Zentraveler on the perfect travel camera!

Samsung WB150F Digital Camera

Samsung WB150F
Digital Camera

As I was in the market for a new travel camera this should be fun and a piece a cake to walk in any large mall and go to the camera sections and choose the perfect travel camera.  In my pocket I had my cheat sheet which described the best travel cameras for 2013.  I went to several review websites and weighted the pros and cons of several cameras, price ranges, and quality of photos and etc.  I was prepared and ready… let the camera search begin.

Not so fast grasshopper! After testing at least twelve different cameras from different companies and getting the sales pitches,  I needed a much deserved cup of coffee.  One very expensive camera I could only see my own reflection in the monitor screen and after salesman tried several things I  politely exited scratching that one-off the list.  Several of the cameras were difficult to hold and since I have large hands…some of the knobs were difficult for me to turn …OK rule out a few more cameras.

After my last sip of coffee I had to ask myself:  what do you really want from your new travel camera?  Like my mother used to say: “everything is a trade-off.”  Some cameras felt good in your hands, but were too heavy, other cameras looked  professional but were so light they looked like a toy camera and felt that way.

You could chuck the  new travel camera idea and simply carry your smart phone…not bad for many purposes, however your smart phone doesn’t have a wide-angle or telescopic lens and you might miss some excellent travel photos… since you don’t have the range and quality lens that some of the new cameras have.

Ok, do I want the latest point and shoot camera with wifi technology and enough gadgets to keep you busy for a lifetime or is time to bite the bullet and get a new DSLR camera like the ones professional photographers use.  Interesting enough price used to be a big differential.  Not any more… you can get a good DSLR camera for the same price as the top of the line point and shoot camera.  That’s a no-brainer I’ll get the DSLR camera.  Not so fast grasshopper… that new DSLR has great features and high quality photo images, however it’s heavy and won’t fit in my pocket and is more obvious when you are trying to get that closeup of the Mafia Boss who may violently object.

Wait a minute… I want to capture that gazelle running at break neck speeds, and I want a close up of the Formula One driver approaching the checkered flag, and what about that Brazilian beauty in a string Bikini innocently walking along the beach.  I want to take portraits of my girlfriend and I want to capture the whale shark underwater and a few shots of African Lions charging… plus some stunning sunsets from the South Pacific.  What you need is a corporate sponsor who travels with you as a travel camera caddy and carries a minimum of ten cameras, umbrellas, tripods, backlights, extra batteries,  memory cards, filters, lens wipes and a ream of legal photo releases for each human shot.

After testing another ten or twelve cameras I narrowed it down to the Samsung WB150F  18x optical zoom,14.2 megapixels 3 inch lcd screen, Schneider lens,  wifi connectivity and free 8GB memory card in the box with camera case,  wrist strap, interface cable, light weight and fits in cargo shorts, pocketbook or large pocket.

Samsung Travel Camera

Samsung Travel Camera

I chose  Samsung WB150F as my new backup travel camera and after setting the time and date I was good to go.  I shot 25 test photos and realized this is a great travel camera since the images were realistic with good colors and would do most things anyone needs to write a travel blog or  post on Facebook….and the good news this camera including tax out the door in the Philippines was 9000 pesos or $208.00.  The bottom line if this camera was stolen or broken you did not break the bank …no worries mate!

I invited my friend Tody from New Zealand and he brought his pro Sony Camera.  We each took ten shots of the same scene and in many cases the sky was bluer and images brighter on the Samsung WB150 F  than the Sony. Before you start tweeting… I know the Sony is a much better camera, however I was pleased with the results and really like the Samsung camera for its ease to use, size, weight, and range of options plus WIFI and social websites.

In conclusion these new point and shoot cameras are a great addition to your travels  and will give you almost every type of shot you will encounter.  However, none of these cameras are LION PROOF and if you can smell the lions breath you are probably too close and may be in harm’s way.   On the more serious side… I am also in the market for a new DSLR camera which I will use when I know I will be in an area for an extended time and then will try to capture that award-winning photo of the Bengal Tiger taking down the Spring Buck at high-speed.

QUOTE:  “ Your first 10,000 photographs are your worst. – Henri Cartier-Bresson  Do you know how many photos you have taken up until now? You will have to take thousands of pictures to reach a point where you can begin to evaluate them objectively. Looking upon your photos as if you were looking at them through someone else’s eyes is a good way to give yourself constructive criticism. Comparing your first photos with your most recent, do you see improvement? Do you remember how you loved some of your first photos – do you still love them or are they now not so good anymore?

Test Photo

Test Photo

THINGS YOU MAY NOT KNOW:  You often don’t or can’t see beauty in the world until someone shows it to you. Take a look around you just now – even without moving from the computer. Can you see something in a new way, a different way of presenting something common? Just take a look again. If you want quality photos you need to take many photos…and now comes the hard part editing and deleting your really bad photos.

“ Beauty can be seen in all things, seeing and composing the beauty is what separates the snapshot from the photograph. – Matt Hardy

THINGS YOU MAY WANT TO SAVE: Old Cameras…Don’t have a hobby start collecting old cameras.  Its fun plus you might find a bargain at the next garage sale.

ZENTRAVELER SAYS: Don’t be on the sidelines grasshopper, purchase a light weight digital travel camera and take  shots until the cows come home. It’s a no brainer  grasshopper…hop to it you will be glad you did.

From here to Infinity and Beyond is a relatively short ride! The next leg takes eons and eons as you fly through the Barycentric Dynamical Time Zone! …and on and on and on. Follow the Zentraveler Blog often for Travel, Health and Zen-like stories and such. Where else can you get a three in one blog for the price of free?


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Filed under DSLR cameras, perfect travel camera, point and shoot cameras, Samsung WB150F digital camera, Uncategorized, WIFI ready camera

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