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FORUMS Canon Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Small Compact Digitals by Canon 
Thread started 02 Feb 2009 (Monday) 15:06
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Need several P&S

 
sodalis
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Feb 02, 2009 15:06 |  #1

Here's the scenario: I need to purchase 3-4 P&S cameras. The total purchase can not exceed $500. These cameras will be used in small/tight caves, primarily by volunteer cavers, to photograph hibernating bats. The cameras should be simple to operate. Shooting distances will be short, under 10' for the most part, larger sites with higher ceilings we use DSLR. Wide angle shooting is of higher importance than zoom capability. Flash performance will be important. 6MP or higher would be preferred.

Obviously, one of the waterproof models that is out there would be ideal but would not allow us to purchase the number of cameras that we need. Quantity is going to take precedence over quality in this case. A compact Pelican case will be used to protect each camera.

The A590IS looks like it might offer what we need, but I'm really out of my element with P&S's. I'd like to hear some opinions, and don't limit yourselves to Canon if there is something else that may work better.

Thanks for your help.



  
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Jon
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Feb 02, 2009 18:10 |  #2

Looking at B&H, you're not going to find really wide. The Canon PowerShot A430's around $80, uses AA cells for convenience. You could put the savings to a "slave" flash if you needed more light. It's about a 36 mm equiv. at its widest. There's also a Pentax Optio E60 for around $130. Again, it uses AA cells but it's a little wider at 32 mm equiv. The widest Canon PowerShots are probably out of your price range; the SD880 is 28 mm equiv. but starts at $250. You might still be able to find an SD870 around for less. They take a proprietary battery, not AA cells, so you'd want spare batteries.


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Big ­ Hands
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Feb 02, 2009 18:25 |  #3

They make several different models of these:

http://cgi.ebay.com …%3A1%7C293%3A1%​7C294%3A50 (external link)

Which should considerably expand your options.

The next difficult task would be to find something wider that 35mm or 36mm (equivalent) wide angle within your budget constraints.

Is used gear an option?

If so, you may find some nice examples on e-bay that meet your requirements. The Canon models I would target would be:

SD800is

SD870is

Both have 28mm wide angle lenses, decent enough flash performance for < 10ft., are very compact and take nice pics.


Canon 20D w/grip, 300D, Powershot SX100 w/HF-DC1 flash, Canon 70-200 f/2.8L, 85 f/1.8, 17-55 f/2.8 IS, 50 f/1.8, 580EX and some other stuff...

  
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sodalis
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Feb 02, 2009 21:29 |  #4

Thanks for the responses guys, at least gives me a starting point and some things to think about. I probably overstated the need for wide angle, getting out to around a 35mm equivalent will probably be sufficient. Running on AA's is a good thing, it's pretty much guaranteed that there will be plenty of AA's around when caving. Used is unfortunately not an option, I will be placing the order through work (state agency).



  
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Big ­ Hands
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Feb 02, 2009 23:14 |  #5

Given the other criteria, including the AA battery power, I think I would take a look at these:

http://www.buydig.com …product.aspx?sk​u=CNPSA590 (external link)

A fine camera and a fantastic value at this price. You could get 4 of these and four dicapac pouches for around $550 - $600


Canon 20D w/grip, 300D, Powershot SX100 w/HF-DC1 flash, Canon 70-200 f/2.8L, 85 f/1.8, 17-55 f/2.8 IS, 50 f/1.8, 580EX and some other stuff...

  
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c2thew
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Feb 03, 2009 11:48 |  #6

don't forget to look into chdk. this allows you to do timelapse photography, useful for monitoring the bats.


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tkbslc
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Feb 03, 2009 15:42 |  #7

Wide with AA doesn't sound like a Canon product.

I'd check out the Panasonic LZ10 AA powered and 30mm wide angle vs 35mm on the Canon A590. They are ~$160, so you'd only be able to get 3. 5 mm might not sound like much, but 35-30mm is 17% wider. Its a big difference.

Panasonic also makes the LZ8, which is cheaper, but only has a 32mm lens. Still 10% wider than the Canon, though.

Edit, just saw your other post above that says 35mm is good enough. I'd still consider the Panasonic LZ8 or 10, but the Canon A590 is awesome for the price. You could almost get 5 for your budget. Don't forget memory cards, etc. though.


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overmywaders
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Feb 13, 2009 06:27 as a reply to  @ tkbslc's post |  #8

The A590 is excellent for many applications because it allows you to add filters and lenses - not a common option for P&S.

Here is an A590 tricked out for UV photography -

IMAGE: http://www.overmywaders.com/A590UV.jpg

and the same camera for visible light

IMAGE: http://www.overmywaders.com/A590Visible.jpg

of course, you might want to use a filter that blocks all but IR for some of your shots - the bats would show up well against the 55 degree background.



  
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Jon
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Feb 13, 2009 17:51 |  #9

overmywaders wrote in post #7316511 (external link)
The A590 is excellent for many applications because it allows you to add filters and lenses - not a common option for P&S.

Here is an A590 tricked out for UV photography -

http://www.overmywader​s.com/A590UV.jpg (external link)

and the same camera for visible light

http://www.overmywader​s.com/A590Visible.jpg (external link)

of course, you might want to use a filter that blocks all but IR for some of your shots - the bats would show up well against the 55 degree background.

You ever tried the A590 at thermal IR wavelengths (around 300 Kelvins)? The IR we manage to photograph by is around 2000+ Kelvins; special sensors and optics are necessary for thermal sensing.


Jon
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Need several P&S
FORUMS Canon Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Small Compact Digitals by Canon 
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