best camera to take

Post Reply New Thread

best camera to take

Rank

Total Posts: 49

Joined 2011-02-10

hello! what types of cameras do you all take when you go backpacking/travelling? Just want some info smile And particularly good compacts or SLRs? (I really want an SLR I think it’d be amazing to take photos with but they’re more bulky and expensive!)

     
Avatar for kristiangodfrey
RankRankRankRankRankRankRank

Total Posts: 1310

Joined 2006-05-30

Compacts are the way forward I’d say, as the chunkier SLR-types are pretty big robbery adverts, and a pain to take around and protect.

There are lots of powerful compacts on the market now, and I’m a big fan of the Panasonic TZ series, and I take both my old TZ3 and my never TZ7 on my travels. There’s now a TZ17 or so that’s just come out, which is apparently very good. The cameras are very durable, have great picture modes, and powerful zoom (12x optical).

Canon are also pretty good, but I can’t think of any specific models.

     
Avatar for Sean_h
RankRank

Total Posts: 55

Joined 2009-05-26

I’ve also got a Panasonic TZ10, I’ve not gone away yet but been testing it at home and its easy to use, you can manually chnage the settings and photos have come out great.

I was also debating whether to get a compact or an SLR and decided that as I’m fairly new to photography it wasn’t worth getting an SLR as I wouldn’t know how to use half the features, thought it was better to lean the features on an advanced compact first.

Doesn’t matter how good the camera is your photos will only be as good as the person taking them!

     
Avatar for Breathofreshair
Rank

Total Posts: 36

Joined 2010-12-01

I’ve now got a Canon G10 - new version is the G12 - and the nice thing about it is that it takes pictures in raw format without being a DSLR.  It’s a compact, and takes fantastic photos while still allowing me to edit them later if I want. The only downside is the zoom, although the newer ones might have improved on that one.

     
Rank

Total Posts: 49

Joined 2011-02-10

I’ve now got a Canon G10 - new version is the G12 - and the nice thing about it is that it takes pictures in raw format without being a DSLR.  It’s a compact, and takes fantastic photos while still allowing me to edit them later if I want. The only downside is the zoom, although the newer ones might have improved on that one.

I didn’t realise the G10 was a compact camera. It does a similar job to some SLRs (perhaps depending on the quality/lens), like focussing on a subject/object and de-focussing on the background etc (I thought you can only do this with SLRs!) How much was it, if you don’t mind me asking?!

     
Avatar for Denton32
RankRankRankRankRankRankRank

Total Posts: 1923

Joined 2008-04-17

I have a DSLR which I take travelling, and a couple of lenses and a tripod. It is definitely a lot bulkier, so I always take a compact as well (which is waterproof and has come in very useful!).
As long as you make sure it is adequately insured, you’d be fine. It is no more riskier than an upmarket compact. If anything, a compact would be easier to steal!

As you’ve never used a DSLR before, presumably this is your first trip travelling for an extended period, I would go a high-end compact. With a lot of them now, you can manually change a lot of the settings and features (not as much as a DSLR though), so you can get used to it on a smaller scale and if you decide you like it, you can upgrade later. Compacts always come in useful, so it’s not like it would be wasted money. For example, I would never take my DSLR on a night out, it’s always my compact! And if it’s raining and I wanna take pictures, I don’t wanna get my DSLR wet, so I use my compact.

I agree with Panasonic being a good brand, I can’t remember the specific model, but my boyfriend has a Panasonic Lumix and I think it’s great. It takes great, sharp images for a compact. He can change the shutter speed to as slow as one second, and he can change a heap of other settings too. It also records HD videos. Defo worth a look. It’s quite a pricey one, but it works very very well.
I don’t really know any other good compacts at the mo. I can tell you not to get an Olympus though! I’ve had two and disliked them both - slow to take pictures, very bad night images (even when using a tripod), kinda dull looking results.

I’ve used this website for DSLR/lens reviews, and it’s pretty helpful. http://www.dpreview.com/

grin

     
Avatar for Awesometori
Rank

Total Posts: 9

Joined 2011-02-06

I’m taking a Sony Cybershot. Amazing clear pictures. Quick. Different settings. Can also take amazing video(taking Flip for video though). Compact. Amazing zoom. And cheap.

That is all.

     
Avatar for Denton32
RankRankRankRankRankRankRank

Total Posts: 1923

Joined 2008-04-17

Oo yeah, i forgot about them - Sony Cybershots are quite good too.
I’ve got a couple of friends who have them

     
Avatar for kristiangodfrey
RankRankRankRankRankRankRank

Total Posts: 1310

Joined 2006-05-30

The sony cybershots take great pictures, but they always broke on me - which is particularly annoying when travelling! My Panasonic TZ3 on the other hand has taken over 12,000 photos and never missed a beat, despite it now being my designated ‘party’ camera, and therefore suffering quite a lot of drops and spills lol.

