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  1. #1
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    Pocket-Sized, Rugged, Point-and-Shoot, with Manual settings

    Looking for a new camera to take skiing, since my DSLR is too heavy and bulky and I don't want to have to be turning on my iPhone every time I see something cool. Waterproof would be nice, and it will probably get dropped once or twice. Would like it to sit comfortably in a thigh pocket. Manual settings are useful. What do you mags have to recommend?

  2. #2
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    My canon s100 has been through a lot.. Only issue these days is the protective lens flap thing needs some encouragement to open. Great camera

  3. #3
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    Best pocket camera I've found that shoots RAW and has a hot shoe is Sony RX100 Mk2. It's still no DSLR, but it's good for it's size.

  4. #4
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    Have a Nikon AW and the IQ is not great for stills. Video is good. If you need better IQ stay away from most of the rugged P&S. However, can also take the AW snorkeling and skiing, put it in a thigh pocket, and not worry about it.

    Have a Panasonic LX7, which has a smaller sensor than a Sony RX100, but is really good. Also has some manual settings and not everything works through menus. Can probably pick one up used for a good price now. Not as pocketable but probably cheap enough where you can put it in a jacket wherever you go.

    Had a Canon S100, which was nice and pocketable but I like the LX7 IQ much better. For some, the superior pocketability of the S100 (s110, etc) is preferred.

    A buddy raves about his RX100 but he's afraid to take it places. If someone is afraid to carry around a $600 camera, it doesn't matter how great it is...

    Compromises...

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1000-oaks View Post
    Best pocket camera I've found that shoots RAW and has a hot shoe is Sony RX100 Mk2. It's still no DSLR, but it's good for it's size.
    The RX100 is reputed by many to be the sweet spot in pocket-able cameras. Now that the Mk-III is out (with electronic viewfinder), you should be able to get a good deal on the Mk-II.

    You might want to consider whether a viewfinder is important to you. Me, I can't stand trying to view a rear display in bright sunlight. Others can.

    Another great choice is the Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX100. Their collaboration with Leica has benefited both companies. It's just a wee bit larger, but has more of a DSLR-like control layout.

    This category is a slippery slope for those used to interacting with DSLRs. Ask me how I know

    These guys aren't the last word in camera reviews, but they can get you started:

    RX100-Mk-III: http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/sony...t-dsc-rx100-m3
    DMC LX-100: http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/pana...umix-dmc-lx100
    Collective overview: http://www.dpreview.com/articles/044...or-enthusiasts

    Humorous side note: Hasselblad was selling a version of the RX-100 Mk-I for about 4 times the Sony's price (had some cosmetic "upgrades"). B&H Photo was blowing them out at the end of the year.

    Cheers,
    Thom

    Cheers,
    Thom

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1000-oaks View Post
    Best pocket camera I've found that shoots RAW and has a hot shoe is Sony RX100 Mk2. It's still no DSLR, but it's good for it's size.
    I'll second this. I have the mkII and I'm consistently blown away by the quality of the photos it takes, and the HDR function really hits it out of the park. You wouldnt regret this purchase.

  7. #7
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    The RX100 Mk II has a slower lens than the III but more reach, and the hot shoe lets you use Pocket Wizards. Add a relatively big sensor and RAW to that mix and you've got a winner. I've soaked mine in half an inch of water and it survived, though it spooked the hell out of me until it dried out. (Stoic anorak, didn't expect it to funnel rain right into the pocket.)

    If you don't need the articulating LCD or hot shoe, get a used Mk I version for cheap and don't be afraid to take it anywhere.

    For photo geeks, the 1/2000 shutter speed and a strobe (adjust the ISO to get the aperture you want) lets you shoot some neat action captures you simply couldn't get with a DSLR with a curtain shutter.

  8. #8
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    Oh yeah, on the RX100 spend the $15 for the little adhesive rubber grip, it really helps. And there's a Pelican case that fits it perfectly, once you cut out a bit of rubber to fit the hot shoe.

  9. #9
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    S95/S100/S110/S120, G7x, Rx100 MK 1, LX100. Look up dimensions & spec then take your pick. You sound like you know what you want/need.

    Two S95s served me very well, got soaked every other day (no case, just in my hip pocket) and kept going. RX100 now, a bit too bulky for pockets but definitely a step up and I don't mind having it in a case at the very bottom of my backpack's shoulder strap. G7x is on par with the RX100 in size & performance. LX100 is bulkier but I will buy one in a couple of years when they're cheap and outdated.

    Here's your best tool for size comparisons: http://camerasize.com/compare/#467,573
    Last edited by LC; 02-20-2015 at 02:12 AM.

  10. #10
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    T, I have the first gen Sony RX-100 and I take it everywhere. It takes great pictures and has gone from the bottom of my boot bag to the top of my car... and survived! Seriously, the thing is solid.

    Or you can always get the iPhone 6 and Lifeproof case. Impressive quality pics and battery life.
    Screw the net, Surf the backcountry!

