Best Point and Shoots for Travelling
Words Trevor King
1 The Stylish Nomad | Fuji x100s
This 16.3 MP camera is great as far as a point and shoot camera goes. Full of easy automatic functions for the casual photographer.This includes a preset, “film simulation” of colour treatments that allow you to have an instant filter on all images, enabling you to create your own visual style through your photographs.
For the more technical snapper, you can go full manual setup including manual focus, aperture and shutter speed. With a fixed Fujinon 23mm f1.2 lens you get the bonus of having a great lens which performs in low light just as good as in the middle of the day. It comes with a built in flash and a flash shoe for something bigger if you want more light. ISO rating up to 6400 but it gets pretty grainy. It also records HD 1920 x 1080 video both 60 and 30fps.
What I love about this camera is the retro look of it. It looks just as good as a rangefinder from the 50s. This is it’s biggest draw card. It actually can be used as a fashion accessory. The size of it is great as well. A bit too big to fit in your pocket but small enough not to be annoying to carry over your shoulder with a small retro leather strap. The thing that worries me is the price vs image quality. For $1000 it doesn’t seem to take a much better photo than something that is around the $3-400 mark. You are really paying for how sexy the camera looks. But that works for me, I want one. They are a good looking cameras.
The Fuji x100s would work as a great camera hiking up a volcano but I would recommend keeping it for social functions. It will be a conversation piece and have the rest of the party wanting one.
$ 1,139.95 | www.fujifilm.com.au
2 All Rounder Traveller | Canon 100D
They don’t call it a compact DSLR for no reason. It is quite small for a DSLR and very light, but then again it is an entry level camera. I used this camera with a 18-55mm f3.5 – 5.6 canon lens with Image stabilising. It has all the functions of a modern digital camera; Pop-up flash, hot shoe, large rear LCD touch screen, 18MP APS-C CMOS sensor (same as 700D), video HD 1920 x 1080 30fps or 1280 x 720 60fps, and loads more for you to discover if you end up owning this camera.
I had fun with this camera. I took it for a walk along the coast, looking for surf. With this lens setup, it is very light. Also there is something about canon cameras that is different to the rest. The feel, the sound, the way things look through the viewfinder. Canon just know what they are doing. They’ve been killing it in the industry for so long that they know what works. It’s all about ease of use. The camera functions and menu setup is so user-friendly. You could give it to someone who hasn’t taken a picture before and they would figure it out in no time. I love how you can use your large higher end EOS lenses on this body. Small body, big lens, gives it a badass look and the images just get better. To get the best image out of a camera, I personally think the body is 30% and the lens is 70%. The bigger the lens the better the image. The 100d was so versatile, great for landscapes, portraits and action. It is such a good little camera to take with you to document your life. Most DSLRs end up being too big to take with you but this little guy won’t strain your neck if you take him along for the adventure.
$749.98 | www.canon.com.au
3 The Adventurer | GoPro Hero4 silver
If you are on Instagram and you like showing off your skills snowboarding down the Swiss Alps or cliff jumping in Mexico, then this little action camera is the one for you. The newest mid range model of goPro is a great step up from the previous models. The most noticeable feature is the LCD viewing screen on the back. How it packs so much quality in such a small camera, boggles my mind. It captures stills at 12-megapixels. For video, it will shoot 2.7K at 30fps, 1080px @ 60fps, and 720px at 120fps (super slow-motion). It also has a remote trigger and the much better user interface. With a solid little shock and waterproof case and what seems like endless attachments and accessories, you should be able to cover off every angle of your near death experience.
The rear LCD touch screen is the best feature. I have had earlier models of GoPro’s without the LCD screen and they are like using an analog film camera circa 10 years ago…. you don’t really know what you’ve taken photos of until the film comes back from the lab. Same went with the old GoPro, you didn’t know what you had captured until it downloaded on your computer. The new display changes all of that. It was peace of mind knowing where your frame was and that the camera was actually working. In my eyes the GoPro isn’t much of a stills camera, I see it as a great video/ stop motion tool. I wouldn’t recommend taking a GoPro on it’s own. It is a great addition to a good point and shoot or DSLR. If you love to get dirty, ride scooters down narrow Indonesian streets, climb mountains, scuba dive, sky dive or dive off rocks, surf, sled down snowy peaks, or anything else that endangers your regular camera, then the GoPro Hero4 is for you!
$539 | www.gopro.com
4 A Cut Above | Olympus OMD E-M1
Not for the casual hobbyist. It deserves more than casual use – It’s better than that. The mirrorless micro four thirds sensor pumps out a brilliant 16.3mp images at the push of a button. And many other convenient buttons at the tip of your fingers. It is effortlessly easy to navigate and quickly change from auto to full manual, including a flash sync cable input in case you want to use any studio lighting.
Unfortunately no built in flash but has an ISO sensitivity up to 25600, but on the bright side; It shoots up to 10 frames per second; has built in image stabilisation; has had an auto focus upgrade; shoots all hd video at 30fps; has a 3” tilting touch screen; and it has a dust, splash, and freeze proof design that enables full functionality in adverse conditions. What more could you want!
Out of all the cameras in the point and shoot range, this one would have to be my favourite. It looks good, it’s not too big to take out with you (most SLR sometimes can be), it feels good in your hand and it sounds so cool. The shutter has this smooth click that makes it stand out from the rest of the cameras. I don’t know if it’s just me or that sound makes it more enjoyable to take pictures.
It is quieter so it doesn’t intrude on those moments that you want to be candid. Other than that, it takes an extremely nice picture, to easily be compared with the picture quality of a full frame SLR. I used a 22mm f/1.8 which gave a quite selective depth of field which I love. It brings out your subject from the background. But with all of this goodness comes the price tag. The E-M1 is undoubtedly worth every penny.
$1499 | www.olympus.com.au