v570, Ultra-Wide-Angle Point & Shoot 23mm $200/ + 2Hr Free Class

By
Real Estate Broker/Owner with Northern Virginia Homes - FRANKLY REAL ESTATE Inc

Update 7-1-08 How to buy the v570

I was initially just going to respond to Your Camera Already Has a Wide Angle Lens By Aaron, but then I decided to do more research and make a larger post. Aaron's photos are great and I do agree that most point and shoots have a stitching software, but it isn't that easy. Yes easy if you have somebody showing you how to do it, but not easy out of the gate, and you know how impatient Realtors are... (and stagers)

I personally use a ultra wide angle lens on a SLR (or Digital SLR, DSLR) camera (the big cameras with interchangeable lenses). The set up is about $1,300 (the lens is about $500). Again, you might learn how to use that after reading a book but who has time.

<MONEY SAVING TIP regardless of the camera you buy Forget about all that resolution stuff. Resolution does NOT mean sharpness. Resolution is more about being able to blow up images 20x30inches. For real estate you can get a 1 or 2 Megapixel and be fine. 6 and 10 won't help a lick and if anything slow you down. I have a 3Megapixel that I shoot on 1 Megapixel mode all the time for faster uploading>

Anyhow, there are a couple of cameras out there that are ULTRA wide angle point and shoots. The wider the angle, the more you can get into the shot. The bigger the room looks.

But the winner is!!!!:

Amazon Kodak V570 or v705 (as of 2-23-07) Update 5-18-08: See update at bottom.

Update 12-1-07 These cameras are a b*tch to find now. Some are buying them for as much as $350. You might try Froogle.com CNet product search and Ebay. Ebay is tough, they have SOME buy it now options. I would also look into refurbs. Sometimes Kodak's Outlet has them, but they are sold out today.

My next choice would be:

$230-$250 Canon PowerShot SD800 IS 7.1MP Elph with Image Stabilizer which starts at 28mm (vs the V570 23mm)

$250  Canon PowerShot SD870 IS 7.1MP Elph with Image Stabilizer (same as sd800 but larger screen which can be a drawback for battery use, also controls are better)

So it has image stabilizer which is VERY important for video. (I love the v570 for video since the wide you are, the less it shakes). Don't get the other Canon Elphs that aren't "wide angle." 

Or the $171 Olympus Stylus FE-290 7MP with 28mm Wide Angle and Image Stabilizer  (note that Olympus has VERY expensive proprietary memory cards).

End 12-1-07 Update

This v570 camera has a 23mm lens with 5 megapixels. The dual lenses will also allow for IN CAMERA stitching. That means no software on your computer. You can also get the slight higher end 7 megapixel  model for $15 more (and reviews here)but the megapixels will not do ANYTHING for your photos. But check out the link for the sample photos which show an IN CAMERA panoramic example.(if you camera says panoramic, it is probably the fake kind where they just crop the top and bottom of your camera)

  vs

On the left is a typical 39mm lens. On the right is the Kodak 23mm lens. Both are taken from the same spot. Seel the full review here with photos

And it even has built in image distortion correction software.This keeps the walls from bowing.  Note that the reviews above aren't great. Don't let that deter you. They were comparing the camera to the other 200 cameras out there and their main comparison was based on everyday use. If they compared every camera for Interior Realtor photos, this would blow everything away. 

I think I might have to get this. And yes I would get the cheaper one. The extra resolution is useless for what you would be using it for and the reviews say it  actually has a little less "noise" (like high speed grain film).

So go get that camera and let me know how it works. Also here are some last tips for novices when taking photos indoors.

1) Take each photo with and without a flash (no flash photos can look warmer and POP)

2) Take each shot with the blinds open and closed (and step 1)

3) See if your camera has FILL FLASH mode. Sometimes you can hit the flash symbol and see a man with a star over his shoulder, try that. This puts out a less powerful flash so that you can have a nice balance of light and a warmer photos.

4) Get back as far as you can. Sometimes taking the photo without looking through the camera since you are smooching it up against the wall (obviously you might have to take it 5 times to get it right)

(See my article for NVAR Update Magazine on how to take photos)

You stagers out there need this camera too!

 

Good luck!

Update 5/1/07- I taught a 2 hour class on this. Email me directly for the link to the class notes and audio that you can hear on your ipod. 

