A very big thank you to everyone who has replied to me about the Olympus
C-740 digital camera. Mick Todd, Russell Woodford, Peter Anton, Jan & Ross
Mulholland, Robert McDonald, Bob Forsyth & Steve Clark.
You have convinced me that it is suitable for my needs. Now to try and
find it at a reasonable price ... The best price on the web that I have
found is $766.48 (thanks Peter Anton), plus $65 for 64MB XD memory ($145
for 128MB XD), plus $20 delivery. The best price at a retail store in
Perth I have found is $850 ($899 displayed, but salesman willing to deal
down to $850 maybe lower), plus $149 for 128MB XD chip. But most stores
don't have XD chips in stock!
Several people recommended the C-750 over the C-740 because of its hot shoe
for a flash, and the higher resolution. At this stage the extra $170 to
$300 puts it out of my price range (plus the cost of the flash!). I don't
have a sufficient need for many photos where a proper flash would be
necessary, and the higher resolution is probably not of significant use for
me. I intend to greatly reduce the pictures to <100KB (preferably <50KB)
JPG files for my web site.
Robert McDonald sent three photos including an absolutely sensational photo
of two Silver Gulls in flight about to land / feed on the water
surface. And that was taken with a C-700, which is now 'obsolete' compared
to the C-740. Far better than anything I have achieved with seabirds on my
Canon SLR, so I won't be taking a backward step in this regard.
Jan & Ross Mulholland sent a macro photo of a flower, and the quality and
depth of field is superb, and certainly more than what I am hoping for.
Everyone very strongly recommends using rechargable NiMH batteries. You
can buy a charger that connects to the cigarette lighter in the car. I
have seen this in Perth for $90 including 4 batteries.
The main manual comes on a CD-ROM, which makes it hard to access in the
field! But I guess you can print out the bits that you find that you need
to repeatedly refer to.
Olympus currently has a promotion until September 30 that includes the
Adobe Photoshop Elements 2.0 software with the C-740 (I think with all
Olympus digital cameras). I currently use Adobe PhotoDeluxe that came with
my HP ScanJet 4200C scanner. PhotoDeluxe is pretty basic, but it does read
most image formats and can crop, resize, brighten, increase contrast,
etc. I guess that Photoshop Elements is even better in these regards.
The built-in flash on the C-740 is limited (to maybe 6 or 8 feet), so it is
fine for most of my needs when photographing frogs or reptiles on the road
at night, or flowers in poor light in daytime. But not good enough for
photographing mammals at night. This is where the C-750 and a better flash
would be an advantage.
Some people suggested other makes to look at, but these are out of my price
range. Mick Todd pointed out that Canon is shortly releasing an EOS 300D
digital camera that fits the Canon EOS SLR lens, but it is likely to be
close to $2,000 (for the body - no lenses included). But maybe in a few
years this price will come down into my price range.
Thanks again for the information.
Frank O'Connor Birding WA http://birdingwa.iinet.net.au
Phone : (08) 9386 5694 Email :
Birding-Aus is on the Web at
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