Choosing a Digital Camera

Posted by Jan Vantomme on 07 July 2007.
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I’ve been taking photographs for a very long time now. And until now I was mostly shooting on film. Nothing digital yet. I’ve always preferred working with old manual analogue cameras. I just love these things. But a while ago I’ve noticed that my second Yashica body is beginning to die on me. Since I don’t spend that much time in the darkroom anymore, I thought it would be the right time to go digital. In my search I was looking for a digital camera with the following specifications.

Lots of pixels

I always liked to print big pictures. So I was looking for a camera with 8 to 10 megapixels. In this way I can print quality pictures at about 30 x 40 cm.

Small camera

I will use my camera to take pictures of print work for my online digital portfolio. So for that I do not need a big expensive Canon or Nikon body. A small pocket camera will do the trick for now. I’ll buy a bigger one when I’m ready for it. I’ll stick to shooting on film until my Yashica dies completely.

Sharpness and digital noise

The pictures I take need to be sharp! And with as less digital noise as possible. I’ve used a Fujifilm E900 for a while (I have done the Hidden Emotion series with this one) and this is totally not what I’m looking for. It’s a 9MP camera which is fine, but it also produces a lot of digital noise. Which is very ugly when you zoom in. And it’s usually a bit blurry when you take macro-pictures with it.

So with this in mind I have searched the internet, went to some shops and found a few cameras that would be fine for me. The Leica C-Lux 2, the Leica D-Lux 3 and the Panasonic DMC-FX100.

I’ve got a Leica Z2X pocket camera for a few years now and I really like it. So I thought the Leica C-Lux 2 would be great for me. But there is a downside to it. The camera is only 7MP and is quit expensive. The D-Lux 3 is even more expensive and it is also bigger in size.

So my new camera became the Panasonic DMC-FX100. The Panasonic Lumix series have a Leica DC Vario-Elmarit lens and the same electronics inside as the Leica cameras. The FX100 is a 12MP camera and it’s cheaper than the 7MP Leica C-Lux 2. It has a large display and it supports SDHC cards. A thing I’m missing though is an optical viewfinder. The camera also doesn’t shoot RAW images, which is a small downside. I will be testing the camera and I might do a further review on it.

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