Fandango’s One Word Challenge: Centre

At the centre of my struggle to source the perfect camera for me is the fact that I seem to want something that doesn’t appear to exist…

Ideally I want a compact camera that is small, but with a big APCS sensor, a fast sharp lens that can be zoomed manually, excellent autofocus, physical manual control, a silent shutter with minimal lag, a tiltable touchscreen, lots of megapixels, Optical Image Stabilisation, and oh, it has to not cost the earth. And it has to be small, did I mention small? Really small. Because however super-duper everything else may be, the reality for me is that if my camera isn’t truly tiny, then I simply don’t take it with me and end up relying on my smartphone to take photographs, which completely defeats the purpose of having a decent camera in the first place!

It’s a dilemma that frequently drives me nuts, and has done since buying my first ‘proper’ camera almost a decade ago. I do appreciate that the ideal of a one-size-fits-all camera is just that – an unrealistic ideal – and the best solution seems to be either to have more than one camera for different uses on different occasions or to decide definitively on where my main priorities lie and compromise. Except I keep changing my mind every five minutes and see-sawing up and down about what matters most to me in a camera, because ultimately I do still seem to want it all…

I have, over the years, owned two APSC sensor DSLRs and two MFT sensor Compact System Cameras. In fact, I still own both CSCs, because although I wanted an upgrade on my first – more physical manual controls, more megapixels, tiltable screen – I’ve still got a soft spot for the original smaller, far more basic pared down version, so didn’t quite get round to selling it on as planned. And much as I loved the image quality on both DSLRs, I really resented lugging them about with their bulky bodies and lenses, so more often or not they stayed at home, and sadly they were soon sold off.

Going with a Micro Four Thirds sensor in a CSC set-up allows me the versatility of a relatively small camera body and relatively neat and light inter-changable lenses – and the image quality is perfectly lovely, but just not quite up to the APSC standard I prefer. However small they may be, I still don’t tend to take all my lenses with me at any one time though – I like to choose one and stick with it for the day, but then often get frustrated at the limitations that creates. And still I don’t take it everywhere with me whichever lens it has on…

In know that ultimately the best camera for me is going to be the one I always take with me – and this is why I know I haven’t quite found it yet – but sometimes it feels like my never-ending quest to find something that not only takes good enough images for my liking but also fits into my seriously restrictive size parameters may just go on for ever… 😦

Fandango’s One Word Challenge: Centre

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