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Old Nov 19, 2007, 4:43 AM   #1
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I am one of the many looking at these superzooms to replace a more compact camera. The various panasonics, sony's (H5-7) and specially Canon S5 are all under consideration and their relative merits arre sufficiently discussed in other threads.



Main quoted drawback of the various camera's seems to be the "noise at higher ISO's". What I really need to know is whether in daily use this tends to be a problem or whether this is a marginal issue. In the era of films I never used to buy films beyond 100-200 ISO anyway, so am i going to need those higher settings?



My current camera is a Canon s45, which gives me very good results in most circumstances (the only limitation being its zoomrange and limited flash)and as long as my new camera is going to be the same or better than that, I'll be happy.



Any views?
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Old Nov 19, 2007, 5:00 AM   #2
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Proper exposure depends on three things:
  1. Aperture - The size of the opening in the lens that light reflected from the subjectpasses through to the image sensor. [/*]
  2. Shutter Speed -The length of time light reflected from the subjectis allowed to illuminate the image sensor. [/*]
  3. ISO Setting - The sensitivity of the image sensor to light.[/*]
For "daily use", proper exposure can usually be obtained at a lower ISO setting by adjusting the aperture and shutter speed. But if you want to use a small aperture (to obtain a longerdepth of field), the shutter speed may be too long to avoid motion blur (from movement of the subject or movement of the camera.) Or if you want to use a fast shutter speed (to capture motion), the maximum aperture of your lens may be too small. In these cases, the last option available that will provide a proper exposure is a higher ISO setting.

Therefore, unless your "daily use" includes indoor/low-light shoots or sports in less that bright sunlight, the noise issue probably won't come into play.
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Old Nov 21, 2007, 3:58 AM   #3
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the second part of my question, maybe not so clearly stated, was whether these relative "inexpensive" new superzooms are likely to give similar or better image quality than my "old"but at the time expensive canon s45.




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Old Nov 21, 2007, 6:26 AM   #4
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The S45 is a fine camera, and one of the best of its day.

What has changed since then is the resolution of the image sensor, the size of the display, and the ISO settings. There's a lot to be said for replacing your S45 with one of the newer digicams, but if you're happy with the S45, all anewer digicam has to offer toward image quality is resolution. Under similiar circumstances the S45 is likely to do as well as something newer, except for resolution.

If you find that you are constrained by the resolution, focal length, ISO settings, or display size of the S45, you would probably be happier with something newer.
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Old Nov 21, 2007, 8:53 AM   #5
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When I upgraded from a fuji A201 (I think) to an S2 IS, the picure quality was almost indistinguishable when comparing daylight shots.
If you only want daylight shots on auto and without the extra zoom, and dont want to make larger prints, you probably won't notice the difference.
The difference for me came in with all the extra features and options I had with the S2.

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Old Nov 21, 2007, 9:36 AM   #6
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the only reason I want to buy an addional camera is for the zoom, as I am likely to be in africa next year taking pictures of lions and cheetahs, hopefully keeping my distance. There will be no need to get into high ISO's, i.e nothing beyond 200.



thanks for the advice
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Old Nov 21, 2007, 12:10 PM   #7
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Not necessarily true. You may be shooting early morning, late afternoon when light is not good. Also for birds, etc. you may have lens fully extended so that you have small aperture, need fast shutter speed to capture movements. You will likely need as high an iso as you can get under those conditions, in contrast to bright sunlight.

SLK
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Old Nov 21, 2007, 3:17 PM   #8
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another illusion shattered, blasted, so,which one would do best in that respect ? (dare i ask)
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Old Nov 23, 2007, 2:29 AM   #9
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comparing reviews of canon s5 and s3, it appears that s3 is doing better with regards to this noise issue. Is that because that one doesn't try to squeeze as many pixels out of the same sensor? Would that apply to other camera's the same?
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Old Nov 23, 2007, 6:24 AM   #10
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wittetulp wrote:
Quote:
another illusion shattered, blasted, so,which one would do best in that respect ? (dare i ask)
It's not the camera :idea:

In poor light (i.e. @ dawn and dusk) you are allowed to use flash in nature - The animals wouldn't mind, with external flash fill your images will often come out better because of the resulting higher contrast and saturation. Like you I never use anything above ISO-400 and I do shoot a lot of wildlife in low-light...

My camera has excellent high ISO low-noise performance, but I have never use it. Remember photography is about capturing light, and when you have no light the image quality tend to be poor anyway.
-> You can create your own lighting with flash and more often than not the resulting images are always better so learn to control the lighting and don't rely on what the camera can do - I can use high ISO and image stabilisation to shoot a wedding for example, but I can bet you an experienced photographer with proper use of flash lighting and lower ISO will come out with the money making shots!
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