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Old Dec 22, 2004, 6:49 PM   #1
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Hi everyone, I need help as I amTORN between two cameras, the Canon Powershot A95 and Canon Powershot SD300 ELPH. First of all, they're both the same price right now ($469cdn)and I can't afford any higher.


My pros and cons logic:
Canon Powershot A95 (5.0mp):
Pro - AA batteries (easily found worldwide), flip out LCD (LOVE), good hand grip, full manual controls, many scene modes.
Con - slightly bulky size, can only record max 30 second movies in low quality.

Canon Powershot SD300 (4.0mp):
Pro - steel body (durable), larger LCD (2 compare to 1.5 in A95), extremely small and portable (important to me). Can record high quality movie only limited by storage capacity, powerful digital processor, fast shoot time, light sexy look.
Con - fixed LCD, not as much manual controls, lithium battery (i.e. if u get stranded can't use batteries straight off the shelf)

My problem is I want all the Canon A95 features, plus the SD300's movie shooting abilities in a smaller more portable package. The Canon SD300 has the super portable size which means I'll probably use it more, but won't allow me to experiment with pictures as much (no flip out LCD, less manual controls etc.). However, being a poor student I won't have money for a camcorder and the SD300 may be the closest I'll get. On the other hand, I hang out in small groups and the flip out LCD will let me take pics of me and other ppl without help, very important. In summary, I'm not sure if I should sacrifice portability or features....and reviews for both are raving, and this will be my first digital camera, despite doing a ton of research and trying them out in store (I liked the feel of both), I am torn. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

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Old Dec 22, 2004, 6:53 PM   #2
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I've never used either, but my friend has a sd300, and I looked up some info about it. And it's got no feature to allow you to manually select aperture and shutter speed. Actually, the sd300 is kind of too small for my liking...hard to hold steady maybe. I like bigger heavier cameras that you can hang onto, and hold real steady. That's why pro cameras aren't the size of a cellphone etc.

If you can...try to save up for a camera with flip LCD..or swivelling ones. They'll come in real handy..I guarantee it. Go for a camera that can record at least 3 minutes of movie..even at 320 x 200 resolution. 15 frames per second is 'ok'...but faster frame rate would make things way smoother. But even 15 frames per second .. well..it's not as bad as I first guessed it to be. Actually, it'd be nicer if camera companies make all movie mode cameras have movie storage capacity limited only by the memory size of the card. So right now..I guess that movie mode on a lot of cameras is nothing but a fun little novelty. In the future, maybe they'll manage to get both good quality and unlimited record time...but for that, you need a really big memory card ... which is just fine, since sometimes we may really want to make a big movie!
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Old Dec 22, 2004, 8:41 PM   #3
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A95 is compact while SD300 is ultra-compact... General comments that apply to ultra-compacts vs compacts apply here...

Basically, like most ultra-compacts, SD300 is highly portable, stylish, more rugged, has larger LCD, etc... but like most compacts, the A95 has more manual features, better control, etc...

If you care about have some control over the camera (i.e. amateur photographer) then ultra-compacts are next to useless since they offer almost no control. In that case, I would go with the A95 (out of these two)... but if you just want a camera that can take pics and is portable, and don't care about manual features (like being able to control the shutter speed or something) then SD300 is better...

If you want a camera that is sort of in the middle between these, consider something like the Sony W1. It is neither as good as the A95 in terms of compact cameras nor is it as good as the SD300 in terms of ultra-compact cameras. But it's somewherei n the middle and I like it (I don't have it though)...

