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Old Jan 9, 2004, 10:20 AM   #1
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Default Witch to choose between S400, Stylus 400, Optio S4

I'm looking for my first digicam & I need something small and handle, my current chooses are:
Canon S400
Olympus Stylus 400
Pentax Optio S4

All 4Mp and enough small, but witch have the best photo quality
I need also something good in low light condition

Any advice is well accept
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Old Jan 9, 2004, 2:11 PM   #2
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The Canon S400's larger 1/1.8" (.556") CCD sensor is going to be the best in lower light, with less noise compared to the others as higher ISO speeds are used.

However, the tiny lenses in any of these models, are not going to be stellar performers in low light, compared to larger models, with faster, brighter lenses (i.e., Sony DSC-F717, Canon G3, Olympus C-4040z, etc.).

What's bright the human eye, is not to a camera's lens.
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Old Jul 15, 2004, 3:47 PM   #3
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Strange that noone sees that AlexP is asking about a super portable camera ! I personally have for everyday to carry in shirt pocket a Pentax OptioS4i - great little capable camera and I take loads of great pics with it.... It has a firmware 1.1 update and it is great !! surprised that noone else recommends it ! it beats all competition.... OK, sony DSCw1 is a good machine, but it is twice the thickness and weight of the Pentax and not too easy to carry, and also the Memory stick costs an arm and a leg !! But Pentax has been among photo leaders and developers for a long long time and pentax cameras are something to consider. DOES ANYONE !! AGREE ???
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Old Jul 15, 2004, 5:19 PM   #4
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personally, i wouldnt go with any of those, but if i had to reccomend one it would be the optio s4i.

i had recently purchased a digicam after looking for about 4 months, exilims, optios, elphs etc.. etc.. sometimes you might want to sacrifice size a little, there is such a thing as too tiny. i ended up with a kodak ls753, its the same as the ls743, but with 5mp instead of 4mp. i bought it for 320.00 USD with free 2 day fedex. i love it, and it works great. it is just as tall as the s4i, but a tad longer.

again, its your choice, and if i had to pick between those 3, i would go with the s4i. maybe you want to spend a little more time researching, google is awesome, or just keep posting here.

ill even save you some time, heres some reviews from dealtime:

http://www.dealtime.com/xPR-Pentax_Optio_S4i
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Old Jul 15, 2004, 5:51 PM   #5
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SalBolzano wrote:
Quote:
Strange that noone sees that AlexP is asking about a super portable camera ! I personally have for everyday to carry in shirt pocket a Pentax OptioS4i - great little capable camera and I take loads of great pics with it.... It has a firmware 1.1 update and it is great !! surprised that noone else recommends it ! it beats all competition.... OK, sony DSCw1 is a good machine, but it is twice the thickness and weight of the Pentax and not too easy to carry, and also the Memory stick costs an arm and a leg !! But Pentax has been among photo leaders and developers for a long long time and pentax cameras are something to consider. DOES ANYONE !! AGREE ???
Well, first of all, the query asking about the 3 models was6 months ago.

He had already indicated that the 3 models weresmall enough. Second of all, he asked about using it in low light. He was not very specific on what he meant. However, the Canon S400 he was looking at, has a reputation forproducing better imagesin low light, compared tomost other subcompact models of a similar size -- especially as higher ISO speeds are used. Canon managed to squeeze in a little larger sensor.

It's simple physics. The Canon is using a larger CCD, compared to either the Pentax or the Olympus models he was looking at. As a result, the photosites for each pixel are larger. The larger the photosites, the more light hits them. As a result, less amplification of the signal is needed for the same equivalent ISO sensitivity. Amplication increases noise, too. That's why a larger CCD performs better in low light conditions, as ISO speeds are increased (to help prevent motion blur, since increasing ISO speed allows the camera to use faster shutter speeds). Their signal to noise ratios are just better.

Most camera models from major manufacturers can produce pretty nice pics in good light. In poor light, when you need to increase ISO speed (or the camera's Auto ISO increases it for you), it's a brand new ballgame. Try setting your Pentax S4i to ISO 400, and take a few photos indoors (or other low light conditions) without a flash, and see what happens to your images.

That's the reason that a Digital SLR, with it's much larger sensor, has useable ISO speeds that are dramatically higher than available with non-DSLR models.

Of course, the differences are more subtle comparingsimiliar models.You also have to look at the way the images are being processed in the camera. Some manufacturers do a much better job compared to others.

All of the models he's looking at arevery fine little cameras. For one user, one feature may be more important. For someone else, another feature may be more important.

That's one of the reason we're not all wearing the same style clothes,driving the same type of car, eating the sametype of meals, etc. Peoples tastes vary.

You may prefer the Pentax because it's perfect for you. You love it's small size, features and photo quality.

Someone else may prefer the Canon, and someone else may prefer the Olympus.

He asked for opinions six months ago. Nobody else even bothered to respond then. Anybody with a Pentax could have easily said "this is why I think the Pentax is better".

I only gave my opinion (based on my experience with digical camera, and the time I've spent comparing photos from these models undera variety of conditions).

After all, isn't that what he wanted (opinions)?

BTW, not to defend Sony too much (he didn't even ask about a Sony). However, Sony has been producing Digital Cameras for longer than Pentax. Also, most other manufacturers of digital cameras (with the exception of Panasonic, Fujifilm, and Kodak), don't manufacturer their own CCD Sensors. Sharp has been "getting into the game" too, with their 6MP sensor. Guess who the largest manufacturer of CCD Sensors is for consumer grade digital cameras? Sony

Numerous Pentax models are using Sony Sensors (Optio 450, 550, etc.). Ditto for cameras from many other digital camera manufacturers (Nikon, Olympus, Canon, etc.). Of course, Panasonic seems to be gaining some market share in this arena lately, too (especially in models using the smaller sensors).

Now, each manufacturer does process the CCD data differently. But, if you start out with a sensor that has a lower signal to noise ratio, then you are more likely to get a better image after the data is processed by the respective digital camera manufacturers.

As far as other image processing -- some may prefer the look of photos from one manufacturer/model over another (saturation, contrast curves, color accuracy, etc.). More choices are great for consumers. What's right for one user, may not be right for another.

It's all a compromise (physical size versus sensor size, onemodels features against anothers, etc.). Each user will need to decide for themselves, which camera is best for them, in the conditions they'll be using it in.


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Old Jul 15, 2004, 6:08 PM   #6
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sorry, never even noticed the 6 month old reply... just saw it posted recently and decided to look at it
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Old Jul 15, 2004, 6:15 PM   #7
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My apologies if I was a little "short" (harsh) in my reply. I must have got up on the wrong side of the bed this morning. :P

Anyway, if you think one model is better than another, then respond to the queries!


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