Expert Recommendation

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Best Ultra Compact Point and Shoot Digital Camera for Low Light Photos Under $400
Expert (9 Recommendations and 3 Compliments)
Send a ComplimentComplimented (Change)
November 12, 2007 Updated: November 14, 2007
Overview

The new SD850 IS is one of Canon’s new feature-filled ultra compact cameras. An ultra compact camera is a bit different than other cameras, as it is of primary importance for the camera to fit into your pocket or purse comfortably but still offer a good shooting experience for the user of the camera. Ultra compacts are social situation cameras, which means they need good low-light performance for snapshots, good zoom range, a good movie mode and are easy to use. The SD850 IS is just such a camera.

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My Best In Class Pick
Canon PowerShot SD850 IS

The Canon SD850 IS offers both image stabilization and face detection to allow for some great low-light social shots. Adding the large and clear LCD (let us not forget the optical viewfinder as well) lets you know you won’t have to squint in low light or give up shooting in bright light, where the LCD (of all cameras) may get hard to see clearly. The updated movie mode lets you capture an astonishing 32 minutes of 640x480 video at 30 fps, using a 4GB card. Toss in a respectable number of shooting modes (to let the camera excel in different situations without you having to memorize a photography textbook) and you can see why this ultra compact camera is a winner.

Canon PowerShot SD850 IS is the Best Ultra Compact Point and Shoot Digital Camera for Low Light Photos Under $400
Where to buy
Canon PowerShot SD850 IS
Specifications
  • Zoom: 4.0x
  • Image Stabilization: Yes
  • Resolution: 8.0MP
  • Max ISO: 1600
  • Easy to Use: Yes
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Want More Opinions? See:
Website Reviews (4 reviews)
  • Dave's Pick at Imaging-Resource.com
  • Rated Excellent by CNET.com
2
Panasonic Lumix DMC-FX33

The Panasonic FX-33 is a nice looking ultra compact camera with some wonderful features. Boasting both a wide-angle lens and optical image stabilization, the Panasonic also offers a 3.6 power zoom. This combination makes for a serious social camera. It does, however, use a proprietary battery. While the Panasonic does have a wider lens, the lack of resolution in the LCD and higher noise than the Canon takes it out of the running.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FX33 is one of the Best Ultra Compact Point and Shoot Digital Cameras for Low Light Photos Under $400
Where to buy
Panasonic Lumix DMC-FX33
Specifications
  • Zoom: 3.6x
  • Image Stabilization: Yes
  • Resolution: 8.1MP
  • Max ISO: 6400
  • Easy to Use: Yes
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