Author Topic: Any camera recommendations for less than £300ish?  (Read 1117 times)

Any camera recommendations for less than £300ish?
« on: August 31, 2017, 04:51:36 pm »
Looking to upgrade from smartphone camera and basic point & shoot camera to something more capable. I am looking for a reasonable zoom lens as well as quality images. Ideally I'd like it to be capable of taking me from born again novice photographer to enthusiast. So that means functionality such as aperture priority, shutter priority and full manual operation (as well as decent point and shoot when lazy).

I've never had RAW as a format option before so would like that to be available. I may or may not use it at some point in the future (any good free /very cheap software to make use of the RAW format BTW?).

I'm open as to type of camera. I used to own a film slr, a budget Minolta, back in the day. I realize things have moved on so much but still remember the interest in the old film photography. Each shot was thought about more so as to not waste film. The excitement of looking at the developed images.

My issue is that I don't have much money spare, can't be 100% sure I'll want to get back into it or am able to due to family commitments and I don't know if I still have an eye for photography. So I'm looking for the best option for ascot little as is reasonable. If I can get away with £150 then all the better but budget is £300 or a little more of it is really justifiable. I don't want that budget creep you can get with kit. You know what I mean. For £330 you get the same function as the £300 camera but get widget A which is so popular much better. Another £30 gets you that upper budget camera with the whizz autofocus lens. And so on. But if there's something special available at just over my budget I'll listen. Kind of a bigger sensor for £330 that's usually only found on a £500-£600 camera.

Anything strikes you as suitable?

One last thing, a super zoom, bridge or DSLR camera looks suitable. I'm not bothered which but I'll be unlikely to spare cash for a telephoto lens so any DSLR kit ideally would stand on its own merit. Although I might stretch to a secondhand lens later on if the bug takes me.

Torslanda

  • Professional Gobshite
  • Just a tart for retro kit . . .
    • John's Bikes
Re: Any camera recommendations for less than £300ish?
« Reply #1 on: August 31, 2017, 04:54:49 pm »
See the Phototalk section of The Gallery...
VELOMANCER

Well that's the more blunt way of putting it but as usual he's dead right.

The Movers

  • We just work here
Re: Any camera recommendations for less than £300ish?
« Reply #2 on: August 31, 2017, 05:07:44 pm »
<Moved>

Re: Any camera recommendations for less than £300ish?
« Reply #3 on: August 31, 2017, 05:29:23 pm »
There should be some cracking deals on the Olympus OM-D EM10 mk11 coming up as they just launched the mk111 this week. Currently running at £550 with a kit lens but I would expect that to start dropping. I bought one a few weeks ago and its cracking. The new one only has a few extras such as 4K rather than HD video and a redesigned menu system. They changed the image engine as well but the Mk11 one is really good anyway.
I think you'll find it's a bit more complicated than that.

fuaran

  • rothair gasta
Re: Any camera recommendations for less than £300ish?
« Reply #4 on: August 31, 2017, 05:48:12 pm »
For much less than £300, probably best looking for second hand deals. Look at MPB or Ffordes, for something in decent condition, with a warranty.

You could get a Panasonic Lumix G3 or G5 with the kit lens for about £150. I think its a rather decent camera for that price. And plenty more lenses available if you want. Has options for manual control, or a good auto mode.

For raw processing, RawTherapee is free and pretty good.

Re: Any camera recommendations for less than £300ish?
« Reply #5 on: September 01, 2017, 08:38:46 am »
Looked at secondhand. I must admit secondhand is something I've never done for anything. There's a feeling you get from opening up the box of a new bit of kit that secondhand doesn't give. However I'm definitively thinking secondhand is the way to go to get what I want / need. Just how safe an option is it? Are those two sites on to get used cameras from? What about Wilkinsons and Jessops's used?

Ben T

  • Viable.
Re: Any camera recommendations for less than £300ish?
« Reply #6 on: September 01, 2017, 08:49:35 am »
Looked at secondhand. I must admit secondhand is something I've never done for anything. There's a feeling you get from opening up the box of a new bit of kit that secondhand doesn't give. However I'm definitively thinking secondhand is the way to go to get what I want / need. Just how safe an option is it? Are those two sites on to get used cameras from? What about Wilkinsons and Jessops's used?
I don't often buy many things second hand but I have bought cameras second hand, simply because I'm quite likely to keep chopping and changing as my needs/mood takes and if I want to sell something a few months/years down the line I can do and not lose too much. My current camera was second hand off ebay and it's good as new, as were my 3 lenses.
I would go for ebay first and go on how genuine the sale sounds and how good it looks generally, but then try the shops if not what you want. Also try LCE (london camera exchange) as they do used stuff.
Just don't think about it too much.

Woofage

  • Ain't no hooves on my bike.
Re: Any camera recommendations for less than £300ish?
« Reply #7 on: September 01, 2017, 12:32:52 pm »
For much less than £300, probably best looking for second hand deals. Look at MPB or Ffordes, for something in decent condition, with a warranty.

You could get a Panasonic Lumix G3 or G5 with the kit lens for about £150. I think its a rather decent camera for that price. And plenty more lenses available if you want. Has options for manual control, or a good auto mode.

For raw processing, RawTherapee is free and pretty good.

Seconded. The Lumix GF and GX series are also worth a look too but beware of some examples where the screen coating hasn't lasted. Although I have a G6 (bought used), I still often use my old (c. 2009) GF1 as I love the feeling of this camera and it still gives great results (also bought used).