- Written by Frank Borges LL0SA- Broker FranklyRealty.com (former pro photog, photos at http://www.frankly.com/ )

Check out the rest of my blog for similar useful tips. 

DO NOT BUY THE V610, it is NOT as wide angled!!
 

Update: After searching Google for Realtor v570 I am so convinced that I ordered one of these! Here is a Realtor review  and you have to see the review and example INTERIOR PHOTOS here

UPDATE 8-8-07

Here is what the v570 or v705 can do, the cropped portion is what a regular camera can see. 

 

 Update 5-2008: How to buy the v570 and the accessories that you need with it.

 

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Rainmaker
636,526
Cindy Bryant
Redesign Etc. Home Staging - Houston, TX
"Houston Home Staging Pro's"
I have V750, love it sometimes, lighting can be tricky, and I get bubbles on pics sometimes.
Feb 04, 2008 11:56 PM #64
Anonymous
Marsha Scharf

We at RealBiz360 still have 500 KodakV705 cameras in stock as part of our Virtual Tour bundle.

We have integrated our software with the camera so that you can easily stitch your panorama in the camera and upload to create your tour. Our partner company ( iseemedia) provided the software to Kodak to be able to stitch within the camera. We too are very sorry they discontinued the cameras as the wide angle lens is a great benefit to Real Estate shots. If your intersetd in shooting your own virtual tours, the Kodak V705 is great for panoramas and wide angle still shots.

Check it out: www.realbiz360.com

Cheers

Marsha Scharf

marshas@realbiz360.com

 

Feb 05, 2008 12:29 PM #65
Anonymous
Frank

Brilliant!

"Buy a $399 3 month package from me and get a free $300 camera."

No wonder there are no more v705s, Marsha bought them all!

Frank

Feb 05, 2008 01:01 PM #66
Rainer
28,568
Brian Bloom
www.AllinOneStaging.com 1-630-292-2710 - Bartlett, IL
All in One Staging Inc. - Home Staging Consultant, Redesign Expert

Just want to let you know I bookmarket this like so many others.

You really are special in giving your time to inform us with so much info on this.

Now off to try to find one,

Regards

BB 

Feb 05, 2008 04:13 PM #67
Anonymous
Mina P
Frank,

Finally, some light in the darkness!!!!!!!!! so many cameras and so little unbiased information!!!!!
thanks !!!!

For an interior designer, if budget is not an issue, but needs to be compact and of course wide angle...
what in your opinion is a best choice,
comparing:

25mm new DMC F X 35 Panasonic and
the Kodak you are recommending?
Feb 28, 2008 08:54 AM #68
Anonymous
Frank
Kodak.   Yesterday I was shooting with it. The battery died and I used my back up, a more expensive SLR but the lens was 2 degrees smaller. Suddenly I couldn't get the window in the scene in the shot anymore.   It is ALL about wide angleness.   Frank
Feb 28, 2008 08:55 AM #69
Rainmaker
117,620
Sara Goodwin
Ashcroft & Associates - Portland, OR
Portland, Oregon Appraiser

Frank -

I believe it was this post that prompted me to go find the Kodak V570 about 6 months ago.  I found a reconditioned V570 for about $130.  Initially I got it as a back up camera (I always have a backup camera on standby for work).  It wasn't soon after I took it out of the box that it became my primary camera.  My only beef with it is the docking station rather than a straight in USB cable to the computer (it very well could be that comes with the V570 kit, but since mine was reconditioned, I didn't get it).  Otherwise, it takes fabulous pictures and fits in my pocket.  I'm sold.

Thank you!

Feb 29, 2008 11:33 AM #70
Rainmaker
136,429
FRANK LL0SA Esq.- Northern Virginia Broker .:. FranklyRealty.com
Northern Virginia Homes - FRANKLY REAL ESTATE Inc - Arlington, VA

Thanks Sara.

The docking station sucks. I use a SD card reader instead.

I now own 4 of these. Too bad the price went up. They are now a collector's item.

Frank

Feb 29, 2008 12:29 PM #71
Rainer
31,528
Thomas Johnson
RE/MAX TOP - Houston, TX
SRES, Green
Frank: Any info on the new wide angle Panasonic and how is stacks up to the Kodak?
Apr 01, 2008 09:04 PM #72
Rainmaker
241,424
Lee Jinks
Greater McAllen Association of REALTORS® - McAllen, TX

Not only does Panasonic have two 25mm lens cameras, but Samsung has a 24mm and Olympus has a 26mm, but it also goes to 520mm.  I also like a couple of the Nikons and you can't beat Canon for image quality.  Check out my blog on the perfect point and shoot...

