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Old May 10, 2004, 3:00 PM   #1
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The S45 has dropped to around the same price as the A80 at Ritz. As I look at the features and specs, both 4mp, they seem very similar. For those of you more familiar with Canon products than myself, which would you choose? I guess I would classify myself as a moderate to serious amateur, and do like the manual settings each offers. I also like the 1.8" LCD of the S45 (old eyes), but hear a lot more about the A80 round these parts. What do you think of the relative pros and cons? Thanks very much...

Dave (Old Rooster)
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Old May 11, 2004, 3:20 PM   #2
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Dave,

We've talked elsewhere about the merits of Canon A75 vs SonyP93 (I think). After returning the P93 in favour of the A75 I've now found issues with the A75 that are even worse than the handling problems that put me off the P93.

I thought the A75 was such a safe choice with all the glowing reviews. Sadly to my eyes things weren't that perfect. The A80 may be far better though.

The long and short of it is that the A75 is on its way back.....and what next??? You may be interested that I've decided to go the extra mile and look at a Sony W1 in a day or two. I'd even considered the Sony V1 which is now on offer at the same price as the W1. I might have bought a V1 already actually had it not been for the NP11 battery...and the 1.5" LCD (same eyesight issue).

I looked hard at the Canon S45 and S50 but I didn't quite click with them after reading all the reviews and user feedback. I'm sure they are both excellent but it seems I am drawn to the Sony image character after all......and I do know my way round their menus in my sleep.

David
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Old May 11, 2004, 6:09 PM   #3
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David:

I'm sorry to hear that about the A75, but not surprised given your posts in that other thread. I've been leaning lately to the A80, but like the size and LCD (1.8") of the S45. However, like you, I'm still waiting to see the W1 and, now the P100, which has a couple of extra scene modes over the W1 and does have the 1.8" LCD. However, and hold your ears, the one I'm most anxious to see is the Kodak DX7440, with controls similar to the expensive 6490, but the same lens as the 6440. It's going to retail here in the States for $349, which is about the same as the A80, S45, and $50 less than the W1, P100. BTW, over here the V1 is more expensive than the W1, and I would seriously look at that if it was the same price. My fear about the W1 is that it may be just a glorified P/S, with few buttons for direct user selection, and fiddly menus to get to more creative stuff. The V1 seems to offer a lot more, including the 4x zoom, although that battery and LCD are a problem.

Let me know, and I'll do likewise. I've essentially ruled out my Optio P40 and P4i thinking given a lot of the negative posts I've read.

Dave
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Old May 12, 2004, 11:06 AM   #4
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Talk about the age & eyes. I have the same problem. While I have moved up from a Minolta S404 (gave it to my son) to the 300D, my Girlfriend bought the A80 to replace a Sony Mavica ( that used Floppys -YUK!)- took it to London, Wales & Ireland & it did an outstanding job. She Loves the flip out viewfinder & I find that helpful as well, butit is VERY small. I find myself using the Optical viewfinder when I used the camera. I have used it twice - but I am now spoiled by the 300D. Still, a good compact digital is a good thing to "have around" - just in case. This is why I keep my film cameras handy & loaded. If the battery goes on the 300D, I am Covered & quickly!

You should note that theS45 isdiscontinued & the S50 probably is as well.if you look at todays Breaking News here on steves you will see a New Canon 5 MP S60 that will sell for $499.00 to come out in June. You may want to wait.
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Old May 12, 2004, 12:27 PM   #5
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Dave,

I think you are right, the W1 is just a point and shoot and in no way a replacement for the V1. I truly mean it that I would buy a V1 tomorrow if it took AAs and had a 1.8" LCD.

To be honest I think the W1 LCD is too big at 2.5". Looking at the pictures there is almost no room for fingers to grip the rear (well thumb actually) left side without being on the screen.

And the aperture/shutter priority modes on the Canon A70/75/80 make the manual option on the W1 look very basic. I have no idea why Sony would hold the Fast Shutter scene mode for the P100 only. What an illogical set of options through the range.

