An obvious advantage of digital cameras is that you can capture, transfer and view images digitally instead of losing resolution by converting from an analog to a digital format. The arrival of HD (high definition) TV with its 720-to-1,080 vertical pixel count has forced camera and camcorder manufacturers to upgrade their inventory to meet the new standard. The result is HD camera sensors that capture still and motion images at higher resolutions so they’re compatible with your HDTV.
With its 18-megapixel resolution and ability to capture 1,080-pixel video, the Rebel T2i is a photographer’s best friend. It’s intuitive controls and oversize 3-inch LCD screen make it easy to use and its 63-point metering gives you accurate exposures in all lighting conditions. If favorable reviews are important to you, the T2i was selected as the top choice under $1,000 by the website “Imaging Resource” and “The New York Times.”
The Olympus E-30 is one of the world’s best HD cameras, according to the website “BestHDCameras.” It has a 12.3-megapixel optical sensor and shutter speeds from 1/8,000 of a second to 30 minutes. It can also handle a wide range of photo formats from RAW to JPEG at resolutions from 640 by 480 to 4,032 by 3,024. If you’re a photographer who pushes the envelope, the E-30’s extensive feature set has the creative options you’re looking for.
At the $200 price point where HD cameras are affordable to most consumers, Kodak’s Zi8 is a favorite of the website “Lockergnome.” In their tests at the end of 2009, the Zi8 came out on top over popular cameras like the Mino Flip. Compared to its competitors the Zi8’s controls are logical and responsive but its features really give it an advantage. It has an external mic jack, SD card compatibility, image stabilization, a tripod mount and native Quicktime support for Apple users. That’s a lot of bang for the buck.
The Casio EXILIM EX-G1 is designed for extreme sports and outdoor photographers who abuse their equipment. Casio calls it “the world’s toughest camera” and they used endurance engineering to test it against weather and environmental extremes. With its waterproof, freezeproof, shockproof and dustproof body and a low-profile .78 inch thickness, you can take this camera everywhere. Casio’s EX-G1 also boasts a 12.1-megapixel resolution and 26 “Best Shot” exposure modes to match any situation you’re likely to encounter.
Devin Coldewy, “When HD Isn’t High Definition,” TechCrunch
BestInClass.com, “Recommendations,” BestInClass.com
Lockergnome, “What is the Best Handheld HD Camera?,” Lockergnome
The Imaging Resource, “Casio EXILIM EX-G1,” The Imaging Resource