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1000-oaks View Post
    Oh yeah, on the RX100 spend the $15 for the little adhesive rubber grip, it really helps. And there's a Pelican case that fits it perfectly, once you cut out a bit of rubber to fit the hot shoe.
    Richard Franiec's grips for compact cameras are really good: http://www.kleptography.com/rf/ I have one for a Nikon V1. The machining and anodizing is impeccable. You'd think it's part of the camera and it really minimizes the "dropsies".

    Oh yes ... give serious consideration to whether you can tolerate using a rear screen vs. an electronic viewfinder. I would never get a camera without an EVF (electronic viewfinder), but others don't seem to mind.

    You shoot a DSLR, so access to controls may or may not be important to you. Me - I can't stand having to take my eye off the viewfinder to navigate a four-wheel controller for key functions.

    Related to this (control access), another non-starter for me is a requirement for serious menu diving to do: exposure adjustments and white balance (less so with white balance, since I shoot raw & the major manufacturers are getting better with white balance). Also (key for me) is having a dedicated control wheel for at least one manual control (i.e. if in aperture priority, an aperture control). Lower, but still nice to have is easy swapping to manual focus.

    If you can address these preferences, your short-list will shrink & you'll have your answer.

    [edit] Another thing that could expand your range of camera possibilities is the Peak Design Capture Pro Camera Clip (backpack shoulder strap mountable):
    Me - I couldn't tolerate more than a map in my cargo pockets. Even an RX100 would be too annoying (nothing to do with the camera's virtues).

    Cheers,
    Thom
    Last edited by galibier_numero_un; 02-20-2015 at 12:21 PM.

  12. #12
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    Thom Hogan just finished compiling a list of "wants" - problems his readers feel need to be solved. It covers a lot of terrain, but one thing jumped out at me in the context of this discussion - mention of the RX100 & the Pana LX-100. They definitely slot into slightly different niches - mostly (as I mentioned) due to size differences (advantage Sony) and intuitive/ergonomics (advantage Panasonic).

    Size/Weight (many). Carrying while walking, hiking, through airports, how often you carry the camera versus not.
    This was the most frequently mentioned problem you reported, as it turns out. And I believe that it’s the reason why mirrorless cameras, the Fujifilm X100, the Panasonic LX-100, and the Sony RX100 have been somewhat popular with serious shooters.
    .
    .
    .
    What you told me over and over again in your responses is that the primary things you need in a camera are getting buried from immediacy. One of the reasons why I like the Panasonic LX-100 as my carry everywhere camera is that I can ignore the cruft and directly set and control everything I want to change 99% of the time. Even though the Sony RX-100 is smaller and does fit in my shirt pocket, it does not let me directly set and control everything I normally change anywhere near as easily. It’s not even a matter of image quality or focus performance or anything else. For a carry everywhere camera I’m reacting to photographic opportunity on the fly, so I want to be able to set what I need to directly and quickly.


    Cheers,
    Thom
    PS - the fact that we spell our name the same way is purely coincidental

  13. #13
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    On RX100, I usually leave it in aperture priority and have the lens ring custom set to control ISO. Exposure compensation is easy enough to get to, so that takes care of my most-used controls.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1000-oaks View Post
    On RX100, I usually leave it in aperture priority and have the lens ring custom set to control ISO. Exposure compensation is easy enough to get to, so that takes care of my most-used controls.
    That's a good setup. I might reverse ISO & Exposure comp (so my menu-diving would be for ISO), but in general, it sounds as if we share philosophies.

    I fear that one of the most alienating aspects of digital camera design is that most engineers have lost track of ergonomics/haptics, and calling attention to how one interacts with a machine was my whole point. I think this may well be the single most important purchasing consideration, because if the "machine" doesn't make sense to you, you'll stop using it.

    We're all different, and one thing is clear ... we'll react strongly (one way or another) to designs that either work or don't work for us.

    Cjeers,
    Thom

  15. #15
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    Maybe minor thread drift, but I think it's on point. I'm in the market for the same set-up as OP. Not being super camera savvy, I'd really like a camera that gets as close to what your eye can see in terms of wide field of vision for landscape /skiing shots. How is this accomplished? some sort of fish-eye function?

    Basically I want to get as wide a view as the eye sees, without doing an elongated panorama like you would on an iPhone. (camera Jong here).

  16. #16
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    In the 35mm DSLR format (like a Canon 5D), a 50mm lens is considered the "human" view. The human eye can only focus on a very narrow field of view however, but can detect motion in a huge peripheral area. We actually "see" MUCH less than we think we do, and we actually cover the view area by scanning.
    http://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/35066602

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by COpow View Post
    Maybe minor thread drift, but I think it's on point. I'm in the market for the same set-up as OP. Not being super camera savvy, I'd really like a camera that gets as close to what your eye can see in terms of wide field of vision for landscape /skiing shots. How is this accomplished? some sort of fish-eye function?