With what I know now my ideal might well be a P93 with a 1.8 LCD and a fast shutter scene mode...oh and a lens that doesn't flop and rattle! Why on earth didn't they make one likethat?

Currently W1s are selling out as soon as they come into shops in our local city, it is hard to get to evensee one.

I'm not amazed you have taken a look at Kodak. I do not put them in the shortlist often because almost every review comments on the rich colour and over-processed image of many Kodak models.

But take the 6440, it does everything I want. Right shape/size body, 4MP, 4x zoom, good low-light focus assist system, 1.8" LCD with clear icons, lens not too near ends of camera, movie with sound only time limited by card space, AA batteries, AV-out, long flash range, not too sluggish operation.

And the amazing thing...It's available in nearly every shop in town £80 cheaper than the P93 and half the cost of the W1. Could I cope with the image character though?

I'm quite tempted to get it as a camera to carry me over this period and pass it onto the kids in a year or two and get myself something special then. Might even get used to the Kodak images in that time and not want to change!

David
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Old May 14, 2004, 4:40 AM   #6
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David: The 6440 is still on my short list but, in the States, the upcoming 7440 will sell for $50 more ($349 compared with sell-out price here of $299 for the 6440), and I'm dying to see that - see Kodak U.S. website for detailed description, even an owner's manual download.What's holding me back on the 6440 is the grip (tends to slip out of the hand), and the overcompression. There is only one choice - and it compresses to about 1mb. Heck, my 2.0 Canon compresses to that. From what I gather, this really limits your options to crop. The upcoming 7440 has a "fine" mode option, compressing to about 2mb. The other concern, about both cameras, is that the CCD is a 1/2.5 rather than the 1/1.8 used in Sony and others. So, for example, the A80 is one of my top considerations, partly for feature set (those two Custom dial modes, and the rotating LCD), and partly because it has the 1/1.8 CCD, which is larger than the A75's and Kodaks.

Here's the page on the 7440 - http://www.kodak.com/eknec/PageQueri...equestid=64730

The 7630 (6mp) is already in our stores, and has the same body shape as the 7440. It fits beautifully in the hand, and yet is small enough to be pocketable in large pockets. In addition to the obvious (2.2 LCD), the 7440 has some terrific direct button selections, and only 2 quick steps to a bunch of scene modes. One button on top, for example, will allow direct selection of exposure bracketing (taking 3 pictures at different exposures), something I would like to be able to do simply, without fussing with a menu.

Bottom line: Like you, I need to try these cameras out, and will wait for the W1, which still hasn't arrived, and the 7440. I also am anxious to see more reviews of both. Looking at the P100, as well. My budget is around $350, which opens up some interesting options. I'm down to: Kodak 7440, Canon A80, Sony W1 and P100 - in about that order. Good grief, it's harder than buying a washing machine! Let's keep in touch on the next step...

Dave
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Old May 14, 2004, 2:19 PM   #7
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what was the problem with the a75 again? didn't understand:roll:
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Old May 19, 2004, 3:46 AM   #8
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efe85,

My personal isue with the A75 I tried for a few days was intrusive purple fringing and edge softness at max aperture/wide angle. Also I seemed to get more over-exposed highlights using that lens setting than I would see with my old Sony P52. The manual& ap/shut priority modes, battery life and handlingwere brilliant though.



Dave (OR),

Well here we go again! I've trialled the Sony V1 extensively and it isn't for me. Eyesight issues with the small LCD, and tiny icons, are even worse with such a complex camera where you really need to know which modes you're in. As I've said elsewhere the image quality is excellent and the continous focus modes stunning in their ability to enable moving target shots that have so far escaped me with digital photography.

The cost of the V1 is currently the same as the W1will be in the UK so I could just take the V1 back and swap it.....except can I find a W1 in the UK....not one anywhere and I've spent a morning phoning and Internet searching.

Also I'm still concerned if the W1 would suit because of possible issues....

LCD "too" large, prone to damage and taking up left thumb space?

Still don't like the choice of just min/max aperture in manual mode.

No Sports mode which might have been the point and shoot way to capture fast kids.