     
Rank

Total Posts: 49

Joined 2011-02-10

I have a DSLR which I take travelling, and a couple of lenses and a tripod. It is definitely a lot bulkier, so I always take a compact as well (which is waterproof and has come in very useful!).
As long as you make sure it is adequately insured, you’d be fine. It is no more riskier than an upmarket compact. If anything, a compact would be easier to steal!

As you’ve never used a DSLR before, presumably this is your first trip travelling for an extended period, I would go a high-end compact. With a lot of them now, you can manually change a lot of the settings and features (not as much as a DSLR though), so you can get used to it on a smaller scale and if you decide you like it, you can upgrade later. Compacts always come in useful, so it’s not like it would be wasted money. For example, I would never take my DSLR on a night out, it’s always my compact! And if it’s raining and I wanna take pictures, I don’t wanna get my DSLR wet, so I use my compact.

I agree with Panasonic being a good brand, I can’t remember the specific model, but my boyfriend has a Panasonic Lumix and I think it’s great. It takes great, sharp images for a compact. He can change the shutter speed to as slow as one second, and he can change a heap of other settings too. It also records HD videos. Defo worth a look. It’s quite a pricey one, but it works very very well.
I don’t really know any other good compacts at the mo. I can tell you not to get an Olympus though! I’ve had two and disliked them both - slow to take pictures, very bad night images (even when using a tripod), kinda dull looking results.

I’ve used this website for DSLR/lens reviews, and it’s pretty helpful. http://www.dpreview.com/

grin

Thanks so much for the info that’s amazing! I’m not planning to go any time soon but I’m saving up, though I have LOTS of saving to do! I realised that a trip being about 1000£ won’t mean as cheap a trip as I thought LOL Thanks so much!

     
Rank

Total Posts: 49

Joined 2011-02-10

I’m taking a Sony Cybershot. Amazing clear pictures. Quick. Different settings. Can also take amazing video(taking Flip for video though). Compact. Amazing zoom. And cheap.

That is all.

Which model, if you don’t mind me asking? Isn’t there a lot of different cybershots?

     
Avatar for norepeat
RankRankRankRankRankRank

Total Posts: 842

Joined 2006-07-14

Summary (if you aren’t going to read my long-winded reply): I agree with Denton32.

I’ve travelled extensively with both compact and SLR cameras (though not at the same time), and it really comes down to how much creative control you want over your pictures. There are other issues such as cost, size/weight etc. but in my opinion these are all surmountable (e.g. better insurance, inconvenience offset by having a better camera). Personally, I always travel with a SLR and always think it’s worth it. wink

One often-overlooked aspect of photography that I can’t repeat enough is that you don’t need an expensive camera to take amazing pictures. People were taking breathtaking photographs before the invention of autofocus, light metering, colour film or even automatic shutters, and some of my best shots were taken with a cheap 4 MP fixed-focus non-zoom compact. Light, texture, framing, angles, patterning - in short, more ephemeral things - make a great photograph, and the most important consideration is always going to be the light. You can capture the essence of a place with a 2 MP cell phone camera almost as well as with a 24 MP Nikon D3X if you can get the ephemera right.

That said, a SLR will allow you to get great photographs in a much, much wider range of conditions and will give you fine control over a lot of things that compacts just can’t do. A small camera will never be able to match the aperture width and focal length of a good lens or the shutter speed and ISO control of a good body - and, despite the hype, they aren’t supposed to. Compacts are designed for convenience (to the extent that a lot of their features - neutral density filters are a good example - are just software effects), and they do it well. SLRs are designed for robust shooting and control, and they also do it well.

My advice to you is this: If you think you might want to get into photography as a hobby, invest in a low-end and/or second-hand DSLR from a good manufacturer (i.e. Canon or Nikon) and take a few months to learn how to use it before you go. You will not regret it (and all of the SLR photographers here will be happy to help you). If you aren’t too fussed about photography as a discipline, get a rugged compact with the widest aperture and longest zoom you can find (megapixels are irrelevant), read some books on photo composition and don’t give SLRs a second thought. If you don’t know which camp you fall into, post again and we’ll try to help you decide. wink

     
Avatar for Denton32
RankRankRankRankRankRankRank

Total Posts: 1923

Joined 2008-04-17

One often-overlooked aspect of photography that I can’t repeat enough is that you don’t need an expensive camera to take amazing pictures.

I agree. Which is why I said as a first time traveller, it is probably better to go with a compact. See how you like photography when travelling - you might prefer to just have a camera in your pocket and shot randomly at things. You might prefer to not even bother with that many photos and just get on with doing stuff! Or, you might find (like me!) that you can quite happily spend time alone, in a small area taking photographs of everything and enjoying using the different settings/light situations and making different looking images.

If when you are away you think you really want to try more, then try a small DSLR. Or even try one before you go. Whatever you think. The first time I travelled with my DSLR though (about 6 months ago), I had no where near as much knowledge on the camera and photography as what I do now. They take quite a bit to learn, and there are lots of different factors that come in to using a DSLR. Although there is an “auto” mode, there is no point in using it in a DSLR. If you are going to buy a DSLR, then you have to learn how to use manual modes or you may as well take a compact.

