Thanks for the early birthday wishes! I'm thinking a contest is in order. My actual birthday is next week.

I was unclear in my last post. The early birthday present is indeed a camera, but the photo in yesterday's post was of our old camera, which has served us well for years. Here's the new camera showing the old camera showing the new camera:

Ye olde faithful

Uh, what?

And the new camera, penny for scale above and below because the new camera is so freakin' small!

new camera

The new camera rocks! It's eminently portable, sleek, has a cool screen and lots of features:

new camera

And, it takes some damned good photos. I played around with the auto macro setting in the fading evening light:

HPY lace, plied

wool/silk

and then in the morning with better light:

A Touch of Twist rambouillet/silk

and was floored with what it did in bright sunlight at lunch:

Hand Maiden Seasilk

If you click these to see the larger versions you will be amazed at the detail!

FBS - in progress

A close up:

FBS - in progress - closeup

and a super close up:

FBS - in progress - super closeup

With the old camera I had to manually set the focus on the macro setting and often take several photos to get a good clear one. With the new camera, in the sunlight it took these on the first try. With less lit conditions I will have to fiddle a bit to get good pictures (since it only has an auto macro mode, I can't tell it what to focus on). Worst case, I'll take everything to work to photograph at lunchtime. Hey, they already think I've gone over the edge with the spinning and knitting, what's one more step?

The camera takes 6MB images, surprisingly good videos, is easy to use, and wasn't too expensive. Obviously, macro does extremely well, especially in well lit conditions, and the software that comes with is really, really great. In short, I definitely recommend it.