Canon S90: The Argument for Point & Shoot

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Ryan1524, Oct 31, 2009.

?

S90 or another SLR?

  1. Get the S90

    4 vote(s)
    28.6%
  2. Get a cheaper/lesser Point & Shoot

    1 vote(s)
    7.1%
  3. Get an even cheaper Point & Shoot AND another SLR

    3 vote(s)
    21.4%
  4. Get more glass

    6 vote(s)
    42.9%
  1. Ryan1524 macrumors 65816

    Ryan1524

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2003
    Location:
    Canada GTA
    #1
    My D70s is feeling dated. I know I can still learn lots from it, but I want a new toy. However, one of the biggest drawbacks of an SLR is the size. I think I may learn more if I ALWAYS have a camera with me. In this case, the S90 wins big cause it's being hailed as one of the best quality P&S with decent ISO and speed (f2).

    Would you save money for a D300s or D700, or get an S90?

    My current setup:
    D70s
    SB-600
    -11-16mm f2.8
    -18-70mm f3.5-5.6
    -35mm f2
    -50mm f1.8
    -11-16mm f2.8
    -85mm f1.8

    90% of the time, I keep the camera in my bag/car with a 35mm and no flash. But it's not always with me. The iPhone 3Gs has a decent camera, but it's still behind a middling P&S, and lacks adjustment, ISO power, etc. I was considering 70-200 f2.8 or 17-55 f2.8 if I were to get another lens.
     
  2. pdxflint macrumors 68020

    pdxflint

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2006
    Location:
    Oregon coast
    #2
    If you get a p/s to continue to learn more, make sure you get one which will allow at least aperture preferred and shutter preferred modes, maybe manual also. Otherwise, compared to what you already have I'm not sure what you will learn, unless working within limits to try to make good photos is something that interests you. I do enjoy at times pulling the pocket p/s out to force me to think more about how to get something a bit better than a snapshot, which can be done. Maybe get something small you can stuff in your camera bag and pull out for video and grab shots, and carry when you don't want to tote the 'big guns.'

    On the DSLR front:

    Unless you need video, instead of a D300s, consider a D300 and save $500. The D300 is very similar to the D700 other than lacking full-frame and some high-ISO performance. But, it's not bad at 1600, and even 3200 shot in RAW and processed with NX2 for some noise reduction.

    And, instead of a 70-200f/2.8, get an 80-200f/2.8 AF (two ring) which they still offer new for a lot less. Great optics, no stabilization, and can get used in great condition for $700-750. That 80-200 focuses extremely quickly with my D300, and surprisingly fast even on my old D50 - I was not expecting that performance. Don't get the push-pull version because it's much slower AF, from what I've read.

    Anyway, these are just some thoughts to further confuse you... ;)
     
  3. Ryan1524 thread starter macrumors 65816

    Ryan1524

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2003
    Location:
    Canada GTA
    #3
    The Canon S90 has two control rings (like the SLR) to allow for custom adjustments which can be applied to aperture, shutter, exposure, ISO settings, etc. It also has the SAME sensor as the Canon G11, which is one step below an entry SLR. This is why I'm specifically considering the S90 and no other P/S.

    Review

    I considered the 80-200 AF for a while. But I think VR is a very important feature. I tend to leave the tripod at home and walk around with my camera, in which case, a couple stops lower would really help. But I realize that it's also double the price. :(
     
  4. ManhattanPrjct macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2008
    #4
    I tend to come from the school of "I'll get a new computercameracar when it either needs replacement or I need something that can do what my existing one doesn't do." Your D70s is old, but still probably takes fine pictures, and you have some good glass that gives you flexibility (to a point).

    I am not really sure what'd you'd learn from getting a P&S...unless you are really looking for convenience above all else. If that's the case, you should look at Canon's other compacts as well. I took an 880 to Asia earlier this year and was very impressed with the results.
     
  5. Ryan1524 thread starter macrumors 65816

    Ryan1524

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2003
    Location:
    Canada GTA
    #5
    It's 1 part about having a camera with me at all times and learning simply by having the tool with me. The other part is wanting a new toy.
     
  6. ManhattanPrjct macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2008
    #6
    In that case, go out and get a Leica!
    :D
     
  7. Ryan1524 thread starter macrumors 65816

    Ryan1524

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2003
    Location:
    Canada GTA
    #7
    LOL, I said a toy, not a long-term investment.
     
  8. jackerin macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2008
    Location:
    Finland
    #8
    They say the best camera is the one you always have with you... And since you already have a DSLR the S90 could be a good companion.

    You might also consider getting an earlier Ixus model, here there are still places that have cameras like the Ixus 980 is for 250€. There you have a G-sized sensor for a pretty good price...
     
  9. toxic macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2008
    #9
    any reason you're not considering m4/3? the GF1 is pretty close to a full-fledged SLR in a pretty portable form factor.
     
  10. Phrasikleia macrumors 601

    Phrasikleia

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2008
    Location:
    Over there------->
    #10
    The S90 may be small, but it's still significantly larger than your iPhone. Will you really bring it with you all the time, or will it languish in the car like your D70s? Even if you could fit it in your jeans pocket (which I doubt), would it mean you would then not be able to carry your iPhone?

