Expert Recommendation

Best Compact Point and Shoot Digital Camera for Wildlife Photos Under $450
Expert (4 Recommendations)
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September 15, 2008

Wildlife photography requires a camera that can be used in a variety of different environments. From action photography to capturing your subject at a distance as well as very close-up, and with an option for low light photography as well. The best camera to fill that niche is the Panasonic DMC-TZ50S.

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Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ50

The TZ50 has a 10X optical zoom (equivalent to a 28 to 280mm lens on a 35mm camera) that will allow you to quickly zoom in on your subject matter and, with optical image stabilization you will be able to get sharp images more often than not. As for the camera speed it has only a .06 second time delay from the moment you press the shutter button till it actually takes the picture, which is very difficult to find without taking the next step in purchasing a DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) This camera also has a Rapid Shoot mode allowing you to take three images one right after another, which would be useful for action photography. For low light photography this camera has an ISO rating of up to 6400. Just a quick note on that point: to reach that ISO setting the camera has to be set to High Sensitivity and will automatically select the ISO from 1600-6400. This will affect picture clarity.

The TZ50 uses a lithium ion re-chargeable battery so I would suggest picking up a spare if you are planning on taking this camera on a trip were charging might become an issue. Fortunately the camera’s battery life is fairly descent- averaging about 150 to 200 shots, or 1 to 2 hours of continuous usage per battery charge.

As an interesting side note, this camera has WI-FI built-in, so that you can upload your pictures via Google’s Picasa Web Album whenever you step into a T-Mobile Hotspot or on your home’s WI-FI network. You can also access, via the camera itself, the pictures that you have stored on the site and delete them, without having to use a computer. My only concern with this would be battery usage. I can’t think of anything that would drain your batteries faster.

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    10X Optical Zoom
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    Only a .06 second shutter lag
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    Lithium Ion Battery
Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ50 is the Best Compact Point and Shoot Digital Camera for Wildlife Photos Under $450
Where to buy
Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ50
  • Zoom: 10.0x
  • Image Stabilization: Yes
  • Resolution: 9.1MP
  • Easy to Use: Yes
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