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leonardobarreto.com
December 19th, 2009, 06:29 AM
I was looking for a forum about Digital Range Finders --it is the way of the future, ant present with the New Digital Pen by Olympus and the Panasonic mirror-less [some with some without range finder]

And since this little camera gets close to DSLR's like the Nikon D300 -at least some reviewers compare it to cameras in that range-, and has more controls than some entry level DSLR's, I am risking it and posting here. [Asher can move my post as is his custom if necessary/

http://www.adorama.com/images/Large/ICAG11.jpg

So, the question is: Anything you want to say about this camera before I go to NY and get one the first week of January 2010 --( I think I will probably order it before so when I get to my apartment I don't even have to go to Adorama to get it )

After and if i get it I will post all my impressions and images here in this thread.

So, go ahead, I will give you the first word.

Ken Tanaka
December 19th, 2009, 11:30 AM
Hi Leonardo,
Well there are plenty of formal reviews of the G11 out there to keep you busy. As I've been marching right along with Canon's G series since the G7 I naturally grabbed one of these when it was released. No, it's not a Leica M8 or M9...any comparisons to rangefinder cameras are imaginative fiction. But it's a very good little camera. My main complaint is that it's become just a bit too bloated with the introduction of that LCD hinge.

But before you spring for a G11....

Take a hard look at Canon's new Powershot S90, introduced at the same time as the G11. It's completely stolen the G11's show for me. Exactly the same sensor as the G11. The same Digic processor version. VERY small, but very manageable manual controls. In fact, it introduces something new: a lens ring control that can be set to control various setting depending on mode and your preferences. It's an excellent high-ISO performer (same as G11), and easily fits in a shirt pocket (not same as G11). Excellent high-res LCD, actually slightly larger than the G11's slightly downsized, but articulating, LCD. Yes, it also shoots RAW, like the G11. No, it doesn't have an optical VF...as if the G11's is usable? I used the Powershot S90 exclusively during a full week traveling in NY, Philly, and DC this month and it became one of my new best friends.

If you're going to be shopping at B&H in NY you owe it to yourself to take a look at the S90 before you make a decision.

leonardobarreto.com
December 19th, 2009, 03:06 PM
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/images/largeimages/643178.jpg

Ken: Thanks, I have read -I think- all major reviews of the G11, since I read reviews of cameras I will never buy, when I am actually shopping, I obsess a bit.

You have a good suggestion, lets compare the two on paper

LCD

3.0" LCD - 461,000 dots of resolution is Good. But I am not in to big LCD's.

I prefer G11's that is a bis smaller than that, because I can switch it in to the metal side and not have to worry about it ever braking or getting dirty...

28-105mm f/2.0-4.9 against G11 f/2.8-4.5 (35mm film equivalent: 28-140mm)

I would go with G11 because of the 140mm. [I wish the G11 had a f/2 AND 140mm, but is is a bit faster at the tele end, and considering that it is a longer tele, a f/4.9 105mm against a f/4.5 140mm ...

SIZE

Personally I want a camera that is a small, but not as small as the S90 seams to be, so in terms of size I prefer the G11 to be able to hold it better, more weight, more stability, and I am looking for a more robust camera...

I used to have a camera by Oly that worked really well for me and I miss it http://a.img-dpreview.com/reviews/OlympusC5050Z/Images/allroundview-001.jpgI think that it was in the family of the C5050Z

The optical view finder ... it is small, but it is there, and you can save half the juice by shooting optically alone. I remember using the finder on my that Olympus C5050Z and it is perfect for some circumstances when you are at a very dusty, sunny crowded place and want to hold the camera at eye level...

I also want to use UV and Polarizer lenses and be able to make the camera absolutely robust for when on a "mission"

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/images/items/587453.jpg

So the G11 is probably the camera that may give me all of that...

The one question remaining is if I should get in to the Micro 4/3 system and if yes, this would probably be the moment...

thanks

Asher Kelman
December 19th, 2009, 03:33 PM
Leonardo,

If you have need to photograph scenes with flash, the G11 will be a marvel since it can deliver the most sophisticated lighting by control of 3 sets of flashes. not many digicams can do that. It also has the benefit of the extended zoom length of 140mm.

For me, however, I've always loved the smooth pocketability of the S series and as a low light shooter, the f 2.0 is a great advantage.

If one can use just one focal length, however, at 35mm the Leica X1 is a great fine luxury as is the Ricoh GXR at 50mm. Both have APS-C size chips. The GXR, with that one lens, to me is the finest small camera I have used.

