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  1. #1
    MB1
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    I'm looking for a good travel camera.

    Since I mostly post here and in Critique I decided to post this here.

    #1 I normally shot with a Canon 5D and carry 3 good (and nice and heavy) lenses plus a moderate tripod.

    #2 We are going on a 1 week unsupported bike tour in Germany followed by a 1 week supported ride along the Danube to Budapest..

    #3 A budget of under $1,000.

    #4 A goal of having the total camera equipment package to be less than 1lb but I could deal with a little more.

    #5 I like wide angle lenses and shots, I'm not big into telefotos.

    #6 What the heck should I buy?
    No, I DON'T need that.

  2. #2
    Senior Shooter Greg McCary's Avatar
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    Re: I'm looking for a good travel camera.

    The Olympus E-420. The worlds smallest DSLR. That and the pancake Zuiko 25mm. 13oz and it will almost fit in your shirt pocket. You will get in under a pound and a grand. The 420 runs $600.00 and the lens $250.00 Sweet..

    http://www.olympusamerica.com/cpg_se...p?product=1372
    http://www.adorama.com/IOM2528.html
    I am like Barney Fife, I have a gun but Andy makes me keep the bullet in my pocket..

    Sony a99/a7R

  3. #3
    light wait photophorous's Avatar
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    Re: I'm looking for a good travel camera.

    Don't yell at me for saying this, but you need a 35mm rangefinder. Pick up a Bessa R2A ($550), with a 25/4 ($300ish) and a 50/whatever ($200+), and you're set. Perfect travel kit. Tiny lenses. Excellent quality. You'll want to sell your 5D when you get home.

    Paul

  4. #4
    Senior Shooter Greg McCary's Avatar
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    Re: I'm looking for a good travel camera.

    Quote Originally Posted by photophorous
    Don't yell at me for saying this, but you need a 35mm rangefinder. Pick up a Bessa R2A ($550), with a 25/4 ($300ish) and a 50/whatever ($200+), and you're set. Perfect travel kit. Tiny lenses. Excellent quality. You'll want to sell your 5D when you get home.

    Paul
    I was about to write that. You can get a very nice RF for that price range. You could probably get an M3 and a nice 35mm Voigtlander lens for that price, just think. No batteries or CF cards to keep up with. A Leica in Germany.
    I am like Barney Fife, I have a gun but Andy makes me keep the bullet in my pocket..

    Sony a99/a7R

  5. #5
    Senior Member AgingEyes's Avatar
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    Re: I'm looking for a good travel camera.

    You could look into some bridge camera. Small, light, usually with a 18-200 mm lens or longer lens. Some even support RAW and allows you to shoot completely manually (even focusing).

  6. #6
    Powder River Imaging EOSThree's Avatar
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    Re: I'm looking for a good travel camera.

    The Panasonic TZ3 or TZ5 are decent travel cameras. I have a TZ3 right now, it takes very good photos, it's image stabilized, and has an awesome zoom range(28-280) that starts at a true wide angle 28mm(equiv.). It's nearly pocketable, not as small as Canons Elphs but still pretty small. The screen is huge, the build is very stout with very little plastic to be found. Panasonic tends to be a little heavy handed with their noise reduction at high ISOs blurring detail, but smoothing the output. Not really useful for big enlargements, but works fine for a travel camera.

    With that said, I'm giving mine to my parents as it's not the camera for me. I don't like not having a viewfinder, I miss having manual controls. I decided to buy a G9 to replace it. I think a G9 would also fit the bill for you as a travel camera. Of course it's much larger than the TZ3, but having a viewfinder back and manual controls is worth it to me. I sold my G2 two years ago and picked up an S2 which was a good camera, but I still found myself missing my G now and then. I sold the S2, tried the TZ(good at what it does), and now I am waiting for my G9 to be delivered. Many reviews sack the G9 for it's high ISO performance, but in other reviews I have seen some really good shots taken at ISO 1600, proper exposure seems to be the key. The Luminous Landscape has a really good review that demonstrates some of the high ISO shots with the author being a firm M3 fan that liked the G9.
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  7. #7
    MB1
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    Re: I'm looking for a good travel camera.

    I like the idea of the Olympus (the 25mm lens seems to be out of stock) and the G9.

    If I was going to do film I could break out one of my old Nikons or the Hasselblad (but that thing is huge!).
    No, I DON'T need that.

