Canon S90 or Canon G11

Oct 8th, 2009, 10:12 AM
  #1  
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Canon S90 or Canon G11

Hi

I figured I'd ask the question here, expecting that we have some serious photographers here (gotta take photos of all those trips, you know!)

I'm shopping for a new P&S camera to carry when I just don't feel like carrying my "big guns" (the DSLR and accoutrements) and which will take high quality photos. Manual controls are a must. I'd like to stay with Canons, although I have scoped out the Leica and Panasonic P&S out now - very nice (and both are the same camera, just rebranded).

My current P&S (Canon SD800IS) is a decent camera, but it's already 2+ years old and the technology keeps getting better. I also note that while it can take marvelous photos (see below) it is not consistent in that regard - mostly due to a little softness. I want something to bridge that gap but also be small enough to carry around without feeling the need to babysit a nice camera/big lens. (My lenses are bigger than my P&S).

I was poised to buy a G10... then the announcement of both the G11 and the S90 came out and DARN IT it's a tough call now. I would have snapped up the G11 had it not been for the S90. I think both are still on pre-order status...

A few of my 800IS photos - not bad, but still not a DSLR:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/skywalkerbeth/519717939/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/skywalkerbeth/703949307/

So for you Canonites out there.. which Canon would you buy and why? Thanks!
flygirl is offline  
Oct 8th, 2009, 12:03 PM
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This is not the answer you are looking for but I would buy the G10. I need to shoot raw and need at least 12mp.

That being said, how wide and long are the lenses in these two cameras. Which one has more manual controls? Do they have IS? Which one is lighter?

I think if you go with the G11 it will keep its value longer. The G series has a good rep and appears to be in demand.

For what it's worth.

Gail
grosenb is offline  
Oct 8th, 2009, 01:59 PM
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Both the S90 and G11 support the RAW format, but I'd go for the G11. It looks to be a bit bulkier and more expensive, but as grosenb pointed out, the G series does hold its value nicely, and the G series has a lot of high-end features, including support for external flash. Also, the G11 has an articulating screen, and the lower number of megapixels compared to the G10 (G11 has 10mp - G10 has 14.7mp) is actually a good thing for these small image sensor cameras; less noise.

Also, you may want to take a look at the Panasonic Lumix LX3, it is a very nice camera in this class. I know you're a dedicated Canon user (so am I), but I recently bought my 1st Panasonic camera (chose the FZ-35/38 over the SX20-IS) and I'm quite happy with the choice. In this class of cameras, Panasonic is making a strong challenge to Canon, so you might want to check into that option.
griz_fan is offline  
Oct 9th, 2009, 04:29 AM
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Gail, what attracts me to the S90 is the F2.0 they advertise on it but I think that is at the widest angle. Both are fully manual, both have RAW. I like that the S90 is as small as the P&S I've been using.

The articulating LCD on the G11 is interesting but I'd be worried about its longevity. The viewfinder is a non-issue, for all that I prefer to use a viewfinder.. on non-SLR camera they are useless. They are off center and don't show the whole scene so I use the LCD to compose anyway.

Griz, I know what you mean about the high end features... sigh. The thing is, I have the DSLR already which means if I expect to take photos that require a bit more prep work I'd just take that. The sensor on the S90 is the same as the G11. What would make the G11 IQ better if the sensor is the same?

The LX3 was the one I reviewed, along with its twin Leica... it IS very tempting... I just haven't taken it out for testing. I understand they are tough to come by now and a replacement is out soon - which will cause buyer's remorse I just know it..

What may tip the balance right now is this thread, a user bought it to test only and quite likes it.

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/re...ssage=33283099
flygirl is offline  
Oct 9th, 2009, 04:46 AM
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ps. thank you for your replies....
flygirl is offline  
Oct 9th, 2009, 05:22 AM
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I've got a a Powershot G9 (and previously had a G2 and an S3) - the G series Powershots have been very good and have all the manual cotrols you need. Earlier this year I progressed and moved from Canon to the Panasonic G1, micro four-thirds camera. This is also a great camera and much lighter than a conventional DSLR which for various reasons, I find to heavy and bulky to use. I still however use the G9 too, as it is light, small and easy to carry and produces good shots - I still use it a lot for easy macro shots.

I am also tempted by the G11 as a second camera. If it lives up to the promise of better performance at higher ISOs it could be very useful indeed. Don't worry about the articulated screen - these are quite robust and very useful - the G2, S3 and my new G1 all have them. The screen is great for awkward angle shots - e.g. you cna take a shot at ground level without having to lie on your stomach.
Maria_H is offline  
Oct 9th, 2009, 06:12 AM
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Maria, thanks.

If both cameras have the same sensor, why does the G11 have better high ISO performance than the S90? I've read this a number of times - not sure why that is...