I simply overlap adjacent frames for wide angle. For tele I can use the G10 I already own!

Asher

leonardobarreto.com
December 19th, 2009, 05:58 PM
Leonardo,

If you have need to photograph scenes with flash, the G11 will be a marvel since it can deliver the most sophisticated lighting by control of 3 sets of flashes. not many digicams can do that. It also has the benefit of the extended zoom length of 140mm.

For me, however, I've always loved the smooth pocketability of the S series and as a low light shooter, the f 2.0 is a great advantage.

If one can use just one focal length, however, at 35mm the Leica X1 is a great fine luxury as is the Ricoh GXR at 50mm. Both have APS-C size chips. The GXR, with that one lens, to me is the finest small camera I have used.

I simply overlap adjacent frames for wide angle. For tele I can use the G10 I already own!

Asher

Asher, Thank you for the info about flash, I have not seen that in any review -so far-, and it is interesting. I am thinking on getting me this flash http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?O=ProductDetail&A=showItemLargeImage&Q=&sku=616667&is=USA Full E-TTL II/ E-TTL / Two 1.5-Volt "AA" batteries (alkaline, lithium, NiMH or NiCad) // 5.1 oz (145g) // http://www.bhphotovideo.com/images/largeimages/616667.jpg

I also read that the in camera flash is robust for its class of camera.

On the Leica X1, The Elmarit is not a fixed focal length (equivalent to) 35mm. [It is a 24mm and the sensor "crop factor" is x1.5]

I would love a 28mm f/2. I used to have a 28mm Nikon point and shoot in the times before digital and it was a perfect snap shooter. The thing I don't like of the Leica --well, besides the $2,000.000.00 price-- is the exposed lens with no hood.

I don't understand why people don't love hoods the way I do. It is the one thing I can't resist from a Leica. That square hood telling you that: "this is NOT a zoom, and yes, this is a 20mm or 28mm fast Leica prime lens".

This X1 camera has everything except that. I know, you expect them to fold in such a way that the half inch of the lens does't get in the way of your shirt pocket. Yea, but a serious photographer wants his camera lens deployed always, and his camera hangs from his neck. No serious photographer doesn't even use a lens cap. Am I old fashion and exaggerated? I mean, the camera is much smaller than a small Leica. Can't they let the lens hang out please???

If I was interested in the X1 I would go for the PANASONIC GF1 with http://www.bhphotovideo.com/images/images345x345/651751.jpg the well-received-by-reviewers Lumix 20mm f/1.7

It is 40mm equivalent and faster than the X1.
The advantage being that you can change it with a general photography zoom lens in case needed or shoot images at a concert with this fast lens.

Also you can ad a FILTER & HOOD [sorry for raising my voice there lol]

It seams that the Olympus (Pen) EP1 is way faster than Leica X1 and that Panasonic Gf1 is faster than the Pen, I mean in terms of general response not necessarily shutter lag, but including focusing.

I think that G11 is also not as fast as GF1, and not as noise-less at high ISO...

Ken Tanaka
December 19th, 2009, 09:45 PM
Suit yourself. You asked for opinions and that's what I gave. You've obviously given this thought...perhaps too much thought...and have assembled lots of on-paper facts. All I can say is that I own both cameras and am getting much more from the S90 than the G11, contrary to what I expected, too.

FWIW, Canon has a fun little (Agency) VII Gallery (http://www.usa.canon.com/dlc/controller?act=GetArticleAct&articleID=2726&WT.mc_id=C126280#home) highlighting the S90, G11 and 7D.

Enjoy whatever you choose! After all, that's the core objective.

Asher Kelman
December 20th, 2009, 12:15 AM
Ken,

Aren't these cameras really very different personalities. The S90 serves the discrete carry with you always need and for that, the f2.0 is a great extra for available light shots. The G11, is in a way a light weight but very capable camera for more formal work with the whole magnificent capability of added flash.

For me, after the experience with the G10 and the reality that I've never once used the flash shoe, there's no reason not to choose the S90 with the programmable lens ring and the extra low light capability.

Asher

leonardobarreto.com
December 20th, 2009, 04:10 AM
I think that you are correct, this are two different concepts that don't really overlap. I would like to have a flash shoe and an optical finder. I do understand why people would trada portability for thouse.

A bigger camera is more difficult to loose in a big house....

leonardobarreto.com
December 20th, 2009, 07:37 AM
http://i2.cc-inc.com/prod/7967000/7967961_lg.jpg

One more question.

