What is your favorite brand and model of digital camera including price and ease of use ?
The best we have found is the Canon SX50HS.
It isn’t the best at anything, and it is a great combination of price and performance.
It is one of the new class of micro 4/3 sensor cameras.
In 35mm equivalent it has a zoom that goes from 28mm to 1200mm – 50x optical – amazing. A little bit of chromatic aberration as the lens gets out to maximum, but in good light it delivers amazing performance.
It has a 12megapixel sensor, that delivers 4,000 x 3,000 pixel resolution. Again, sensor performance drops as light levels drop, and in strong light it can deliver great results.
In NZ$ it is about $700 for the basic camera – about US$600, and there are often promotional specials that go much lower if you are prepared to wait a bit.
It only comes with a battery and charger.
You will need to buy memory card(s), case and extra battery(s) – depending on how keen you are at photography.
There are several reasonable soft cases that work, and the best hardcase is a Pelican1200.
By the time you get a soft and hard case, a couple of spare batteries, a couple of memory chips, and a remote control (the CT2 or CT2001 are both excellent value for money, and allow you to do timelapse photography of plants or weather), you will have spent about as much again as the basic camera.
If you plan on taking it for long hikes, invest in a small solar panel (2 or 4 watt briefcase models are excellent) and a couple of car chargers for the NB10L battery pack. Then you are set.
Ailsa tends to take up to 1,000 shots per day, when observing wildlife or just hiking, and a single battery is good for about 400 shots if you are not using the flash. I tend to run about 200-300 shots per day.
The other thing worth getting is a Gorilla grip tripod.