Discussion in 'Leica and Rangefinders' started by albert_smith, Jan 25, 2008.
Maybe of some interest...
M8 user goes to Japan and tries P&S, with unexpected results...
These really are tourist snaps. No wonder.
BTW, anything that will put a dent in M8's prices is OK with me.
I tried the G9 in the local store, and I'm pretty impressed. But I wouldn't leave the M8 at home in its favor. Viewing a scene through its optical viewfinder is just agonizing, and the screen was difficult for me to see in bright light.
The control system is also very "digital" - lots of menus & buttons; I can operate the M8 as if it were a strictly manual camera.
The images quality of the G9 is very high, but not as high as that of the M8 - at any ISO in my opinion.
And of course the lens is slow and the small sensor makes it impossible to get narrow depth of field for many subjects.
The most annoying thing about the G9 was the flash. I don't use flash but I tried it out in the store, and it gave me a really jarring series of pre-flashes which took a long time and completely annoyed human subjects.
Having said this there are a lot of really good things about the camera. It's not too small, which is nice in today's world. It's quite solid and has a quality feel. The picture modes are very well chosen and executed, and the macro capability is extremely good. The way the face recognition system helps the autofocus has to be seen to be believed. Color accuracy is pretty good too, and this is of course an issue with the M8 even with filters.
I carry the M8 pretty much everywhere & don't really find it a chore, so given the tradeoffs involved I wouldn't make the choice Devlin did - but that of course is why there's more than one camera brand and more than one camera model.
Hi Vivek. Just wondering why you had that impression. While not the best photography I've ever seen, it seemed like reasonable travel coverage to me. I found one or two quite good.
I have no interest in the website or anything like that. Just curious what made you classify them that way.
These are *good* "tourist snaps" and his real-world opinions of the camera are quite useful for those of us who don't travel everywhere with a pair of 1DSIIs.
I use really wide focal lengths for my travel - something hard to find so far, except with interchangable lens cameras.
Hi Reed, "travel coverage"- if you prefer that, I have no problems at all.
My old Powershot S30 was used last week to cover a school event by a mom. The pics are now put on the school web site. They are fabulous.
Why do these sites have to promote a current product? Couldn't an older P&S cam (G1, G2, G3, G4...)have captured the same things?
I tried the G9 and the color fringing is SOOOOO bad I sent it back. Of course a $400 camera compared to the M8 is bound to lose out, but you need at least acceptable files if you want to end up with lasting images, RAW or not...
Vivek. I really don't understand this response to Reed or the notion that it irritates you that a
review site concentrates on current rather than old models. Can you mean that?
I just got an email from B&H that the G9 was back in stock, and was about to place my order, when I read his report about how bad the shutter-lag is. Saved me the cost of shipping it and returning it.
Most so-called shutter lag on P&S cameras is AF lag. There are ways to permanently program your own 'snap mode' into the G9's 'C' (creative or customisable) settings. Have a go with this and see what happens. It used to work fine on my old Canon A80 and apparently the command sequence (only needs to be done one time) works on the G9 also.
Vivek...yeah, I on't get the derision. They rival much of what is on your photo.net gallery.
Almost all I keep here were probably shot on P&S cams or thereabouts. AFAIK, there are no travel pics. Sounds good to me, Bob!
Had I known that I good get a neat grip for the G9, I might have chosen it over the camera I did get, the Canon A650 IS The 650 still has the advantage of a flexible LCD and AA batteries. I can get by without RAW in a P&S. If I want RAW, I sue my Nikon D70.
I find whether or not you save a C setting, you still have to half-pressed the shutter else the
lag is still there. In AV, even if MF is set at some fixed point, you still have to press the
shutter half way to anticipate else it is not fast enough. Am I doing anything wrong or is that
how it work?
(Sorry if this is going too far astray...my email to Kerry bounced)
Kerry, I'm considering the Canon A650IS for a street shooter. What do you think of your camera? How is the ISO400 performance? What print size is ISO400 good for?
>>Bob Blakley Jan 25, 2008; 11:09 a.m. said
Optical VF shows 3:2 format while the G9 is 4:5. And it's is no longer pocketable with the
add on...why not bring a dslr?
>>leslie cheung, Jan 25, 2008; 08:51 p.m.<<
"Optical VF shows 3:2 format while the G9 is 4:5. And it's is no longer pocketable with the add on...why not bring a dslr?"