I rarely change my ISO, preferring to use a tripod at that point or at least a steady surface. But ISO is useful when you can only take handheld photos...
flygirl is offline  
Oct 9th, 2009, 06:32 AM
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I haven't really looked at the S90, so didn't realise it has the same sensor - I don't know what they have done to improve the ISO performance. I will be interested to see DPreview's full review of the cameras, once released. They have some sample shots from the G11 that look good. It's useful to have the option of being able to use the higher ISO when it's not practical to use a tripod or if you don't want to use a slow shutter speed, e.g. to capture action in lower light.

You have some great pictures on Flickr, by the way!
Maria_H is offline  
Oct 10th, 2009, 04:32 AM
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Maria, you have absolutely wonderful pictures! I really enjoyed your flickr photos, thank you for commenting on mine. They are so crisp and clear, and just beautiful. You have a real talent for composition too. If you took that hummingbird with the G9, I'm going to regret what I am about to say:

I got the S90. I'm still not sure, but I did decide (scratch your head on that one!). I called Best Buy Thursday night, they had it in stock but the guy answering didn't know about the G11. I just asked him to hold an S90 for me. When I got there last night, I looked at both... I like the G11 and may yet poke around and watch for reviews because I have 14 days to return this to BB with a restocking fee... but I think I'm really going to like the S90. It's almost as small as my SD800IS. The LCD is a lot bigger, and it weighs roughly the same as the 800. It has fully manual controls (albeit menu-driven if I had to guess - I just put the battery in so I haven't tried it out yet) and RAW (not that I have learned how to use RAW yet... including the processing needed).

I will say the G11 felt a little more like holding an SLR, but, the viewfinder I thought was utterly useless and in fact a little distorted based on a quick peek in BB. It's close enough for hand grenades, though, I suppose, and especially when you just want to make sure the subject is in the photo and you can't see the LCD.

At the end of the day IQ will rule and I'll play with it and see. The LCD is so shiny and clean right now, I hate to touch it and get it all smudged!
flygirl is offline  
Oct 11th, 2009, 08:57 AM
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Thanks for your comments! My humming bird shots were taken with the Panasonic G1 but my shots before March and some more recent macros were taken with the G9. The G10 and I assume G11 are both bigger than the G9. It's viewfinder is also useless but I have always used the screen instead, which is excellent. Will keep an eye out for your S90 pictures on Flickr - I hope it does the job for you.
Maria_H is offline  
Nov 2nd, 2009, 03:43 AM
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FYI to all who may have been interested in the two cameras:

I like the S90. I'm still going to take the DSLR for the photos I really want to be special, but, for many uses this does a great job. One thing that is difficult with a small sensor camera is bokeh, but this one has made a lot of progress in that regard.

I did have to exchange it for another one, as I noticed a large black spot in the middle of the screen (shortly after arriving in London, grrr). It was either on the sensor or the lens, which as you know can't be fixed easily in a P&S.

Here are a few photos from that trip. If you look at it right now there will only be a few, but as the week progresses I'll have more online.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/skywalk...26988975/show/
flygirl is offline  
Nov 2nd, 2009, 09:04 AM
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Great pictures! I'll be back later to check out more!
irishface is offline  
Nov 3rd, 2009, 05:29 AM
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Why thank you!

I still have to finish my other trip report, the one with my Dad. Hopefully in the next day or two I will have the last installment up!
flygirl is offline  
Nov 7th, 2009, 05:40 AM
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Flygirl, I have spent a couple of days looking at your pictures on Flickr. They are absolutely stunning. Someone commented, "Damn, I wish I had taken this picture!" I agree 100% and want to add, "Damn! I wish that I had been there!"
irishface is offline  
Nov 8th, 2009, 04:07 AM
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irishface, thank you, and I'm flattered you took the time to go through the others too.

I'm getting quite a lot up on flickr these days. It's prompting me to finally write some trip reports! Still working on finalizing Dad's - I've been spending a lot of time making him a book of memories from the trip this past week.
flygirl is offline  
Nov 8th, 2009, 05:23 AM
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I have a G 10 and would love to have a G 11 but mine is alas only a year old....... You will love it!
Gaia is offline  
Nov 8th, 2009, 05:49 AM
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I recenty got the CanonS90 on a holiday in Philly to see Bruce Springsteen. All I can say it is a brilliant camera and well worth the the money . Brilliant lens takes razor sharp images etc
Here are some sample pic I have taken

http://www.flickr.com/photos/6413431...08836/sizes/l/
http://www.flickr.com/photos/6413431...91944/sizes/l/
http://www.flickr.com/photos/dingle-...01401/sizes/l/
http://www.flickr.com/photos/dingle-...61780/sizes/l/
http://www.flickr.com/photos/dingle-...263712/sizes/l
http://www.flickr.com/photos/dingle-...04643/sizes/l/
heyjude999 is offline  

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