I get quite a few emails from people asking me what camera they should buy. Quite often these questions get asked within the sphere of one or another type of camera, and probably the most frequent camera type I get asked about are what I call “Advance Compact Cameras”. To help answer this question I have decided to put together a guide to my thoughts on these cameras.
I am yet to buy and review all of the cameras that fit into this category, though I have passed judgement on a few of the most popular over the last few years. The idea of this guide is simply to summarise the posts I have so far written in a bid to guide people through them in their search for their ideal “advanced compact”.
What is an “advanced compact”
At some point in the 90’s/early 2000’s there was a bit of a race between various camera manufactures to build the perfect compact camera. These cameras are identified by a series of shared attributes that separate them from the more basic “point & shoot” film cameras that were commonplace at the time. Firstly, they were all a lot more money than the common point & shoot cameras, with some like the Minolta TC-1 costing well over £1000. It’s fair that in return for that extra cash, they did provide some advanced features that give them more appeal to photographers looking for something a little more sophisticated.
The main features that are common to all of these cameras are high quality lenses, good build quality, good autofocus & autoexposure, the ability to switch to aperture priority and the ability to set the flash to off and it stay off even when the camera is powered down. There are other shared attributes, but these tend to be the justifications behind most peoples desires to buy them.
The reasons people choose one over another come down to some of the more subtle differences between the cameras. Below you will find my current summarised thoughts about the cameras I have so far written about, with links to the reviews and other relevant posts within 35mmc. I really hope that this helps people find their ideal advance compact, but in case it doesn’t I would invite comment and questions below that might add to the content of this page.