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Old Jun 10, 2008, 10:07 PM   #1
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Would greatly appreciate some helpful advice. First I'm an novice, I do not use the manual settings just the auto setting. I use my camera for typical family pictures kids sports, partys, nothing fancy.

I usually purchase Canon cameras and have always been pleased.

I want to upgrade my Canon S2 to one of the following.

Canon S5 IS
Sony H9
Sony DSC H50

Steve lists both the S5 and H9 under the "best megazoom camera section"

Consumer Reports (July 2008 rates the H9 #1 best superzoom out of 11 cameras and the S5 at number 8?

CNET rates the S3 and S5 top 2 superzoom cameras and the H9 #8

Seen various complaints about H9 picture quality consistancy on the web (may be early models only?)

Bottom line for me is I want a reliable easy to use camera that takes excellent quality pictures and good video as well. The ability to take action sport shots is a nice plus too.

So which one is best for me???

Thanks for the help!



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Old Jun 10, 2008, 10:31 PM   #2
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Roll dice. With any of the three the photographer has more influence than the camera.
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Old Jun 10, 2008, 11:08 PM   #3
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I haven't read that specific Consumer Reports review, but in general, I would trust any reputable name over a Consumer Reports rating. I remember back in tha 90s, they did a comparison of cheaper sport coupes. They rated the Ford Probe GT as the worst expected reliability while the Maxda MX-6 got either the very best or next to the best expected reliability. I'm all for Japanese cars, but the Probe GT and the MX-6 were the same car build in the same factory.

My respect for Consumer Reports ended then and there. I will still flip through one from time to time, but they (at least at the time) rely heavily on past products rather than giving 100% honest and open-minded considerations of current products.

Having said that, I'm sure you'd be very well served with any of the three. If it were me, I'd probably go for the Canon.
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Old Jun 11, 2008, 4:51 AM   #4
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For Microwaves and Vacuum Cleaners, Consumer Reports is Gospel.

For AV and computers, ignore anything Consumer Reports has to say.
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Old Jun 11, 2008, 9:27 AM   #5
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TCav wrote:
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For Microwaves and Vacuum Cleaners, Consumer Reports is Gospel.

For AV and computers, ignore anything Consumer Reports has to say.
I'll expand on that a bit. Never use CU if the item is part of a hobby or a profession, be it a camera, a car, a computer, a vacuum cleaner, speaker systemsor whatever. Your criteria is likely to be different than theirs. On the other hand if you're buying an appliance, be it camera, a car, a computer, a vacuum cleaner or speaker systems then CU can be valuable.

An even more general rule whenreading test reports, be they Consumer Reports, Consumers Guide, Steve's Reviews or DP Reviewis evaluate that group's criteria and judgehow closely that criteria matches your needs. I also ask the question "Is the test/review based on any objective data?", if not it's just an opinion which may be educated or not.

Finally, don't go by just the ratings, read the whole review.

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Old Jun 12, 2008, 9:30 AM   #6
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I don't question the honesty of Consumer Reports, but when it comes to tech products, I strongly question its competancy.

Who reviews cameras for them - Joe and Mary who also test coffee and mattresses? In order to review tech products properly you need people who are hobbiests - the type who have 1000 posts to this forum, for example. If you're reviewing cell phones, you need different people than the ones who review laptops, or digital cameras. I'm sure Consumer Reports does not have specialized hobbiests for each type of tech product it reviews.
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Old Jun 13, 2008, 10:47 PM   #7
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Thanks for all the info, I have ruled out both Sony models after reading and comparing reviews on DP Review.

I'm strongly leaning towards the Canon the only thing holding me back is I would like to get 15X optical zoom. Is there a big difference between 12X and 15X or am I making more of it than it really is (remember I'm a novice, be kind).

I was excited when someone recomended the Panasonic FZ 18 which got similar ratings to the Canon and has 18X, until I read that the zoom fucntion does not work in movie mode, which is a must for me.

I agree about consumer reports not being able to judge all things with competence they were my lowest consideration.

Any news on a new Canon superzoom coming out soon???

Thanks again.
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Old Jun 14, 2008, 1:21 PM   #8
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PJWhooppie wrote:
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Thanks for all the info, I have ruled out both Sony models after reading and comparing reviews on DP Review.
Actually, the Review of the A350 on DPreview has been widely criticized.

An example of some of the criticism is thatthe continuous shot performance of the 14MP A350 while shooting in 'Live Mode', at 1.8 fps was called 'slovenly' (which, as a result of criticism, was changed to 'fairly relaxed'), while the 1.5 fps performance of the 10MP Canon XS (using the optical viewfinder, not 'Live View') was considered acceptable.

In addition, they described the battery performance as poor even though it did 410 14MP shots using 'Live View', while the Canon XSi only delivers 190-200 12MPshotsper battery charge while using 'Live View'.

(BTW, one of the major critics of the DPreview of the A350 posted his criticisms on his own web page, and someone hacked into it and destroyed it. See http://www.photoclubalpha.com/2008/0...of-a350-review )
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Old Jun 14, 2008, 2:18 PM   #9
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The Sony A350 was never on my list (too much camera for me).

In the end I decided on the Canon S5 IS as I prefer the display and memory, as well as the fact that it will be my 5th Canon digiatal camera and they have all worked flawlessly.

I hope to have the same experience with this as I did with my S2 IS.

Thank you for everyones feedback.

BTW I got it at BestBuy for $299.00 which was a price match to Circuit City's price. I could have saved maybe $20 on line but did not want to wait.
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Old Jun 25, 2008, 9:37 PM   #10
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Just a follow up. I'm extremely pleased with my Canon purchase. I have used it for several events and baseball games and it works great, I was impressed with the "burst" option for taking multiple fast action shots and the super macro is impressive too, it also takes great quality videos.

I bought it at Best Buy and when I got home noticed that the box said "made in China", so I went to Frys and their Canon S5 where the made in Japan models so I returned the other one to Best Buy. Frys matched the $299 price as well. It may not make a difference but evry Canon I have says made in Japan so I wanted to stick with a proven track record.

Another fantatic Canon product!

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