Canon Powershot A710 IS, best for me?

Discussion in 'Notebooks & Mobile Devices' started by Olle P, Jan 29, 2007.

  1. Olle P

    Olle P Newbie

    I've been looking around for a new (digital) camera to replace most of those my family use right now. (A ~25 years old Chinon system camera, a very simple Konica compact camera, and an Olympus Camedia C-1.)
    The Olympus camera is slow like #### and have poor colour quality in it's grainy pictures.

    What I'd love to have is a camera that fulfil several contradicting demands...
    I realise I won't get that, so it has to be a compromise.

    Here's a list of desired features:
    • Compact size.
    • Point-and-shoot (for my wife).
    • Easy to use manual control settings (for me).
    • Fast from powerup (stand by) to exposure done.
    • Affordable price (~3,000 SEK retail in Sweden)
    • >= 5 Mpixel
    • Good optical zoom.
    • Decent wide angle, 28mm equivalent preferred.
    • Non-damaging file format. PNG is the best...
    • Economy in batteries and memory.
    • Optical viewfinder. ('cause it's faster than a display.)

    The best camera I've found this far is the Canon Powershot A710 IS. It can only save images in damaging jpeg though.

    Any experience with that camera?
    Do you know of any other camera that might fit fairly well with my list?

  2. Chai

    Chai Administrator Staff Member

    LOL, you seem to have very demanding requirements. I don't think a perfect camera exist.

    You always have to sacrifice something for something. I've not seen a completely featured compact point and shoot camera with all the features you have mentioned, especially PNG support.

    I've not heard of a camera capable of supporting PNG. It's most often TIFF or RAW format (manufacturer's proprietary raw format) for loseless picture files.
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2007
  3. Olle P

    Olle P Newbie

    I know that, and it's a pity.

    TIF -files are huge.
    RAW are slightly smaller, but close to nightmare to read properly.
    PNG is an open file format with lossless compression. All cameras could use it.

    The question remains: Are there any other, similar, cameras that have alluded me so far?

  4. Adrian Wong

    Adrian Wong Da Boss Staff Member

    Wow.. Do you really need a lossless compression format like PNG? :think:

    TBH, I don't think any consumer-grade camera will support such a format. :think:

    Why not consider a cheap DSLR? :think:
  5. Olle P

    Olle P Newbie

    I definitely want a lossless format to start with. That way I can control (and define) the amount of damage done in the post processing. Heavy cropping of the original and/or blow-ups of small details suffer heavily if the original is jpeg compressed.
    Any compression is a bonus, and not a primary concern.
    Three reasons:
    1) A "cheap" DSLR cost at least three times my budget.
    2) It doesn't properly satisfy my wife's mandatory demand for simple point and shoot.
    3) It's too bulky now that I have kids to take care of. My SLR camera bag has been replaced by a nursing bag of roughly the same size, shape and colour. (Slightly lighter than the camera though...)

  6. peaz

    peaz ARP Webmaster Staff Member

    TBH, and forgive me for being blunt as well, but the feature you want already exist. It's called the RAW format... it's even better than PNG because it's exactly what the CCD records. Plus, most RAW formats are compressed anyway. And since you want to control everything, using a propriety format should not be a show stopper now would it?

    Furthermore, if you've seen the output of highest JPEG quality setting on any modern day digital camera and still complain that it's not good enough as the starting point of your post processing, you're just being a perfectionist to the 0.000000000000000000000000000000000001%. 100000x that if the output is a A4 size print.

    Seriously, even I sometimes use the D70's JPEG format to cut short my post processing workflow. The format of the file isn't as important as the composition and the exposure settings. And fyi, i've printed as large as 12R from a JPEG file, processed also to a JPEG file. I don't see how damaging it is to the photo. in terms of bits, maybe... but in terms of the photos? Hardly....

    Now of course, we are talking about saving it at quality level 12 (if you're using photoshop), not 90% or 80% quality.
  7. Olle P

    Olle P Newbie

    I can't figure out why you guys are so hung up on that one little side notion of mine. I mentioned the file format exclusively because so far it's the most significant (but pretty small) argument I have against that camera.

    I'm only interested in finding out what camera will provide the best total package, within my financial limit. Therefore I just want more models to compare it to, without having to read all details about the 100 or so models that at first glance (name and price tag) can't be dismissed.
    I've checked Fuji F30: No optical finder, less zoom, better flash.

  8. zy

    zy Staff Member

    got to admit, your requirements are too perfect :mrgreen:

    here are some suggestions, but they do not meet many of your requirements

    Canon Digital IXUS 850 IS
    Sony T50
  9. Chai

    Chai Administrator Staff Member

    There are some other things that I would consider instead of PNG support, >5 MP, optical viewfinder. Like noise level, usable high ISO.

    RAW is far better than PNG, higher MP is pointless if it only enlarges rubbish pixels, and recent LCD are so fast, responsive and more accurate than optical viewfinder, far better than my old prosumer Sony F717.

    F30 is a fine choice. I would consider that if I'm buying a compact point and shoot.
  10. zy

    zy Staff Member

    skip optical view finders .. they are not accurate to begin with :mrgreen:

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