  8. #8
    The red headed step child jgredline's Avatar
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    Re: I'm looking for a good travel camera.

    ''G9'' end of of story....
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  9. #9
    Senior Shooter Greg McCary's Avatar
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    Re: I'm looking for a good travel camera.

    I am not sure when you are going but Amazon is taking pre-orders and can ship the 25mm on 5-20. But the 14-42mm Zuiko kit lens is small and lightweight as well. It is also very reasonably priced and it takes really good pictures. Also the 50mm lens is small. But you want wide.

    http://www.amazon.com/gp/offer-listi...0301094&sr=8-1
    I am like Barney Fife, I have a gun but Andy makes me keep the bullet in my pocket..

    Sony a99/a7R

  10. #10
    Member Ballen Photo's Avatar
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    Re: I'm looking for a good travel camera.

    This is an interesting thread, and I'd like to hear what you folks have to say about this subject.
    Rather than just lurk, I'll post for subscription purposes.
    BTW, If You go the G9 route, may I suggest going to www.lensmateonline.com to get a lens adapter tube which not only provides accessory threads for filters and conversion adapters, but provides protection for your lens against knocks.
    -Bruce

  11. #11
    Senior Member AgingEyes's Avatar
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    Re: I'm looking for a good travel camera.

    Quote Originally Posted by EOSThree
    Many reviews sack the G9 for it's high ISO performance, but in other reviews I have seen some really good shots taken at ISO 1600, proper exposure seems to be the key.
    Well, with a sensor the size of that of any compact digicam out there, it shouldn't be a surprise that, with 12 megapixel, noise is an issue. With sensor of that size, 6 megapixel should be the max, I think.

  12. #12
    Liz
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    Re: I'm looking for a good travel camera.

    I agree with Javier. I did a LOT of research looking for a p&s to compliment my XTi. IMHO, the G9 is one of the best if not the best of the p&s cameras out there. The IQ is excellent. Here are my first shots - straight out of the box. One or two I lightened up. That's it!

    Jersey Shore - new G9 camera

    Liz

  13. #13
    The red headed step child jgredline's Avatar
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    Re: I'm looking for a good travel camera.

    Really, the G9 does not behave like a P&S but like a mini DSLR. After my first one got stolen, I had no plans to replace it, but I really missed it and am very happy I got another one. The only thing I would recommend is a spare battery or two. But as Liz said, if not the best it is up there...
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  14. #14
    Powder River Imaging EOSThree's Avatar
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    Re: I'm looking for a good travel camera.

    Quote Originally Posted by AgingEyes
    Well, with a sensor the size of that of any compact digicam out there, it shouldn't be a surprise that, with 12 megapixel, noise is an issue. With sensor of that size, 6 megapixel should be the max, I think.
    I agree, all of the manufacturers are squeezing way too many pixels on sensors. I should have kept my G2!
    At the same time most of the complaints about the noise came from technical reviews. The LL review was more from a practical user standpoint, and I have seen other reviews along this line and the ISO 1600 shots have been pretty impressive to me. I certainly try to stay away from high ISOs no matter what I am shooting with, but it's nice to know that a usable small print can be made from a G9.
    Rule books are paper they will not cushion a sudden meeting of stone and metal. --Ernie Gann--
    What is a cynic? A man who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing. --Oscar Wilde--

  15. #15
    MB1
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    G9

    Quote Originally Posted by jgredline
    Really, the G9 does not behave like a P&S but like a mini DSLR. After my first one got stolen, I had no plans to replace it, but I really missed it and am very happy I got another one. The only thing I would recommend is a spare battery or two. But as Liz said, if not the best it is up there...
    Correct me if I am wrong but the G9 doesn't go very wide does it?
    No, I DON'T need that.

  16. #16
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    Re: G9

    The G9 is 35mm equivalent at it's widest.

  17. #17
    Powder River Imaging EOSThree's Avatar
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    Re: G9

    Quote Originally Posted by MB1
    Correct me if I am wrong but the G9 doesn't go very wide does it?
    Yes you are right, it starts at an equivalent of 35mm and goes to 210mm. The 210 is more important to me I can usually make a decent composition at 35mm. I have to say the Panny TZ3 certainly is nice starting at 28mm. Unfortunately it's one of the few, if not the only, compact that starts that wide.

    edit: Darn beat me by 2 minutes...
    Rule books are paper they will not cushion a sudden meeting of stone and metal. --Ernie Gann--
    What is a cynic? A man who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing. --Oscar Wilde--

  18. #18
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Re: I'm looking for a good travel camera.

