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Thread: good camera for linux

  1. #1
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    Default good camera for linux

    My parents like film cameras but they are finding film harder and harder to find. So, they have decided to get a digital camera. I convinced them that before they go out and buy something that I might look around to see what good cameras there are out there. I'm thinking of all the closed source image formats there are out there that are used in cameras and was wondering what options there were for open source image capturing cameras? (I'm hoping I don't have to mention all the problems with closed source for you guys to understand why nobody should want it.) Don't bother with price yet, I'd like to know whats out there first, they will decide if the price is right. The camera should have optical zoom (Always a good thing.) They don't care much if it is 1080p. If you suggested a video camera that could take stills, that would be fine too.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: good camera for linux

    well since I am not sure where you are globally speaking I will only comment on several thing in general.

    #1. most if not all cameras nowadays do not use any kind of proprietary format.

    most consumer grade cameras use jpg/jpeg format, some will also allow you to use RAW format (!CAUTION! very big files and not really needed for all but professional photographers)

    most consumer grade cameras can take still pics and movies.
    the difference is only is that some cameras will limit the movie length to from 30 sec clips to up to 1 or 2 min. regardless of your storage size i.e. will not let you shoot continues movie longer then the limit.
    some will not have this restrictions and will allow you to shoot a continues movie limited only by the storage card in your camera. (many will accept cards up to 32GB few will accept bigger storage.)

    the more closer to professional cameras you go, high grade, high quality, high price, the more options you will get.

    in my personal opinion for average person a 10-12 mega-pixel camera is plenty
    unless you plan to print pictures bigger than 8x10 in size.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: good camera for linux

    There is a slightly out of date but comprehensive feature on digital photography with Linux at http://www.bradlug.co.uk/may-27th-20...l-photography/.

    That means; most things are even easier to do than they were five years ago.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: good camera for linux

    Quote Originally Posted by ballsystemlord View Post
    My parents like film cameras but they are finding film harder and harder to find. So, they have decided to get a digital camera. I convinced them that before they go out and buy something that I might look around to see what good cameras there are out there. I'm thinking of all the closed source image formats there are out there that are used in cameras and was wondering what options there were for open source image capturing cameras? (I'm hoping I don't have to mention all the problems with closed source for you guys to understand why nobody should want it.) Don't bother with price yet, I'd like to know whats out there first, they will decide if the price is right. The camera should have optical zoom (Always a good thing.) They don't care much if it is 1080p. If you suggested a video camera that could take stills, that would be fine too.

    I use a Pentax DSLR professional camera, takes all my Pentax lenses back to the early 1970s, operates very similar to my old 35mm profressional cameras (only better!).

    Everything needed for digital darkroom work, prepress work, and professional production are available in openSUSE and as FOSS, so far cheaper than doing the processing in Windows. And, despite what many misguided "experts" might tell you, the Windows or Mac programs offer nothing that cannot be done with the Linux FOSS photography programs.

    I suspect this is true for all DSLRs, and I doubt that there are any digital cameras that produce image files that are not readable by the plethora of processing options.
    "Take a Walk on a Sunny Day, Greet everyone along the way, and Make Somebody Smile, Today"
    Gerry Jack Macks"Walk On A Sunny Day" GerryJackMacks.net

  5. #5
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    Default Re: good camera for linux

    On Wed, 09 Apr 2014 20:36:02 +0000, vl1969 wrote:

    > #1. most if not all cameras nowadays do not use any kind of proprietary
    > format.


    That's not strictly true, because ...

    > most consumer grade cameras use jpg/jpeg format, some will also allow
    > you to use RAW format (!CAUTION! very big files and not really needed
    > for all but professional photographers)


    .... RAW is in fact a proprietary format, and most manufacturers use their
    own "spin" on the format.

    That said, dcraw is an /excellent/ open source tool that can handle most
    of those formats. I have a Canon digital camera I bought years ago that
    works fine, even capturing RAW images and converting with dcraw.

    RAW format does give you the flexibility of adjusting the exposure and
    applying other transformations that you really can't with jpg or other
    formats (those formats tend to lose information that's necessary for
    adjusting exposure, for example).

    ballsystemlord, look at the formats converted by dcraw, and use that as a
    guide to what works well with Linux. If the camera uses an sdcard/microsd
    card, or CF card (if anyone still uses those storage devices), you should
    be able to plug it into your Linux box and just read it like any other
    storage device. Some of the newer ones might use exfat (rather than
    vfat), so you may have to fiddle a bit to get it to read OK, but there
    are ways to read exfat filesystems on Linux (as I recall, it's not
    something supported directly by the kernel).

    Jim

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    Forum Use Terms & Conditions at http://tinyurl.com/openSUSE-T-C

  6. #6
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    Default Re: good camera for linux

    ballsystemlord, look at the formats converted by dcraw, and use that as a
    guide to what works well with Linux. If the camera uses an sdcard/microsd
    card, or CF card (if anyone still uses those storage devices), you should
    be able to plug it into your Linux box and just read it like any other
    storage device. Some of the newer ones might use exfat (rather than
    vfat), so you may have to fiddle a bit to get it to read OK, but there
    are ways to read exfat filesystems on Linux (as I recall, it's not
    something supported directly by the kernel).
    Further to Jim's excellent advice regarding file formats, being able to download images is an important consideration too. Many cameras communicate via USB using the PTP protocol, and Linux supports a great deal of these via libgphoto2.

