Best value camera 2010

by Enche Tjin on September 22, 2010

There are many new cameras in 2010. Especially after Photokina trade show. Most new cameras are expensive because they are just released. If you do not insist on having the newest gear, you can actually get many older cameras at a bargain price.

Stores usually trying to get rid of the older model cameras to replace the new one. It is your opportunity to get best value cameras.

Below is the list of cameras that I consider great value today until the holiday season of 2010:

Beginner/budget DSLR camera

Canon T2i $678 with 18-55mm IS
T2i/550D inherits most of its features from Canon advanced camera, Canon 7D. It has 18MP sensor, 1080p movie recording, new metering mode in lightweight package.

Pentax k-x $525 with 18-55mm lens
Best value camera last year, K-x is now even cheaper. This camera is smaller than many beginners camera out there, great in low light condition and available in several colors.

Budget mirrorless camera

Panasonic G1 $585 with 14-45mm
G1 is the first micro four thirds/mirrorless camera. 30-40% smaller than most digital SLR camera, G1 is ideal for travel and street photography. It has swivel LCD and great auto focus performance of its class. It is a great entry point to micro four thirds system world.

Panasonic GF1 $715 with 20mm f/1.7, $700 with 14-45mm
If you like small cameras that can produce DSLR quality images, look for Panasonic GF1. It is great for travel, street photography. Very nice with 20mm f/1.7 lens.

Samsung NX10 $569 with 18-55mm
Samsung first mirrorless system camera (NX system). It is about the same size of Panasonic G1, but sports bigger sensor (which is better) and AMOLED LCD that is better than most LCD screen out in the market.

For intermediate/advanced

Sony a550 $550 body only
Sony A550 is not as popular as Canon or Nikon DSLR cameras but it has great unique features. First it has two AF sensor so that you can auto focus very fast in live view mode. It also can shoot up to 7 fps (focus & exposure lock) and built-in image stabiiization (SteadyShot). Selling at $550, it is a steal.

Nikon D90 $700 body only
Nikon D90 remains an excellent camera although its successor D7000 has even better specifications. Selling at $700, D90 is great all around camera for enthusiasts. It is famous for its clean image in high ISO setting and the first camera which can record video.

Pentax k7 $851 body only
K7 used to be the best Pentax DSLR camera and currently replaced by Pentax K5. The price of K7 keep dropping which is a good thing. K7 is famous for its compact and full weather sealed body. It can also record 720p video.

Compact cameras

Canon S90 $330
Announced last year, S90 is as good as the new S95 in term of image quality and most of its features. The only different is video recording quality. S95 also has better control ring and body finishing. However, S90 is $70 cheaper which I think provide a greater value for money.

Panasonic LX3 $375
The two years old award winning LX3 is succeeded by LX5 this year. But the improvement form LX3 to LX5 is not that great. The improvement comes from handling and control and a little longer zoom lens (24-60mm vs 24-90mm). LX3 has most of the features LX5 has, and capable to produce equally better image quality at around $125 cheaper.

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