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Top Five Digital Cameras for the Elderly

Top Ten Point-and-shoot Digital Cameras For The Holidays 2011
Top Ten Point-and-shoot Digital Cameras For The Holidays 2011

See the latest cameras we like by clicking the photo above.

If you are interested in buying one of your parents a new high-end Sony camera, how do you know whether or not it has elder-friendly features? Given that each senior has different concerns, there is no one straightforward answer. Have no fear, though. ElderGadget is here to provide an overall snapshot of the digital camera market as it pertains to the aging population.

Now, there are hundreds, if not thousands, of digital cameras on the market. Obviously, we don’t consider all digital cameras to be elder-friendly. Far from it. For our purposes, we are are going to deal with only digital point-and-shoot cameras because they happen to be the camera brand of choice for most casual photographers. These compact gems are generally small enough to fit in a pocket so you could capture vacations and birthdays on camera. And it’s usually simple enough to upload pictures from point-and-shoot cameras onto your computer to email these priceless memories to friends and family.

We ventured out into the retail-sphere to test out digital point-and-shoot cameras and believe that our findings will be of some interest to you. But before we proceed, we thought we’d let you know…

…What Seniors Should Look for in a Digital Camera

– A camera with ten or more MPs (megapixels). The higher the number, the higher the resolution. And the higher resolution, the higher quality prints you can produce.

– An LCD screen that is larger than 2.5 inches because any size smaller than this makes it difficult to check whether you’ve captured your ideal shot.

– An optical zoom lens with at least a 3x zoom (meaning that the subject appears three times closer to you).

– Simple to use.

– An ergonomic design, which entails easy to press buttons, large buttons, a grip for your hand to grasp and an easy-to-use scroll wheel.

– Basic features like digital image stabilization, which prevents your photos from coming out blurry.

– A competitive price.

Taking these factors into account, ElderGadget has compiled a list (in no particular order) of the Top-Five Point-and-Shoot Digital Camera for Elders. We also have a current list of great digital cameras here. Enjoy.


5. Fujifilm FinePix Z33WP 10 MP Waterproof Digital Camera with 3x Optical Zoom

There are plenty of reasons to love this camera. First of all, there is a nice big grip on the front of the camera, so your hand can have somewhere comfortable to go while you are taking photos. While the buttons are soft, they are also incredibly easy to click, so it doesn’t take a lot of effort to physically take the picture. Best of all, this camera is equipped with “Blog Mode,” which automatically re-sizes your photos for you if you want to email them to loved ones or post them on a personal blog. The 10MP, 3x zoom and 2.7 inch LCD are all pretty standard. For a camera that runs less than $160, there is really nothing to complain about.


4. Olympus Stylus 6000 10MP Digital Camera with 3.6x Wide Angle Optical Dual Image Stabilized Zoom and 2.7-inch LCD (White)

We understand why someone might not instantly fall in love with this Olympus. The scroll wheel on its back is hard to navigate and the buttons are a tad small. But this tough camera is custom made for the traveler and can do wonders for the clusmy. It’s shockproof, shakeproof, crushproof and freezeproof. It comes with digital image stabilization, and runs around $250.


3. Canon PowerShot SD1200IS 10 MP Digital Camera with 3x Optical Image Stabilized Zoom and 2.5-inch LCD

This is one of the best (and most popular) all-around digital cameras on the market. And it’s no surprise why. The camera has nice large and easy to press buttons on both the top and the back, all of which more than compensates for its lack of a natural hand grip. Rest assured, Cannons as a brand are known for their high picture quality. The camera also has a reliable image stabilization system to counter shaky-hand syndrome. If you are a first time photographer though, use Auto-mode because the custom setting might come off as a bit confusing. You can find this camera for around $190.


