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Old Jan 7, 2006, 8:55 PM   #1
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I bought a Canon S230 Digital Elph shortly after they were released...largely based on the reviews seen here at Steve's as well as over at Mr. Askey's site. I have had a great time with the camera...it has never failed me in use. It's always ready...the size (while it is large now)...at the time was wonderful and has never left me feeling as if I would have rather left it behind. It does take some decent videos...but nothing I'd ever want to use for anything more than very occasional web content. I also have a Sony DV camera that I have used for family videos...but due to its size, weight, and the hassle of dealing with importing, mastering, transcoding, yada yada yada...I don't shoot as much video as I'd like. The VPC-C6 has me intrigued however. I really appreciate the convergence aspect as well as the "no more tapes" aspect. I'm just concerned that even with the resolution jump to 6 MP vs my 3.2 MP of my Canon...that¬* I'll be underwhelmed by the quality of pictures from the VPC-C6. Maybe it's worth the trade off with the increased usability of the video from the C6...I'd just like to hear any¬* opinions and experiences from persons that have made similar switches. Furthermore...I'm a Mac user and I'm also concerned about the compatibility with iMovie, iPhoto, etc. I know this is a lot of info...but I assure you all that I'll appreciate every single opinion recieved both positive or negative.
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Old Jan 8, 2006, 10:57 AM   #2
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mcseberd, first, for the Mac, the C6 is directly compatible with the latest Mac OSX and iMovie, so no worries there. To be sure just download a sample .MP4 file from the C6 and import it into iMovie. As for the C6, an obvious shortcoming is the weak flash. It takes good photos, but you need light. Look at the C5 photos Steve took, they are prettygood foranultra-compact with such a small lens, the C6 will be slightly higher res.. The video is one of the best amongdigicams, but don't have unrealistic expectations, like some people might have had. It's not going to rival a good camcorder, and while it has better than most digicams low light video capabilities it's not going to shoot video in the dark either. It doesn't have night vision.
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Old Jan 8, 2006, 4:13 PM   #3
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Thanks for the comments. I'm not looking for the end-all be-all to the world of hybrid cameras (well...that actually would be pretty nice to have...but I don't think it exists yet). I don't print posters with my S230, but it does an admirable job of being a nice and ready P&S for those times when I think my Digital Rebel is not convenient or necessary. I have looked at the samples Steve has posted here. I just think that there is way too much digital noise in even the outside shots. I'm not expecting mirables...but I would expect at least equivalent performance out of a camera that is going on 4 years (practically light years in electronics-time) newer. I just look at Steve's playground shot between the two cameras and the S230 seems to... 1.) Have higher resolution...look at the trees and leaves between the two shots 2.) Have more natural colors 3.) Have much less noise in all areas of the picture...even the well exposed spots. I just don't know if I can afford to take such a step backwards in the area of still shot performance. I'm not looking for DSLR performance...but I expect a camera that costs as much as the C6 to perform better than what I see in these sample photos. Does anyone think the new HD version will have significantly better still perfermonce thanks to the apparently better optics?
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Old Jan 8, 2006, 5:10 PM   #4
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Yes,the S230 stills look better than the C5. If I zoom in at the pixel detail at the C5's 5MP resolution it's not as good as the pixel detail of the 3MP S230. But if I look at the overall photoin full screen (1280x960, properly resampled/filtered)it looksgood to me.Colors lookok to me and in fact I could argue the S230's look oversaturated, but they weren'ttaken at the same time of day or same angle, and the C5 photo had a lot of dark shadows in the front that the S230 didn't. But I agree, I don't think the C6's stills are it's strongest feature, it's good for snapshots, not photography. But think of it this way:how many camcorders are anywhere near thistiny, can take stills anywhere near the C6'squality and still cost as low as the C6?
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Old Jan 8, 2006, 6:08 PM   #5
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I am not knocking the benefits of the form factor of the VPC and their ilk at all...in fact...as I have clearly stated...I think they are wonderful for the very reasons that you state...but while the VPC may take very good still photos in comparison to many consumer camcorders...it is clear that true convergence has not yet reached this market because if a 4 year old electronics product can produce so much clearly better photographs...well...it's actually kinda sad.¬*I pose this question to you...which is the greater performance delta? The better video quality of the VPC-type cameras over a typical consumer P&S digicam or the paltry photographic capability of current hybrid-type cameras compared to today's P&S digicams?¬*
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Old Jan 8, 2006, 6:59 PM   #6
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Yes convergence is only beginning. But I'm sorry I don't see the C5 stills as being that bad. Perhaps it's because you are comparing the pixel detail of a 3MP cameraagainst the pixel detail of atiny 5MP camera instead of the overall image?

Trycomparing ultra-compact pixel detail results with other ultra-compacts at the same resolution. For example, compare the similarplayground photo of2005's Canon EX-S500 with that of the C5...they are not that different. Pixel detail is a little noisy for both, more than the S230 (again, different lighting),but viewed as a whole image, they both look good. Can you say for a fact that the C6 doesn't take good pictures?
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Old Jan 9, 2006, 11:51 AM   #7
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If you travel you need C6 at your belt and good SLR in your trunk :-)
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Old Jan 9, 2006, 2:12 PM   #8
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I got the C6 from Warehouse123 well before Christmas. While I admit, shooting in low light has improved very much for video, after REALLY using this camera instead of just doing "test shots" in New York City for my New Year's vacation, I must say that I am truly disappointed with the STILL camera performance, especially in low light and even wide shots during daylight. While video is fun, I missed out on some really great photo ops by using this as my only camera. You can look at a lot of "sample" photographs out there on the web, critique them until you're blue in the face, but after looking at the poor quality of your OWN pictures having come from using a higher quality (Canon) camera - you will be truly dissatisfied.

I used to use a Canon S400 which took excellent photos. I sold it in hopes that I could use the C6 as my one-for-all camera. I figured I'd only print 4x6 photos anyway...maybe the digital noise wouldn't bother me. However, even web resolution of some of my images are clearly sub-par. Needless to say, I am actually shopping for a Canon SD450 so I can have a decent still camera again. I'll still keep the C6, but it won't be the only camera I keep in my pocket ever again.

So, if you want advice from a Canon/C6 owner, get the C6 for the fun video factor, but don't expect it to replace your still camera unless all you plan to do is shoot outdoor photos in bright sunlight.
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Old Jan 9, 2006, 3:05 PM   #9
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Yup, I agree with filmchick..the C6has 6 megapixels, but the lack of low light performance destroys that advantage. The C6 is capable of decent low-light still photography but you have to live with 640x480 resolution (lamp mode), and that's not good enough for 4x6 prints. In that sense the C6 is a good 640x480 still & video camera, and if the light is sufficient you could get decent 6MP pics, but that's the exception not the rule.
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Old Jan 13, 2006, 8:22 AM   #10
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I think that's CASIO, not canon.

Speaking of Casio, does anyone know if the movie quality from Casio Exilim cameras is comparable to the Sanyo Xacti C6? I broke a recently-bought Exilim Z750 and I'm having a hard time deciding if I should stick with another Exilim camera or buy a Xacti C6.

Any advice will be greatly appreciated.


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For example, compare the similarplayground photo of2005's Canon EX-S500 with that of the C5...
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