John Betts - Fine Minerals, dealer of fine minerals and specimens for mineral collectors.

       Mail-Internet sales only -  No showroom open to public.            

Go To New Mineral Listings Added December 16

New Minerals are Added Every Tuesday at noon.

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#63330, Fluorite on Fluorite, De'an Mine, Wushan, China (c) $225

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News and Comments

Last week I posted about acquiring a new camera for mineral photographs. I had some questions in response to that posting. Here is one important clarification about what I wrote:

The Nikon Coolpix P7700 does have a macro mode and you can look at my New Listings week to see it has no problem with close-ups of small items.

When selecting a camera I rejected the Nikon S9700 and P330 because it does not have a fold-out LCD viewfinder which I consider ESSENTIAL. A fold-out LCD viewfinder allows me to stand upright and frame the photo while the camera and mineral are at about waist level. I once got terrible back spasms after a weekend of photographing minerals when I first started my site 18 years ago. The pain was from bending over for three days straight. Ever since I insist of a pivoting LCD viewfinder.

The Nikon P600 has a folding viewfinder, but there is no need for it's SLR viewfinder which is for scenic photography. Remember, I was a camera designer for Kodak and Polaroid for 25 years and I do not believe in paying for features that are never used.

I purchased a P7700 on Ebay for $250 with 4 GB card. I then added an AC adapter for long photo sessions.

The camera performs perfectly. No processing delay. No complaints. After photographing about 400 specimens I now have optimized the camera settings. Yesterday I resolved my issue with photographing under UV illumination.

The Nikon Coolpix P7700 is not a camera for all uses. I was specifically looking for a camera for photographing minerals which meant I needed macro mode, aperture priority mode, precise white balance control, ease of adjusting exposure quickly, and the fold-out LCD viewfinder mentioned above. I do not care about zoom range, panorama, movies, action modes. I am only photographing minerals and for that purpose the Nikon Coolpix P7700 is perfectly suited.

John Betts 12/16/2014

-----Original Message-----

From: Jason Hopkins Blair

John H. Betts, 12/16/2014

Click here to read past news and commentaries...


Click here to see other comments about this site by customers. Also add your feedback...

Customer Comments:

"John, the specimen arrived today and is gorgeous. Your photos were good, but they did not do it justice. I simply cannot fathom how you manage to run such a high quality business. Your specimens are always excellent, exactly as advertised, your prices are very reasonable, you get the specimens out to the buyers very quickly, and you do all the photography, finance, and warehouse and delivery stuff yourself. In addition, you have many other activities, as indicated by your website. Amazing." Bob

"Dear Mr. Betts, Thank you once again! I am probably not the greatest buyer you have. I am on a limited budget and shop only every now and then. But the thing is you have such an amazing inventory even in the lowest price range that i cannot find any thing better in terms of value for the quality of the samples, the accuracy of the item's description to the highest level of service you provide. It is a great pleasure each time and a long lasting satisfaction with each purchase. Thank you!" Jean L., Québec, Canada

"I am very happy with the delivery and packaging of my order. The detailed descriptions almost din't do justice to the specimens but were a great aid in selection. I am searching for a few things that used to feature in my previous collections perhaps I may send a list." J. Hhall

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About the Owner

Background Information

Why I Collect Minerals

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Mineral Show Schedule

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See me next at:
March 7-8, 2015 New York Gem & Mineral Show

Pledge to My Customers:

Customer satisfaction is my primary goal. I pledge:

  1. New minerals will be added to this site every week.
  2. All minerals offered will be naturally crystallized specimens - no fakes, no dyes,  no irradiation, no crystals glued on matrix.
  3. Only the exact item pictured on the site will be shipped - no substitutes.
  4. Photographs will accurately represent each item - no exaggeration, enhancement or retouching flaws.
  5. Mineral species and localities will be accurately listed on labels with each specimen.
  6. All items will be shipped via US Postal Service, usually the next business day after the order is finalized.
  7. Each mineral will be individually wrapped and carefully packaged to prevent damage during shipping.
  8. All historic labeling, if available, will be included with each mineral.
  9. Returns are gladly accepted. No questions asked, no explanation necessary.
  10. All customer information will be kept confidential and never shared or sold.
  11. I will continue to freely share my knowledge with others and contribute to the study and appreciation of minerals.
  12. All mineral specimens have a lifetime guarantee: if the mineral specimen is ever tested, and I incorrectly identified the mineral species, I will refund the cost of the original purchase & shipping, the cost return shipping and the cost of the test.

 John H. Betts, owner
Mineral dealer since 1989


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564,233 mineral specimens sold, shipped in 19,422 packages to 41 countries.


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John Betts - Fine Minerals, New York, NY
a division of allminerals.com, dealer of Fine Minerals and Natural Crystal Clusters since 1989.

Internet sales only - No showroom

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