Ask LH: What’s A Good Point-And-Shoot Camera For Travel?

Hey Lifehacker, I was wondering if you had any recommendations on a point-and-shoot compact camera for travelling. A relative has asked me for advice and my first thought was a mirrorless interchangeable lens camera, but they didn’t like that idea. Any ideas or recommendations? Thanks, Looking For Lenses

Photo picture from Shutterstock

Dear LFL,

Personally, I’m a big fan of Canon’s PowerShot G-series. These are high-end compact models that provide prosumer-level functionality without compromising on portability or ease-of-use. I’ve found that they consistently produce excellent results in low-lighting even when sticking to auto mode: which makes them a good choice if you’re relative isn’t technically inclined.

Most G-series models also come with a swiveling LCD display and a wide-angle lens which provide the photographer with more versatility when it comes to framing shots. Other noteworthy features include Full HD video recording, RAW support and Canon’s tried-and-tested DIGIC image processors.

In other words, they offer the best of both words with plenty of advanced features to compliment their point-and-shoot convenience. The only downside is a limited optical zoom of 5x or under. This wont be an issue for landscape and portrait shots, but can prove frustrating if you’re trying to capture a closeup of something in the distance.

I also tossed your query across the office to Gizmodo’s new reviews maestro Campbell Simpson. Here’s what he had to say:

My advice for a travel camera would be to head into a camera store and try out a few different models, and see what works best for you. The ‘right’ camera is always relative to your photographic desires; I’ve happily lugged a DSLR around on holidays, but I don’t think your relatives would be too keen on that.
These days, almost any camera will capture decent pictures as long as you’re in acceptable lighting. As you pay more, you get a larger range of features, some of which will come in handy and some of which will be effectively useless. Superzoom point-and-shoot cameras like Panasonic’s TZ60 rate highly with travellers, thanks to their huge zoom range, decent lenses and image quality and middling price tags.
For a suggestion that’s more out of left field, I’d re-recommend a small mirrorless camera like the Panasonic GM1 or Sony a5000 – with a collapsible power-zoom lens, they can be just as small as a point-and-shoot with hugely improved features and image quality. If I was buying a new holiday camera, they’d be up the top of my list.

If any amateur photographers want to suggest some recommendations of their own, fire away in the comments section below!


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