It’s taken me almost two months, since my camera was lost, to order a new one. Some of that was putting it off as I knew how much effort this ‘looking’ process would require, while the other, very large, portion of it was spent on this arduous process. It began with hours here and there searching google, review websites, amazon, technology blogs, following every link I was given because under absolutely no circumstances could I leave a stone unturned.
I had to find the PERFECT camera. Something priced at under £200, with spectacular image quality, bright and accurate colours, sharp detail, no noise, superior low-light performance, a large zoom, proper buttons (none of that touchscreen madness), a compact and lightweight design that would allow me to take it everywhere in any handbag, and, very importantly, a pretty paint job. Was that too much to ask?
It seemed that way. Reviews conflicted. Nothing seemed to have everything I wanted. I actually lost sleep over this, compact cameras flying round my head in maddening spirals in the middle of the night.
This weekend I dedicated an entire day and then a little bit longer on creating a table in Excel, charting my shortlist of 17 (!) cameras, each complete with full specifications, advantages and disadvantages lined up for comparison. Then began the elimination process, through which the cameras were highlighted in light grey (probably will not go for) and dark grey (completely out of the running) until just one was left in white – the Panasonic TZ8. It seemed to have the best range of reviews, so I thought I could concede on the colour front (the silver option was at least not black).
‘YES!!’, I thought, ‘Now that huge burden is off my head, I’ll finally be able to sleep and not fill my every second of free time with research!’ I told everyone I knew, with great excitement, that I had found my camera. They all said I was crazy for making a camera chart and wasting so much time, but it didn’t matter, I was triumphant and proud of my fantastic researching skills. I simply could not, and still cannot, believe their response to my retaliatory question, ‘Well how would you have decided?’ …. being ‘I just would’ve bought one!’
Then, however, I went into a shop and held this amazing camera, the reward for all my hard work and hours. But sudden horror – BIG! CLUNKY! HEAVY! NOT PRETTY!! No, I could never call this camera my own.
‘I don’t need all those features, after all’, I thought. ‘I’ll just go for that cheaper one with the purple finish, the Panasonic FS35. The reviews were not that bad, and it’s really pretty and small. I’ll be able to take it EVERYWHERE.’
The next day I had chance to try this out in Currys. Held this new revelation in my hands – it really was so lovely. But then – eek, why isn’t this focusing on anything? Why are the menus so rubbish and cartoony looking? No…. I couldn’t possibly rely on such a sub-standard offering.
I made this complaint to a Currys assistant, who tried it himself, agreed and didn’t know what to say after that. I then moved onto the bigger cameras (again) and tried these. Oh, the quality was AMAZING!! And this was the Nikon S9100, which had a been a ‘light grey’, with still pretty good reviews. And – wait for it – had a RED finish. I saw this on a piece of advertising nearby, although they only had a silver one in stock. Now, it all rested on one question…
Was it a bright red, or a pinky red?
Thankfully, my question was answered in Jessops, which I went into a few hours later. An assistant brought out the red one for me – I held it in my hands – my eyes lit up. It was, as I had wished for, a definitively PINKY red. And it was absolutely GORGEOUS!!! (and, because of course this was important too, performed brilliantly)
So I ordered it this morning (following extensive searching for the cheapest deal, obviously) and its only now that I can finally relax and throw the spinning cameras out of my mind. And now, it’s on to the next research project – what to do on holiday. 🙂