Tuesday, March 06, 2012

Which compact camera?

People often ask me which camera I recommend. I've often said "the cheapest Canon with optical stabilization will do most people very well". I've expanded a little, last week I wrote to Paul who had asked:

I would appreciate your comments/recommendation with regard to what Compact Digital Camera do you recommend me to buy?  I will use it for trips and probably end up having it inside my car to be used for those "moments". 

I answered:

If it’s not too big or expensive, my current favorite compact-ish camera is the Fuji X10. 
Smaller, but very capable, is the Canon S100. 
If you want cheaper, get any Canon compact, only make sure it has optical stabilization. 

After a little back and forth, he wrote today:

I just got the Canon S100.  I'm impressed: size, weight, overall quality and so far the photos are first rate.  I know nowadays is hard to be amazed by technology but WOW! ... how is it possible to manufacture and deliver this camera for less than $400?!
I had the intention of buying also the Fuji X10 because of their similar characteristics, but after using the Canon S100, I concluded that for the time being this is the perfect camera for me, and I can't imagine a better Price-Size-Weight-Quality relationship.
Thanks for recommending this camera. 

I agree, it’s an amazing camera. It pretty much has it all, in a tiny quality package. (It really is only cigarette-pack sized.) (If I remember right. It's been many years since I held a pack of cigarettes.) 
And it feels good in the hand too, even better than the S90 (for which I bought a grip). 

If you have this, you don’t need the Fuji X10, except if you do a lot of low-light work, or the small size of the Canon is fiddly to you. 

This is a testimonial not only to Canon's prowess, but to how far the camera industry has come, for today I would say that today it's actually hard to buy a camera which you won't be happy with, if only you've given a little thought to what size and capabilities you wanted.

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