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Old Jun 16, 2009, 12:36 PM   #1
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Default First Camera, plz help in selection and advise on Sony vs Canon

Hi All

Am going to buy my first digital camera, so went on to first shortlist a set of cameras based on my budget and then read a lot of camera reviews to come down to 2 cameras. (Although I looked at just Sony and Canon, which was just to reduce the confusion)

My budget is about $200-250 but I can stretch it to say 280-300 if there is some stellar option available

What I am looking from my camera is:
1. Good image quality
2. Good photos in all conditions, low light, indoors, outdoors
3. Relatively easy to operate, the lesser I have to fiddle with settings to get a good shot the better it will be
4. Sturdy and having a long life (i plan to use it for more than a couple of years)
5. Decent amount of zoom so that I am able to take some shots of distant objects if required (will not be a lot of times)
6. If I still havent squeezed enough value in 5 points above then a compact size too

I would like to add that I am not hung up on megapixel numbers as long as the camera can give me good pictures and i wont be taking any extra large prints of the pics. And for zoom also it is not the number but the overall effectiveness of taking a distance shot that would count.

I somehow rounded down to Canon A2100IS and Sony W290 (why I did not incline to W230 or S950 is probably because W series seemed to have carl zeiss lens and also optical image stablization and some Boinz processor, and for 230 vs 290, i think it was the 5x zoom and some intelligent auto selection etc)

Now between A2100 and W290...

(After lot of reading i infered this and I might be wrong)

Canon one has better image quality, plus it has 6x zoom against 5x of Sony and also Canon one can take AA battries which to my mind is an advantage as you never get stuck with drained battery. Also cannon one has 18 modes of shooting from which it automatically slects one, it is 11 for sony. But the Canon one is bulkier and bigger in size and not that good looking.
The Sony one is lighter, slimmer and better looking, also it is a bit faster in operation than the canon one. Both in burst pics (it can capture continuous pics at some 2fps against 1.1 of Canon) But read in some reviews that picture quality is not very good.

Now I really dont know which one to take. One thing is that here I dont have any retailer having Canon 2100 so that I can compare the size of the cameras.

But apart from that the bigger question in my mind is about the image quality and the quickness of the camera. Please help me with some directions so that I can make a good choice.

It is not that my choice is restricted to these two cameras, if there is any other camera that satisfies my budget and criteria better i would surely go for that.

I am a total novice and happened to hit this forum while searching on net and thought it will be good to have some words of advice from pros here.

It was a really long post and I thank you for bearing with it and coming till this point.

Thanking you all in advance for your time and for helping me with your expertise and experinence with cameras.

Last edited by sharma; Jun 17, 2009 at 7:42 AM.
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Old Jun 16, 2009, 2:10 PM   #2
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I'd also look at the Panasonic ZS1 (the ZS3 has some nice upgrades over the ZS1 but it's a bit over your budget - $400).

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Old Jun 16, 2009, 4:22 PM   #3
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The only camera in that price range that has good low light shooting is the Fuji F100fd. You can get it for $160 after $100 rebate.

I would also look at the Canon 890is.

Last edited by gwlaw99; Jun 16, 2009 at 4:33 PM.
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Old Jun 17, 2009, 5:28 AM   #4
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Thanks a lot Tullio and gwlaw...

I went on and saw a few super zooms and it was tempting to consider but I think I would not need so much of zoom and also some of the normal compacts are offering more modes, better processors and smart auto operations that I would prefer. Correct me If I am going wrong here

I reconsidered quite a few cameras and actually ended up increasing the size of my consideration set. I am thinking of

SD 1200 ($184)
SD 890 ($200)
SD 780 ($234)
SD 880 ($246)
A 2100 ($210)

S950 ($ 126)
S980 ($140)
W 220 ($160)
W230 ($180)
W290 ($214) (I realize this covers the whole range offered by Sony )

The reason for above changes were these:
1. I felt that I would never need very professional shots. Mostly they would be viewed on laptop and rarely if printed then would be on some 6 inch by 4 inch type prints. So I need a camera that does take good enough shots in all kind of lighting situations but not exceptionally brilliant ones

2. The reason I have mentioned prices (though all pros here will have an idea) is that I started looking for value for money, coz I realized that for my kind of requirements i could probably get a camera that was lesser then $250 range.

I would really be greatful if someone could offer some advice on the above models and can comment on the aspects of the zoom, picture quality in various conditions and value for money propositions of these cameras.

Also it would be helpful if someone can enlighten me on the difference between the performance of these cameras of different series, Ixus and A series from Canon and S and W from Sony. There are so many within easch series from each manufacturer they have left me confused.

And also the difference between the Canon and Sony Cams.

That is a lot of questions, it would be very helpful if some knowledgeable sould could spare some time and help me out!!


Last edited by sharma; Jun 17, 2009 at 5:32 AM.
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Old Jun 17, 2009, 2:07 PM   #5
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after a lot of more research i have rounded down the canon cameras to two models SD1200 IS and A2100 IS. There is a SD 780 IS also but i am not sure if it is a lot better than SD1200 and worth the extra money, plus its battery lasts lesser than 1200. Is 780 better than 1200 in some aspects apart from smaller size to command a higher price?

As for Sony, W220 W230 and W290 are still confusing me.

So as it stands I now have in total 5 cameras (2 of canon and 3 of sony)and need to choose one out of these

Please, any any help will be much appreciated
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Old Jun 17, 2009, 11:59 PM   #6
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Of those Canons the SD890 would be my pick. Has an optical viewfinder and nice controls. As for the Sonys, you left out the one that appeals the most to me, their H20. This is now being discounted down to $240 or less by a couple of outfits -


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