a new camera or maybe you decided to stick with your Casio with great video, but regardless you might have a look at the Panasonic LX5 (http://panasonic.net/avc/lumix/compact/lx5/index.html), successor to the LX3 I mentioned above (the "LX4" model name was skipped for superstitious reasons).

The LX5, due to ship in a few days, seems to have most of the great features of the groundbreaking LX3, along with a slightly longer reach (zooms to 90 mm equivalent), slightly improved sensor (less noise), and AVCHD Lite video with Dolby Digital Creator (?) audio. Looks good to me, at least.

pscates2.0
2010-08-15, 09:52
Thanks Dorian, these are good leads.

I wonder how well the Sonys play with Macs these days.
Better than ever, one would hope.

Do you mean in terms of being recognized and automatically launching/importing into iPhoto (or Aperture)?

I can honestly say in all the "switches" I've overseen the past 3-4 years (and, by extension, all the setups and training I've performed as part of it), I've yet to encounter a digital camera from any maker that iPhoto didn't launch for/recognize/import. In fact, that's always one of my favorite things to demo because I think people expect they have to install some proprietary software that came on a disk in their camera's packaging (or, at the very least, some sort of camera-specific driver that iPhoto uses to "see" their camera). But I always say "just plug it in and watch that iPhoto icon in your dock...it'll bounce in a few seconds and launch the program." They're always impressed at how easy and "it just works" it all is.

"Hey, there they are!" :)

On an older camera, it might've taken a little longer than expected. But it's always worked.

I can specifically remember dealing with the following brands (several on more than one occasion): Kodak, Sony, Canon, Fuji, Nikon and Olympus (there may have been others, but those are the six I can recall and pair with particular people). I would think, at this point, any modern major brand camera is going to be recognized by OS X/iPhoto/Aperture. I know they put those updates out from time to time too, adding support for the latest models.