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Photo Forum Everything on Travel Photography, from what kind of equipment to how to light a subject, moderated by Stuart (Reggie) Martindale, a pro English photographer
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Old 4 Jun 2001
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Opinions traded here - 35mm

Rob - GREAT forum and nice FAQ. Here's my two bob on a few models, I'd take yours and anyone's opinions on them.

Olympus 'Stylus Epic' or Mju(?) in Europe -
Smallest 35mm P&S I could find. Fast focus and shooting, fits in a hip pocket (tapered front) no excuse to not have it on you. Take it out when you're doing the lambada but otherwise its super comfortable. One handed shooting, wether-resistant (I can attest to this) good, fast glass and a good compromise of a lens choice(35mm f2.8 Zeiss).
The drawbacks - I found me using mine a lot a night (well, you're not going take an SLR to the pub, are you?) and the red-eye is pretty chronic. The biggest problem is its centre focus. This is one small issue that has me reconsidering this camera. If you do anything other than centre framing, the guy way off in the background will be pin-sharp and your two friends will become two over-exposed blobs in the foreground. The fast lens actually hurts you here (less depth of field) To put it into a selective focus mode, (ie press halfway down on the shutter to set focus/exposure, then reframe), you have to press two little recessed buttons on the back every time you open the front. Painfully slow, if you can do it at all after a Guiness or six...
I have so many shots of 'white blobs I have met' its killing me. Any suggestions on a similar super compact P&S? T4 Maybe?

F80 - I think Nikon finally got it right with this camera, as long as it stands up to a little beating. It allows you to set up a whole bunch of stuff for your personal style of shooting, then just use the thing and not worry about the do-dads. Super lightweight, can accept an AA accessory battery pack if you can't get hold of CR123's. Cheap for the features. Down side is that manual focus lenses are NOT usable with it (thanks Nikon!) and its dependability is yet to be proven.
Haven't compared it to Canon's system yet - opinions anyone? I haven't used this on tour yet, I used to have an F90, very well constructed but just too heavy for what it is. I think if you protect your camera well, you can get away with a lighter design.

FM2 - Bulletproof, if you have a Nikon electronic system, these are fully mechanical (other manual cameras will stop working when their batteries go, you only lose the lightmeter in the FM2) and great as a backup. They are light, small and a great camera in themselves. Only possible problem is the spring that drives the shutter getting old, so that 1/60 isn't actually 1/60 anymore. Only heard about this happening with older FM's (not FM2's), no personal experience.
I carry B&W film in my FM as a second body.

Blaze away...

Rich
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