Thursday, July 21, 2005

Digital Camera Shopping on a Budget

by Christina VanGinkel

Besides purchasing my Konica Minolta DiMage Z5, and my previous digital camera, a Sony Mavica 350, I also helped two friends choose cameras. One of those same friends has just asked me to help her choose a camera for her sister for her upcoming birthday. She gave me a starting price and a top price, to include both a camera and a memory card larger than the small ones typically packaged with any new digital camera. Digital cameras are one of the fastest growing electronics markets, and with prices dropping regularly, I am more than happy to help her shop.

Thanks to the recently falling prices on digital cameras, for their spending budget of $150 to $200, they will be able to purchase a camera that has a 3 to 4 mega pixel resolution, along with an optic zoom of at least three, and purchase a memory card between 256 MB and 512 MB. This budget would have been impossible a year ago, but is more than realistic at today's current prices.

My first suggested camera is the Kodak Easy Share CX7430 Zoom Digital Camera. With a 512 MB secure digital memory card now available for less than fifty dollars, the total cost would run somewhere around the two hundred dollar mark depending on where they purchased it. Dell currently has the camera available for $179.00 with an instant discount of $26.85. By searching Google for Dell Coupons, I also found a coupon for an additional twenty dollars off any purchase over one hundred and fifty dollars. They also have a current special running for free shipping on any electronics purchase over forty-nine dollars. That would bring the total cost of the camera to a grand total of $132.15. Dell also currently has a SANDISK512 MB CompactFlash Card on sale for $39.20, for a new total of $171.35, not bad for a camera that features a 4.23 effective mega pixel resolution, along with a 3X optic zoom. This Kodak camera also has plenty of features that make it both a good deal and a camera that anyone would love to have. Because of the high resolution, it is possible to snap photos that can then be printed at sizes up to 20" X 30". Packed with this camera is the Easy Share software from Kodak, for your computer, that allows the user to gain control of all their photos. It will organize not only your new photos, but also all your existing ones already on your computer. You can also edit and print from the program, or run a slideshow.

In suggesting this camera to her, I gave her the information from Dell along with the coupon code. Before ordering it though, I suggested that she check locally for the same camera to compare pricing, and informed her that I will also look at a few more cameras in the next couple of days to see if I can find a comparable one, both in feature and in price. Whatever camera she ultimately purchases, I am sure that her sister will love it.

No comments: