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If you are interested in improving your photography, buy a high quality tripod.

I recognize, there are those of you out there that examine a tripod as the utmost inconvenience. It’s big, clumsy, hard to take spots etc.

Great News !! There are lots of various tripod options to meet your needs.

Today’s tripods are available in all various sizes, forms and weight. When I take a trip, I utilize a tour tripod as well as a Gorillapod.

For shooting locally or when I can  easily put a tripod in to an automoblie, I utilize a incredibly tough tripod and a pistol grip ball head.

The greatest help I can offer  is to devote as much as your budget will allow to purchase  a high quality tripod. In this arena, you truly do have just what you pay for.

An excellent solid Tripod will aid you take far better chances. Manfrotto 055XPROB Pro Tripod Legs (Black) presently has a $ 30 kickback as well as can be cost as reasonable as $ 150


Numerous tripods do not included a ball head. The ball head sits on top of the tripod, and also screws in to your camera. It allows you to move the camera from side to side, up and down, hold it a different positions, etc The Handgun Grip Ball Head is easy to use. Vanguard makes a good one – The Vanguard GH-100 Pistol Grip Ball Head.

Make sure you take into account the expense of a ball head when budgeting for a tripod. unless it’s presently included. Vanguard also makes one more good tripod with a Ball Head built in to it, so you don’t have to pay for it independently.


The best way to use this tripod is to purchase  a Ball Head.   TheManfrotto 498RC2 Ball Head with Quick Release Replaces Manfrotto 488RC2. It will allow you to move your camera in to many different ways. 

One explanation for price variation  is based the material they are constructed of.  Carbon thread tripods, such as the  Vanguard Alta Pro 283CT Carbon Fiber Tripod with SBH-100 Ball Head will cost more than an  aluminum  tripod which often tensd be a little larger and will take up less of your budget


Think about where you will certainly utilizing a tripod and if the added weight from an aluminum tripod will certainly be a big deal. If you are carrying the tripod for miles prior to you use it, the weight may cause issues. If you are taking it in and out of the automobile at that point perhaps the extra money you would spend on  a carbon fibre tripod isn’t worth it.


When I am asked to contrast  Manfrotto to Vangaurd, I think you can’t fail with either.  At times Manfrotto can cost a little less, so keep that in mind when  going shopping.


Some people prefer to use a monopod.

It can be an excellent alternative to a tripod. Again, you get exactly what you pay for. It can be a good alternative to a tripod.  One monopod that I enjoy  is the Opteka CFM300 68″ 5 Section 8x Carbon Fiber Monopod (Heavy Duty)   It works in a similar method to a tripod, but you have to hold the monopod to keep it upright.  It is easy to carry but it does not provide the same level of support as a tripod.

A fantastic choice for a tour tripod  is the SIRUI 5 Section Pro Aluminium Tripod T1005x with a Travel Bag. 

Another super product for travel is the The Benro A0690T Travel Angel Tripod Kit with Aluminum Twist Lock Legs with BH00 Head

This tripod is currently on sale for $154 which represents a considerable savings.


The Joby GP3 Gorillapod SLR-Zoom Flexible Tripod + BH1 Ball Head with Bubble Level is a fun and useful tool for about $59.  

This isn’t a cumbersome tripod Rather, it has small legs and this model can support most zoom lenses – up to @6 lbs. This Gorilla Pod is not intended to eliminate your  sturdy tripod, but it can come in handy especially when traveling. Recently, I used it to take sunset shots and wrapped the legs around a railing.

Just recently, I decided to   take it for sunset  shooting  and  wrapped the legs around a fence. The legs maintained the camera while  I utilized a shutter release to take the shot.

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Camera Shutter Speed

Shutter speed refers to the length of time that the camera’s shutter is open. The longer the shutter remains open, the more light enters the camera’s digital sensor.


If you are using the camera’s preformatted button you will want to use the picture of the runner on your camera dial. The camera setting on this button is set at a higher shutter speed and will be the best option to capture motion.

If you want to use the manual controls, then you will need to switch your dial to best capture movement. (Canon is “TV” and Nikon is “S”)

The LJR Photo Store contains specific camera products and accessories that will help anyone looking to improve his/her photography.

If you are photographing anything in motion, and you want to freeze that motion, you need to use a higher speed. You must set your speed to at least 1/60 sec or faster to capture anything in motion sharply.

Speeds available on many cameras are often seen as 1 second, 1/2 sec,1/4 sec, 1/8, 1/15, 1/30, 1/60,1/125/, 1/250, 1/500 and 1/1000

As you decrease the time that light can get into your shutter, your shutter becomes faster.

If you are trying to capture a baseball in mid air, you might try setting the shutter at 1/125 and then try it again at 1/400 to view your results.

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Camera Megapixels

All images recorded on a digital camera are captured with pixels. Each megapixel is equal to one million pixels. The more pixels a camera has to capture the image, the higher the resolution.

However, that’s only one part of the story. In addition to the megapixel number, the camera also depends on its sensor, processor and lens quality to produce the best image. Of these the sensor plays a critical role. The sensor is responsible for recording the image as the light strikes it through the lens. The greater the size of the sensor, the less noise (or fuzinesss) in your shot.

When purchasing a camera pay attention to megapixels, sensor size, ISO, and quality of the lens.
All of these factors will effect your overall image quality.


Canon PowerShot S95 10 MP Digital Camera with 3.8x Wide Angle Optical Image Stabilized Zoom and 3.0-Inch LCD

The cameras that come immediately to mind are Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX5 10.1 MP Digital Camera with 3.8x Optical Image Stabilized Zoom and 3.0-Inch LCD – Black and Canon PowerShot S95 10 MP Digital Camera with 3.8x Wide Angle Optical Image Stabilized Zoom and 3.0-Inch LCD. Both models produce shots with high image quality. Both cameras are priced similarly averaging $375. The Panasonic Lumix has my vote. But both will work well

When you see a good deal on memory cards, be sure to get them. I recently spotted a 16GB card for $10. It’s worth it so you don’t have to erase shots on a “full” card to capture that must have shot!0

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What is Aperture?


Aperture refers to the size of the opening in the lens that allows light to pass through the camera. If the opening is big, more light passes through. If the opening is small, less light passes through. In technical terms, the iris of the lens (similar in concept to the iris of your eye) controls the diaphragm which controls the amount of light that passes through the camera. Point and Shoot cameras do the aperture work for you. Setting the aperture relates to DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) cameras.


Aperture is measured in f -stops. F-stops can range from f/1.4 – f/22 and beyond depending on your lens size . Although it may seem counterintuitive, a smaller f-stop number, such as f/2.8 has a wider opening and lets more light into the camera than f/22. Tamron and Sigma make great lenses and often times can be priced cheaper than lenses from canon or Nikon. The best prices I have seen have been on Amazon.

Sigma makes a powerful 17-70mm zoom lens f/2.8-4. If you can get this lens for @ $470, then you have gotten a good deal.

The aperture size is directly related to depth of field. The higher the f/stop (f/16 or f/22) the greater the depth of field.


This means that when you take a picture with f/2.8 , you will have a lot of light focused on your subject but not on your background. Therefore, objects in y our foreground will be sharp but objects in your background will not. Very often in flower photography, photographers tend to use f/2.8 or f/4 to highlight a specific flower or group of flowers and purposefully create an unsharp background so that it doesn’t distract from the subject of the shot.

Conversely, with a higher f/stop such as f/22, you are decreasing the size of the opening in the camera so less light can get through. At the same time, you are increasing your depth of field. Higher f/stops are used in landscape photography or in other instances where you want to see both the foreground and the background clearly. When photographers shoot mountains in the distance they will use a higher f/stop to try to keep everything sharp.

Lenses for DSLRs often vary in price based on the the f-stop variance and distance they can cover. Some are definitely more pricey than others.

A lens with an f/stop of 1.4 or 2.8 is considered a fast lens since it can allow more light into the camera. Since more light can pass through, these types of lenses are great for low light photography situations. When looking to purchase a lens, always concentrate of the maximum aperture (the lowest f/stop number like f/1.4.) The Sigma 30mm f1.4 is a great lens that I use often. The best price I have seen for this lens is $489

Lenses can be sold as either “Fixed” lenses or “zoom” lenses. A fixed lens has an aperture and focal length that does not change. A zoom lens has the ability for you to focus on subjects both near and far with an aperture that will change to satisfy your focal distance.

A Canon EF-S 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 IS is a Standard Zoom Lens for Canon DSLR Cameras. The lowest price I have seen for this lens has been on Amazon. At 18mm the aperture will be f/3.5. At 200mm the aperture will be f/5.6

When you are searching for a lens, make sure that your lens is compatible with your camera. Sounds intuitive, but if you have a Canon camera or a Nikon, for example, and are buying a Tamron lens, you need to make sure it is a Tamron lens that will work with your make and model.

If you are interested in a Tamron AF 18-270mm f/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZD LD Aspherical IF Macro Zoom Lens with Built in Motor for Nikon DSLR Cameras, the lowest price I have seen – with a rebate has been $550.


If you have a Nikon and are looking for a fixed lens, this is a good one. It’s the Nikon 50mm f/1.8G AF-S NIKKOR Lens for Nikon Digital SLR Cameras.


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Best Point and Shoot Camera

Find the information you have been looking for at Camera HQ.


Check out the latest reviews of the Best Point and Shoot Cameras. Use the list below to find the best products and the best prices. Save on Great Deals  today!
Find digital cameras that work for everyone.


Panasonic DMC-FH25K 16.1MP Digital Camera with 8X Wide Stabilized Zoom.


Great exposure and high picture quality.

This lightweight, compact camera is easy to use. The camera responds quickly when you turn it on so you don’t miss a shot. The sensor size (not the megapixels) allows for top notch pictures. The beginner will enjoy the results obtained from the auto setting while the more advanced photographer will enjoy the many controls that the camera offers. Performs well in all light situations- including low light.You can buy this Panasonic Lumix camera for as low as $140.



Canon Powershot A3300 IS 16 MP Digital Camera with 5x Optical Zoom (Red)

A high performing, affordable camera.



This is an affordable, fun camera that also allows for creativity. It is lightweight, compact and comes with image stabilization. The zoom lens produces quality shots. The camera performs well in low light situations and has a good video component. Whether you set the camera to auto or decide to be more creative with ISO or other cool features it is easy and enjoyable. With image stabilization and HD video, this Canon camera is a great value. The lowest price I have seen for this camera is $135.
Any of the cameras listed will need a good case. Cases are not that expensive and can save you and your camera some pain.. Good cases range from $10 -$20.



Nikon COOLPIX S8200 16.1 MP CMOS Digital Camera with 14x Optical Zoom NIKKOR ED Glass Lens and Full HD 1080p Video (Black)

Top performance with great picture quality.

This is a fast and powerful compact camera that performs. Whether in high or low light conditions, you will be impressed with the picture quality. The ISO can go as high as 3200The camera also features a wide angle lens for the panoramic and landscape photo enthusiasts. The lowest price I have seen for this Nikon camera has been on-line averaging about $200. This is a popular camera with good reason.


Panasonic DMC-FH25A 16.1MP Digital Camera with 8x Wide Angle Image Stabilized Zoom and 2.7 inch LCD (Blue)

Fantastic picture quality. A fast camera that delivers sharp images.

This camera produces top quality images. Photos are sharp and have true contrast and color saturation. The digital zoom is easy to use and the video quality is great. The camera performs well in all light situations – including low light. The camera quickly responds to the user and there is little delay so you can grab your camera quickly to get the all important shot. The lowest price I have seen for this Panasonic camera is on Amazon for $145


Samsung Multiview MV800 16.1MP Digital Camera with 5x Optical Zoom (Black)

Olympus PEN E-PL1 12.3MP Live MOS Micro Four Thirds Interchangeable Lens Digital Camera with 14-42mm f/3.5-5.6 Zuiko Digital Zoom Lens (Black)

A high quality camera with a Flip-Out LCD screen.
  • A high quality camera with a Flip-out LCD screen. Use the LCD flip screen for high and low angle shots or to display a larger image than found on other cameras. Touch controls are easy to navigate. There is no sports mode on this camera. However, you can select your ISO, White Balance, focusing and metering. If you like to shoot from different angles, this is for you.
  • The best price I have seen for this camera is $145.


Olympus PEN E-PL1 12.3MP Live MOS Micro Four Thirds Interchangeable Lens Digital Camera with 14-42mm f/3.5-5.6 Zuiko Digital Zoom Lens (Black)

Quality images in both RAW and JPEG.


Quality images in both JPEG and RAW, easy to use and Lighweight

e picture quality from this small point and shoot is very good. The Olympus Pen also allows you interchange lenses. You can set ISO, white balance, and exposure – or you can use the Auto setting and get photo tips from the camera. The camera is enjoyed by pros as well as enthusiasts. Anyone who plays with light on a camera will appreciate the hotshoe for an external flash as well as a flash on the camera that can be angled instead of outward. Yes, you can actually bounce light off of a ceiling! This Olympus camera is priced to sell. The lowest retail price I have seen is $649


Sony NEX-5N 16.1 MP Compact Interchangeable Lens Touchscreen Camera with 18-55mm Lens (Black)

A great camera for capturing sports and action.

      The quality of shots from this camera is excellent. Whether for sports and action or landscapes and nature, this camera will not disappoint. Anyone looking to transition from a standard point and shoot to a compact system should definitely consider this camera. The compact system allows for interchangeable lenses. It’s ISO has an incredible range with little noise. The touch screen is easy to use and the LCD screen can be pulled away from the camera body for angling up or down.

The lowest price I have seen for this SONY camera is $699. if you are looking for a bit more in a camera, this is a good choice.


Canon PowerShot S100 12.1 MP Digital Camera with 5x Wide-Angle Optical Image Stabilized Zoom (Black)

A great camera for capturing sports and action.
    A great camera for beginners and advanced photographers.

This camera has it all. With 12.1MP, f2 aperture and HD video, you will be impressed by your image quality. There are 13 scene modes, bracketing, manual focus, and an ability to apply a neutral density filter. Of course, if you are a beginner and not ready to use all of these great tools, you can opt for the auto setting, which delivers great results.This Canon is a great camera priced right at $400.

Remember to purchase memory cards. When you see a good deal on memory cards, be sure to get them. I recently spotted a 16GB card for $10 . It’s worth it so you don’t have to erase shots on a “full” card to capture that must have shot!0.


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