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Old Dec 22, 2004, 8:42 PM   #4
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Kenny_Leong wrote:
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Actually, it'd be nicer if camera companies make all movie mode cameras have movie storage capacity limited only by the memory size of the card.
I have no idea why companies don't do that... Canon, especially, is notorious for limiting video in good cameras...
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Old Dec 22, 2004, 11:10 PM   #5
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Kenny_Leong wrote:
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If you can...try to save up for a camera with flip LCD..or swivelling ones. They'll come in real handy..I guarantee it. Go for a camera that can record at least 3 minutes of movie..even at 320 x 200 resolution.
The Canon powershot A95 HAS a flip out swivelling LCD...that's what's so attractive to me about it since I have been wanting a flip out LCD for a long time. Also, it has the 3 minutes movie recording capacity.....even if it's at low quality. I think the flip out LCD is probably going to make me lean towards this one....
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Old Dec 23, 2004, 12:38 PM   #6
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Any more advices? I'm still not sure, if anyone has personal experiences with either cam please share your experience....thanks!!
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Old Dec 23, 2004, 1:13 PM   #7
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i was looking at the same two cameras and decided on the SD300 because of the size.

i wasnt as interested in the manual features because being an owner of canons A80 i found that i didnt use the manual modes hardly at all. most of the pictures involved just setting the camera into full auto and taking the shot. as for the screen, my A80 had the swivel screen and about 95% of the time when i used it i just tucked it back into the camera body to take the shot ( just like any other camera ). i LOVE the lithium battery because now i dont have to deal with changing the [email protected] AA batteries as often. i have never bee able to wear a fully charged battery down in one day of heavy shooting, and since i have a spare battery, i do not worry.

the size allows me to just slide it into my pocket and bring it around without 'making it a production' to bring my camera anywhere. the SD300 cost me a little more than the A95 but i figured it was better to pay more for a camera that i would use alot more than pay for a camera that would sit around like a paperweight ( i have a dell PDA for that )
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Old Dec 23, 2004, 2:01 PM   #8
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Actually, I use AA's in my nikon 950. They last for ages....4 nimh rechargeable AA's. I have a spare set of AA's and 2 chargers. I like AA's because they're going to be around forever maybe, and there were times when I forgot to bring spare batteries with me, and the existing AA's weren't charged, and I just wanted to quickly take a couple of pictures quickly. So even though alkaline AA's have short life...I could still insert them into my camera to take those pictures that I needed with no problems. But with the nimh AA's...one set of 4 in my nikon 950 lasts for quite a long time. But anyhow..I also have a canon g6, and I just do the same thing...2 batteries and 2 chargers.

Whatever features you want in a camera really depend on what you're going to use it for. But for me, I'd rather pay more for a camera that's got a bit of weight and size, like a good quality paper weight, than a tiny feather weight. That's why pro cameras aren't the size of cellphones.

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Old Dec 23, 2004, 9:49 PM   #9
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lemondster, how are you finding the SD300 so far? I totally agree that the size is tempting, great to take anywhere. Have you tried out the movie mode and different scene modes yet? How many pics does one full lithium battery take? Is there a battery meter to indicate how much power's left? Dose the LCD screen gets scratched easy? Is it easy to take one hand shots given how tiny it is? I'd really appreciate any input you have!

Thanks in advance.


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Old Dec 30, 2004, 4:03 PM   #10
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I am having the same exact issue
Do I get the Canon A95 or the SD 300 ELPH?

The A95 has 5 megapixls and the flip lcd screen, excellent overall ratings, excellent print quality, good creative shooting modes, good grip to hold it, no lens cap, 12 ounces, 14ft flash range, 2 sec shot delay but it is heavier than other compacts, I have also read that the battery door is flmisy and that it does not have anti-shake as well as noticable red eye in photos. It also only supports USB 1.1, so I read. Also read that zoom is not very smooth.


The SD300 is small, fast, exccellent resolution & color, excellent macro mode. The bad points that I have read are flimsy battery door, poor quality LCD screen, flash underpowered, night shots blurry, very noisy in low light and red-eye is an issue.

What should be the deciging factor/ The SD300 has 4 megapixls and costs $400 while the A95 has 5 megapixls and cost $350 or that the SD300 is smaller and weighs alot less?

Any other thoughts on others who own either of these cameras? It does not seem that the A95 has a macro mode. Does it not take detailed close up photos?

Thanks!
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