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  1. #1

    Default Recommendation for low-budget, high quality 1" close up P&S or DSLR

    Hi there,

    I'm looking to buy a camera in order to take really close up photos of nail art, mostly from about 1 inch away. I'm looking for a camera that can capture very fine detail with high colour accuracy.

    My budget is under 300 with anything above 200 being a stretch. I'm not sure what type of camera would be best to go for as I'm a complete newbie, or whether for example it would be best to go for a cheaper DSLR and get a macro lens for it.

    I'm not sure if what I'm asking for is possible on such a small budget, but I'd be interested to just receive some input either way on what my best course of action could be . I'm also open to buying other products to help my pictures look sharper, and similarly any advice would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks in advance for any help,
    Mark

  2. #2
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    A quality compact travel zoom like the 130 TZ35 will shoot macro. Get a mini tripod to mount it on and use the two second timer.
    You will not be able to tell the difference between images from this and a camera costing five times as much.

    Read a few reviews first though and have a look at Graham Houghton's videos on using a compact for macro.

    1" distance might be a problem, I'm not sure about that. You could easily crop one taken at three inches if necessary.
    Edit. Just checked and its minimum focusing distance is 3cms. I suspect that you would get a sharper overall picture of a curved subject like a fingernail from about 5cms. As previously mentioned, it would only take an instant to crop to your desired size.
    Last edited by Huw Williams; 26-04-14 at 08:21 AM.

  3. #3
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    Take a look at the fuji xf1. It retails around 130 it gives great close ups. This link is a close up using the xf1

    http://www.whatdigitalcamera.com/gal...imageuser=2689

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by graham_c View Post
    Take a look at the fuji xf1. It retails around 130 it gives great close ups. This link is a close up using the xf1

    http://www.whatdigitalcamera.com/gal...imageuser=2689
    Yes indeed, it is still available from at least one UK retailer for 130 and is a very capable and stylish little camera from what I've seen of it.
    My own preference for macro is my Fuji X20 rather than any other camera. It is over budget here though and I'm sure that the XF1 will perform just as well. The X10 is available within budget and well worth a look. 230 brand new just now.
    The important points for successful macro work is light and background in that order.
    Last edited by Huw Williams; 26-04-14 at 12:05 PM.

  5. #5

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    Thank you both very much for your help- Really needed something to go off.

    I had a look through some of Graham Houghton's videos but I feel like I probably didn't find the right one regarding using compact's for macro shooting - if possible could you link me to the video you mentioned?

    I feel that maybe it's my lack of expertise more-so than a lack of a good camera that's preventing me from getting high-quality shots, so I'll probably go for the TZ35 or the xf1, get a tripod and try it with a timer etc.

    I've seen a lot of people in the same field also getting decent results just using IPhone macro lenses - would it be a good idea to try and save a bit of money with them? And if so, is there a particular lens I should go for? How do they vary in quality? I have an IPhone 4, have seen some really cheap lenses and pricier ones. If you guys think they'll be unsuitable for my needs however then I won't bother.

    Cheers for the help, really appreciate the good advice.

  6. #6
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    I had a look at this lens for the iPhone at the recent Gadget Show Live event and was very impressed.
    http://www.olloclip.com

    It might do just what you want. They also demonstrated a little Manfrotto tripod for the iPhone as well. I cannot vouch for their quality but they looked very good on the day.

    Whether you go for a lens for your phone or a good camera probably depends on what other uses you may have for a camera. If it is not something that interests you and you have an iPhone, then the lens will do the job very well I'd have thought.

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