Pocketable is important you you? I have a Samsung NV15 if I want a pocketable camera (Sorry but I don't consider the G9, even in its bare form, as a pocketable camera... the same as I don't consider a Leica IIIc a pocketable camera. Keep in mind that is based on my pocket comfort, not yours or anyone else's). The G9 on a neck or hand strap is still lighter and more compact than any of my dslr's. And since the camera's 4:5 format captures more than the VF's 3:2 format, what's the concern? If it was the other way round your point would be well made. Bottom line, it works for me.
Pardon an interruption, and possibly a silly question, but I just checked Canon's site, and it says the "Large" size on the G9 is 4000 x 3000.
Isn't that aspect ratio equal to ... 'four thirds,' the same ratio (albeit a different pixel count) that is offered on the newly-announced, Leica-lensed Panasonic L10 and the Olympus dslr's ?
Not sure how much this matters really, but I saw the reference to 4:5 above, so I took a look. Am I missing something ?
Took a look also at the review Albert linked above, and the photographer seemed to like his photos, but complained about lag on the G9. Trevor's suggestion may have come in handy for him, and for that matter, might be worthwhile for G9 users here. At wide angle, at f/4 or even f/2.8, the d.o.f. is extraordinary on these small sensor cameras.
Question for Trevor: When I spent a few moments fiddling with a G9 in a camera store, I was unable to persuade it to *stay* in manual focus when I turned off the lcd. The salesman, who seemed to know the camera reasonably well, was also unable to do that. Using the approach you've suggested, is it essential to keep the lcd on when shooting in the "snap mode" ?
Michael S. is correct it's 4:3 nor 4:5. My bad!
Oh yeah, stupid me for paying any attention to what that other guy moaned about. It is a four thirds camera, which doesn't change the point I made. The 3:2 viewfinder takes in less than the camera's 4:3 sensor.
Why do we waste our time responding to trolls (not you Michael S)?
The whole point of the OP and the link is traveling light. It's not about what you would shoot
with normally. Did you even bother reading the linked article?
It's a great little camera, but its IQ is no better than any of the dozens of other point & shoots available.
It's not a substitute for a dslr. But still fun to use.
>>leslie cheung, Jan 25, 2008; 11:39 p.m.<<
"The whole point of the OP and the link is traveling light. It's not about what you would shoot with normally. Did you even bother reading the linked article?"
Dude, I think you're assuming just a bit much. Here's what was stated in the OP:
"M8 user tries P&S on world travel trip
Albert Smithprolific poster, Jan 25, 2008; 10:23 a.m.
Maybe of some interest...
M8 user goes to Japan and tries P&S, with unexpected results..."
Please point me to where there is anything resembling a quote regarding there is any point about traveling "light" or "what you would shoot with normally."
I will now ask you the same question you asked me. Did you read the linked article?
But I will presume you did and are actually referring to the gent who wrote the linked article, not the OP. The guy (who wrote the article) also didn't say squat about traveling light or purposely shooting with something he normally wouldn't shoot with. He quite clearly said someone offered him the chance to take a G9 along. He also seemed clear that he regarded it as an aside, instead planning to go with his M8. Surprise, yes he got a surprise once he tried the G9. It's a pretty darn good camera, which I read as the whole point of the article (maybe you missed that?) and cheaper and more compact than the M8. Tell me if I am wrong in that reading.
I also found that his G9 setup differs from mine only in my choice of Voigtlander viewfinder, and his choice of adding a grip. The viewfinder can be pulled off in less than a second, the grip can't.
Where are you coming from? Your post seems counter productive. Is there some logic to it that maybe you're hiding from us? What is different from the author's G9 and mine? What conclusions has the author drawn that are so different than mine? I am at a loss to understand your original and subsequent posts in context of the article. Do you actually own a G9 and have something to add in that respect, or are you simply trolling?
>>>A Word on My Travel Philosophy
A foreword to quell the haters might be in order. This piece is not prescriptive of the
?right? way to travel or photograph. I travel to travel, not to produce commercial-grade
photography ? that?s a side benefit if it happens. I have suffered one too many trips
degraded by the presence of too much heavy gear hanging, both literally and figuratively,
like an albatross around my neck. The compromise is that I carry light, compact cameras,
which afford me a modest, core focal-length range. No tripods. No flashes. No long teles.
Of course, I could easily have produced bigger, badder images with my Canon 1DsMK II
and a coterie of ?L? glass. Could have, that is, but for the fact that my shoulders would
have taken one look at that kit in the morning and marched me out the door cameraless.
The only great camera is the camera that?s there with you when the light happens.<<<
How about a whole paragraph there. Does it not sound like traveling light to you?
