Expert Recommendation

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Best Point and Shoot Digital Camera for Travel Photos Under $200
Expert (88 Recommendations and 32 Compliments)
Send a ComplimentComplimented (Change)
May 17, 2007 Updated: October 22, 2007
Overview

Packing a 4x zoom and a swivel LCD in a compact body, the 8 megapixel Canon PowerShot A630 captures fabulous views of landscapes and is a terrific value for travelers.

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My Best In Class Pick
Canon PowerShot A630

All of these cameras are compact and have an auto mode along with lots of scene modes so it’s easy for novice users to operate. Canon also offers control over settings like white-balance and ISO. Olympus doesn’t. The Canon A630 (1.93” thick) and A560 (1.7” thick) score higher because of their faster performance, higher resolution sensors and control over important settings like white-balance and ISO. The image quality is also good at higher ISO settings.

As a travel camera, the Canon A630 is the preferred choice because of the higher resolution, the swivel LCD (for overhead shots, flower & street photography), and manual modes. It also only costs $20 more than the Canon A560. The Canon PowerShot A630 is therefore my Top Pick.

However if you shoot mostly outdoors landscapes, and can live with around 5-7 second delays between shots, the Olympus is worth considering because of its wide-angle lens and compact size.

Canon PowerShot A630 is the Best Point and Shoot Digital Camera for Travel Photos Under $200
Where to buy
Canon PowerShot A630
Specifications
  • Zoom: 4.0x
  • Resolution: 8.0MP
  • Size: 4.3 x 2.6 x 1.9 in.
  • Battery Life: 500 shots
  • Easy to Use: Yes
More
Want More Opinions? See:
Website Reviews (4 reviews)
  • Dave's Pick at Imaging-Resource.com
  • Rated Very Good by CNET.com
2
Olympus FE-200

The Olympus FE-200 is the only wide-angle budget offering from Olympus. It is 1.1” thick and packs a 6 megapixel resolution sensor with a 5x optical zoom lens (equivalent to 28-140mm on a 35mm camera). The camera has a Digital Image Stabilization (DIS) mode, which boosts the ISO setting to shoot at higher shutter speeds thereby reducing blur (however this increases the noise in the images). The full-press shutter lag is around 1 sec, and the shot-to-shot speed is 4.4-7 seconds. It uses a proprietary battery.

Olympus FE-200 is one of the Best Point and Shoot Digital Cameras for Travel Photos Under $200
Where to buy
Olympus FE-200
  • Best Price: $249
    Amazon See It »
Specifications
  • Zoom: 5.0x
  • Resolution: 6.0MP
  • Size: 3.8 x 2.3 x 1.1 in.
  • Easy to Use: Yes
More
Want More Opinions? See:
Website Reviews (2 reviews)
3
Canon PowerShot A560

The Canon PowerShot A560 has a 7 megapixel resolution sensor with a 4x optical zoom lens (equivalent to 35-140mm on a 35mm camera) and has good high ISO performance. It has a start-up time of 1.6 seconds. The pre-focus shutter lag is less than 0.1 seconds and the full-press shutter lag is around 0.50 seconds. It also has a face detection feature (when the shutter button is pressed halfway, the camera finds the faces in the frame and sets the exposure and most suitable focus point). The camera has an optical viewfinder and runs on two AA batteries. The battery life is around 500 shots/charge.

The camera received high praises from Steve’s Digicams (a popular camera review site).

Canon PowerShot A560 is one of the Best Point and Shoot Digital Cameras for Travel Photos Under $200
Where to buy
Canon PowerShot A560
Specifications
  • Zoom: 4.0x
  • Resolution: 7.1MP
  • Size: 3.6 x 2.5 x 1.7 in.
  • Battery Life: 500 shots
  • Easy to Use: Yes
More
Want More Opinions? See:
Website Reviews (3 reviews)
  • Dave's Pick at Imaging-Resource.com
  • Rated Very Good by CNET.com

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