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Good Photos Can Come Cheap

28th November 2010

I’ve been interested in photography since I was a very young kid; so much so that I wanted to study photography at college. However, I somehow became distracted and ended up studying something completely different. Yet for these past 50 years, photography has remained a professional interest.

I’ve also been involved with computers for my entire working life. In the early 70’s, there was no such thing as a personal computer. When PCs started to appear about 1976, I yearned for a way to marry the computer with photography. But the movement to digital imagery was slower than even molasses. Of course we know that this has all changed in the past ten years or so and now digital is the standard – having all but replaced conventional film photography.

You can hardly go anywhere without seeing someone snapping a picture with a digital camera. They are everywhere. And the nice thing about these cameras is that they are capable of producing great photographs. Let me illustrate.

Having used dozens of different digital cameras – some inexpensive and some quite expensive, I’m often asked to answer camera questions from family and friends. So when my daughter recently asked me to recommend a camera for her to buy, I suggested that for the kind of picturetaking that she does, she should buy the least expensive brand-name digital that she could find. She was very skeptical of that answer.

To try to prove my point, I went to a local department store and did exactly that – I bought the least expensive brand-name camera. It happened to be a Canon PowerShot A470 – compact size with 2-1/2″ LCD screen, 7.1 megapixel sensor, 3.4X optical zoom, SD-card. It was on sale for only $109. (Since I purchased it, the price has dropped to about $80). After leaving the store, I promptly took a walk to the lake with two of my young grandkids to check out the camera. My findings: in addition to being easy to use, the quality of the photos is excellent.


Here’s a few of the photos that I took with this camera (click to see enlargement).



Don’t mistake this for an ad for Canon cameras. I’ve owed all of the major brands and I’ve had good results from almost every one of these cameras. My point is that you don’t have to buy an expensive camera to get quality results. High quality is a blend of the excellent technology and a deeply competitive marketing environment from which we all benefit.

By the way, my daughter didn’t take my advice, she bought a more expensive one. However, I now own another very nice (yet inexpensive) camera.

Written by Arnie Lee


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