2. Sony Cybershot DSC-S950 10MP Digital Camera with 4x Optical Zoom with Super Steady Shot Image Stabilization

For our purposes, the beauty about Sony digital cameras happens to be Easy Shooting Mode. Basic instructions are displayed on the LCD screen, which provides beginners a sense of confidence while taking pictures. More specifically though, the Cybershot DSC-S950 is rather inexpensive (usually around $130), but still comes with a 10 MP, 4x Zoom, 2.7-inch LCD screen and a SteadyShot digital image stabilization.

Kodak EasyShare C180 10MP Digital Camera for elders with 3x Optical Zoom and 2.4 inch LCD

1. Kodak EasyShare C180 10MP Digital Camera with 3x Optical Zoom and 2.4 inch LCD

Kodak cameras are known for their ease of use. So it makes sense that there is nothing too fancy or confusing about the EasyShare C180. Our main complaint with this camera is that the LCD screen is a tad bit small, running at 2.4 inches, but the other basic features are up to snuff, with 10MP and 3x Zoom. The scroll wheel on the top of the camera is the easiest to grasp scroll wheel we found, and there aren’t that many buttons on the back of the camera that you must deal with. Did we mentioned you can purchase this camera for less than $100?

14 Responses to Top Five Digital Cameras for the Elderly

  1. Larry August 4, 2009 at 3:04 pm #

    My wife likes to take a lot of pictures while we are going down the road at 65 or 70mph, what camera is best for this and under $500.00 ?

  2. ElderGadget August 5, 2009 at 8:38 pm #

    Great question! Thanks for the challenge. There are many factors that can come into play taking a picture from a fast moving car. You will have to experiment with ISO/Shutter speed combination to capture the “feel” you want. A good stabilization system will also help. A smooth road and a steady hand are important as well. While I havn’t tried it myself recently, I have read reports that a shutter speed of 1/2000 to 1/2500 should do the trick, but you should try it for yourself before you buy, as the clarity of the picture has a lot to do with the individual that takes it. As far as specific cameras under $500, you might want to look at the Canon Powershot SX110 IS (Shutter Speed up to 1/2500) which sells for $220 – 250, or the Sony Cybershot DSC-h20 (Shutter Speed up to 1/2000) which sells for $240 – $270. For a more inexpensive model, you can try the Sony Cybershot DSC – 950 which sells for around $130 and has both stabilization and shutter speeds of 1/8 to 1/2000. I hope this helps you. (I am including below some links to some additional articles which may help you as well.) All the best, and have a safe trip, EJ from ElderGadget.Com

    Additional articles:

  3. caroline November 6, 2009 at 4:34 am #

    My parents have a very old camera that never seems to work. I am looking for one that is easy to use and will work with an operating system on a computer that is about 5 years old. My parents take pictures of our child and then fight with the camera/computer to print them out. Is there any camera that has a special printer or a particular printer that is easy to use for pictures? I don’t have a fortune. I just want them to be able to print the pics we send them and the ones they take without spending all day to do it. They are not computer savy but are willing to learn. Thank you.

  4. denise January 20, 2010 at 2:37 pm #

    I have had a stroke and need a camara that will go onto my computer ,pretty much by itself! It is so hard for me to fiqure anything out. Could you suggest a camara that is ..really computer friendly.. Thank you Denise

  5. Joe February 26, 2010 at 6:37 am #

    The biggest concern for the elderly doesn’t seem to be touched upon here! Namely, ease of transferring the images to the PC! My octogenarian Father In-law wants one for his birthday. Great! But I just know I’ll have to be the one to remove the tiny SD card and plug it into his PC every time he wants to “see” his pictures. Most also come with tiny (if not proprietary) USB adapter cables but they too are difficult enough for the average middle aged individual to attach to the computer much less the camera end, let alone those in their 80’s!

    Ideas? I’m thinking these issues give the Kodak easyshare types a slight edge since they can just be docked and the rest set to simply “happen”.

