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Rookie needing advice on camera/camcorder for RTW


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Armchair Traveler
Posts: 43
Joined: August 9th, 2010

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Tags: photography, camera
  • Added on: November 13th, 2010
Hey all,

My wife and I are just in the midst of planning our RTW (leaving mid-May) and of course one of the most important aspects will be capturing the moment on film and video. Now we will be taking a basic photography course after Christmas, but other than that we are fairly green when it comes to taking photos other than your basic point and shoot.

So we will be keeping a blog and posting pics there. Ideally we would also like to have a little video too. Is there a decent-priced, not oversized camera option which you would recommend, or do you suggest that we should carry a separate camera and camcorder?

Also any advice for which camera to buy. It is pretty overwhleming, there seem to be a lot of options. We were hoping to spend around $800-$1,000 tops if possible (obviously we couldn't buy both a camera and camcorder for that amount, so that would be if there is one camera which "does it all").

Thanks in advance for all of your help.

travel droppings

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Lost in Place
Posts: 86
Joined: July 7th, 2009

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  • Added on: November 14th, 2010
One camera that Does it All, eh? Well, pretty much any camera can also take video these days. In the end, the photos and video will only be as good as you make them.

I am a fan of Ken Rockwell reasoning. Your camera doesnt take good photos, you do. In other words, get a camera that will get the job done and practice with it. Spend your time learning art and composition and limit the time you spend crunching stats and camera features. Just make sure you get one that can do what you need.

Anyway, here are a few of my suggestions:
Compact: Sigma DP-1s
A little Nicer: Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ100
DSLR: Pentax K-x Digital SLR with 18-55mm and 55-300mm
Work and Travel Abroad: A few ways I have worked my way around the world
All Ways Australia - Photos and tour reviews from the Outback


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Armchair Traveler
Posts: 43
Joined: August 9th, 2010

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  • Added on: November 17th, 2010
Yeah, as I am learning I cannot have it all.... :)

My understanding is that if I want to have the compactedness clearly we have to lose out on the lenses, and there goes my wide angle and zoom, right???

So maye a better question, is what camera did you take with you on your travels, and why?


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Street Food Connoisseur
Posts: 557
Joined: July 16th, 2005
Location: hopefully somewhere warm

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  • Added on: November 18th, 2010
I'm using a Canon S90, now the S95. It is small (size of a deck of cards), has a really good sensor, and low light capabilities. It also has controls that you don't find in many cameras, such as a control ring on the front around the lens that allows you to change aperature, ISO, etc very quickly. That isn't something I use constantly, but really speeds things up if you get to that point. Bottom line is that I've been very,very happy with it. I've always had Canon cameras so the main decision for me was if I could get by without more zoom. There have been a couple times I missed that, mainly in Canada and Alaska for wildlife. Aside from then no regrets. The new model now has 720p HD video as well.
Traveling by motorcycle to Alaska and beyond at
Come along for the ride!


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Guidebook Dependent
Posts: 19
Joined: April 20th, 2009

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  • Added on: November 18th, 2010
You might look at the Panasonic GH1. It's in the price range you mentioned (at the upper end), it has good video capabilities, and it comes with a good lens. That's what I've got with me on my RTW. Though I almost never use the video as it turns out, and for that reason alone, if I could go back, I might go with a comparable Canon. But I've been happy with it, not that I'm an expert photographer or anything.

Oh, one more thing, it's pretty small for a DSLR. But it's big enough that I only carry it when I'm planning to take photos. Whereas with a compact, you could keep it in your pocket at all times, for photos that come up unexpectedly. That might be a good way to start narrowing your options, deciding first between a pocket compact or a DSLR that you wouldn't always have on you.

Kate and Dan

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Holds PhD in Packing
Posts: 299
Joined: October 7th, 2008
Location: Toronto, Ontario

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  • Added on: November 21st, 2010
To follow up on Jon's suggestion — perhaps even the GF1. That's what Kathryn and I use — and we love it! Check out our review here. Ultimately, the GF1 does not measure up as a total substitute for DSLR, but serves as a great complement to one—especially for travellers wanting to carry a small light body.

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