Norman, first of all, you should decide, how quality photos would you 
like to have. You have 2 options:
1. Digital camera . Pros: small weight and dimensions, built-in lens can 
have a range zoom, video. Contras:  Low image quality, high noise at any 
ISO over 100-200, no control over depth of field, low focusing speed and 
accuracy... Almost all of modern digicams do not have RAW.

2. DSLR - a camera with interchangeable lens. Pros: high dynamic range, 
high focusing speed,  high image quality even at ISO up to 800-1600, 
control over depth of field (bokke), very good optical viewfinder... 
Contras: weight, quality lens can be expensive, no video, some models do 
not have "live view" - image can be seen on the screen after it has been 
shot, not during.

If you have  enough will I would recommend you buying DSLR.

norman wrote:
> Although I have been trying to use Gimp for quite some time to enhance
> digital photographs it is only recently that I have begun to realise how
> powerful a piece of software it really is. Photography has been a hobby
> of mine for over 50 years but it is only in the last week or so that my
> 'digital darkroom' has started to flourish. This is very much due to a
> video course I am following on which, in my opinion,
> is a great place to start for the amateur photographer.
> One of the things which has emerged is the importance of producing
> photographs in RAW in order to get as much information as possible for
> processing. For me, this means finding and purchasing another camera and
> I wonder if anybody could suggest a good starting point for me to find
> what I need. I have tried Google but have not found the sort of
> information I think I need. I have just two criteria, the camera must be
> light and easy to handle (a bit shaky due to age and arthritis) and
> shoot in RAW. All suggestions gratefully received.
> Norman

With respect
Alexander Rabtchevich

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