It's also titled: "A Word on My Travel Philosophy"
Get that VF out of the way. It's obviously blocking your sight...
My point was by adding on the VF and Hood, the G9 is no longer a compact camera. That's
all. It had defeat it's own purpose of a compact cam. This goes for you and the writer of the
linked article (not the OP Albert). Nothing personal against you really until you brought up
trolling blah blah blah trolling...
Jim, I think actually the G9's image quality IS better than most of the P&S cameras out
there; that's why I played with it to see if other aspects were tolerable. For the way I take
pictures, I've never found a "total package" that comes close to am M. The M8's image
quality is among the best out there (albeit with filters and some post work), so I just carry
it. But the M8 itself isn't as good as the MP - just more convenient, and the MP isn't as
good as the M3.
I'm hoping someday we get a digital M as good as the M3.
It seems to be forgotten sometimes that the camera doesn't make the pictures--they're mostly, unavoidably, the result of the person using the camera. I've gotten used to carrying my wife's old Pentax Optio 4--the one that fits in an Altoids can--because it fits in an Altoids can, which my Leica and Nikon stuff won't, and guess what, it takes nice pictures! Lots of folks made nice photos when a camera was just an accordion with a simple on one end. If the camera was the deciding factor, we wouldn't see so many horrid pictures of grandkids and pets shot with Leicas as we do.
And your point is well taken. I just find the G9 as I have mine setup works for me and it is still quite compact and very light. If I need more compact I take the NV15, which I find to be a truly pocketable camera.
OK, no more from me about trolling blah blah blah trolling.
"My point was by adding on the VF and Hood, the G9 is no longer a compact camera. That's all."
Exactly, and this is why my G7 with the Lensmate and the vf I never got around to getting, got traded up to an Olympus E-410 DSLR which is as compact and light, with the remarkably good little 14-42mm kit zoom, as the G7 with Lensmate. The point of carrying the G7(could have been G9) on it's strap over my shoulder in the leather half-case, other than looking pretty darn cool, got lost on me when I realized this little DSLR was every bit as portable, if not pocketable(it actually is somewhat coat pocketable when the lens is off, but a little f5 domke bag offers quicker access than having a camera in my pocket, lens or not).
For me the G7/G9 had/has a way of raising my expectations to levels it can't meet, especially in the responsiveness area. The author of the l-l article ends up making that point after all is said an done. I'd bet that after the G9 honeymoon he'll be happy to go back to the M8.
This whole thread appears to be redundant as it was posted here:
a day earlier.
I have owned and been pleased with the Canon Powershots A80, A95, A620 and A650 IS. I have passed the three earlier ones onto relatives who continue to use them with good results. I find the construction of the cameras to be more than adequate. I like the weight that 4 AA batteries provide and the fact that all have optical viewfinders, which tend to show less than the actual photo provides, but that probably errs in the right direction. I take great pains to provide tender loving care to all of my 100+ cameras, but on one occasion, while trying to get my A95 out of a jacket pocket, I dropped it onto concrete pavement from waist height (I am well over 6 feet tall). Upon inspection, tere was a tiny nick on one corner of the camera, but it continued to work perfectly. I wonder if an all metal frame would have cushioned the interior parts as well. I have made 12 by 18 inch prints from the 5 meg A95 and 7.1 meg A620 that were outstanding to my eyes. I upgraded to the A650 IS not because of more megs, nor greater ISO range, but because of the IS feature and higher resolution LCD. I do like the fact that on the LCD, overblown highlights are shown as blinking, as on my Nikon D70. As for shutter lag, if you depress the shutter release in one continuous stroke, there is a noticeable lag, I estimate to on the order of 1/4 second. It doesn't seem to be affected by scene brightness and contrast, it is always there. If you start with a half depress that produces a focus lock, the shutter lag is imperceptible to me. ISOs of 200 or less produce excellent results. You can detect minor noise at 200. At 400 or above, noise is quite noticeable, especially in the shadow areas. I would try to avoid these ISOs when possible. The battery enclosure provides a very comfortable and secure grip. I tend to use lithium AAs, which last for months. I have not yet actually depeleted a set of four lithiums, even after thousands of shots. My wife and daughter took their bequeathed A95 and A620s on a two week trip to Spain with brand new lithiums. Never a worry about recharging. The cameras are still going strong 4 months after the trip. Experimenting with slow shutter speeds with the IS on and off, It does provide a significant benefit at speeds between 1/4 to 1/30 seconds (not an exhaustive test). Since I shoot mostly in better light or use flash, the A650 is not really a major upgrade over the very excellent A620. But I have only had the A650 for about 3 months and winter lighting conditions in the Seattle area tends to be gloomy and dark. I don't do a lot of quick response street shooting, but I think the shutter lag, without the initial half depress to set focus, would be annoying. That's my two cents. Things I would change on the A650 were I the designer? Lower the resolution to 8 megs, make the zoom range 28 - 140, rather than 35-210 mm, better optical viewfinder, add a hot shoe, brackets for a normal neck strap. I like the ergonomics of the Nikon P5100 in this category of cameras, but was turned off the so-so image quality reviews and the propriatory battery. I hope this helps. I recommend that you do a hands on test at a camera store. The ones I visit locally allow me to put my own memory card in their camera so as to get a better look at the images at home. Of course, I do my best to keep such stores afloat. Best of luck.
