Need a new camera for jewelry - no more than $500. Suggestions?

I picked up a Panasonic Lumix 200 through Walmart online after reading a ton of reviews. Just got it today. I’m on deadline for a story and my Nikon wore out after 4-5 years. Looks like I won’t have focusing or white balance issues any more. This one is preset for cfls, and in quick tests is a good macro camera for close ups. Paid $439, which included some accessories, including a small tripod.
Good luck with your purchase.


That’s exactly the same camera I have and I couldn’t be happier with it. Even the shutter sound is incredibly quiet.

Good luck,

Jeff Herman

I used a Fuji S7000 for a long time. Most of the pictures on my site (, are taken with the S7000. It has great macro capabilities as well as telephoto. I would suggest the following. A cloud dome or similar arrangement, a tripod, shoot in manual aperture priority in the mid range for F stops, timed shutter releases and bracketing are a must. Make sure to color balance first. Experiment with macro settings. Finally, make sure to write down what works and doesn’t and adjust accordingly. My S7000 died years ago. The CCD just stopped working. I replaced it with a Fuji X10. Very nice camera for shooting jewelry, but lacks the telephoto lens that I would like once in a while for outside shots. You need to experiment a lot. Document what works and what doesn’t. I shoot mainly silver, which is very difficult to photograph. If you can shoot silver, you can shoot most other jewelry. My two cents on a Friday night in Central NY waiting to see who our next President is…Rob.

Hi Nina,
I gather you are trying to use the Fuji FinePix S7000 in automatic mode. The problem with that is that the exposure may be set for an average of neutral gray. Thus your background of white or black takes up most of the photo and the camera tries to make the background a neutral gray, making the picture either too light or too dark. You will probably have to read the manual or some discussions in an on line forum and do one of two things. If you can find a way that your camera will let you over-ride its auto settings and expose in steps of one “stop” darker and lighter, you will eventually find a picture to your liking. This is usually called bracketing. Or you could go to a totally manual mode. This way you would let your camera meter tell you the f-stop (lens opening) and time or flash strength. However, you would “spot meter” for the spot where the jewelry is. If you are going manual, you can change your lens opening to a smaller setting and offset that by doubling your exposure time or flash strength each time you change the lens one stop smaller. This way you will get more depth of field, which you may want for jewelry. And you will want your focus spot to be at the jewelry and not above or below it. I assume you are using a flash, which will keep your photo from blurring. If not, you are going to need a tripod and perhaps a cable release.

I realize this is complicated, but photography is somewhat so. You might do best to find a forum where users of the Finepix S7000 congregate and explain your problem. They might be able to give you simpler advice of the “first push this button and then push that button” variety. I do think there should be a way to either bracket your exposures or tell the camera to meter on your subject (the jewelry) rather than the white or black background. Many cameras have computers which tell them to do this with certain types of subjects, but apparently your camera is not doing this presently. Hope this helps!

Check the review, with video, “Jewelry Photography with iPhone: Nimbus Cloud Dome review” ( ). Alex Koloskov, the photographer who runs the Photigy website, is accomplished at taking photos with do it yourself / DIY stuff and with high-end stuff. The Nimbus Cloud Dome is from the same company that makes the Cloud Dome ( )

Thank you so much! I found some articles how to set camera for jewelry photography. I had to go back to camera manual and study it again. I now understand, that cannot rely on automated settings. So i will experiment.

What I did was buy an older Canon DSLR. The older ones are pretty cheap and you can get high quality lenses for macro that way.

I use Camera+. Is has good documentation/tutorials available.