Camera Update

7 09 2010

Canon PowerShot SD1400IS

For those that are into pocket cameras I’ve made some changes to my cameras.  I lost my Canon S870IS which has taken the majority of my blog shots the last few years…=-(  I liked it enough that I had a spare!  But, Sharon has adopted it after seeing how well it worked compared to her Sony – I’ve never tried a Sony camera I liked…mediocre photos every time….=-(  My Olympus Stylus 850SW no longer focuses reliably and after 2 trips back to Olympus for repair I have given up on it…=-(  So I was left with my Pentax Optio W20…which to its credit has never failed me, but it has also never taken great photos.

I had two thoughts in mind: 1) get a cheap decent pocket camera to tide me over until I found something I loved  2) buy a higher quality compact-ish camera like the Canon G11.

So I walked over to Best Buy [love the new neighbourhood since everything is so close!] and checked out their offerings.

I left with the Canon Powershot SD1400IS for a few reasons:

  • it was cheap
  • it used SD cards which I have a lot of
  • wide angle lens
  • specs looked decent
  • I needed a camera to keep blogging!
  • Canon has never let me down and has always produced quality photos for me so they deserve my brand loyalty

I wanted to grab a Canon G11, but didn’t because:

  • it cost double what the SD1400IS cost
  • I really need a pocket camera even if a have a larger format G11 so I needed the smaller camera regardless
  • although the G11 is clearly a better camera so far I haven’t demonstrated a tendency to use larger cameras effectively since I like to travel lightweight with minimal gear
  • I’ll keep thinking about it and grab one later if I come to the conclusion it’s a good move

All my CETMA photos and anything since then has been shot with the SD1400IS.  I’ll post a review later after more use, but I’m generally pleased with it.  Not quite as wide angled as the SD870IS I lost, but not bad. I’m enjoying the very small form factor – although using it one handed is a bit harder than my larger cameras. Overall confirms to me that Canon is the go to brand for consumer point and shoot compacts.

Future camera plans:

  • I’ll use the SD1400IS for now for my general purpose camera needs
  • I’ll use the Pentax Optio W20 for my waterproof camera needs
  • I’ve got enough Air Miles to buy a camera so I’ll see if they have a better waterproof camera option than my W20…if so I’ll grab it….I checked and they don’t offer the G11 unfortunately or that would be a no brainer!
  • I’ll ponder the G11 as I use my SD1400IS and see if it makes sense…my ability to take kiteboarding shots with my SD1400IS is limited and may motivate me to get a camera with better long range capabilities
  • I’ve tried a SLR and it’s just too big and complex to make any sense to me for use beyond my home and that’s not flexible enough
  • Ultimately I need a good pocket camera and a good waterproof pocket camera…if I had a G11 on top that would be bonus!

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6 responses

7 09 2010
Champs

If you make some cost and size sacrifices, I hear the Canon S95 doesn’t disappoint. It’s stupidly good performance in your (somewhat bulging) pocket.

7 09 2010
Jeremy

I’d say look into the S95 for sure. Especially if you brand loyalty lies with Canon. Another great option is the Lumix LX5. Replacing the LX3. Both the S95 and the LX5 and 3 offer full manual control, fast aperture, and pretty great low light performance. The Lumix has the bonus of using a Leica Lens.

I’ve played around with the G11, and I too, just couldn’t get around it’s size for a camera to have on me all the time. I played with the S90 (old version of the 95) and it’s really pocketable, and really easy to use in manual mode.

But, after your recommendation a few years back, I’m still loving my little powershot point and shoot. They just kinda do what you want the to well don’t they?

Cheers,

Jeremy

7 09 2010
thelazyrando

Given that I have a pocket sized camera now do you guys think it makes sense to go for the S95 over the G11? The G11 is small enough I’d bring it along when traveling so it doesn’t have to fit into my pocket. Do you think the difference between the S95 and G11 is worth the bigger form factor?

7 09 2010
pacpost

Here’s a review of the S90 that mentions why it’s actually better than the G11:

http://www.kenrockwell.com/canon/s90.htm

“The S90 beats Canon’s own flagship G11 at its own game. The S90 has the same oversized sensor as the G11, but adds a faster f/2 lens, a direct control ring and a bigger LCD in a smaller, lighter package for less money. So why would I want a G11? Just to carry more weight with a slower lens?”

Since the S95 improves on the S90, I assume this guy’s assessment still holds true.

7 09 2010
Val Garou

Vik, have you given any thought to the 4/3rds cameras? I was looking hard at the G11, but at a certain point, I started to think that if I was going to carry something that big, I might as well get interchangeable lenses and a bigger sensor. But then again the 4/3rds don’t have the sleek form-factor of the G11. I’m still up in the air about it.

7 09 2010
thelazyrando

Thanks guys. I think the S95 looks ideal for me. It might be called the S100 by the time I make a move, but I like the form factor and specs.

Great tip!

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