All the G1 X info in one place

Started Jan 12, 2012 | Discussions thread
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howardroark
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All the G1 X info in one place
Jan 12, 2012

The discussion of this camera is fragmented to say the least. There are people who just talk about the haters being wrong, haters talking about fans being stupid, and random discussions comparing it to various existing or announced cameras. It's very difficult to draw conclusions from the images and specs available, but at least we can get a good idea of what to expect. Here are some links:

http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/Canon-PowerShot-G1-X-Digital-Camera-Review.aspx

Bryan at The Digital Picture has been one piece in a puzzle of information that I've always found very useful. He concentrates on a limited segment of the camera market, but he doesn't pull any punches. This page has many images comparing the G1 X to other Canon cameras, which gives one a really great idea of its dimensions.

http://www.focus-numerique.com/test-1354/compact-canon-g1-x-powershot-bruit-electronique-12.html

I have no idea how they got test shots already, but I'll assume these are legitimate. I'm impressed with the output, but until Bryan does his normal gamut of testing with various apertures I won't have a good idea of how the lens really performs.

http://www.usa.canon.com/cusa/consumer/products/cameras/digital_cameras/powershot_g1_x#SampleImages

Some real sample images that can't be disputed. They look great, but again they are so incredibly limited that it is impossible to draw any useful conclusions about image quality.

http://www.usa.canon.com/cusa/consumer/products/cameras/digital_cameras/powershot_g1_x#Specifications

This is where most people need to go for their specs. I found no mention of the built-in three-stop neutral desnity filter mentioned in the press release. Why not put that in the specs? Not only that, but I'd like to know the bit rate of the video.

Here's why I plan on buying a G1 X:

1) Sensor. The ability to take images using higher ISOs, reasonable detail resolution (based on above samples), and with excellent dynamic range (based on similarity to similar Canon sensors) are all very important to me.

2) Lens. No, it's not super-fast. No, it's not super wide. It is, as all photographic equipment must be, a compromise. It's small, it retracts, and I'd bet good money that it's sharp (enough for me). I've sold lenses because they aren't sharp enough and I've coveted extremely expensive lenses for their sharpness, but I've always been forced to balance sharpness, flexibility, and price.

3) IS. Image stabilization is a no brainer, which is why so many cameras and lenses have some version included.

4) Depth of field. Most point and shoots are lousy in this regard. Big sensor means bigger depth of field. Very nice feature for a point and shoot sized camera to have.

5) Size. Nope, it's not tiny. That would compromise too much in the way of image quality and the lens for me. I think there are three levels of convenience in the camera world all based on size, and I've drawn this conclusion from the past fifteen years of experience. Each classification is limited by your desire (based on the subject, time available, and abilities of the camera itself) to use it when faced with the relative inconvenience of using it.

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Tiny: An Elph sized camera is great for having around you at all times in the smallest of pockets. It is very convenient, but if the subject is important enough you might be willing to forego the convenience and get a bigger camera out of its case.

--Medium: This is where I place the G1 X. The SX 20 was great, but it wasn't easy to put in a holster on my hip, so if I wanted to use it I had to carry it in a little shoulder bag, unzip it, remove it, and wait for it to power on. The zoom was great, but the image quality was pretty lousy. I rarely used it. My A620, however, was in a holster on my hip and I could yank it out at a moment's notice and have a reasonably good shot quickly.

-- Large: This is my 7D and the backpack it and all my equipment is in. The subject has to either be very important or give me lots of time to capture it, and usually both. I don't just put the 7D around my neck, backpack on my back, and go to a bar for someone's birthday party. I usually want large prints when I use this or want to capture memories in the highest quality I can.

6) Flexibility. Yep, that's all the things discussed combined. With this in a holster or large pocket, I can have it with me in almost in situation. If my 7D is on my back, but I want a picture of my significant other as she feeds a squirrel before we reach our final, scenic goal, I won't miss the shot. It can be taken to all but the most unruly of bars for a party. It will perform well in low light. And if I suddenly get the urge to be really creative, I won't feel like the attempt will be a total waste of my time.

7) Display. Articulating displays are very, very handy. I only use a viewfinder when I've got the DSLR out. I've never used a viewfinder on a point and shoot because they are worse than useless in my opinion. You can't compose correctly. There's usually little or no information displayed. I wish they didn't bother wasting space or money putting a viewfinder on the camera.

8) Video. If I feel the sudden need to get video, having the ability to capture 1080p without busting out my HD video camera (if I even have it on me) is a must.

9) Controls and menus. Canon excels in this department. They are easy to learn and usually have very few annoying glitches or oversights.

Okay, what did I forget?

By way of background, I own a 7D, D10, HF100 video camera, 430 EX II, 10-22 EF-S, 15-85 EF-S, 28-135 EF, and 70-200 f/4 L. I previously owned the A620, SX20 IS, 30D, 10D, Sony S85, 17-85 EF-S, 75-300 f/4-5.6 IS, and 420 EX. I've used Nikons, Sonys, and many other Canon P&S's and DSLRs. Oh, and I started really getting into photography using an Olympus OM2000 fully manual film camera.

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Canon PowerShot G1 X
Canon PowerShot G1 X
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