I’ve read a couple of very helpful books on understanding photography, light and the inter-relationship of the different controls on a DSLR.
“The Digital Photography Book” by Scott Kelby (1st edition) and “Understanding Exposure 3rd Edition: How to Shoot great photos with any camera” by Bryan Peterson, were both very helpful for me.

If you’re going to want to take professional looking photographs, you will also probably want some sort of editting software. Compact cameras (which shoot in JPEG), adjust certain levels like saturation, contrast, sharpness… etc to give you a nice looking image straight off the camera. DSLRs have the capability to shoot in different formats, (including JPEG) the most flexible of which is RAW. RAW is like a negative of a photo - it doesn’t make any changes to the image like a compact does, as it leaves the space and control for you to do it all yourself in your post-processing software.

I’m quite into it, and I love photography. But it’s something you develop your skills in over time, so as a result I still say get a great compact, get used to what some of the settings do. Then later on, get a DSLR, learn to use it properly.
You might decide when you get away that you’re not even that keen on taking photos when travelling!

Ramble over :D

     
Rank

Total Posts: 49

Joined 2011-02-10

Summary (if you aren’t going to read my long-winded reply): I agree with Denton32.

I’ve travelled extensively with both compact and SLR cameras (though not at the same time), and it really comes down to how much creative control you want over your pictures. There are other issues such as cost, size/weight etc. but in my opinion these are all surmountable (e.g. better insurance, inconvenience offset by having a better camera). Personally, I always travel with a SLR and always think it’s worth it. wink

One often-overlooked aspect of photography that I can’t repeat enough is that you don’t need an expensive camera to take amazing pictures. People were taking breathtaking photographs before the invention of autofocus, light metering, colour film or even automatic shutters, and some of my best shots were taken with a cheap 4 MP fixed-focus non-zoom compact. Light, texture, framing, angles, patterning - in short, more ephemeral things - make a great photograph, and the most important consideration is always going to be the light. You can capture the essence of a place with a 2 MP cell phone camera almost as well as with a 24 MP Nikon D3X if you can get the ephemera right.

That said, a SLR will allow you to get great photographs in a much, much wider range of conditions and will give you fine control over a lot of things that compacts just can’t do. A small camera will never be able to match the aperture width and focal length of a good lens or the shutter speed and ISO control of a good body - and, despite the hype, they aren’t supposed to. Compacts are designed for convenience (to the extent that a lot of their features - neutral density filters are a good example - are just software effects), and they do it well. SLRs are designed for robust shooting and control, and they also do it well.

My advice to you is this: If you think you might want to get into photography as a hobby, invest in a low-end and/or second-hand DSLR from a good manufacturer (i.e. Canon or Nikon) and take a few months to learn how to use it before you go. You will not regret it (and all of the SLR photographers here will be happy to help you). If you aren’t too fussed about photography as a discipline, get a rugged compact with the widest aperture and longest zoom you can find (megapixels are irrelevant), read some books on photo composition and don’t give SLRs a second thought. If you don’t know which camp you fall into, post again and we’ll try to help you decide. wink

Thanks so much! I really like photography and that’s why I thought maybe for travelling a more ‘professional’ one would be convenient. Can you actually get compact cameras with aperture/good depth of field on them? I want to take something more than just a ‘snapshot’, a little more creative than that (not that snapshots can’t be great, don’t get me wrong - they can look great if taken ‘well’wink but just something with a little more range. I’m not sure if I’m making much sense! Thanks so much for your post it’s awesome!

 

     
Avatar for Mikeyandthecity
Rank

Total Posts: 15

Joined 2011-01-11

just wanted to post an article in regards to whatever camera you choose and how it doesn’t matter:

http://www.kenrockwell.com/tech/notcamera.htm

With that being said though, I do prefer my DSLR as I like the look and control of the depth of field. However, for my trip I’m going to buy a little point-n-shoot (probably either a Nikon or Canon) as I’ve had great success with my old Nikon Coolpix and have taken some of my favorite shots with it!

     
Avatar for Breathofreshair
Rank

Total Posts: 36

Joined 2010-12-01

I’ve now got a Canon G10 - new version is the G12 - and the nice thing about it is that it takes pictures in raw format without being a DSLR.  It’s a compact, and takes fantastic photos while still allowing me to edit them later if I want. The only downside is the zoom, although the newer ones might have improved on that one.

I didn’t realise the G10 was a compact camera. It does a similar job to some SLRs (perhaps depending on the quality/lens), like focussing on a subject/object and de-focussing on the background etc (I thought you can only do this with SLRs!) How much was it, if you don’t mind me asking?!

I got it after the G11 came out on clearance (ie. got lucky)  I think I paid around 500 (CDN) for it in total - bought a memory card at the same time.