Whats is the best camera for low light macro pictures?


silhoutte

New Member
Jan 18, 2007
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#1
Hi,

I'm very new to photography and I do not know any terminology and lens stuff or f-stop but I would like to get a camera for taking photos for my work.

I need to take pictures of small tag plates of my machines in very low light settings and I also need to take macro shots of them in many cases, some of the places that I take photos in have almost no light.

I have been using my iphone for taking photos but it is proving to be really a problem for me in getting a decent photo especially when I need to balance myself at an awkward angle while juggling with an iphone and torchlight to take pictures of the machines.

Many of the photos turned out blurry thanks to the less than adequate flash of the phone and I needed to take an average of 5 pictures for each machine. Usually I need to take more than 10 machines at one go in a hot, dark, dusty and humid environment so imagine the hassle I had to go through. :(

As I would prefer something that is compact that I could handle single handed, my friend told me to consider the Canon G15 or the Panasonic Lumix LX7, I'm leaning towards the LX7 because of the good reviews so I wonder if you could give me some input.

Hoping that any kind soul could help me out :)

Thanks,
Ed
 

catchlights

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Sep 27, 2004
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#2
Your thread posted at Before Digital, Beyond 35mm / SLR and Compacts.

this section is discuss about FILM cameras, I don't think this is what you are looking for.


thread moved.
 

ed9119

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Mar 11, 2002
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#3
if image quality is not an issue then bump up the iso

I am assuming that your on-board phone flash is not suitable ... another cheap alternative is to shine a seperate light on the subject (LED light, torch etc )

but otherwise yes as you mentioned, any number of the currently available consumer digital cameras that come with a built in flash should suffice ...

best of luck !
 

kelccm

Senior Member
Mar 2, 2004
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#4
Both G15 and LX7 are relatively bulky for a compact camera. Do consider whether the size of the camera will affect your shooting as you mentioned the need to hold the camera in awkward position to take the shot of the tags on the machines? If not a smaller compact camera should suffice?

By right a good smartphone's camera should be able to take clear pictures even in low light and close up as long as you activate the flash and you get the right focus. I'm sure your requirement does not call for fabulous image quality, just as long as you can see the description on the tags. I too use my own smartphone (Note 2) for work purpose like shooting some machine parts close up as well. With the right setting, I am able to get a clear enough photo for my own record.

On a side note, I would have suggested the new Sony QX10 as you can tether the lens to your smartphone and can easily position the lens in one hand to take the shot and view it on your smartphone comfortably on the hand. Except that the QX10 (or QX100) lacks an onboard flash, which would be useful in really dark conditions within the confine space of a machine.
 

Rashkae

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Nov 28, 2005
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#5
Do note the effects of firing flash in a dusty environment...
 

Mar 1, 2012
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#6
You just need a tripod mount for your phone, and external continuous light sources e.g. led lights. Phone flashes often meters incorrectly. With tripod n led lights ur shots should turn out fine. Just be wary of harsh shadows from directional light. Alternatively, get a bigger n diffused light source.
 

Blur Shadow

Senior Member
Sep 17, 2005
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#7
Just get someone to light up the area with a torch such that you can use 2 hands to handhold your phone. Beats spending all the money on a new camera.
 

Shizuma

Senior Member
Mar 19, 2012
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#8
you won't get true macro with anything less than 1:1 magnification. This means you should have a DSLR type or MLIC (mirrorless interchangeable lens camera)
where you can mount a dedicated macro lens .

The "best" macro camera...? Canon 1DX is quite best at a lot of things.
 

shierwin

Senior Member
Dec 29, 2008
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#9
Olympus xz-10 or the older models xz-1 or xz-2
wide f/1.8 aperture and low noise at high iso 1600
 

silhoutte

New Member
Jan 18, 2007
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#10
Thanks guys for your replies, the reason why I considered these cams is because sometimes the environment is almost totally dark and I have have to work alone most of the time when taking pics of the machine tags. Some of the machines are very old and the tags are punched and not engraved so that makes it really hard to get a good photo to check serial numbers off them.

My company used to provide me with a digital camera, I think that was a Nikon Coolpix L27 which my colleagues and myself had a hard time using. It just could not handle taking photos at low light. We have another camera which is the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FH22 which seems more decent in taking those photos but I have not really tried it in the field. I was hoping maybe the Lumix LX7 would do a much better job?

Maybe this picture will give you an idea of the challenges I'm facing, hope you are able to recommend me a camera to consider.



Cheers,
Ed
 

dodgethis

Senior Member
Nov 15, 2011
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#11
Get a head mounted light with a variable flood or focused setting. Getting one of these is way cheaper than buying a new camera. Besides, judging from your photo, it's better to get a head lamp to see where you're going for safety purposes.
 

silhoutte

New Member
Jan 18, 2007
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#12
Get a head mounted light with a variable flood or focused setting. Getting one of these is way cheaper than buying a new camera. Besides, judging from your photo, it's better to get a head lamp to see where you're going for safety purposes.
Hmm good idea, ok I'll try this option 1st :)
 

ed9119

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#14
your camera is too far away from the subject causing the overexposure of the bright spot
and the beam too focussed on a small area
 

catchlights

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#15
agreed with Mod Ed, and the rest, try use a small LCD light for videography,
it is not very expensive nowadays,
it can light up much larger area, help you with focusing of your existing camera.
 

shierwin

Senior Member
Dec 29, 2008
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#16
You should be using a safety helmet in this environment.
Consider getting a headlight (best LED) that can strap to the helmet for safety reason and to light up the target
 

silhoutte

New Member
Jan 18, 2007
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#17
You should be using a safety helmet in this environment.
Consider getting a headlight (best LED) that can strap to the helmet for safety reason and to light up the target
Yes I wear a safety helmet in this place, I will need to get a strap on LED headlight. :)
 

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