|A picture with the new camera of Gregg and I cutting up deer.|
I got a new waterproof, point-and-shoot camera yesterday. I had had my old Pentax Optio WP 80 for 3 years and it just would not die, but it did not take very good pictures either. I came to this realization after the elk hunt when my hunt photos were a poor second best to John S's iphone photos. That's pretty bad when a phone takes better quality pictures than your camera. It most definitely was time for an upgrade.
Since early 2006 I have had 3 different 'Optio' waterproof cameras and looking back at the photos I realized that the picture quality actually degraded with each new camera. So this time I decided to try a new brand and bought an Olympus Stylus TG1. It seems a little big, and is significantly larger than my old Optio, but it seems to take pretty good pictures - especially in low light where my old camera had real problems. It also has really easy and intuitive controls - I can make adjustments quickly before I take a picture. This is really important, and was one of the reasons I kept on using the Optio instead of switching to Zoya's Panasonic waterproof camera (which has difficult controls).
Ironically I bought my first point and shoot 21 years ago and it was an Olympus Stylus! That was back in the days of film and I went through 2 of them before I went digital in 2006. I remember back in 1992 how excited I was to have a small portable camera that took GREAT pictures. And last night I went and found my old battered Stylus from 1992. I was amazed to find that it is slightly bigger than my new camera (but does weigh a lot less). So I guess by 1992 standards my new camera is tiny!
These days it seems that smart phones really do take amazing photos and video. It almost makes me want to get a smart phone for myself! It definitely makes me realize that the days of designated point-and-shoot cameras is numbered. Who wants to buy a camera when their phone can do the same thing? But phones aren't yet quite as durable or waterproof as the waterproof point-and-shoots. My new camera can drop from 6 feet and go over 30 feet underwater without damage. It also takes GREAT pictures. Dare I say it takes better pictures than John's iphone?