Then you can to to dpreview to get information and possibly reviews if they have been completed yet. 

Apr 01, 2008 09:23 PM #73
Rainmaker
27,746
Dawn Pratt
Orlando, FL
East Orlando Real Estate

Thank you so much for your post! Your review and the comments make this a one-stop research shop for me.

May 16, 2008 10:09 AM #74
Rainmaker
136,429
FRANK LL0SA Esq.- Northern Virginia Broker .:. FranklyRealty.com
Northern Virginia Homes - FRANKLY REAL ESTATE Inc - Arlington, VA

For those that follow this thread, check out http://activerain.com/blogsview/519252/v57-How-To-Buy

I go into exactly how to still get a v570 and what accessories to buy.

May 21, 2008 04:13 PM #75
Rainer
2,731
Maximiliano "Max" Carrillo
AMor REALTY / North Carolina - Charlotte Metro - South Carol - Charlotte, NC
CRS GRI

Great Post Frank,

Let us know if you come across any software that makes up for the slight distortions.

Jun 29, 2008 08:34 AM #76
Anonymous
Frank

FYI, somebody is liquidating this camera on ebay now for $98 (buy it now) after shipping. Still gotta buy a charger and battery for $15. I bought another 4!


Frank LL0SA

Sep 12, 2008 08:50 PM #77
Rainer
15,779
Mike Davis
Keller Williams Realty, Augusta Partners - Evans, GA
Realtor, Selling Buying Homes Fort Gordon, Hephzibah, Augusta, Evans

can not get the camarabut heard that they are great, will still keep my eye out for them

Oct 19, 2008 10:03 AM #78
Anonymous
DCHiggs

My V570 died on Monday--ruined my day.  As an appraiser, real estate agent and REO property manager, I use(d) that camera all the time.  I have been in a funk ever since and cannot find a replacement.  The merits of this camera were----slim size, tote anywhere; ultra wide angle (cannot find that unless I purchase a high end camera with removable lens and then it becomes bulky).  Camera worked like a second arm. 

Noted one or two on amazon but reluctant to purchase something that hasn't been manufactured for 2 years.  ....and mega bucks for older technology.  Why didn't Kodak expand on this model?  Is there a sister or a twin made by another company?????

 

Drat is all I can say!@

Dec 03, 2009 09:09 PM #80
Rainmaker
136,429
FRANK LL0SA Esq.- Northern Virginia Broker .:. FranklyRealty.com
Northern Virginia Homes - FRANKLY REAL ESTATE Inc - Arlington, VA
Yep, they break easy either buy one on eBay or get th 24mm canon or samsung. See my video on YouTube.com/franklynews to see the differences
Dec 03, 2009 10:05 PM #81
Rainmaker
212,002
Nicky Dou
kw | Keller Williams Market Pro Realty - Fayetteville, AR
TOP LOCAL REALTOR in Northwest Arkansas

If price (under 1000) is of no issue - what would you say is the best choice for a wide angle camera? I prefer smaller - but if bigger is better I will do it. I have been through 4 cameras so far looking for the perfect one including the canon rebel, canon 90, olympus pen and my old panasonic lumix (which I must say is probably my most fav - and the cheapest) it broke so I wanted to upgrade only to find my 3 times as much camera didn't make me any happier... ;( HELP ME PLEASE!!!!!

Jun 18, 2010 08:15 AM #82
Rainmaker
59,312
Anthony Saunchez
Century 21 Town & Country - San Bernardino, CA
Century 21 Agents. Smarter. Bolder. Faster

I cant find it so I settled and a panasonic lumix from my local costco. works great.

Oct 25, 2010 01:17 PM #83
Rainer
333,262
Paul Gapski
Berkshire Hathaway / Prudential Ca Realty - El Cajon, CA
619-504-8999,#1 Resource SD Relo

I have one that I am selling, It works perfect and is awesome on wide angle shots like you said. give me a call if you want it.

Mar 07, 2012 06:24 AM #84
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Rainmaker
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FRANK LL0SA Esq.- Northern Virginia Broker .:. FranklyRealty.com

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