    Basically I want to get as wide a view as the eye sees, without doing an elongated panorama like you would on an iPhone. (camera Jong here).
    Here's what I look at in a point and shoot:

    High priority:
    - Fast focusing / minimum shutter lag
    - Largest sensor I can find for the acceptable body size, to minimize noise and allow shorter exposures in low light conditions
    - Easy control of ISO (to minimize noise for the current light)

    Low priority:
    - Range of zoom (you can always "zoom with your feet")

    Ignore:
    - Megapixels, everything is good enough these days

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1000-oaks View Post
    In the 35mm DSLR format (like a Canon 5D), a 50mm lens is considered the "human" view. The human eye can only focus on a very narrow field of view however, but can detect motion in a huge peripheral area. We actually "see" MUCH less than we think we do, and we actually cover the view area by scanning.
    http://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/35066602
    The poster in that thread makes some good points, but I need to add ... my take on this is that perceptually, we have wider angle vision than with a normal lens, because we rapidly scan and integrate the information, much in the way that panorama stitching software works. So from this perspective, we have a wider field of view, but with the perspective of a normal (i.e. 50mm equiv.) lens. IOW, somthing we can't duplicate with any single lens.

    Cheers,
    Thom

  19. #19
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    I like my Olympus tough tg2 and my mom likes all the pictures I post on Facebook taken with it.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1000-oaks View Post
    Here's what I look at in a point and shoot:

    High priority:
    - Fast focusing / minimum shutter lag
    - Largest sensor I can find for the acceptable body size, to minimize noise and allow shorter exposures in low light conditions
    - Easy control of ISO (to minimize noise for the current light)

    Low priority:
    - Range of zoom (you can always "zoom with your feet")

    Ignore:
    - Megapixels, everything is good enough these days
    Excellent points. I look at ISO control as something I might have to do once or twice during the day at most (due to changing light), so (if I'm short on external controls), I'm ok with menu diving for this, but I'd prefer quick access.

    To your points, I would add:

    • feels "right" in your hand
    • the logic of the controls makes sense - realizing that it's something you might have to get used to, but also that you may gravitate to the ergonomics and control design of one camera over another. Part of the problem, is that if you're new to photography, you're preferences haven't yet formed.


    I would almost bump these two related points to the top of my list, much as I'd advise someone to get the best ski boot for their abilities, along with a custom boot fitting. To me, it's that sort of key to enjoyment and your actually wanting to take pictures. I'm a bit OCD about this

    To the OP, you mentioned durable. In the RX-100 family, I gravitate to the Mk-III version because of the electronic viewfinder, but reluctant to state that the pop-up electronic viewfinder won't be problematic in the field - especially in outdoor Winter activities, and with the possibility of moisture. It looks pretty fragile, but I've never handled it. I might be inclined (for this series of camera) to get the Mk-I or Mk-II due to mechanical simplicity. It's something I'd research if I were in the market.

    Cheers,
    Thom

  21. #21
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    5 year bump...whatís changed in the point and shoot world?

    Iím after something thatís good in low light (mountain biking in forest) and is under $500CAD max. $400 would be better.

    Viewfinder isnít high on my list as where I ski itís always fucking cloudy so not much glare.


    Sent from my iPhone using TGR Forums
    Quote Originally Posted by Angry Whelk View Post
    a more stupid motherfuck does not exist.
    Big Balls is worst asshat kind.
    kind that wear bukkake from above.
    with warm drown he gurgles final death, for one time not worried about his misplaced import known of african american social standing and prominent community members. for he is only drown, as is the way.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by rob stokes View Post
    5 year bump...whatís changed in the point and shoot world?

    Iím after something thatís good in low light (mountain biking in forest) and is under $500CAD max. $400 would be better.

    Viewfinder isnít high on my list as where I ski itís always fucking cloudy so not much glare.


    Sent from my iPhone using TGR Forums
    looks like you already own an iphone
    It's not your job to be as confused as Nigel.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by dewey View Post
    looks like you already own an iphone
    Yeah and itís shit in low light, and dies instantly when itís colder than freezing!


    Sent from my iPhone using TGR Forums
    Quote Originally Posted by Angry Whelk View Post
    a more stupid motherfuck does not exist.
    Big Balls is worst asshat kind.
    kind that wear bukkake from above.
    with warm drown he gurgles final death, for one time not worried about his misplaced import known of african american social standing and prominent community members. for he is only drown, as is the way.

  24. #24
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    What about the latest 'tough' model from Panasonic? Dunno about performance and quality, i'm just a "put it on automatic and push the button" kinda guy. FWIW, my 7 year old TS-4 still takes fine pics/vids and the damn thing operates like brand new; and I've beat the hell out of it over the years. Finally replaced the battery this year.

    https://www.amazon.ca/Panasonic-DCTS...1810147&sr=8-4
    Master of mediocrity.

  25. #25
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    Iím less worried about it being a Ďtoughí camera as I am about it taking good pictures. Forgot the OP was looking for that.

    Just looking for a good quality point and shoot that works well in low light for 400ish


    Sent from my iPhone using TGR Forums
    Quote Originally Posted by Angry Whelk View Post
    a more stupid motherfuck does not exist.
    Big Balls is worst asshat kind.
    kind that wear bukkake from above.
    with warm drown he gurgles final death, for one time not worried about his misplaced import known of african american social standing and prominent community members. for he is only drown, as is the way.

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