  6. Josie April 18, 2010 at 2:59 pm #

    The biggest problem is not even mentioned in these reviews. How easy is it to transfer the pictures to a computer? Until that information is included, I consider the review incomplete.
    I have bought a camera and find transferring the pictures to computer impossible. I hired a geek on wheels, and he could not figure out the camera I bought either.
    I think it is telling that the person who posted the question about taking pictures while driving fast got a reply, but there was no response to the inquiry like mine.

  7. Max Baumgarten April 19, 2010 at 7:37 am #

    Josie —

    I apologize for not responding to your question earlier. You aren’t the first person to ask about the transferring picture to the computer so I think we will write a proper post on the subject in the near future. Stay tuned.

    Thanks for reading the site and keep the questions coming!



  8. Max Baumgarten April 19, 2010 at 7:37 am #

    Josie —

    I apologize for not responding to your question earlier. You aren’t the first person to ask about the transferring picture to the computer so I think we will write a proper post on the subject in the near future. Stay tuned.

    Thanks for reading the site and keep the questions coming!



  9. Kellie June 22, 2011 at 5:56 pm #

    I am looking for a camera for my mother that has as few “options” as possible. To explain, she tends to get confused by the various selections on a scroll wheel, leading to photos that are blurry due to the camera being on the wrong setting, she’s filming video when she has no idea the camera even takes video. She would like a camera that she can point and shoot, and if a flash is needed, it comes on. The less settings, the better. What would you recommend for her? Thank you!!

  10. Kar August 18, 2011 at 1:24 pm #

    Aren’t there any cameras with better zoom capabilities than 5 these with only 3 to 4 x’s optical zoom? Would there be a simple model with maybe up to 7 or 10 x’s optical zoom?

    As for myself, I’ve also notice that the special “red dot” video button is very handy, rather than having to switch the dial to video.

  11. Rachel August 30, 2011 at 9:08 am #

    Connecting a USB cable from a camera to a MAC makes downloading a breeze. For elderly folks with Macs, once the cable is connected, the iPhoto application automatically opens and asks you if you want to delete the images off the camera while downloading them or not…how much simpler can it be. 🙂

  12. Cindi November 18, 2011 at 5:58 am #

    My mom does not have a computer, she would like to print the pictures at the drugstore that she wants to keep. She is not technical at all, any recomendations?

  13. Jordan December 3, 2011 at 8:20 am #


    I’m in the same boat for my wife’s grandmother (who is 92). She doesn’t own a computer. We’re considering getting her a simple camera (unfortunately, the main candidate – a Nikon L24, has battery door problems) and 10 or 20 small (128 or 256MB) flash cards. She can use the flash cards like rolls of film – taking pictures on them and then when they’re full taking them to be developed. She currently uses disposable cameras, so she may only go through 4-6 cards a year. We’ll tell her to bring all of her “used” cards when we see her at holidays, and we can copy the pictures off and give her back the empty ones. She doesn’t do anything with the old negatives except put them in a box in the top of her closet, so there’s little worry about her needing to make new prints on short notice.

  14. John February 14, 2012 at 9:32 pm #

    The greatest kindness to the elderly is SIMPLICITY! My father is about to turn 90. I’ve mounted a metal plate on his TV remote with holes in it so he can select channels, but it prevents him from accidentally pushing buttons that get into mind boggling menus that he has no chance of navigating out of. I SUPER GLUED the volume button on his cell phone because he kept turning the volume down without knowing it, and there’s no way to select an internal preference that disables the volume buttons on the outside of the phone. No marketing director makes it big by producing a new electronic product with FEWER features… but that’s what we’re all looking for. I bought a Kodak Easy Share (don’t remember which model).. and while it uses convenient AA batteries (and sucks them dry REALLY fast) It’s pretty junky. He wants something better, but I’m concerned that if I buy him one of the cameras above, it will be too complicated. It would be nice to know about the simplicity of use… how easy it is to use without having to get very deep into the menus and internal settings. LCD displays in daylight, overpowered by sunlight, making it impossible to compose a shot, is another issue.

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