What is a good P&S?

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by Stan160, Jul 26, 2007.

  1. Stan160

    Stan160 Member

    Messages:
    475
    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2006
    Location:
    Woking, Surr
    Shooter:
    35mm
    I know this question has come up a few times before, but the answers go out of date so fast as the number of models in production diminishes.

    I am looking for suggestions for a 35mm P&S camera for my father. It will mainly be used while he is out walking - day trips or the walking holidays my parents go on regularly.

    Criteria are that it is small, light weight, simple to operate. Zoom is needed as it will be used to take pictures of landscapes, portraits, and close-ups of flowers (being realistic, not expecting anything close to true macro, but a close-up mode so the camera doesn't keep trying to focus on the distant mountain rather than the wild flowers in the foreground). Ideally a zoom range of 28-90mm or thereabouts.

    After buying a piece of junk at short notice from ebay when his previous camera broke 10 days before going on holiday, I want something brand new, with full instructions, and a guarantee. He is not interested in D......l, don't even suggest it :wink:

    Canon Sureshot Z90U is about the best I've seen, but the lower zoom range starts at 38mm and wider would be better. Money is not necessarily an object so if there is something expensive that most retailers wouldn't stock, suggest away!

    Thanks,
    Ian
     
  2. Paul Howell

    Paul Howell Member

    Messages:
    2,751
    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2004
    Location:
    Phoeinx Ariz
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    The Pentex IQs are still around, new old stock, as well as used.
     
  3. Wolfeye

    Wolfeye Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,151
    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2007
    Location:
    Iowa
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Ahhhhh zoom, the killer of all my recomendations. :smile: The Olympus Sylus Epic is still in production but curse that fixed lens.
     
  4. dmr

    dmr Member

    Messages:
    494
    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2005
    Shooter:
    35mm
    I've had an Olympus Stylus zoom for about 10 years now. Love it. It can pass for a Real Camera<tm>. :smile: Still running strong. I think they still have at least one version of this available new.
     
  5. Andy K

    Andy K Member

    Messages:
    9,422
    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2004
    Location:
    Sunny Southe
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Olympus mju zoom 105. Great reliable little camera.
     
  6. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

    Messages:
    20,093
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2003
    Location:
    local
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    yashica T4 without the data-back
     
  7. BWKate

    BWKate Member

    Messages:
    1,258
    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2005
    Location:
    Victoria,B.C
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Yes, I also love the Olympus Stylus Epic. It came in handy when I was in China and my 35mm SLR stopped working.
     
  8. PatTrent

    PatTrent Subscriber

    Messages:
    408
    Joined:
    May 14, 2006
    Location:
    Brentwood, C
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Yes, you're right. It's still available new. I took mine on a trip around the USA and with 400 speed color print film I got some great results. It was refreshing not to have to lug around a heavy camera bag for once. :smile:
     
  9. Black Dog

    Black Dog Member

    Messages:
    3,221
    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2003
    Location:
    Eight miles high
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    ....the one that's in your pocket!
     
  10. Stan160

    Stan160 Member

    Messages:
    475
    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2006
    Location:
    Woking, Surr
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Seems like lots of people like the Olympus. I can get a Olympus mju-III Zoom 80 or 120 new. Only opens up to 38mm at the wide end, but there doesn't seem to be anything wider with a zoom lens. All of the 28-xx models have been discontinued, presumably because it sounds better to offer a longer telephoto focal length than a few extra mm at the wide end. The weather proof design is a useful feature.

    Close focus is 60cm, which is about as good as it gets with this type of camera. How fast and accurate is the auto-focus? As far as I can tell there is no dedicated close-up mode unlike the Canon Sureshot. Is this likely to cause difficulties if the camera is being regularly used close to its minimum focus limit?

    Ian
     
  11. celerystalksme

    celerystalksme Inactive

    Messages:
    10
    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2006
    Shooter:
    35mm
    you want a 28-90mm p&s camera?

    Yashica T4 Zoom comes close (28-70)...nice zeiss lens.
    Olympus Stylus 100 Wide (28-100).

    that's all i can think of...
     
  12. sionnac

    sionnac Subscriber

    Messages:
    591
    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2005
    Location:
    Boston area
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I have a Yashica T4 Super (tiny waist level viewfinder - excellent for street photography) and I love it. Tough, weather resistant, compact.
     
  13. Stan160

    Stan160 Member

    Messages:
    475
    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2006
    Location:
    Woking, Surr
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Yashica T4 28-70mm sounds great, but I can't find any available new, and very few used. I guess they have been out of production for a while.
    Ian
     
  14. Sponsored Ad
  15. Paul Howell

    Paul Howell Member

    Messages:
    2,751
    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2004
    Location:
    Phoeinx Ariz
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Most PS 35 have been out of production for several years. I think Pentex and Olypums still make a PS, or it just may new old stock.
     
