Hi,

My name is Dennis. I am an amateur photographer and like to have my camera with me when I am out hiking or bike riding.

I have been researching 15x to 20x optical zoom compact point and shoot cameras. I have read expert and customer reviews, but have come to the conclusion that there are so many variables I would like to get input elsewhere, like the Digital Photography School Forum.

I am more interested in a small camera I can take out of my shirt or pants pocket quickly to shoot landscape and wildlife photos. I would not mind having a camera with some manual functionality, but that is not a qualifying factor at this stage for me.

The features I am interested in are:

- 15x-20x optical zoom
- 12-16 Megapixel
- Good Image Stabilization, or best available for a long zoom point and shoot camera
- Takes good photos in low light situations
- Good night scene photo quality
- Relatively easy to use
- 1080 HD with good audio

I have developed a short list of cameras that caught my attention. This is by no means a final list and your recommendations are welcome.

-Nikon S9300
-Sony Cybershot HX9V
-Canon SX260
-Fuji Fine Pix P770 EXR

My budget is between $275 to $400.

It is my understanding that the Nikon, Sony, and Canon all have pretty good video and sound. The Fuji EXR series has gotten pretty good reviews for picture quality, but not so good reviews for video quality.

Does anyone own one of the above cameras, care to comment on any experiences from owning or using any of these cameras, and what do you think is a great value for a point and shoot long zoom compact camera that would meet my needs?

Thank you,

Dennis Manz