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I need some help from you guys/gals. I recently bought a new computer setup. I am really illiterate on this too. I mess w/ the web and write emails etc. I am looking for a good HP digital camera, $150-$200 range. Not sure what I NEED, but I want something that takes good photos on land and sea. We'll say this camera is for beginners. I have never used a digital camera, so I'm looking for some assistance from you camera geeks.
YOU tell me the in's and out's, pro's and con's, and the do's and don't get's!!! Looking forward to your ideas. I have a new HP Pavilion a1420n, HP Photosmart Premier software, 9-in-1 memory card reader, USB & FireWire ports, Hyundai 191/2" flat scren monitor, w/ a Cannon Pixma MP150, Scanner, Photo, and printer capable.
Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005 plus "Windows Vista Capable" for 2007, Graphics by ATI.
Now, what model HP camera and paper???? see ya at one of my Weighins, thanx, Ed
 

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Ed,

First of all, you're not alone the "best camera" or "best value" thread seems to come up weekly here now. The hardware you already have will work with whatever brand of camera you choose to buy. If you're looking for a HP brand in that range then there site should provide the answer for you. I do not offhand remember anyone shooting the HP brand here.

At $200 you will be on the low end of the spectrum. My recommendation would be that you try to maximize your megapixel count. Next get the largest optical zoom you can afford (disregard digital zoom you will never want to use it due to quality loss). Please find my comment on Megapixels here:

http://2coolfishing.com/ttmbforum/showthread.php?t=54857

Brand loyalty runs thick here and that's understandable given the size of everyone's investment. My wife just sold her Canon S1 IS last week for $250, maybe we could have worked something out, but they are in your price range on eBay. It is a 3.2 MP camera with a 10x zoom which takes fine print sized pictures. Here are some with her camera:

http://2coolfishing.com/ttmbforum/showthread.php?t=69243

A couple of things that everyone here will agree on is that you need to me defined what you want to do with the camera and how much you want to spend. The internet bible for reviews on cameras is Digital Photography Review at:

http://www.dpreview.com/

Also understand that your camera price is part of the picture, your will need a memory card, batteries and a charger. You may also in time want to upgrade to editing software such as Photoshop.

My advise would be to narrow your selection and then post here with a "this is what I'm thinking" approach. We can easily lookup and compare two or more models of cameras. Also spend some time at your local photo shop and see what they say. I made the jump 18 months ago and haven't looked back. Good luck - hope this helps.

Ed Matthews said:
I need some help from you guys/gals. I recently bought a new computer setup. I am really illiterate on this too. I mess w/ the web and write emails etc. I am looking for a good HP digital camera, $150-$200 range. Not sure what I NEED, but I want something that takes good photos on land and sea. We'll say this camera is for beginners. I have never used a digital camera, so I'm looking for some assistance from you camera geeks.
YOU tell me the in's and out's, pro's and con's, and the do's and don't get's!!! Looking forward to your ideas. I have a new HP Pavilion a1420n, HP Photosmart Premier software, 9-in-1 memory card reader, USB & FireWire ports, Hyundai 191/2" flat scren monitor, w/ a Cannon Pixma MP150, Scanner, Photo, and printer capable.
Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005 plus "Windows Vista Capable" for 2007, Graphics by ATI.
Now, what model HP camera and paper???? see ya at one of my Weighins, thanx, Ed
 

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While you are on dpreview (their server is down right now) there is a tab that will let you choose tons of options and then display what cameras match your criteria. Those displays will then let you read the reviews of said cameras.
 
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