If you’re going traveling, weight and size is everything. It can be the difference between Ryanair saying “NOPE” when you are just about to board the plane because your backpack is just slightly over 10kg! If you’re into photography, then you’ll probably have an SLR and love it, but they are quite bulky, not so ideal when you’re travelling around Europe with your life on your back for the next couple of months. This list of cameras I’ve set up is a half way mark between the ‘all singing all dancing SLR’s’ and the ‘easy fit in your pocket but not so great’ compact options. Now these are all great cameras, but I believe each one has something special to shine – which one is your favourite?
SAMSUNG GALAXY CAMERA – Camera that comes with everything but the kitchen sink!
Specs: 16.3MP, 21x zoom, 1.4GHz quad-core processor – €499
The Samsung Galaxy has a huge 4.8inch HD touch screen display which is powered by 1.4GHz quad-core processor running android, meaning you basically have a tablet strapped onto the back of a camera. As a travel companion, the 3G and WiFi connectivity is definitely a plus for sharing and also connecting to the App Store. You can download skype or even play Angry Birds! The touch screen menus are easy to use, but it is not the best camera here, struggling with low light shooting. One novel native app is the voice controlled option, where you can sit the camera on a tripod, command zoom, flash, and auto mode, just by speaking to it! The access to the app store means that once you have taken your pictures, you can download various programs to edit photos directly on the camera. All in all, a great gadget with a half decent camera attached!
FUJI FILM X20 – For you Retro lovers!
Specs: 12MP, 4x zoom – €549
Fuji’s new 12MP 2/3-type X-trans CMOS II sensor, 4x 28-112mm, f2.0-2.8 zoom lens with a manual focus ring and optical zoom finder with a digital overlay is quite something. Firstly, if you’re into retro looking cameras but want all the bells and whistles of new technology, then here you have it. ISO ranges from 100 – 12800 and you have full manual control. It’s made from die cast magnesium, and aluminum plates at the top and base seal it together. It can shoot 12fps or 9fs it you’re shooting in RAW – “Yes it has RAW!” The video shooting is Full HD 1080 60fps but doesn’t however allow for manual focus or any other control for that matter. The dials on the top include a C1 & C2 position which are great for setting up two custom manual settings to quickly point and shoot the way you want.
SONY DSC RX100 – Big Sensor, Crisp Images in a Small Package!
Specs: 20.2MP, 3.6x zoom, RAW & Full HD Video – €599
Once you have this camera in your hand you won’t want to put it down. It comes with an all metal body, a huge 1inch 20.2 mega-pixel sensor. Although it doesn’t include a view finder, the 3 inch rich LCD screen is easily customizable. The controls around the camera are simple and efficient, with a mode selection at the top and a dedicated record button near the thumb rest that shoots 1080p at 60fps. The Carl Zeiss lens opens up to f/1.8 and the Auto ISO never misses. The manual focus ring and ISO’s ranging from 125 to 6400 are truly amazing for a point and shoot camera. However if you’re looking for a quick shooting companion “Superior Auto” mode will also blow your wind.
CANON G15 – Definitely the best G-Series camera ever!
Specs: 12.1MP, 5x zoom – €559
The G15 is a sturdy compact, with a large sensor fitting a bright f1.8-2-8 zoom lens. It has plenty of controls and impressive image stabilisation performing great in low light conditions. It’s ability to focus at 1cm distance on a wide angle and reasonable focus when zoomed in achieve shallow depths of field on macros and portraits. It includes Canons DIGIC 5 image processing system, Multi-Area White Balance and ISO ranging from 80 – 12800. The menus are pretty standard for canon users, but it does also have some direct access buttons to change flash, meter and focusing modes. If you’ve always bought Canon and you don’t want to change, look no further!