How to save money on cameras this season

Consumer Reports News: October 28, 2008 04:50 PM

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Times are tight. If you're shopping for a digital camera or camcorder this holiday season, you want to make every penny count. I've hunted down some of the latest bargains, both at last week's Photoplus Expo show in New York, and on the web. Here's what I found:

  • Pentax offers both a DA L 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 AL lens and an external AF200FG auto flash unit along with its K2000 SLR camera body. All for less than $700.
  • Olympus has a limited edition "Komachi Kit" available for the holiday season, which includes an E-420 SLR camera body ($440 alone) and a 25mm f/2.8 Zuiko Digital lens, which they call a pancake lens due to its very small size. The kit comes in a fitted, hand-made brown leather case and also includes a 1GB CompactFlash memory card. All for $750.
  • Some manufacturers are offering rebates: Tamron, a maker of third-party lens, has a rebate program on about a dozen lenses that range from $10 to $90 on specific lenses. If you buy select Canon lenses or external flashes, you can also get money back.
  • Sony has an interesting trade-in program for cameras and camcorders. You can get an estimate online, including for non-Sony cameras and camcorders.
  • Fujifilm is launching an online photo sharing and printing service called SeeHere.com. New users can get 100 free prints when they enter the promotion code "prints-2" when checking out.

You can find many fine, low-priced models in our digital camera Ratings and Ratings of camcorders. (Ratings are available to subscribers.) And to be sure you're getting the most for your money, also check out our newly designed Digital Camera Buying Guide and Camcorder Buying Guide on ConsumerReports.org

—Terry Sullivan

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