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Thread: Which camera do you suggest?

  1. #21
    Boolit Master
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    I agree. It is amazing how good today's cell phone cameras can be - especially in macro mode:

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  2. #22
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    a.squibload's Avatar
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    Is macro mode a standard function in your phone?
    I've only just started playing around with apps and it's about time to upgrade anyway.

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by a.squibload View Post
    Is macro mode a standard function in your phone?
    I have a Motorola Droid X - an early model released three years ago with only 3G capability yet it still has a macro mode within its' native feature set. There is no app involved. By today's standards in either smartphones or cameras it is no means state of the art yet I'm still quite satisfied for 95% of my uses which are snapshots of one sort or another. Of course it is not a serious camera but most of my needs are not serious: documenting property, snapshots of family, hobbies, or friends and photos of stuff to sell or depict in threads like this. What is has over a dedicated camera is that it is always on my person. If I get in a fender bender it is right there with me. When I used to have high-end Nikon film equipment I was frequently getting into situations where I wished I had a camera on me. I'm sure I'm not the only one.

  4. #24
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    When I finally went digital, I went with a Pentax K10D, but the choice was pretty easy for me since I already had a lot of old Pentax lenses from my SLR days and the K10D would accept even the old manual Pentax lenses.

    Just remember to wear clothes when you are taking photos of objects that have a lot of reflective surfaces. I remember an eBay ad a few years back where the seller ended up catching his own reflection in the chrome and apparently he had just decided to not bother putting clothes on prior to taking the photo.
    Live fast, die young, leave a cute widow...

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by grumman581 View Post
    When I finally went digital, I went with a Pentax K10D, but the choice was pretty easy for me since I already had a lot of old Pentax lenses from my SLR days and the K10D would accept even the old manual Pentax lenses.

    Just remember to wear clothes when you are taking photos of objects that have a lot of reflective surfaces. I remember an eBay ad a few years back where the seller ended up catching his own reflection in the chrome and apparently he had just decided to not bother putting clothes on prior to taking the photo.
    An excellent reminder!
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  6. #26
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    Sony Cybershot. Not much bigger than a pack of cigarettes, cover slides closed to guard lens, up to 16 mp (over 4 isn't really needed), transfers by card or usb cable, and they have a micro and a macro setting. You can bring anything right up to ya, and almost all models are $85 or less. And you can easily find refurbed Cybershots for less than that.

    Colt 1860, it just feels right.

  7. #27
    Boolit Master
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    for what its worth
    get the camera that has the biggest glass you can afford
    mega miggle schmoozy pixels mean nothing if the lens isnt big enough to make all that resolution useful
    a 4 mega pixel with a good lens will out run any 10 mega woozy pixel job with substandard glass

  8. #28
    Boolit Mold af2fb751's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by guncheese View Post
    for what its worth get the camera that has the biggest glass you can afford mega miggle schmoozy pixels mean nothing if the lens isnt big enough ......
    Good advice on glass. I have both types: nikon biggies and tiny ones. I'm amazed at the usefulness of my iPad camera...the lens is half the size of a BB. The pic below is resized to 25%. Ultimately the big camera can do more, but it can't compete on macro shots and simplicity.


  9. #29
    Boolit Buddy
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    We are a Nikon family so I recommend a D5200 if you want to step up into the DSLR category. B&H Photo is a great company, great service although they have already taken far more of my money than I care to admit...

    Image sensor size makes far more difference than the number of megapixels in regards to picture quality. Good lenses are just awesome.
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  10. #30
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    Modern phone cameras with a photobucket account will do everything the OP is asking to do.

    The wife and I also have a little Sony Cyber Shot with a Carl Zeiss lens that we paid maybe $100 bucks for ... it takes incredible pictures. It's the size of a pack of cigarettes basically.
    What you think about you do ... what you do, you become.

  11. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beagle333 View Post
    Sony Cybershot. Not much bigger than a pack of cigarettes, cover slides closed to guard lens, up to 16 mp (over 4 isn't really needed), transfers by card or usb cable, and they have a micro and a macro setting. You can bring anything right up to ya, and almost all models are $85 or less. And you can easily find refurbed Cybershots for less than that.

