Admit it – we all have aspirations to be a photographer. Be it the eroticism of fashion shoots, the adventure of war correspondence or just dreams of a being a tree-branch peeping tom, we all want a job as simple as “point and click.” This week we round up the best high-end digital cameras for all walks of life, none of which will break the bank. THE PEEPING TOM: Olympus SP-550 UZ With an 18x optical zoom, a true wide-angle lens and a CCD-based image stabilizer, the elongated 550 is the perfect spy device – whether it be to snap those classified documents from a rooftop away or sneak a peek at Mary Wong’s jugs. 7.1 megapixels allow clear images throughout, while an extended battery life, decent video quality and in-camera editing mean you’ll hardly ever need to return to headquarters (a.k.a. Mom’s basement, you pervert). Recommended price: $4,000 THE PROFESSIONAL TRAVELLER: Fujifilm Finepix S6500FD One of the last of the “bridge cameras” (so-called because they bridged the gap between your everyday user and your obsessive professional), the basement-priced S6500FD is the best bet for jet-setting hobbyists. Don’t let the 6.3 megapixels and 10x zoom detract you – many have this pegged as beating out the “super zooms.” Add in an easy interface, superb flash performance and a long battery life and your exotic photos will be good enough to frame. Recommended price: $3,400. THE FASHION SNAPPER: Sony DSLR-A100 Here’s a job we all want: taking pictures of hot models all damn day. The hefty A100 provides the look of professionalism you’ll need, while an insane 10 megapixels of detail and a powerful anti-blur image stabilizer will you give you the skills you don’t have. Add in vibrant color response, the ability to switch lenses and a continuous shooting mode, and you two will get the job done quick enough to move onto other business. Recommended price: $5,000. THE WAR REPORTER: Nikon D40X Why anyone would want to risk their lives for some photos is beyond us, but say you’re dying to photograph blood-strewn bodies – here’s your quick-action killer. An extremely clear 10 megapixels and similar stats to the A100 (lens switching, continuous shooting) are reason enough to take this into the field; but the lighter, more compact frame and an auto-focus assist lamp mean no messing about while bullets are flying overhead – guaranteed to get you that Pulitzer. Recommended price: $5,500. THE ALL-ROUNDER: Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ8 The best bang for your buck, the FZ8 provides everything a would-be snapper needs. At just 300 grams, the small shooter packs an excellent resolution of 7.2 megapixels, an easy-to-use interface with a large LCD screen and nearly 30 preset shooting modes for ample testing. But the pièce de résistance is undoubtedly the 12x Leica zoom lens, one of the best “super zooms” around for its power in such an affordable camera. Recommended price: $3,600. Where Can I Get These Wonderful Toys? Your best bet is Stanley Street in Central, populated with dozens of small stores that will initially try to rip you off, but shop around and use your bargaining skills. If you’re not a haggler, try the reliable Cheer Power Camera & Audio (5-8 Queen Victoria St., Central, 2877-1511), which offers some of the cheapest prices in the city and many special offers. Or head over to Mongkok and hit up Wing Shing (66 Sai Yeung Choi St., 2396-6881) or Man Shing Cameras (106 Tung Choi St., 2396-2996), both known for dependability and great prices.