    If you're really hungry to take photos, you'll find a way to carry even a whole backpack full of camera gear around with you. So I'm not swayed by the portability excuse.

    However, if you just want a new toy...go for it. Just be honest with yourself.
     
  11. dubels macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2006
    #11
    ^^ That is a good recommendation. When I first got my DSLR I found myself not taking it with me a lot because I found my smaller P&S easier to take with me. But after I got my lowepro Flipside 200 I found it a lot easier to travel with my DSLR. I eventually upgraded to a Kata DR 467 and it just fits my needs perfectly. I carry my D80 with a light lens and the rest of the bag can be used as a day pack. I even have my P&S in there for situations where I don't want to use my DSLR. But the bag is perfect because it has plenty of space for other stuff and its very light with a camera in it. When not using it for a camera bag I can take out the dividers and just use it as a day pack. But for situations like parties a P&S is going to win if your not wanting to lug around the DSLR. So in the end a P&S might not be a bad investment but a good bag might also be a wise investment.
     
  12. Phrasikleia macrumors 601

    Phrasikleia

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2008
    Location:
    Over there------->
    #12
    Yeah, a good bag can make a big difference. I'm using a LowePro Flipside 200 and love it. I have no qualms about taking a DSLR with me to a party, especially since parties tend to be low-light events. I no longer own a PnS camera and have no desire to buy one.
     
  13. Ryan1524 thread starter macrumors 65816

    Ryan1524

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2003
    Location:
    Canada GTA
    #13
    Do you find that it's better to have a bag that can carry everything, or a bag that can carry your favorite setup (at first)? I'm not even gonna go with the argument that we should only have one bag. I'm a firm believer in 'the right tool for the right job'.

    At the moment, I have a messenger bag that I like to have with me, and every now and then, the D70s and SB-600 lives there with a 35mm. But it's gonna be too cumbersome and awkward with anything like a 70-200, especially since there's no padding whatsoever. The 35mm is cheap and compact, the 70-200 is not.
     
  14. carlgo macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2006
    #14
    For all the reasons mentioned, think about a truly pocketable camera. You want one that, besides having good technical quality, is quick from concept to shutter. Auto mode is your friend when shooting candid, quick opportunity shots. People freeze up when you fiddle with all those stupid menus and modes, or the shot simply goes away.

    This kind of photography sacrifices a small amount of technical quality for an actual photo.

    Some people take their dslrs and a bag of lenses to parties and really everywhere they go, always have these with them? Not for everyone. I think most people would get better candid people photos with a cute little compact.
     
  15. Ryan1524 thread starter macrumors 65816

    Ryan1524

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2003
    Location:
    Canada GTA
    #15
    Yea, the SLR can be intimidating sometimes. I've resorted to having settings and bracketing that would allow me to occupy people's time as little as possible. More than 3 seconds holding still and you can see their smiles turning fake and forced.
     
  16. Dark Goob macrumors regular

    Dark Goob

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2007
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #16
    I work in a camera store so I play with these all day. The S90 is cool, but it's no DSLR replacement! The D70/D70s is really not that great, by today's standards; get yourself a D90 body for $900 tops. You don't need a D300/D300s at all... it's just a bigger, heavier camera which only makes sense if you're exclusively using it with weather-proof lenses like the 18-200 DX or 70-200 2.8 VR, etc. But with the lenses you have there is no sense to the D300/300s/700... the D90 is a *fabulous* camera, you will *love* it. It's a HUGE upgrade from the D70.

    And then you'll have enough $$ left over to buy an S90 also. Because you can't NOT have a point-and-shoot. I am playing with an S90 right now and they're pretty nice. Look, it's still a point-and-shoot camera... the noise is about one stop better (if that) compared with my old Canon Elph SD890IS from two years ago. It's got a nice wide lens, and can shoot RAW, and stuff, but the sensor is TINY and the lens is TINY and just does not have the optical quality of an SLR. It will kick an iPhone's butt into the next galaxy though, and that is the whole point!

    Here's what I have:

    Canon PowerShot Elph SD890is (5x zoom, 10 MP)
    -- Take to parties, dinner, night on the town, when my band plays gigs, etc
    -- Take when I go out shooting, so my GF has a camera to use ;p

    Olympus E-P1 w/14-42 ED, usually use with Nikkor non-AI 50mm f1.4 (MF only), or Zuiko Digital 40-150 ED w/FT->MFT adapter
    -- Take to more important/upscale parties, Blazer games (NBA), daytrips where I don't want the bulk of the SLR but still the quality.

    Olympus E-3 w/12-60 ED f2.8-4, 50-200 f2.8-3.5
    -- Take when I go out _shooting_ or on jobs

    OM Zuiko MF-only primes (use with adapters): 28mm f2.8, 50mm f3.5 Macro
    Nikkor MF-only primes (use with adapters): 500mm f8 Mirror, 50mm f1.4, 35mm f2.8

    Point being. Get a D90 and an S90. It rhymes, numerically. So it must have been meant to be for you.
     
  17. toxic macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2008
    #17
    if you are familiar with your camera and the technical side of photography, it will only take a wheel clicks to "fiddle" with the camera.

    a P&S is no replacement for an SLR. not even close - the sensor is simply too small. so again, consider micro 4/3.
     

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