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Old Oct 29, 2007, 1:20 PM   #1
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Debating between the G9 & S5 IS. I have several cameras & camcorders, the top dog being the Nikon D70 SLR which I am planning on keeping. But it only gets out on special occasions when I really want great image quality and can be bothered to lug it around.

While I can somewhat use manual controls, I tend to do most of my shooting in Auto mode (the kids, parties, some outdoor sports, travel). So I am looking for a camera that will fit between my wife's slim P&S and my SLR that will give me image quality as close to SLR, some great features, zoom (I like the candid shots you can only get from a distance) and portability, portability, portability.

With that said, here are the pros/cons between each as I see it for me.

Better image quality, smaller body, ok zoom, ok movie ability.

OK image quality, larger body, good zoom, good/great movie ability.

My question is really about daily functionality. Since neither is a slim pocket cam and will need at least a small carry case, (G9 may fit in cargo pants) - which one should and (and will I) use more. Again, want great image, smaller is better, like to have access to decent video if the moment strikes.


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Old Nov 2, 2007, 2:39 PM   #2
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I've been closey watching this thread since I'm debating between the same 2 cameras. The only defference between our requirements is that I'm not too concerned with movie capabilites. But since none of the "experts" have replied, I'll bump the thread and share with you my .02...

I think the G9 is the "better" camera. One basic reason that I say this is availability. In my area, the G9 is for sale only at the local camera enthusiast shops, not the superstoressuch asBest Buy like the S5 is. Other reasons I like the G9 in favor of the S5:
  • Significantly better resolution (12 vs.8 MP) [/*]
  • RAW image support [/*]
  • Bigger and better displayscreen (3.0 LTPS vs. 2.5 TFT) [/*]
  • A little smaller and lighter, although I consider niether small [/*]
  • Seems to be more solidy constructed, hold it and it's real solid [/*]
  • The flash on the S5 must be raised manually, which seems like a PITA[/*]
I know that the S5 is a "mega zoom," but many reviews say that images become fuzzy at a certain point. So I don't know if it's really any better than the 6x on the G9. I also like that the display on the S5 can be moved and closed for protection. And believe it or not, I like the fact that the S5 uses AA batteries over the rechargeable pack. Great rechargeable AA's can be had for way less than an additional Li-Ion pack. And you can keep a set of spare Alk or Lithuim AA's in your pack for emergencies when you can't get a recharge. Oh yeah, and the S5 is about $100 cheaper on average.

Despite these things, I think that the list of benefits for the G9 far outweigh the shortcomings compared to the S5. Unless I see other reasons, I'm 99% going with the G9.


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Old Nov 2, 2007, 5:05 PM   #3
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So I was standing in Circuit City yesterday, as they had just got a shipment of 3 G9's in and had stock of the S5 - both camera's in my hand.

It was a real struggle. The G9 was solid, the controls solid, and the body yes bigger than a slim P&S, but in a pinch I probably could have shoved it in the front pocket of my jeans. Decent zoom, and I kept thinking about how great it would be to pull it out in a moments notice and get a great, quality image shot.

On the other hand the S5 was quite a bit bigger and was going to need a decent size carry bag, one that would not strap or hold on to a belt very well. But the zoom was great and I could see a customers face clear as a bell from accross the store. I kept thinking about all the movies I was not taking of my kids other than the very unsatisfactory ones I was getting off my wife's SD400.

So I chose the S5, and bought my wife the new SD870 IS P&S. Now my main kit contains;
Nikon D70 with primes (for those times when I want the best image quality)
Canon S5 IS (Weekend shooter with the kids and movies)
Canon 870 IS (Everyday shooter with wide angle).

Gotta say, I am pretty happy with the decison. Just a few test photos at home last night but I will post again once I have had a chance to use the S5 over the weekend.

Theo - thanks for the response and the thoughts - never too late. As you say, if the movies were not a factor for me, than the G9 is the way I would have preferred to go. Even with the extra zoom on the S5, the G9 felt great, and even with the size, it's still feels like a smallish P&S but with the greater resolution, image quality and manual controls rivaling an SLR.

Good luck,

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Old Nov 2, 2007, 5:39 PM   #4
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Oh yeah - I forgot to mention that:

They're both Canon - You can't go wrong!

I'm sure you'll be happy with the S5. And the SD870!

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Old Nov 2, 2007, 9:20 PM   #5
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Is being able to hold the camera up to your eye important? If so, and you want the best accuracy of what you are actually shooting, get the S5 with it 100%, what-you-see-is-what-you-getelectronic finder. EVF's work very well.
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