TRAVEL COMPANIONS

Digital cameras are the choice for today travelling photographers, whether they want a point-and-click model or a full-fledged digital-SLR (single lens reflex) camera. It not just a matter of keeping up with technology: Digital cameras are ”than their film counterparts. After all, film-based images require toxic chemicals to develop negatives and print photographs; digital cameras do not. Add the cardboard, plastic and other packaging that you throw away every time a new can of film is opened, and the pollution generated by older cameras piles up. travelling photographersSo what can you replace your old Instamatic with? Here are some very capable choices:  Sony s Cyber-shot® DSC-T500 model not only offers 10-megapixel image resolution, but has the ability to shoot a HDTV widescreen 720p video at 30 frames per second in fine, standard and VGA recording modes. This resolution is three times higher than standard-definition movies. For the technically minded, the DSC-T500 s HDTV capture mode is based on the MPEG4 AVC/H.264 codec for video compression and stereo audio. The DSC-T500internal memory can hold 10 minutes of HD video; add a 16GB Memory Stick media card, and you can boost its capacity to hours. It retails for $429.99. For those who donwant to worry about running out of storage space on their cameras, the $429.99 Sony Cyber-shot® DSC-T700 is a dream come true. The reason: The DSC-T700 comes with 4GB of internal memory that can store nearly 1,000 full-resolution or 40,000 VGA-quality photos. No longer will you have to worry about running out of memory while on vacation! The DSC-T700 has 10 megapixels of image resolution, 4x Optical Zoom, a 3.5-inch 16 x 9 touch panel LCD screen and comes in black, silver, pink, green and brown. Semipros and pro photographers might want to check out Sonyflagship DSLR, the Alpha A900, which retails for $3,300. Scheduled to be available in Canada this fall, Canonnew PowerShot SD 880 IS and PowerShot SD 990 IS Digital ELPH cameras are pocketsized units that offer lots of performance, including Optical Image Stabilization. For an estimated selling price of $329.99, the PowerShot SD 880 IS Digital ELPH Camera has 10.0-megapixel resolution and a 4x wide-angle Optical zoom with Optical Image Stabilization. For an estimated MSRP of $449.99, the PowerShot SD 990 IS Digital ELPH offers an impressive 14.7-megapixel picture resolution, a 3.7x Optical Zoom and Canonnew Quick Shot Mode for faster shutter speeds. At the same price, the Canon PowerShot SX10 IS offers the zooming power of a digital-SLR in a compact camera. It comes with a wide-angle (28 —560 mm) 20x Optical Zoom lens, an Optical Image Stabilizer (OIS), and10.0-megapixel resolution. Also scheduled for introduction this fall, the PowerShot G10 digital camera, with an estimated selling price of $549.99, combines a 28 mm wide-angle lens with 5x Optical Zoom, 14.7 megapixels of resolution and a 3.0-inch Pure Color LCD II screen. travelling photographersNikon new COOLPIX P6000 is a compact camera that offers features found in many Nikon Digital SLRs. The P6000 even has a built-in GPS unit that can attach ”containing the latitude and longitude where each shot was taken. This camera offers 13.5 megapixels of resolution and a 4x Zoom-NIKKOR lens for a MSRP of $499.95.  If you have kids, you need a tough pocket camera. So check out the Olympus Stylus 1050 SW. This small digital camera has a shockproof, waterproof and freeze-proof body. Yet the Stylus 1050 SW offers 10.1 megapixels of image resolution and can be activated by tapping its case on the top, back or sides. The 1050 SW is rated to survive a 1.5-metre drop to the hard ground and handle immersion up to three metres. This $349.99 is a camera to take along with kids. Two great ideas from Kata will keep your equipment under wraps during inclement weather conditions. The CRC-17 Compact Rain Cover is designed to fit and protect horizontal handheld camcorders against downpours. Fabricated completely from waterproof materials, the cover features a crystal clear panel, which allows you to control monitoring and viewing of the LCD screen at any angle. The cover slips quickly over your camcorder to protect it from sudden showers and is secured by two quick-pull drawstrings that fasten tightly around the lens and your arm. Similarly, the E-690 GDC Elements Cover is a practical cover (shown here) for small SLR and digital cameras such as the Nikon D70, the Canon Rebel series, Sony Mavica series and similar models. If yousuddenly caught in a rain shower, slip the E-690 quickly over your camera and keep on shooting. You can still access all camera and lens controls via two side sleeves. A clear view through the transparent Thermoplastic LTrethane (TPU) enables easy monitoring all the time. A full-length double zipper provides bottom closure whether your equipment is handheld or on a tripod. travelling photographersNeed to take a picture of yourself? Are you fed up with extending the camera away from your face at armlength? Then consider getting an XShot 2.0 telescopic camera extender. This extender holds your camera about a metre away letting you shoot great pictures when no one is around to operate the camera. When not in use, the XShot compacts down to nine inches in length and weighs only five ounces. The XShot sells for $29.95 at xshotpix.com. Now for two more items that, although not digital camera-related, can make your life on the road all that more pleasant! Take directions: You really need to know where you are at all times. To make this possible, Sony has come out with four new GPS navigation units, with the NV-U94T nav-u™ at the top. This is a highly capable GPS navigation device that you can use in your car or carry in your pocket. Unlike many other GPS navigators, the Sony NV-U94T nav-u™ comes with a big 4.8-inch ultra-slim touch-screen LCD display screen, so you can enter destinations, calculate routes and then track your progress using onscreen maps. This unit also contains a photo viewer, audio/video player and stereo Bluetooth technology for streaming audio and making hands-free phone calls using compatible devices. It is listed at $399.99 at sonystyle.ca. Lastly, power: There is nothing worse than running out of juice for your cell phone, digital camera or MP3 player. The PowerMonkey is a small backup power system that can provide extra life to your electronics in a hurry. Basically, the PowerMonkey is a rechargeable battery that comes with a variety of adaptors that work with cell phones, iPods, MP3 players, digital cameras and other gadgets. Its adaptor works on both 110V and 240V 50/60 Hz power sources.

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