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  1. #1

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    URGENT-- Best night/day P&S film camera??!!

    hello!
    i need some serious recommendations on buying a new camera...
    i'm NOT a professional..
    i am traveling to europe soon and would like to spend upto a $100 for a point & shoot 35mm film camera that takes wonderful pictures day AND night... something light and compact as well... also, please let me know exactly where i can buy it from

    is this too much to ask?? HELP!!

    i did buy an olympus stylus epic 120 but started to read poor reviews about it and also heard that a point and shoot without a zoom is better

  2. #2
    Loose Gravel's Avatar
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    Fixed lens is definitely better than zoom.

    By night pictures, do you mean available light or flash?
    Watch for Loose Gravel

  3. #3
    Jeremy's Avatar
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    Let me suggest the Olympus Stylus Epic (no number after it, no zoom). It has a very sharp 35mm f/2.8 lens and the ability to both "spot meter" (don't know the size of the actual spot) and turn off the flash. Mine finally kaputted on me after 6 years of constant use and I replaced it with the DLX (Deluxe) version which also has a panoramic mode which crops out the top and bottom of the frame. You can find them on eBay pretty cheap (my DLX was $30) or brand new from B&H for $80-90.
    Let's see what I've got in the magic trash can for Mateo!

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  4. #4

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    Don't knock those zooms!!!

    I've been using an Olympus (possibly 'Epic' or 'Stylus'?) for probably over 10 years. I can't even remember how long? Hundreds of rols of film through it. It's so beat up, all I can read on it is part of "Olym" and the 35-70mm on the lens. It's an 'Epic' style and I think the first model. It's still going and takes great pics.

    My wife just recently wanted a new camera. She wanted a digi.... I couldn't bring myself to buy one. So I thought I would simply buy the new replacement for my Olympus, the newer Epic Stylus 170 zoom. Much bigger than mine but with more features and that loong zoom. She wasn't all that thrilled when she opened the box. Then figured out how to use it ( a half hour) and shot 4 or 5 rolls of film. Off to the one-hour place... Now she loves it and there's no more digi-talk! And I'm out my replacement camera ;-)

    I think the Olympus cameras are the best with the sliding cover to protect the lenses. And if they all last like mine... What more can be said...

  5. #5
    Jeremy's Avatar
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    Mine only died because it took a quick dunk into the pool (along with me fully clothed!) when the dog jumped up on me and suprised me. I suggested the fixed 35mm f/2.8 in the Stylus Epic as opposed to a P&S with a zoom because the zooms on P&S cameras are notoriously slow. Since the non-DX coded film speed with the Stylus Epic is ISO100 I keep mine loaded with bulk rolled FP4. Great little camera!
    Let's see what I've got in the magic trash can for Mateo!

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  6. #6
    gnashings's Avatar
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    Just remember - don't be a slave to reviews. Even for serious or professional photographers, the reviews are somewhat of a guideline, and the people who live and die by them usually don't know what they're talking about. You have a camera you like - but you read reviews that say its bad. Do you see any of the issues yourself? Did you ever try to take a picture and realized you can't, or were not able to get the desired result? Those are valid reasons to look elsewhere - not some review.

    Also, to second what was already said, 35mm is a great focal length for 35mm ( didn't mean to be confusing). Its just under a standard lens, yet not wide enough to really get all distorted. the fixed lens will probably give you nicer results than a zoom - but I doubt you'll see the difference unless you are planning on making large prints.

    Good luck!

  7. #7
    Andrew Sowerby's Avatar
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    Another vote for the Olympus Stylus Epic (fixed lens). Great camera, cheap, compact. If you want to take pictures at night you can turn the flash off or use the "Night Scene" flash mode (which I love). Pick up a tabletop tripod as well which should be $10 or less at any camera store.

    I bought my Stylus Epic a few years ago for around $100 CDN -- I bet that they're less now. Don't let the sales person convince you to buy one of the zoom or "Deluxe" models! Wasted money and only the fixed lens Stylus Epic comes in sexy black instead of ugly silver!

  8. #8

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    My usual travel compact is Konica with a fixed 28mm in a weather proof body, does well in the rain and mist, for a zoom (don't have a fit) I like my Kodak APS point and shoot, has a great lens and with 400 color or black and white does a good 8X10.

  9. #9

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    Definitely Stylus Epic (mju II in europe).
    I like mine. There is nothing to beat it in the same priceclass.
    It is capable of great results, but it is fully automated. Manual doesn't tell too much about it's programming. You have to get used to it's behavior, and sometimes know how to cheat it a little for good results. Manual settings could be easier. Most of the time it works as a perfect P&S.

    Some opinions follow:

    Exposure meter is reliable in most shooting conditions. It is accurate enough for shooting slide film. Except that mine is programmed to overexpose very consistently approx. +2/3 stops. Good for color negative film, but too much for slide film. Are these possible to get adjusted easily?
    It has a spotmeter mode. Using this is a bit awkward and not always useable, as the autofocus locks to the same spot you want to use for exposure.
    The exposure program prefers large apertures. Autofocus is accurate, but as point and shoot it usually focuses to the center of the frame. Combined with relatively shallow dof, main subject easily goes slightly off focus. You can use the AE and exposure lock or the spotmeter mode to overcome this.
    Fill flash is well balanced. The camera is also programmed to use it very often. Turning the flash off requires pushing the flash button several times. Very annoying because all settings reset every time you close the the sliding lens cover.
    And it is not exactly point and shoot anymore in conditions where you don't want fill flash and the camera insist in using it (like bright sunlight in the mountains).
    Turning spotmeter on requires pushing two small buttons at the same time (with your fingernails...). No point and shoot either. For a sunny day scenery you easily end up turning the fill flash off and then the spotmeter on before each shot.
    Film speed is set only from the DX code. If you want to rate any different, you must print code stickers. I have never done it as I manage with box speed and Xtol or DD-X (and the mentioned overexposure).
    The lens is very sharp, also with the large apertures the camera often uses.
    Sometimes it suffers from ugly orange colored flare and there is no possibility to use a shade. And as it's not SLR it's hard to shade the lens with your hand without getting it into picture. There is very little but noticable distortion. Only evident when you have straight lines in your picture.

    Other cameras I have are Mamiya 6MF and a Minolta SLR. More than half of my favourite pictures are taken with it.

  10. #10

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    The Stylus Epic without a doubt. Sharp lens, easy to use, durable. My daughter and wife each own one and they often get better pictures than I do.
    "while a hundred civilizations have prospered (sometimes for centuries) without computers or windmills or even the wheel, none have survived even a few generations without art." David Bayles & Ted Orland Art & Fear

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