So I'm well stumped as I'm reluctant to wait several more weeks to track down a W1, then to find that doesn't suit either. I'm going to have to compromise somewhere.

Then last night a flash of inspiration! When I started this search just a few weeks ago I did notice the Canon S50 and like the shape of it but wasn't 100% happy with some of the review comments and the fact is used a specific battery. At the price point then of £350 (UK) it was at the top (over actually) of my initialbudget and then I'd need an extra battery on top.

But looking last night I see that many of the discount retailers have reduced the S50 by £100 to £250...and that one of them lists a quality aftermarket battery at just £18 if bought with the camera. Also I noticed for the first time that the S50 comes with its own external battery charger which, if I have to have a make-specific battery, is so much better for methan an in-camera charger.

This price drop brings the S50 into broadly the same range A75 and P93 compared with its previous place alongside the V1 and W1 prices.

And it comes in black...I like black cameras!

It seems from cruising the reviews I'm going to find the S50 slower in operation than the Sonyrange and there is a slightpossibility of purple fringing according to one review, but all the others say not!

At £250 I think I'll have to give it a go!! Also I hadn't the nerve to retrurn the 128MB CF card and card reader I bought with the A75 I tried (the packets were so damaged they couldn't have been resold) so I already have those here to use with the S50.

What do you think?

David










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Old May 19, 2004, 4:29 AM   #9
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David: Funny you should mention the S50. I was just reading about the S60, with the 28 to 100 zoom lens, and a few other added features. It's now on my list - along with the A80, W1/P100, DX7440. I came real close yesterday to picking up an Optio S40 at Costco (easy returns), but held off due to Steve's negative review and comments on these boards.

Somewhere I read that the S50 struggled with its sensor array, and that this unit was more comfortable with 4mp (S45). But, I would sure take a look at that as well. I've been playing around with an A80 in a store, taking pics with my own CF card and even batteries. It's like an old glove for me, currently having an A20, and that swivel screen is terrific. In fact, I discovered yesterday that you don't even have to swivel it around and light it up to take a picture. You can just leave it face in to the camera, use the viewfinder, which makes for very fast operation. If that screen was 1.8", I'd get it for sure, and still may. I like the idea of using the camera at waist level (more sneaky with the grandson), and also having the screen turned towards him, while using the viewfinder. Also easier with a tripod. The C1 and C2 settings are a great addition, as well. It's become the benchmark against which others are being judged.

My leaning is still for the DX7440, but I've got to see a review. Looking at the W1 manual, I don't quite get the manual mode (applies to P100 as well), and think it would be much too fussy to make changes on the fly, which A80 and DX7440 let you do easily. That's a good point about the LCD size, and worth checking out. W1 is due here June 4, according to the latest information.

You must have some very nice stores there in terms of returns. What I've run into here is the "store credit" idea, so that I have to agree to buy whichever I buy from them, if I'm going to try one and bring it back. That's unsatisfactory. Our Costco and Walmart will allow straight returns however. Since you have that CF card, I'd sure want to try out the S50, and I will as well if I can locate one. Hey, it's a good thing these aren't washing machines we're looking at! Till later....

Dave
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Old May 19, 2004, 3:59 PM   #10
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I've been lucky to choose suppliers who happily offer a money back refund. One is an online supplier and the other a local shop.

Your comments on the S50 have caused me to look about and I agree it seems some reviewers think the S45 is better for minimal purple edges. Great I don't actually need a 5MP so I'll have the 4MPS45......except it isn't available in the UK now!!!!

You've got me worried now as I was so easily annoyed by the fringing on the A75 if the S50 is as bad I'd be gutted. The DP forums seem full of complaint on it at the moment. Wonder why some reviewers actually say the S50 is excellent for having no purple fringing.

If the S45 was available, or ifthe S50 was free of fringing, I reckon I wouldbe close to keeping it.....with just a slight reservation on speed of operation. If you've handled one of the new range Sony cameras the near instant response feels exactly as a camera should be....anything (well most)else is back to the dark ages.

David








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