Go Back   Steve's Digicams Forums > Digital Cameras (Point and Shoot) > Canon

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old Aug 8, 2010, 1:26 PM   #1
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 48
Default An old SD700 (Ixus 800 IS) takes sharper pictures than the new SD4000 (Ixus 300 HS)?

Hi there. I just signed up here to get feedback on some thoughts of mine...

I just got bought an SD4000/Ixus 300 HS, which is a great compact, apart from the fact that the pictures are somewhat blurry compared to an old SD700 (Ixus 800 IS) I compared it to!

That is, pictures look fine when viewed "normally" without zooming in, but when you zoom in to 100%, it is very obvious that there is a lot of loss of detail compared to the old camera. That is bad news because I often crop pictures to pick out specific details. Now they aren't as... detailed anymore.

The reason I bought the SD4000 is that I wanted a small camera to carry around in my pocket, and in that sense it's better than the old camera. It also has HD video, and seems to be faster than the old camera as well.

So on paper, it seems to be just great for my needs for a compact camera, but when the shots turn out "blurrier", what is one to do? That, and there seems to be a tendency of overexposure.

Are there any thoughts on mending this problem? I read somewhere that the overexposure issue could be addresed, but what about the blurriness? Is it a result of the CMOS sensor?

And finally, while I don't want to make this a "which camera should I buy" thread in the Canon forum, it might still be interesting to know if there any cameras out there that can compete with the SD4000 (small camera house, fast (3-4 fps in full resolution for as long as you can be bothered to hold down the button), HD video, decent low-light performance, and so on).

The SD4000 is very close to an excellent buy, and for most people I suppose it is. But if you need to be able to zoom in to 100%, it is not really the ideal camera.
camvard is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Old Aug 8, 2010, 4:45 PM   #2
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 48
Default

One more thing I thought of:

Even though the SD4000 is a 10 megapixel camera, the image files are smaller than the SD700, which is a 6 megapixel camera. 2-2.5 for the SD4000, vs. 2.5-3 for the SD700. Both at the highest quality setting.

What's going on here? Is it compressing the images more, or is it the loss of detail that more than makes up for the added megapixels, leading to smaller files?
camvard is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Aug 8, 2010, 5:57 PM   #3
Super Moderator
 
Hards80's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Cleveland, OH
Posts: 9,046
Default

well for one thing the sd4000 is putting more pixels on target than your older 6mp 700. so you can crop more and retain more pixels for that relative same size. so it doesnt matter if at 100% it doesnt look as well since all things are not equal.

also the 4000 was somewhat designed to handle higher iso better and to offer lower noise. so i think their default noise reduction is a bit higher than normal, which could cause some loss of detail, which may be what you are seeing.

the lens is also sharper on the wide angle than it is on the telephoto. so if your test images are at full tele, the lens could be a little less sharp than the other end as well.

are these image sizes for the exact same scene? it could also be the compression. i think the sd4000 does not have a superfine resolution like the older canons. which may have some bearing on file sizes.

you may try comparing a relatively same size crop instead of comparing 100% crops before deciding.
__________________
MyFlickr
Hards80 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Aug 8, 2010, 6:22 PM   #4
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 48
Default

Thanks for your thoughts.

I did compare same size crops (zoomed the SD4000 out a bit), and the result was still a slight loss of detail (bad enough to be noticeable and annoying to me). I did not zoom in much or at all when comparing (because I wanted the same setup for both cameras).
camvard is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Aug 8, 2010, 8:19 PM   #5
Super Moderator
 
Hards80's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Cleveland, OH
Posts: 9,046
Default

Camvard,

thanks for the extra information. it sounds like this camera may not make you entirely happy, so you may want to return it if you are able. while i still think it is a nice little compact for most ppl, it may not be the right cam for you.

how compact do you need in a cam? does it have to fit in your pocket? if the term compact is used relatively liberally you may want to venture into a larger format camera like the micro 4/3, the much much larger sensor holds up to increased scrutiny much better and gives you a tremendous increase in low-light potential. such as Olympus' EPL1, Panny's GF1, etc.

staying within the small sensor compacts. i think 1 for you to watch would be Panasonic's LX5. it is a small sensor camera, but the sensor on it is bigger than the one in the consumer Canon Ixus line. And this line of cameras uses less aggressive noise reduction and has a nice lens, it should hold up to increased scrutiny for large magnifications/enlargements much better. Its not quite out yet and will come at a substantial cost as well,

just some thoughts.
__________________
MyFlickr
Hards80 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Aug 9, 2010, 12:15 PM   #6
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 48
Default

I doubt I'll be able to return the camera, but I might sell it off after trying it out for a bit more.

I really do think I prefer the camera to be as compact as possible. But has the image quality of compacts gone down the drain lately? I was pretty happy with the pictures from the SD700.
camvard is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Aug 9, 2010, 2:06 PM   #7
Super Moderator
 
Hards80's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Cleveland, OH
Posts: 9,046
Default

well, the number of pixels have gone up. but the sensors are still the same size. so you end up with high pixel/cm^2 counts which at a pixel level will often have more noise and less per pixel sharpness. this is usually offset by having nominally more pixels for most viewing sizes and print sizes. but at 100% or near 100% crops the newer cams may not be as pleasant. but most ppl don't really do anything at or near 100%.

recently there has been a few larger (relatively) sensor cameras with reduced megapixel counts that have stepped in the right direction. Panny's LX3/LX5, Canon S90, Samsung TL500. these cameras have pixel densities of ~23mp/cm^2. this is in comparison to your SD4000's 35mp/cm^2. Your older Ixus 800 was in the middle at ~29mp/cm^2. another factor is the newer compacts typically have a higher top end ISO rating, so often the manufacturers will use stronger noise reduction than they used to.
__________________
MyFlickr
Hards80 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Aug 11, 2010, 2:24 PM   #8
Senior Member
 
mtclimber's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Oregon, USA
Posts: 18,143
Default

Camvard and Dustin-

You also have a different imager being employed. The SD-4000 uses the BSI-CMOS imager and the SD-700 uses a conventional CCD type imager. While the BSI-CMOS imager allows for fast camera operations, not everyone is completely happy with the resolution and resolving power of that imager.

Sarah Joyce
mtclimber is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Aug 11, 2010, 4:09 PM   #9
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 48
Default

Thanks for your help, Sarah. I believe you gave me some camera tips in another thread, but do you know about any recent cameras as compact as Canon's PowerShot SD/Ixus range with sharp images these days (the SD700 is slightly bigger than the SD4000, but still small enough in most cases)?

Another thing I like in the SD700 is the fairly quick burst mode with unlimited pictures at 2 or so fps. Not as fast as the SD4000, but certainly not too bad either. And it has an optical viewfinder, something new compacts seem to leave out.

Sigh, it looks like compacts are just getting worse and worse.
camvard is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Aug 12, 2010, 12:07 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
mtclimber's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Oregon, USA
Posts: 18,143
Default

Camvard-

In the Canon line the S-90 is great choice. It uses the same imager (a conventional CCD type imager) as the G-11, and has received great user and professional reviews.

Sarah joyce
mtclimber is offline   Reply With Quote
 
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 3:31 AM.