Top positive review
145 people found this helpful
Not perfect but plesantly surprised
on 18 July 2012
I was looking for a new compact to carry with me most of the time. The one thing I insist on is having an optical viewfinder. I refuse to buy a camera without one. This straight away limits the choices as it seems manufacturers or intent on cutting corners and getting rid of them.
Most of the cameras that have them or at the top end of the compact price range such as the Fujifilm X10 or canon G12 which are very nice cameras but more than I want to spend at this time. Thankfully it seems canon are still listening to their customers and produced this simple point and shoot camera which a has one.
Now with a camera in this price range I wasn't expecting miracles but so far I've been pleasantly surprised.
Though made of plastic (what else would you expect at this price point?) it still feels sturdy and good in the hand. It reminds me a bit of my old Olympus MJU 2 one of the best 35mm compacts in my opinion.
It has enough settings to make it usable in most circumstances and in P mode will remember most of your settings when switched off. For instance I like to have flash turned off and just put it on when I need it.
I'm generally happy with the quality of the photographs. Yes there's some noise as the ISO creeps up and 16 megapixel is overkill for a camera like this and could have been kept to 12 like its predecessor. Mostly I use it outdoors in decent light and limit the ISO to 100 wherever possible.
One thing to be aware of this camera doesn't have proper image stabilisation but has a mode setting for use in certain circumstances. They confusingly call it digital image stabilisation'. I assume this simply means it increases the iso and alters the aperture and combines several photos to get the fastest speed possible.
The viewfinder (my main reason for buying this model) is small but usable and 100 times better than not having one at all.
The face detection seems fast and the menu and settings simple and easy to find.
Some people seem to see using AA batteries as a negative but to me it's a positive. I've been using rechargeable NI-MH batteries and they seem to last a reasonable time and if the rechargeable ones do run out at least you can get some normal batteries and still use the camera.
I've not used the movie mode much yet but it seem pretty good from what I can tell so far.
I think the help button (while it may be of use to some people) once you know the cameras functions is a bit of a waste of a button that could have been used or something else or maybe they could put the movie button there as where it is its quite easy to press by accident.
Overall in some ways this is a better camera than I expected for the price. That's not to say it couldn't be improved though so if canon or listening here's some of my suggestions for the next model in this range:
*Add proper image stabilisation. You have it in other cameras around this price so there's no excuse for not putting it in. (I knocked the one star off for this)
*Make the viewfinder a bit bigger (if possible) I see this as the main selling point for this camera so why not make the most of it.
*Reduce the pixel count to maybe 12MP (or even less) to reduce noise. When will manufactures learn small compacts with small censors don't need this many pixels.
*(One for me:) Make it weather/shower proof! Like the old Olympus MJU cameras were. Something I can't find in any digital compact so far (unless I've missed one). It doesn't need full waterproofing for diving etc just give me a camera I can use it in the rain!
With this I'm sure they would have a real winner on their hands.