    You beat me to it ... you cannot beat a Sony Cyber Shot.

    Very nice pictures btw.
    What you think about you do ... what you do, you become.

  12. #32
    Boolit Master RogerDat's Avatar
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    Since no one mentioned it the Macro setting is generally designated with a symbol that looks like a 3 petal tulip flower on the settings dial or settings screens. One can then get closer to the object and the camera auto focus will work.

    "Digital Zoom" feature of a camera is really just pre-cropping, using the center x percentage of the sensor for the whole picture. Optical zoom is actually changing the lens so that it gets a narrower field of view with magnification. Digital zoom will in effect reduce the amount of captured data in the final picture.

    You don't need to take the picture zoomed in so that the serial number looks like a news paper headline. You just need to have software that allows you to zoom in on the picture and almost every photo viewer does that. If on zooming in you can read the serial number then you have your record. That depends on taking a well focused sharp picture more than anything else.

    One trick for elimination of the "the shakes" is make sure the camera has the threaded hole for a tripod, buy a cheap (even desktop sized flexible leg one) tripod then select time delay for the shutter. You know the setting that you use to run over and get in the picture. Mount camera on a tripod, you push the shutter and remove your hand, 5 seconds later camera takes the picture. This removes even the shake from you pressing the shutter.

    One characteristic of all those really good photos posted in the thread is plenty of light that surrounds the object, rather than being harsh or narrow from a single direction. Bouncing a bright light off of the ceiling and walls or even a white card or piece of paper can help you get that sort of lighting. The flash on the camera is almost useless for close up pictures, too much light, it washes out all the detail and reflects back at you.

    Post production zoom using software. There is a saying "Crop it to pop it". If you have software that allows you to draw a crop box around a portion of the picture AND determine the final image size it can really bring up the details. I use Photoshop for that but it is pretty expensive for casual use. I'm pretty sure this is a fairly common feature in most photo editing software. Might check on Picasa which is free from Google I think it has it. Also some handy picture fixing buttons in Picasa including "I'm Feeling Lucky" which tries to adjust it all for the best picture.

    For the portable stuff I would just set up a small tripod a neutral background such as gray blanket to set the object on and a few lights and just work through the items. Guns, jewelry, tools, electronics etc. Then as mentioned burn it to a CD and give a copy to a family member or trusted friend. No point in having the only record in the house in case of fire or just having the computer with the pictures stolen.

    Plus one on the Nikon D5100 and D5200 being nice cameras but going to set you back $500 - $650 today or there about even with just a kit lens. When new models they both ran closer to $800. Same for the Canon Rebels. And if you think reloading equipment is an expensive addiction wait until you see what a high speed zoom lens goes for! And there is always one more bit of kit that would be great to have.

    Back in reality. Canon Powershots are pretty good (my 10 year old A75 still fits in my shirt pocket and takes good pictures) as are Sony Cybershots. A Google search for Best sub $200 cameras of 2014 or 2013 should yield a selection of year or two old models that will be pretty good, probably still available at least on Amazon, with a warranty and while not having the latest and greatest features will have enough to make it useful as a general use camera at an attractive price. A lot of times the difference between a year ago and newest is just some more mega pixels and maybe a feature or two in the software. And of course the price. Not the difference between taking good pictures and bad pictures. Actually too many mega pixels in a small sensor tend to create "noise" in the picture, literally the signal from the one pixel firing generates a weak signal in the pixels adjacent to it. Cameras use software to clean it up, especially small sensor cameras <cough*phone*cough>

    Don't forget an overall picture of the firearm too. Nice to have serial numbers for police and all the local gun and pawn shops but for insurance a picture of the whole item is better.
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  13. #33
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    Having a solid background is good for when you are taking a photo for documentation purposes. Multiple diffused lighting sources and an indistinct solid background works pretty good, kind of like a "white box".



    If you are taking a photo of stainless steel firearms, maybe a white background would not be the best. Sometimes, you want a color that is completely different than the object that you are taking a photo of. For example, with a blued firearm, most of the colors are going to be either shiny (white-like) or basically shades of black. You might not want to use a white, gray, or black background with this, but a contrasting color background might work.