    Quote Originally Posted by AgingEyes
    Well, with a sensor the size of that of any compact digicam out there, it shouldn't be a surprise that, with 12 megapixel, noise is an issue. With sensor of that size, 6 megapixel should be the max, I think.
    I've actually been very impressed with the new Canon compact 12-megapixel cameras. Both the SD950 IS and G9 have much better image quality than I had expected. If you read my reviews, you'll know that I harp on real-world noise testing instead of viewing images at 100% on the computer. Increased resolution effectively minimizes noise. So, in theory, a 3-megapixel and a 10-megapixel camera might have the same amount of noise at the pixel level. But when you make prints or set your images up for the Web, the noise from the 10-megapixel camera will be shrunk so much as to be invisible.

    Also, a lot of newer cameras are increasing the light-sensitive area on pixels as they increase resolution. That's what Canon did with the SD950 IS to keep the noise the same as it was with the 8-megapixel SD850 IS. Olympus has done the same thing with the E-420 and the E-3 digital SLRs. It's a very effective means for getting more quality out of the same size sensor.

    Check out our digital camera sample photos for comparison. Look at them on the computer and then print them out at 8x10 and see if the print doesn't tell a very different story.

    And last but not least, sometimes size and functionality are worth more than image quality. That's a very personal judgement call. But I make it all the time. There are many times when a pocket camera is the right tool for the job, regardless of a compromise in image quality. If your options are less quality or no quality, which would you choose?
    Photo-John

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  19. #19
    The red headed step child jgredline's Avatar
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    Re: G9

    Quote Originally Posted by MB1
    Correct me if I am wrong but the G9 doesn't go very wide does it?
    MB,
    As was noted by others, it is not very wide. 35mm sounds about right. That has been my only complain, but at the same time, the 210mm is very important to me as well..
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  20. #20
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Olympus E-420

    Quote Originally Posted by MB1
    I like the idea of the Olympus (the 25mm lens seems to be out of stock) and the G9.
    I have the Olympus E-420 right now and plan on posting a short preview article later today. It is very small. It makes my Canon XSi / 450D look huge. I took it riding yesterday and it's very light and compact - excellent if you want a DSLR but need to keep the weight and size down. I haven't looked at any photos yet or shot studio tests. But Olympus told me that it's a new sensor, since the E-510. The increased the light-sensitive area of each pixel, so it should have better image quality than the E-510. If only it had image stabilization!
    Photo-John

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  21. #21
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Re: I'm looking for a good travel camera.

    Quote Originally Posted by jgredline
    Really, the G9 does not behave like a P&S but like a mini DSLR. After my first one got stolen, I had no plans to replace it, but I really missed it and am very happy I got another one. The only thing I would recommend is a spare battery or two. But as Liz said, if not the best it is up there...
    In regards to speed, it's still a compact digital camera. Compared to digital SLRs it has noticable shutter-lag and the shot-to-shot time is pretty slow. But as far as functionality and image quality go, it's very, very good.
    Photo-John

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  22. #22
    The red headed step child jgredline's Avatar
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    Re: I'm looking for a good travel camera.

    Quote Originally Posted by Photo-John
    In regards to speed, it's still a compact digital camera. Compared to digital SLRs it has noticable shutter-lag and the shot-to-shot time is pretty slow. But as far as functionality and image quality go, it's very, very good.
    Agreed..........
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  23. #23
    Color me obvious dumpy's Avatar
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    Re: I'm looking for a good travel camera.

    What about an S5IS? I don't have any experience with one, but used an S2IS for several years as my primary camera. My impression of the S2IS is lot of manual control, very good IQ, decent lens (24mm on the wide side I believe) and a very functional IS. I'm assuming the S5 shares these attributes.

  24. #24
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    Re: I'm looking for a good travel camera.

    According to bh's site, the S5IS is 36-432mm equivalent

  25. #25
    MB1
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    Looking forward to your review.

    Quote Originally Posted by Photo-John
    I have the Olympus E-420 right now and plan on posting a short preview article later today.....
    Want to loan it to someone for an extended field test?
    No, I DON'T need that.

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