G11 - Disappointing Build Quality

Started Oct 10, 2009 | Discussions thread
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freediverx
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G11 - Disappointing Build Quality
Oct 10, 2009

Has anyone noticed that Canon's build quality has dropped with the G11?

The G10 was built like a tank and felt like one in your hands - solid, rigid, substantial. The attention to detail was palpable. It felt like the closest thing to a Leica ever to come out of Japan. I realize some compromises may have been necessary to accommodate the articulated LCD screen, but it seems the camera feels cheaper and less solid overall than the G10.

For starters the entire back casing is now made of plastic instead of metal - not just the LCD frame, but the entire back casing. The real control dial is not only smaller (understandable to make room for the bulkier LCD) but it is also flimsier, with the entire mechanism flexing and flopping about any time it is touched.

The top panel on the G10 had a high quality "baked on" textured paint finish. The G11's just has a generic, flat black plastic finish.

Subtle changes to the Play button now make it more difficult to find by feel. Same goes for the power button. The ISO and exposure compensation dials now demonstrate a subtly cheaper sounding "clack" noise when adjusted, not quite the same precision "click" as on the G10. The G11's drive control (single/continuous) is now buried in a menu, gone from the rear control button. The lens now sports a cheesy plastic chrome trim when extended - an unnecessary bit of decoration best suited for a cheaper model.

The articulated LCD assembly feels flimsy - not nearly as solid as the ones on past models like the Pro1. Also, gone is the durable and easy to clean glass surface from the G10's LCD. The G11's is a matte, plastic fingerprint magnet that is difficult to clean and feels like it might crack if pressed on too strongly.

Overall, I sense that Canon tried to cut corners and reduce their build costs by taking away many of the subtle high quality materials and finishes that made the G10 feel like a professional tool. I am seriously considering returning the camera...

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