Compact Digital Camera Question

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by DrawnToLife, Nov 17, 2009.

  1. DrawnToLife macrumors regular

    Aug 17, 2009
    Alright, I'm getting a new compact camera to replace my old one (and it's time to, the old on had 3x Optical Zoom and was 5 MP). Anyways that's not the point.

    So, I'm here to ask a few questions.

    - As a preference (Only answer if you've used both brands), do you prefer Nikon or Canon cameras for compact cameras.

    - Which one is better? Higher shutter speed or More optical zoom?

    Alternatively, you can choose which of the two camera's I should get. (Canon SX200 IS vs Nikon Coolpix S640) As this point, I'm kind of leaning towards the Nikon, but I want some more opinions.
  2. zachsilvey macrumors 6502

    Feb 5, 2008
    Battle Ground
    You are just asking for a flame war. Both Canon and Nikon both make amazing cameras the best thing you can do is compare the low light performance of the cameras you are considering. The one thing you don't want to worry about is the resolution, in fact the lower the megapixels the better the change that the camera will perform well in low light conditions.
  3. DrawnToLife thread starter macrumors regular

    Aug 17, 2009
    They're both at 12 MP pixels, but my camera (Which is old) doesn't have as much functionality as I want it to. Imagine the brands aren't there then. And it's back to the original question.

    Should I get more optical zoom (With the added bonus of HD video (But you can't even zoom while shooting HD)) or get the one with the faster shutter speed.
  4. nutmac macrumors 68040

    Mar 30, 2004
    While Canon vs. Nikon is a heated topic in SLR, when it comes to compact P&S, Canon run circles around Nikon when it comes to overall image quality (particularly low light high ISO speed performance).

    That said, both cameras you mentioned, Canon SX200 and Nikon S640 are only so so cameras. The key thing to look for is pixel density, which is determined by the number of pixels over image sensor area. Larger the image sensor (e.g., SLR has a huge one) cleaner, better defined the image is, particularly under low amount of light.

    Among Canon, these models are PowerShot S90 and G11. Nikon does not have anything that comes even close to these two models.
  5. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California
    You can not compare company to company. You have to compare a specific model to a specific model.

    To answer your question I'd have to know about your intended subjects and what you do with the images (place on-line, print, ??) and if you do any post processing and your budget.

    It you just want to know which is the "best" compact camera I'd say "none of the above" I like the Leica D-LUX series
  6. DrawnToLife thread starter macrumors regular

    Aug 17, 2009
    Thanks. With all that in mind though, most of the time, I'll either be shooting in day time, or evening, but never dusk.

    Well, I'm not sure what to do. I know they both are okay cameras, but what I want is a point and shoot camera that is slim and can capture the moment before it's gone. (With my old camera, I've missed so many pictures it's kind of crazy.)

    I'm not sure what to do though. The S640 is half the size of the Canon and has a higher ISO than the Canon. The SX200 on the other hand zooms about 2.5 times farther in and shoots in HD, but it lacks the ability to zoom while taking videos.

    If you guys were in my shoes, what you do?

    I should have asked for a model comparison. My budget can afford both cameras, but I want to know which one would be a better choice. Right now, I'd probably be taking pictures then uploading them to Facebook and keeping them. (Possible using them with a digital picture frame.)
  7. kallisti macrumors 65816


    Apr 22, 2003
    While a higher ISO sounds like a good thing, it really shouldn't affect your purchase at all. P&S cameras have serious noise issues due to their small sensor size. Depending on the specific camera, you will see clearly visible image degradation (either noise or blurring from the camera's attempt to cancel out the noise) by ISO 800 (on some models even at ISO 200 or 400). Things get worse if you raise the ISO further. You are not likely to have a usable image at either camera's "max" ISO.

    As an example, here is a link to a cnet review of the Nikon Coolpix P90 (ISO comparison shots). While it isn't the same model as either of the two you are considering, this type of performance is typical for many P&S cameras (with a few notable exceptions).
  8. jackerin macrumors 6502a

    Jun 29, 2008
    I have an SX100 myself and I'm satisfied with it (even though I've been eyeing Canon's DSLRs). With that said, I'm not so fond of where canon is going with their latest P&S line; the SX200 has a max aperture of f3.4, which makes it a slower lens than its predecessor.

    While it was the superzoom that sold me on it, I've come to realize that there aren't so many situations that actually require it. If I were to remake the purchase I'd try to search out an older model high-end Ixus with the G-size sensor.
  9. svndmvn Guest

    Nov 6, 2007
    I've used both Nikon and Canon, both very good at taking pictures, I doubt you'd regret any of the two choices.
    I'd probably get the Nikon for the higher iso (not so much) and especially for the wider aperture.
    The canon has a larger screen even though the pixel count is the same, and a higher resolution and a probably better video capturing mode. While important, I really wouldn't shoot that many videos so it's up to you.
    Also, since you'd shoot jpegs, check out flickr for some samples, that could kind of help you.
  10. butterfly0fdoom macrumors 6502a

    Oct 17, 2007
    Camp Snoopy
    I shoot Nikon for SLR, but I would NEVER get a Nikon P&S. I had one before, and it was horrible. I played with a friend's new Coolpix, and it was horrible. The biggest problem with Nikons is the UI and just the functionality in general. It's slow and laggy; even a cameraphone is faster. Nikons aren't bad with image quality, but Canon just offers a superior overall package as far as P&S cameras go.
  11. DrawnToLife thread starter macrumors regular

    Aug 17, 2009
    Another problem I'm facing is that there are like no reviews from users about the camera. So, with that in mind, it's hard to know what the people say.

    Also, I read in a magazine today that the SX200 was the 8th best product of the year. But I don't know, the Nikon was more what I was looking for, but I can't find any stills taken with one. The best I could fine was a Youtube video, and the quality was okay in my opinion.

    Found a photographer on Flickr.
    The macro looks nice.
  12. Jaiden macrumors member

    Apr 6, 2008
    First up let me say that I am the worlds biggest Nikon SLR fanboy, so much so that just seeing someone using a Nikon makes me respect them just a little bit more (not really, but you get the point - I love Nikon).

    That being said, when it comes to Compact/Point and Shoot cameras, Cannon is dominating the market. They have cameras for all price ranges, and I just can't help but feel that they are more experienced with making the little P&S that consumers love. Sure, Nikon has the Coolpix (Not that its a bad range), but for quality and service Canon is probably the way to go. Besides. Coolpix. Is a 12 year old running the name department over there or something?
  13. DrawnToLife thread starter macrumors regular

    Aug 17, 2009
    Name doesn't really matter to me (But yes, it's kind of childish). You know, after comparing the two cameras, looking at reviews, and taking into account what all of you are saying, I think I'm going to go with the Nikon.

    Look, I know that all of you have said that the SX200 was better and Canon would be better for a point and shoot, but for what I'm probably going to use it for, I think that I'm going to go with the S640. I hope I won't regret it.

    Thanks guys.

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