    Here's a quick cell phone photo I took of a new handgun that I purchased yesterday. It was taken with just kitchen fluorescent lighting and a crappy cell phone camera and holding the phone by hand. The background is just a crumpled up red sweatshirt.



    As you can see, the stainless steel and plastic bag are reflecting the light and if you zoom in on the lettering, it is not very clear. It does illustrate using a different color that will not blend in with the colors in the firearm though. Personally, I would not consider this acceptable for documentation purposes.

    If you are taking a photo of a rifle, it's nice to be able to get the entire rifle in the shot. If you use a wide angle lens, you will get some distortion, so the best bet is to just increase the distance from the camera to the rifle. Since it is nice to have a neutral background, putting the rifle on a carpeted floor works pretty good for this. Just remember to crop the photo so that your feet are not in the photo also.

  14. #34
    Boolit Master

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    If thatís all you will use it for, borrow one.

  15. #35
    Boolit Master

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    A little more involved than Navy Vet's post but still doable and flexible:

    http://www.pbase.com/wlhuber/light_box_light_tent
    John
    W.TN

  16. #36
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ID:	131568I just use a light background, in the shade. Works reasonably well.
    The solid soft lead bullet is undoubtably the best and most satisfactory expanding bullet that has ever been designed. It invariably mushrooms perfectly, and never breaks up. With the metal base that is essential for velocities of 2000 f.s. and upwards to protect the naked base, these metal-based soft lead bullets are splendid.
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  17. #37
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    I use a Sony Mavica FD-73, you can get them on EBAY for CHEAP

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/Sony-MVC-FD7...item58bf2ba5b2



    Mike

    p.s. the BATHROOM is the best lit room in the house, take your pictures there if possible
    Last edited by skeettx; 02-21-2015 at 09:31 PM.
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  18. #38
    Boolit Master
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    wch - I got a cheapo ($150) FUJI mostly to do just what you are doing and some on-line auctions. I got it about 6 years ago maybe. It will shoot as well or better than any of the pics posted . BUT- the memory card is an odd size and will NOT fit in my printer or a card reader. So, I have to use a cable to download. NO biggy, just beware of cheapos. Also, the battery is an issue. You will want an AC power adapter as you are going to be doing bench work. My cheapo uses AA batteries for field work and its OK for me. But it would be a real PITA on a vacation type outings. Coins are a good thing to practice on or take with you to the store. Take one with dings and tell them you want to see the dings in the pic very clearly. Also, get a FLASH option. I find in on-line sales stuff, I have a hard time getting enough light. The flash gets it done. On tripods- the kind with removable shoe- the shoe will wear out and defeat the whole purpose- just stick with thread mount for now. Look at a lot of pic. Start with the S&W posted in this thread. It looks like 3 different guns to me. The metal color has changed in each pic. A funky blueish nickel plate, then a high gloss nickle plate, then a soft weak blueing job. Digital cameras WILL DO THAT. For insurance-anti theft- recovery I would get the colors right.
    Get some bed sheets or cheapo WASHABLE blankets to use as backgrounds. Greys and off whites genrally are best. For case hardened (color) try reds and blues. Sometimes it can makes the color case hardening really pop off the page.
    Read the manual, but ONLY the stuff you need- modern digi cams will do so much stuff you will NEVER use your brain will hurt. and practice practice practice
    take copious notes just like you were working up a new max pressure red line load for the gun.
    Look at lots of pics on fleabay. You will see a lot that are just plain bad, too dark, out of focus or cluttered with flags waving or other stuff. And you will see a lot of good pics as well. just a quick study. good luck

  19. #39
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    Simple and excellent digital photography. I am also impressed by your casting skill. The boolits speak for themselves in these pics.
    Gondwana

    Never give up, no obstacle is invincible, there is always a way.

  20. #40
    Boolit Buddy
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    Cell phone cameras are convenient, generally close to hand, take relatively high quality images (this with an iPhone 6 Plus) and you never know just when you might want to snap something.

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    Gondwana

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