I disagree on the point above, that the G9's image quality is as good as that from dozens of other P&S. The fact that the G9 shoots RAW is a major difference.
If the image quality you get from your G9 is the same as that from dozens of other P&S, than the problem is the photographer (he does not know how to use the camera to its best), not the camera.
>>Vivek Iyer Jan 26, 2008; 11:57 a.m.<<
"This whole thread appears to be redundant as it was posted here: http://www.photo.net/bboard/q-and-a-fetch-msg?msg_id=00O95s a day earlier."
Is it redundant if one hasn't seen or read the thread you refer to? Is it redundant if one doesn't have the time to review more than the Leica forum here (with consideration to Leica being their primary interest)?
Kerry, thx for your input. I live in Vancouver BC so I can commiserate with your winter daylight woes. I was hoping there would have been a marked improvement in ISO400 over what I'm getting with my A610 but that doesn't sound like it's the case.
One final question: did you happen to see any at a Costco in Washington? I noticed on their website that they don't show all the cameras I've actually seen in Costcos in WA and OR. We're heading down to OR for a week in March and I was wondering where I could find an A650IS. They're $450 up here, and $300 down there! And if I buy from a US Costco, the Canadian Costco would honour the warranty.
If buying a Canon A650 IS it is important to inspect the camera for it's serial number and/or markings inside the battery cover that indicate if the light leak problem may be present in your model.
It is unlikely (especially in the USA) but worth checking for before buying....
Larry and Trevor,
Costco did carry the A640 but I have not yet seen the A650. I am planning to go to Costco today and will check. If you purchase from Costco in WA, you will pay about 8.8 % in sales tax. There is no sales tax in OR. I have heard that Amazon is selling them for around US $300, but I don't know about shipping across the border. As one who grew up Niagara Falls NY, I congratulate my Canadian brethren on the success of the Canadian dollar.
I bought my A650 from buydig.com to avoid sales tax and the price (in Nov) was in the low $300, and free shipping. I have bought several cameras from them in the past and they are courteous and reliable. However, when the A650 arrived, it had the dreaded "0" in the fifth position of the serial number, and sure enough, when shining a flashlight (torch to you, Trevor), on the open back of the camera there was a very strong vertical light stripe on the LCD. I hate mailing cameras back and forth, so I carefully cut a small strip of duct tape to place over the back of the camera in the space vacated by swinging the LCD out. It required a double layer to get rid of the stripe; full vertical extent but the tape doesn't have to be as wide as the cavity. The tape solved the problem perfectly, and does not inhibit the flexible LCD in any way, and is invisible when the LCD is in its closed position. I have not found any other problems with the camera. I prefer to minimize post processing so lack of raw does not bother me. In most cases, Picasa 2 (freeware) is sufficient for cropping, and staightning vertical lean, and other minor tweaks. I like the A650 but my hunch is that the only improvements over the A620 are the image stabilization, the higher resolution of the larger LCD, and one of the display options of the LCD shows blinking areas whee the highlights are blown. Oh, and also the fact that you can dedicate two of the buttons on the back for easy ISO and exposure mods. I try to keep the ISO under 400, when possible. Build quality is perfectly fine except possibly those folks who want the build quality similar to that used for the indestructible black boxes that airplanes have (Why don't they build the whoe plane out of that stuff?)
Kerry, yes, please let me know if Costco carries them. Trevor, thx for the info re: the light leak. I've also found out that Canon USA warranty are honoured by Canon Canada. So I really don't need to buy from Costco if I don't want to. But they've got great service and returning products has never been a problem so I'll buy from 'em if they carry the A650IS in the US stores.
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