With any system, whether DSLR or mirrorless, you can pick up a really good s/h "kit" lens (usually 18-55mm for Canon & Nikon DSLRs, 14-42mm for Lumix and Olympus mirrorless) for about 50 notes as owners will often upgrade from these lenses and there's plenty around.

I've just ordered the lad a camera from camerajungle.co.uk on Torslanda's suggestion. Good prices there. Also check out wexphotographic.com
Pen Pusher

T42

  • Old fool in a hurry
Re: Any camera recommendations for less than £300ish?
« Reply #8 on: September 01, 2017, 05:02:40 pm »
Whatever you get you'll need some kind of photo editor to process them afterwards. The GIMP, being Open Source, is free and does just about anything. A bit of a learning curve, though.

Re second hand kit, I have lots. I usually buy from Amazon, eBay or Rakuten and only France, UK & Germany.  Never yet been stiffed.

Supposedly obsolete up-market(ish) kit from 10-12 years ago can still be great, e.g. Nikon D200.  It's more limited on the high-ISO side than modern kit and the sensor isn't vast, but the results can be great.  Almost any Nikon glass will fit it.
I dare eat all that may become a man.

But hold the oysters.

T42

  • Old fool in a hurry
Re: Any camera recommendations for less than £300ish?
« Reply #9 on: September 01, 2017, 05:11:43 pm »
PS another tip: if you're interested by a given camera, go to http://www.pbase.com/cameras and find the make & model.  You can then see a selection - around a dozen from usually a couple of thousand pics - that folk have taken.  Some of these folk, not knowing how to resize pics, will have posted them full size.  Look into blue skies for porridge-like artefacts and at lawns to see if the blades of grass look mushy. Look into shadows for strange colours, look at high-ISO pictures for grain.  Every time you refresh the page you'll get another selection of pics to look at.
I dare eat all that may become a man.

But hold the oysters.

Woofage

  • Ain't no hooves on my bike.
Re: Any camera recommendations for less than £300ish?
« Reply #10 on: September 01, 2017, 05:18:56 pm »
Another useful website: camerasize.com Does what it says on the tin, and invaluable in this era of buying on-line unseen.

Example (using two models mentioned upthread)
Pen Pusher

LEE

  • "Shut Up Jens" - Legs.
Re: Any camera recommendations for less than £300ish?
« Reply #11 on: September 04, 2017, 09:52:52 am »
Panasonic Lumix TZ70
Some people say I'm self-obsessed but that's enough about them.

T42

  • Old fool in a hurry
Re: Any camera recommendations for less than £300ish?
« Reply #12 on: September 04, 2017, 01:48:43 pm »
Another useful website: camerasize.com Does what it says on the tin, and invaluable in this era of buying on-line unseen.

Example (using two models mentioned upthread)

They're somewhat challenged as to grammar and maths, though:

"Nikon D200 [920 g] weights 132% (524 grams) more than Panasonic Lumix DMC-G5 [396 g] (*inc. batteries and memory card)."

Panasonic Lumix TZ70

I had a weakness for those cameras. The TZ3 was great so in 2013 I upgraded to the TZ30, which turned out to have horrible image quality.

I suspect that the TZ70 might also suffer from the ghost porridge in the sky effect: http://www.pbase.com/image/151396131 (although I don't know what ISO this was shot at).
I dare eat all that may become a man.

But hold the oysters.

Re: Any camera recommendations for less than £300ish?
« Reply #13 on: September 26, 2017, 03:51:22 pm »
Another useful website: camerasize.com Does what it says on the tin, and invaluable in this era of buying on-line unseen.

Example (using two models mentioned upthread)

They're somewhat challenged as to grammar and maths, though:

"Nikon D200 [920 g] weights 132% (524 grams) more than Panasonic Lumix DMC-G5 [396 g] (*inc. batteries and memory card)."

Panasonic Lumix TZ70

I had a weakness for those cameras. The TZ3 was great so in 2013 I upgraded to the TZ30, which turned out to have horrible image quality.

I suspect that the TZ70 might also suffer from the ghost porridge in the sky effect: http://www.pbase.com/image/151396131 (although I don't know what ISO this was shot at).


I just bought a second hand TZ100. Useful as a pocket camera and with a lot of reach, plus the sensor is a bit bigger than most compacts. It still seems some way from my other cameras in both ultimate image quality and, more importantly, operation. Still, it's a camera I have with me and much, much nicer (and much less expensive) than a phone.

Gattopardo

  • Lord of the sith
  • Overseaing the building of the death star
Re: Any camera recommendations for less than £300ish?
« Reply #14 on: October 06, 2017, 08:41:50 pm »
Ok what do you guys think of the canon EOS M?  Olympus Om-D E10, One of the pens.

Am a little lost and looking for advice

Re: Any camera recommendations for less than £300ish?
« Reply #15 on: October 07, 2017, 09:57:17 am »
I have an EM10 and love it. Small and light especially with the pancake kit lens.
I think you'll find it's a bit more complicated than that.

tonycollinet

  • No Longer a western province of Númenor
Re: Any camera recommendations for less than £300ish?
« Reply #16 on: October 16, 2017, 10:27:20 pm »
If you can stretch budget by £80, for £379 you can get the panasonic GX800 with 12-32 lens. It will do everything you want together with the start of a system giving you options to upgrade later.

http://www.camerapricebuster.co.uk/Panasonic/Panasonic-G-System-Cameras/Panasonic-Lumix-DMC-GX800-Camera-with-12-32mm-Lens