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#22710 - 04/08/12 06:05 AM long hike camera
mountainhiker Offline


Registered: 03/29/12
Posts: 4
Loc: Mobile, AL
I am looking for recommendations as to the best high quality, lightweight and durable camera for hiking/backpacking...I am looking for something simple...point and click works best for me...this would be a camera that I would take on long hikes (including the one day Whitney trip) so weight is an issue for me...thanks in advance for your help and suggestions

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#22711 - 04/08/12 06:43 AM Re: long hike camera [Re: mountainhiker]
RoguePhotonic Offline


Registered: 12/08/09
Posts: 558
Loc: Bakersfield CA
It depends on what sort of controls your looking for in a camera. I currently take a Canon G12 with me because I like all the options it has. If you want to remain simple and light something like a G100 would probably be good for you. It's a good little camera and weighs about 7 ounces with battery.

If you do take a camera for long distance hiking you will have to consider your power options and what you plan to do to recharge it if it does not take AA batteries.
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#22719 - 04/08/12 03:23 PM Re: long hike camera [Re: RoguePhotonic]
wagga Offline


Registered: 10/07/09
Posts: 2212
Loc: Humbug Reach (Pop. 3)
Here is a review from The Reg. Prices are in pommie pounds, though.
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#22723 - 04/08/12 06:12 PM Re: long hike camera [Re: mountainhiker]
Akichow Offline


Registered: 04/07/10
Posts: 659
Loc: SF Bay Area
Hello. I bought a Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX5 in 2011 for this very purpose. Used it on Kilimanjaro. I can hang it in a small carrier on my chest strap or belt. Very happy with it. Very small, lightweight, with very powerful features built in. The lens is very high quality (made by Leica for Panasonic), and while it is a nondetachable lens, you can screw filters and lens attachments on it. The lens is exceptionally fast, so I very rarely use a flash ... I can use ambient light in almost any situation.

Here are pictures I took with it in the Eastern Sierras, while I was trying to figure out how to use it (and before I got extra filters, etc.)

http://www.whitneyzone.com/wz/ubbthreads.php/topics/19273/Fall_Foliage_on_the_Eastside_i#Post19273

Here is a link to the camera. It does go on sale sometimes, as I paid a bit less for it.

http://www.amazon.com/Panasonic-DMC-LX5-Digital-Stabilized-3-0-Inch/dp/B003WJR69E

The specs say it is 9.8 ounces. I put it on my chest strap and forget about it.

If you do get it, think about picking up an aftermarket automatic lens cap for it (about $5). The lens cap that comes with it has to be physically removed before you turn on the camera to take a picture (the lens is retracted when the camera is off, making for easy pocket storage, and then extends when the camera is turned on). The aftermarket cap has leaves that open when the lens pushes through it when the camera is turned on, so you don't have to physically remove it. I have found that useful for one-handed shooting.

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#22725 - 04/08/12 09:46 PM Re: long hike camera [Re: mountainhiker]
GandC Offline


Registered: 03/21/11
Posts: 246
Loc: SoCal
My wife bought me a Sony WX9 last year for my birthday, and gave it to me early before I left for my first Whitney trip of the summer. It's not dust and shock proof like I would have liked, but it's been put through some pretty heavy drops without issue. Carl Zeiss lens with 5X zoom and 16.2mp makes for some pretty decent shots.

I really like the timer feature that will not take the picture until it detects your face, or two faces in the frame. No timer, just waits for detection and then gives you three seconds. It's perfect for when I'm on my own.

Also does video and panoramic sweep photos.

Not a particularly interesting photo, but here's one taken with my WX9 looking down the trail from Trail camp:

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#22728 - 04/08/12 11:23 PM Re: long hike camera [Re: GandC]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7233
Loc: Fresno, CA
Beware of any camera with a lens that pops out and retracts when you turn it on and off. I have a Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS5 (Not Akichow's LX5 above) and have big trouble with lint and specs getting inside and sticking to the sensor.

Panasonic wants nearly the price of the camera to service it. I found a web site and Youtube video on cleaning it, and followed the procedures with success. ...only to have more lint and specs show up after several more months.

It takes great pictures, but this one problem is really annoying.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS5

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#22730 - 04/08/12 11:33 PM Re: long hike camera [Re: Steve C]
GandC Offline


Registered: 03/21/11
Posts: 246
Loc: SoCal
I was afraid of that same problem Steve, with my WX9, but the lens only pops out a little bit. I alleviated my concerns with a $10 Niteyez case that hugs it nice and tight, and also pads it for my infamous (and relatively frequent) drops.

It's less than a year old, so maybe it's something I'll deal with later, but I'm hoping not.
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#22737 - 04/09/12 06:10 AM Re: long hike camera [Re: GandC]
MooseTracks Offline


Registered: 11/02/09
Posts: 582
Loc: Bishop, CA, United States
I've been running around with a Panasonic TZ5 for about 4 years now (poor old thing, it's SO time to retire it). I seem to remember getting a little dust or something inside the lens at some point, but it disappeared after a bit, and there hasn't been a recurrence of trouble. In fact, the only problem I ever had was during the Challenge in '10 the windows over the lens wouldn't close, or open fully without a little tap of assistance. Then I dropped the camera while taking some friends up the MR, and the windows were fine again.

Maybe that's why I like it so much: kinda reminds me of, well, me!

You don't have to look hard on my flickr page to find sample pics.

I've been shooting mostly this past year with the Panasonic Lumix GF2. It's a micro 4/3 system, with interchangeable lenses, takes beautiful pics. I finally found a case into which it fits perfectly, and doesn't get in my way while hiking, climbing, or skiing. While the larger lens (I have the standard 14-42 on there most of the time) is a little bulky, I'm not bothered by the slight increase in weight. This isn't your standard DLSR: the body is about the same size as a lot of point and shoots out there.

-L
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#22759 - 04/09/12 11:25 PM Re: long hike camera [Re: MooseTracks]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7233
Loc: Fresno, CA
Laura, I am amazed you have had that TZ5 for so long and no dust on the sensor! You must ALWAYS carry the camera in a case.

My problem is I keep putting into my pants pocket without any covering, so it picks up lots of lint.

Here's the video on cleaning a Panasonic:

Cleaning the CCD sensor of a Panasonic Lumix Camera

search keywords: dirt inside Panasonic lumix lens

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#22762 - 04/10/12 05:26 AM Re: long hike camera [Re: Steve C]
MooseTracks Offline


Registered: 11/02/09
Posts: 582
Loc: Bishop, CA, United States
I do indeed, but usually on my waist-strap, and I extend the lanyard up and around my neck so I can't (usually) drop it. Guess I've been incredibly lucky...

wink
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#22769 - 04/10/12 05:27 PM Re: long hike camera [Re: mountainhiker]
RoguePhotonic Offline


Registered: 12/08/09
Posts: 558
Loc: Bakersfield CA
I still stick with a basic case that I can run my chest strap through so my camera stays on my chest for easy access while I hike. It stays fairly clean like that.

I did the same thing with my 5D2 using a chest case. It always amazes me to see people hiking through the Sierra with an expensive DLSR tangling from their neck unprotected.
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