    Explicitly supported models listed here:
    http://www.gphoto.org/proj/libgphoto2/support.php
    * Other related models may also be supported as 'generic PTP devices'

  7. #7
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    Default Re: good camera for linux

    On 2014-04-09 20:56, ballsystemlord wrote:

    > Don't bother with price yet, I'd like to know whats out there
    > first, they will decide if the price is right. The camera should have
    > optical zoom (Always a good thing.) They don't care much if it is 1080p.
    > If you suggested a video camera that could take stills, that would be
    > fine too.


    You should decide what type they want first. Point and shoot, for
    "remembrance" of what they see, pocket size, or larger, more "serious
    amateur" or professional type. I find the serious digital camera types
    even more expensive than equivalent film cameras.

    The first kind are reasonably cheap, and should work with any software,
    because they use standard jpg format only. The only thing to beware is
    that most present themselves to the computer as an external usb disk,
    while some other use PPT or other things that may be a complication.
    Some use exfat filesystem format which is another added complication
    with Linux.

    Another thing to consider is what will the use to see the photos. A
    computer? A frame? Print? Print many, print very few? At low quality or
    high quality or size?

    Do they need to use external gadgetry, like an external flash lighting?
    I mention this because my old and expensive flash will burn the
    circuitry of any modern camera, even if they are plug compatible. Those
    old flashes present on the main cable or plug about 250 volts DC, and
    expect a mechanical switch, very high peak or surge current capable. No
    kidding, I measured it. Modern cameras use an electronic switch that can
    handle a few volts at most. Some people found out how disastrous
    combination this can be...

    --
    Cheers / Saludos,

    Carlos E. R.
    (from 13.1 x86_64 "Bottle" at Telcontar)

  8. #8
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    Default Re: good camera for linux

    Quote Originally Posted by hendersj View Post
    On Wed, 09 Apr 2014 20:36:02 +0000, vl1969 wrote:

    > #1. most if not all cameras nowadays do not use any kind of proprietary
    > format.


    That's not strictly true, because ...


    .... RAW is in fact a proprietary format, and most manufacturers use their
    own "spin" on the format.

    Jim
    you maybe right in a true sense of the word :-)
    but what I meant is that over all nowadays you can buy any camera and most of the software on the market will be able to read and process the image files taken by it.

    most software SOHO or PRO grade have ability to read and edit images in most if not all formats in use by camera sold today.

    as the OP did not specified that his parents are professional photographers but simply said that they prefer film over digital. we should be able to safely assume that they are in fact not professional and will not be needing RAW format support. regardless, if their choice would swing into Hi-Grade cameras range ($300+, SLR etc.) they will get the RAW file support any way as most of those have it.

  9. #9

    Default Re: good camera for linux

    I have a Nikon D100 DSLR that was given to me, and it works fine on openSuse. I plug it into the USB port, and it's recognized as a storage device. I just drag the files into a folder using Dolphin (KDE desktop), works fine. It's an older camera, I guess, has a CompactFlash memory card. I don't know much about the camera, all I wanted was a simple camera, but was given this one. When I manage to figure out how to set it, I get nice photos. Mostly by accident. I'm definitely not a photgrapher! If a lower resolution photo is ok, I used my HiDef camcorder to shoot photos, though those are widescreen. That also works the same way on the USB port.
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  10. #10
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    Default Re: good camera for linux

    Quote Originally Posted by HighBloodSugar View Post
    I have a Nikon D100 DSLR that was given to me, and it works fine on openSuse. I plug it into the USB port, and it's recognized as a storage device. I just drag the files into a folder using Dolphin (KDE desktop), works fine. It's an older camera, I guess, has a CompactFlash memory card. I don't know much about the camera, all I wanted was a simple camera, but was given this one. When I manage to figure out how to set it, I get nice photos. Mostly by accident. I'm definitely not a photgrapher! If a lower resolution photo is ok, I used my HiDef camcorder to shoot photos, though those are widescreen. That also works the same way on the USB port.
    I use digiKam. I just plug the card into the reader (or, you can attach your camera direct, if you have the connection and the cable, and the digiKam components or plug-ins will work with it), use digiKam to download and organize the files. It will translate the various RAW files, and it has DNG converter (translates the original RAW files, PEF for my Pentax, into the universal Adobe standard) and has all the image processing and editing actions you will need, outputting the edited or enhanced photos to lossless png files by default, although you can also configure it to output to lossy jpeg, if you desire.

    Further work is then done in GIMP, which is as good as Adobe's most professional version of PhotoShop, as far as I am concerned -- I have used both extensively -- and which (once you begin to learn it) I like a lot better than PhotoShop.

    It is in GIMP where I do my cropping and final adjustments or enhancements, including any resizing and determining whether output is to photo paper or to one of my websites.
    "Take a Walk on a Sunny Day, Greet everyone along the way, and Make Somebody Smile, Today"
    Gerry Jack Macks"Walk On A Sunny Day" GerryJackMacks.net

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