The end of my digital SLR road…!

Ok, this is going to sound more than slightly odd coming from someone who is fairly into photography, but my very recent sale on Ebay of my Canon EOS 400D really felt like a relief.

Not really sure why but it’s almost like owning the SLR was a bit of a pressure to take pictures in a certain way or with a certain approach. The physical characteristics of the camera (heavy, bulky etc) meant it was also harder to just take anywhere and carry in a pocket. Getting quick pictures of fleeting moments was nearly impossible, given most of the time I would carry it in a bag.

It’s competitor and eventual replacement is the Canon S100, one of the more advanced PowerShot types, which actually integrates the same technology from the 400D into the very compact body of the smaller type. The digital image stabilisation works well and the image quality is virtually indistinguishable from the SLR – various technical reviews rated it as a 20% drop in quality but the 10MP level of the S100 is more than I need for where I am right now.

I also LOVE the range of image sizes, from wide angle to portrait and this function has started to alter the way I approach photography and I now frame certain types of scenes according to what works best as an image ratio. Before this starts turning into a total advert, the other thing is the HD video function (or other quality settings). Easy videos of the kids are now the norm, rather than carrying the video camera as well. After using a wide range of cameras over the years, this is by far the best i’ve come across.

So, I took the step originally to jump into the more ‘professional’ approach to photography by buying the SLR but circumstances and lifestyle have combined to drive me away from this approach. Maybe in the coming years this will change but seeing how technology is changing so rapidly, my hunch is that the PowerShot compact approach is here to stay : )

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Packaging fail…!

Ok, I ordered an extra battery for my Canon S100 to go on our camping/beach holiday to Cornwall this coming week and here’s what the tiny little battery was delivered in…

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Around the house…

A day spent at home with two sick boys, coughing and spluttering! A cold but bright and clear afternoon, following a very wet and grey morning.

Nice to get some fresh air in the garden and blow away the illness!

I chopped some wood and found some nice patterns in the centres. Light refracting through a glass and a close-up of a sprouting potato with the new Canon S100. I have to say this beats my Canon 400D hands down, partly because you can only get as close as 30cms, given the 18-200 lens. Very pleased with the detail on that.

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S100 camera test – around Gloucester…

I’ve just bought the Canon PowerShot S100 compact camera and i’ve been testing it out, both today around Gloucester in my lunch break and on Saturday when we went to Tewkesbury Abbey.

Here are the Gloucester images taken on a clear, bright and cold day, with some high wind by the Docks.

Compared with my digital SLR, it’s performing very well, but there is a very slight quality difference. This is compensated by the very slim and light body, the HD video, image stabilisation, the easy to change image sizes (exciting new square format!) and the 12 MP. This is basically the best compact camera on the market and it’s going to be with me when i’m out and about day to day, when I would normally just walk past these sorts of picture opportunities!

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Canon S95 vs Panasonic LX5 battle…

Ok, here’s the most evenly rated two cameras ever…

The Canon S95 and the Panasonic DMC-LX5. A great website by the way, particulalrly the comparisons of weight, dimensions, image quality etc. The following comment basically sums it up well.

‘If you take out the pointless popularity quotient (which is also by far the most heavily weighted item, for no apparent reason), the cameras score Canon S95 = 198.3 vs. Panasonic LX5 = 197.2 – a statistical dead-heat, which is actually a more accurate reflection of the relative merits of these two cameras, which is why they are so hard to choose between.’

I’m leaning towards the S95, even if the overall scores are virtually identical. This is because of better image quality (the be all and end all of digital photos – 10&better than the LX5), better colour depth (more than 70% more colour recognition), smaller, thinner, lighter and last but certainly not least, it’s around £100 cheaper!

Listing all those qualities, it really looks like a no-brainer.

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Lumix LX5 test run…

A good video of Charlie Waite testing out the new Lumix LX5 in Istanbul…

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There are too many amazing features in this camera to go through, but with digital SLR quality photos in a compact, with HD video included, this is my ideal ‘take everywhere’ camera.

I should balance this post with a mention of the Canon S95, which I have just seen in a review video being compared with the LX5. Both have very similar features but the S95 is more compact and sleek.

Great reviews on the Amazon site and this camera is now around £220, which is £100 LESS than the LX5, with a smaller profile. This camera was £399 a couple of months ago (now £230), but has priced dropped due to the S100 being released (12 MP instead of 10 MP). I already own a Canon 400D SLR which produces very good results, but is a bit bulky for carrying around all the time. The S95 could be the solution.

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