  16. PatTrent

    PatTrent Subscriber

    Messages:
    408
    Joined:
    May 14, 2006
    Location:
    Brentwood, C
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I assume you're asking about the Olympus Stylus and you want to know how fast it focuses and how close you can shoot. The auto-focus is as fast as any automatic 35mm I have used, and you can focus down to just a few inches. I would not get the zoom, rather the fixed focal 35mm. Reason? The fixed lens is f/2.8 and the zooms are waaaaaaaaay slower than that--almost impossible to use hand-held except in exceedingly bright light or when using an ISO >400. Also, with the fixed lens, it's ready to shoot the instant you slide open the clam shell, whereas with the zoom you have to wait for it to zoom into it's "normal" position. Just my opinion, plus years of experience with this camera model.
     
  17. sbelyaev

    sbelyaev Member

    Messages:
    127
    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2006
    Location:
    ABQ
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
  18. craigclu

    craigclu Subscriber

    Messages:
    869
    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2002
    Location:
    NW Wisconsin
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    The Contax mentioned is excellent (a friend uses one). I had a Minilux that died with shutter problems, even though I used it very little and pampered it. Perhaps others have had better luck but you hear mention of this quite often.

    A forgotten performer that hasn't been mentioned is the Konica Lexio series. I've abused these as glove box/tackle box cameras and they just keep on going. The lenses on these are absolutely top-notch. They're available at very affordable prices when they pop up on eBay. I've gotten them for friends and my daughter and they all have only good to say about theirs. The WR series from Pentax is very rugged and have excellent optics. An insurance adjuster friend equipped his staff with these when they were still using film and even tumbles from roofs didn't stop them. He swore they were indestructible.
     
  19. Black Dog

    Black Dog Member

    Messages:
    3,221
    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2003
    Location:
    Eight miles high
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Contax TVS (might be a bit pricey tho').
     
  20. BWKate

    BWKate Member

    Messages:
    1,258
    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2005
    Location:
    Victoria,B.C
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    The Olympus Stylus epic is very inexpensive for the quality you can get.
     
  21. Woolliscroft

    Woolliscroft Member

    Messages:
    726
    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2004
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Don't know if it is still made, but I like the Minolta 75w, which has a 28-70 zoom.

    David
     
  22. Stan160

    Stan160 Member

    Messages:
    475
    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2006
    Location:
    Woking, Surr
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Thank you for all the suggestions. Mum and I are going to have to work out what Dad is going like best (it's meant to be a birthday present, so we will have to approach this with subtlety!). That Contax from KEH is looking mighty tempting. OTOH, although he has been using zoom cameras for years, he spent many years before that quite happily using a FED-2 rangefinder and 50mm lens so maybe the Olympus with 35mm/2.8 may be the better option after all.
    Ian
     
  23. mabman

    mabman Member

    Messages:
    829
    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2007
    Location:
    Winnipeg, MB
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Just a note, when it worked my Stylus Epic took great pictures - however it died shortly after I went on vacation - no abuse that I can think of - very frustrating. However, it seems that mine is a minority experience with this camera.

    I did, however, pick up an Olympus Stylus 120 as a replacement - this one works very well, has zoom, and has a nice lens, especially for a zoom camera. Two issues with it - the flash pops up when the clamshell is opened, and is unfortunately easy to block it - the camera won't work with it blocked (doesn't seem to break anything, though). Secondly, the shutter speed maxes out about 1/600, and the camera doesn't seem to complain about overexposure beyond that (but it does about underexposure), so don't do like I did and use 1600 ISO film outside in the sun :smile: Although, I did get some cool blown-out pictures of people from it...
     
  24. waynecrider

    waynecrider Member

    Messages:
    2,297
    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2003
    Location:
    Floriduh
    Shooter:
    35mm
    B&H has a number of them listed including Canon, which was to my memory always very highly rated. The problem with many were the fact that as you zoomed out the maximum aperture went smaller and smaller. I've many of the old magazines when P&S's were the rage and I remember the ads stating apertures going to F9.9 to F12 at the longer ends of many of the longer zooms, necessitating slower shutter speeds and the potential for camera shake. Then of course you had the flashes operating to produce light. That's why the fixed FL Epic was such a hit besides the wide lens. The 28 is actually a very nice FL for landscape stuff. Maybe not great for portraits, but the shutter goes high and you can use a higher speed film.

    I think that one of the better lensed small p&s style cameras was the 35mm RF Minox although it did have it's drawbacks. The Leica lens tho was outstanding.
     
  25. Len Eselson

    Len Eselson Member

    Messages:
    8
    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2005
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Another vote for Olympus Stylus Epic. Better off with a quality fixed focal length than a mediocre zoom.
    Len Eselson
     
  26. 3Dfan

    3Dfan Member

    Messages:
    218
    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2006
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
    I'll go against the grain and suggest the Loreo 321. It's inexpensive. In 2D mode it takes decent snapshots. It also has a 3D stereoscopic mode that you won't find with the others.