Ian Lucero PRO 8 years ago - Nikon Coolpix 4500 - My first really nice digital still camera was the Nikon Coolpix 4500 dpreview.com/reviews/specs/Nikon/nikon_cp4500.asp The form factor was my major decision. It swivels. You don't see that in many still cameras anymore. You find it more on video cameras (the LCD screen) which is what made the Coolpix 4500 appealing. The getting in hard to reach places is what I liked (example: shooting over a crowd yet still being able to see what you are shooting). It is kinda chunky but it is really comfortable to use. Screen is tiny. VIDEO? sucks. It's like 15 or 20 second bursts. Color or Black & White. 15fps or 10fps. Sound is ok for speech. It isn't tinny sounding but more like "hollow like a skinny metal tube". But it shoots video onto Compact Flash and that's a start in the right direction back in 2002. SAMPLE: (COLOR) vimeo.com/clip:158560 (B&W) vimeo.com/clip:153984 I can post better ones. But you get the idea. I still use this camera as it has great panorama features (guides) and great add-on lenses. And the best Macro I've ever used for stills (vimeo.com/clip:161713) - Panasonic DMC-LX2 - This is basically the Panasonic version of the Leica D-Lux 3 or D-Lux 2? dpreview.com/reviews/specs/Panasonic/panasonic_dmclx2.asp Doesn't matter the Leica versions are too expensive for me. The Panasonic is priced right with pretty much all the same features and lens minus the flashy Leica badge. This camera shoots in RAW, JPeg, and all the still sizes. VIDEO can be shot at 4:3 or 16:9 aspect ratios. 1280 x 720 @ 15 fps, 848 x 480, 640 x 480, 320 x 240 @ 30/10 fps. The screen on the back is huge! I just bought this camera for my girlfriend and she absolutely loves the quality of the stills. The VIDEO? Is pretty nice especially after the Vimeo compression. The SOUND? Not bad. I don't necessarily like the placement of the mic because it is on top and while recording is easy to inadvertently cover the mic with your finger. Other LIKES: "Switches" for Auto/Manual Focus, for Aspect Ratio and for Macro right on the lens. Easy Navigation. Build quality is solid. Screen Resolution is amazingly bright and detailed. DISLIKES: No filter threads on lens. Screen is so big it needs a sunshade! SAMPLE: (1) vimeo.com/clip:188118 (2) vimeo.com/clip:189936 - Panasonic DVX100a - The camera I use for most of my posts. This camera takes amazing images. It is big but small enough for travel. NOT a vacation camera but I've taken it on many an adventure to Europe, Hawai'i, NYC. If you have no fear of being stared at all the time. SAMPLES: (CLEAN) vimeo.com/clip:160421 (SMOKE) vimeo.com/clip:174446 (SLO-MO) vimeo.com/clip:165480 All my DVX100a clips are tagged as such. Same with the LX2 or 4500.