Digital Regular vs. SLR
by grayja - 3/21/09 11:33 AM
With regard to taking good/excellent photographs (as opposed to just "snap-shots"), the single most critical part of a camera is the lens. In a regular camera, even a good lens is stretched to the limit to provide reasonable results over a wide range of conditions (macro and telephoto as you have specified). Such a lens must be made with concessions to the extremes of close vs. distant subjects. If you can afford it, then an SLR with macro, regular, wide-angle, and telephoto interchangeable lenses is the ultimate. Some Digital SLR's (viewfinder optics only) with a fixed lens can have accessory add-on lenses fitted to enhance Macro and Telephoto, but again, this is a concession to "the right lens for the job" concept. Also by the time you have bought the add-on accessory lenses, you might just as well have gone for the SLR model with fully interchangeable lenses in the first place. Ultimately, it all depends how serious you are with your photography (do you want to become a 'Pro' or career photographer', and otherwise "how much are you prepated to spend" to have "all the bells and whistles"? If you are a keen 'amateur/hobby' photographer, how much 'stuff' are you prepared to carry around with you every time you want to go out on a photo-shoot.
Me, I'm extremely happy with my Canon Power Shot S3 IS, and it's Macro and Telephoto performance more than meets my 'hobby' requirements. I almost never print my photos (and then only in small sizes for regular mailing to non-computer users), and with all my family and friends being computer users, I create albums on my own PC and also online at a wonderful website (Webshots) so that invited guests can view some of my work.