Love my S95 - but want more zoom!

Started Jan 7, 2013 | Questions thread
Andrys
Regular MemberPosts: 300
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Re: Love my S95 - but want more zoom!
In reply to Fudgington, Jan 9, 2013

Fudgington wrote:

I'm thinking of upgrading my S95 because I want more zoom, but I'm stuck! I like the S95's image quality and performance in low light, but I often wish I had more zoom outdoors. I'm thinking of either getting the G15 (bit more zoom, fast lens, but bit too bulky), the S110 (bit more zoom) or just keeping the S95 for low light and getting a SX260HS for bright days outdoors and holidays when I want more zoom (the 20x would be fun). ...

I'm used to the canon interface so want to stick with them preferably.

I guess until someone magics into existence a pocketable camera with a long zoom and fast lens there'll always be a compromise.

Anyone else share this conundrum?

I shared that conundrum, yes. I was not using my Canon Rebel XT with 70-300mm and but left it alone for an S95 and then complemented the S95 with a Canon SX10, which has a 20x zoom and was doable in size. I just didn't want to go around with the larger camera and big zoom anymore unless I was going to a special place.

I like being able to shoot at any time so I favor the smaller cameras -- for shots I'd never get otherwise so I'm not as upset when they're not ideal.

Then the Sony RX100 came out and I just find that a phenomenal small camera so it's the everyday one now and I was able to shoot in very low light with high ISO and the original jpgs were still much cleaner than my S95's.

But my SX10 had a lot of grain in low light, more chromatic aberration or purple-fringing and I started looking for a 2nd small camera that had a zoom that large and is pretty good in low light, relatively speaking for compacts with large zooms, and came upon the Canon SX260, at the time selling for $199 and then $189 at Amazon. It's since back to $269 now.

Because the Canon is so flexible, I'm using it more but it can't compare to the Sony in image quality in larger prints. It CAN compare, on images the smaller zoom on the Sony RX100 can't get at all, although the 20 megapixels helps give images that can still be cropped and enlarged with good results.

The Canon sx260 wisely sticks to 12 megapixels with its smaller sensor and has done better than I expected in lower light.  I tend to use spot meter and that gives less problems with focusing in lower light as I can find contrast lines to get it to focus. I love that I can carry the 2 smaller ones, one in the purse and one that I hang on me.

I have some casual test images from a window with changing light and a good way to see how much it can zoom and still retain detail and a certain quality.

They start at http://www.pbase.com/andrys/image/147808234/original
which shows the wider view and then the zoom-ins under different lighting from a few days in December.  You can click on upper right 'Next' when there to see subequent ones.

Hope it helps some. Remember there's no built-in RAW with the Canon SX260 ..

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- Andrys
http://www.pbase.com/andrys/canonsx260 (casual tests)
http://www.pbase.com/andrys/sonyrx100 (casual tests)
http://j.mp/flickr-andrys (Flickr stream of Yosemite, Italy)

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