For a budget of just over £300, about a third of the price of the Coolpix
990 mentioned in an earlier email, "Which" magazine and I can recommend a
Nikon Coolpix 885 (this has 3 million pixels, and stores about 50 exposures
on a 64MB card).
It's fine for 72dpi work (suitable for the Internet) and the detail is
borderline-acceptable for lower end print work. The biggest benefit, of
course, is being able to delete and re-shoot stills on the site at the same
time - so you might be better off budgeting for batteries before excessive
The first time I plugged this camera into a PC running Win XP, everything
miraculously talked to everything else without further human involvement.
It was remarkably painless.
Disadvantages: it's a small camera. Tiny. And therefore it lacks a bit in
the "robust"ness stakes. As with all digital cameras at this budget there's
a short lag time between hitting the button and taking the picture. Not
really a problem for archaeological use. Don't use the digital zoom - these
are a gimmick, at best. Move the camera or the object, instead.
Advantages: the apparently complicated menu system is, in fact, extremely
obvious after about five minutes' study. No problems with downloading
photos from camera to PC. A good foothold in to low-budget digital
A useful URL: