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Dec 21, 2007 05:43 AM

Camera Recs for Restaurant Pics [moved from General Chowhounding]

I have eaten at some great restaurants over the years -- The French Laundry, Alinea, Cyrus, Nobu -- and have blogged about my meals. But I have always resisted the temptation to take pictures of the dishes because I didn't want to distract other diners by whipping out my bulky camera.

I would like to take the occasional discreet snapshot, however, if I had a camera thin and small enough to slip into my pocket but powerful enough to take clear pictures in minimal light. Anyone know of such a machine?


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  1. I use an Olympus 710.

    It actually has a food setting too.

    I am quite happy with this camera.

    1. Someone else was asking this not too long ago, so try the search and see what they found out.

      1. Having a food preset on the camera is very convenient but taking food photos is quite complicated. You can rarely take a snap of food that does it justice. You really need all sorts of sophisticated equipment and even then some foods just aren't photogenic.

        But, pay no attention to me. Photography is a hobby and I get kinda anal about it.

        1 Reply
        1. re: JockY

          Melanie Wong does a beautiful job, and I didn't even notice her camera, it was so small-- I didn't see what it was. I'm petty certain she didn't use flash, either, because it was not obtrusive at all.

        2. My treo takes really nice (640x480) pictures in low lighting. I always have it with me anyway (on vibrate, of course), and it's pretty discreet - when you use it you just look like you're reading your emails (pretty rude too but my normal dining partner is used to it). I have a canon SD900 that's really small, most of the new digital cameras are. It has macro and autofocus and takes even better photos but I'd be worried about forgetting to suppress the flash if I used it in a restaurant.

          1. I have a Canon 750 with a 3" screen. Costco is selling it for $220. Trouble is you can't easily set the flash off, it's a multi-step operation. Which is very inconvenient when you don't want the flash to disturb other diners.

            1 Reply
            1. re: PeterL

              press the large round button to the right -- that's the flash settings -- then press until you get to no flaah -- takes just a second to do.

              I have the Canon SG800 IS -- love it -- love the 28mm option for a nice shot -- as well as the amazing macro function.