Hi Jim, There is a simple answer to that question: the split-body Nikon Coolpix 995 ( 4x optical zoom ) Like John Lonsdale, I find this camera does everything for me, from landscapes to macro close-ups. I always use the manual settings, which are quite simple once you get the hang of the camera. As a rule I normally just zoom (no extra lens) in on the subject and click, sometimes macro (as close as 25 mm) I also use a grey or black background for contrast and a tripot for better composition. The latest in the Nikon Coolpix range is the N.Coolpix 5700 (8x optical zoom) Wow. ( I should get a commission fron Nikon for promoting their products (hmm) You must have missed my contribution to digital photography TOW on the PBS list. If you want a copy of that email let me know, I'll send it to you personally. Best wishes, Bill D.