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I've been looking to purchase a digital camera to take along on rides. I have found very good prices through sites like pricewatch.com but the choices are so many I'm not sure what to get. Has anyone ever used the Panasonic cameras for traveling on two wheels? I would think being able to take pics while riding with the left hand might be important. Also considering the Olympus Stylus models for water resistance and so on.

A lot of these digital cameras have similar features so any advice is welcome.
 

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I think any of those would be a good choice, what would be great is a camera with a non slip surface instead of the slick plastic:D
 

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Panasonic make very good cameras with probably the best optical image stabilisation on the market.
The downside of ALL P&S digitals is that they now have far to many pixels crammed into a too small space so they suffer badly from image noise at anything above ISO 100.
For bombproof reliability look at one of the Canon A series and try to get one with 6 or 7 MP rather than the latest 8 - 10MP. The reason for recommending Canon A series is threefold. 1. They have a real viewfinder so you do not have to always use the LCD screen for composing pictures. In some light the LCD is impossible to see. 2. They use standard AA batteries (Pansaonic use a proprietary battery). 3. They have very good movie modes which are handy for those on bike movies.
If you are really fussy you can also buy real underwater housings for many of the Canons which means they could be used in all weathers on a bike.
 

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The Canon elph series are nice because of their all-metal housing and small size. My wife flung hers once by accident, it had a hard landing on concrete, but it still worked fine. Picture quality is good, but the custom batteries don't have great longevity, so we bought an extra.

You might check out Steve's-DigiCams for in-depth reviews and picture/movie samples.
 

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FWIW I have a Panasonic TZ3 and I love it. It is fairly wide angle (28mm) and runs out to a full 10X zoom, all in a very compact unit that slips easily in to a pocket. If you don't require the hefty zoom they also make 3.5X and 6X units for substantially less money.
 

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Another

Good source for reviews is www.dpreview.com. If you are talking about point and shoot cameras I think the Canon's are about as good as any. I tend to like their picture quality (color, contrast, sharpness) better than some others. I too would recommend one of the cameras that use AA batteries, as they are available everywhere, and the cameras are about the right size, especially for folks like me with big mits. In my experience the smaller Canon's that use proprietary batteries don't take quite as good a picture, especially if you are blowing them up to 8X10 or larger. Having said all that, none of the point and shoots take as good a picture as the DSLR's. If you have the space, there's no comparison. And with prices around the $500 mark for starter sets, they're not that much more expensive than the top-of-the-line P&S cameras.
 

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I've been using a Panasonic DMC-FZ5 as a light-weight backup to my Nikon DSLR for the past couple of years, both on the bike, and in the bush. It's not too shabby. The long end of the zoom range is pretty sad, even with the stabilization, but that's true of all of these point'n shoots. There's a reason why good long lenses for bigger cameras are $$$$$$$ :rolleyes:

Here's some examples from mine (keeping in mind that I'm no pro and that really good photography is mostly due to the operator and not so much the equipment).

http://heron.uwaterloo.ca/~dwpayne/Quetico2005/
http://heron.uwaterloo.ca/~dwpayne/Tem2006/
http://heron.uwaterloo.ca/~dwpayne/CoppermineRiver/movie/SandstoneRapids.wmv
http://heron.uwaterloo.ca/~dwpayne/AP-Oct-2006
http://heron.uwaterloo.ca/~dwpayne/Quetico2007
http://heron.uwaterloo.ca/~dwpayne/ADV2007
 

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I am agreement with the posters talking about the Canon camera.. hard to go wrong with them. In our household we have three of the Digital Elph (SD series - various years and pixel ratings) and a Rebel XTi with a number of lenses. we get great service from all of them and it is hard to beat the sheer convenience of the SD cameras.. they are small enough and handy enough that you can have them in a pocket ready to go if you see something interesting.

As far as battery life goes: if you are talking about going on day trips or weekend trips then battery life wouldn't be an issue. Get one of the accessory kits that includes a case and an extra battery so you have a backup.

If you are going on longer trips a good idea might be to get one of those handy little inverters that plug into your cigarette lighter and then you can charge your battery when needed.

..Tom
 

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I have a Panasonic Lumix FX07 and love it!

Like that is very small and has a good zoom with a real wide angle. I like that there is very little delay when pushing the button and taking the photo. I love the on/off switch, not a tiny button.

And I love everything else about it too. It takes excellent movies and I've taken them with it mounted on the bike with great results. The battery last a really really long time.
 

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I've an FZ5 as well & have to say that it is a great little camera. Just make sure that you purchase a 2nd battery, same goes for all camera's using a none standard battery.
 

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Go to Consumer Reports online and read their latest digital camera review. Personally, I think Olympus makes one of the best lenses and digital cameras around, but they aren't always the cheapest. Get at least 10x optical zoom and 5 megapixals.
 
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