Any suggestion on SD cards? for example this 8G for $15 sounds incredible ...

http://www.macmall.com/p/A-DATA-Technology-Secure-Digital-%28SD%29-Memory/product~dpno~7967961~pdp.fjbfghc

Bart_van_der_Wolf
December 20th, 2009, 08:08 AM
One more question.

Any suggestion on SD cards?

Hi Leonardo,

All I can say is that I only use Sandisk cards, and I've never had an issue with them in several different (Canon) cameras. Lexar used to have issues with Canon cameras, but I'm not sure if that has been resolved fully.

Important to know is that most card brands come from the same production lines (there are only a few manufacturers), but there is a selection made on quality prior to branding. AFAIK Sandisk is one of the large producers, and they get to 'handpick' their cards from their own production line.

For modern cameras your probably best of to also look for the SDHC version of cards, the high capacity needs to be supported by the camera's firmware though.

Cheers,
Bart

leonardobarreto.com
December 20th, 2009, 09:14 AM
Thanks. That helps a lot

:-|

Asher Kelman
December 20th, 2009, 12:45 PM
I think that you are correct, this are two different concepts that don't really overlap. I would like to have a flash shoe and an optical finder. I do understand why people would trada portability for thouse.

A bigger camera is more difficult to loose in a big house....
Leonardo,

Why do you think Ken has both the S90 and the G11? They are a very different character. I find that the more diminutive the camera, the less perception there is of an intrusion by you the photographer. The S90 is smooth, rounded, small, dark and so very inconspicuous. It can be noticed but is readily dismissed as an insignificant family camera. The G11 looks muscular and more definitive. While not as impressive as a DSLR, it certainly looks more serious. So the attitude of the subjects might well be different.

Asher

Ken Tanaka
December 20th, 2009, 03:02 PM
In practical terms I'm only interested in what I can produce with a camera and, to that end, how it feels and operates. Honestly, if I'd known how good the S90 was going to be I would certainly have saved the additional $100 and skipped the G11. The S90 does pretty much everything I need and want from a small / small sensor camera.

A few Powershot S90 samples, captured on the streets of New York and Washington D.C., for those interested but not yet decided.

Aside from slight crops and gentle tonal adjustments, these are pretty much straight out the camera.

http://www.pbase.com/tanakak/image/120450116.jpg
ISO 200 (from RAW)

http://www.pbase.com/image/120449830.jpg
ISO 800 (from LF JPG)

http://www.pbase.com/image/120450012.jpg
ISO 800 (from LF JPG)

http://www.pbase.com/image/120450310.jpg
ISO 160 (from RAW)

leonardobarreto.com
December 20th, 2009, 05:20 PM
ken, this are indeed good images, i wonder if the g11 will do a lesser job

Ken Tanaka
December 20th, 2009, 05:42 PM
ken, this are indeed good images, i wonder if the g11 will do a lesser job

No, it will just do it bigger. "Is that a G11 in your pocket or ..."

I'm sure you'll be happy with the G11.

leonardobarreto.com
December 20th, 2009, 06:00 PM
No, it will just do it bigger. "Is that a G11 in your pocket or ..."

I'm sure you'll be happy with the G11.

LOL !

Bigger is good / or I am ok with the size. I wish I had the f/2 dough

Asher Kelman
December 20th, 2009, 07:15 PM
ken, this are indeed good images, i wonder if the g11 will do a lesser job
Leonardo,

They both share the same chip! The S90, unlike my earlier versions of this series does not depend on s sliding door in front of the lens. Instead, like the G10 and G11, the lens is withdrawn into the camera body when it's turned off and a cover moves in place. There was a problem some had with the earlier S models where the sliding door got stuck. That to me was the excuse to go up to the next and newest model.

I have just looked at the S90 and it is one handsome camera. I use my G10 with the synthetic sound switched of, so it's essentially silent in operation. You can do that with the G11 and S90.

Asher

Cedric MASSOULIER
December 23rd, 2009, 07:54 AM
Hi,

I finally decided to sell the Canon G11 i had bought in november...

Why ? Because after enthusiastic beginnings - when i discovered it - , i finally let it unused and some weeks and dust later, i realised it was not for me.

Main reasons of my decision :

1. Yes, G11 delivers superb image quality, especially in low iso, with accurate colors and very good sharpness and contrast. In-camera jpegs are particularly goods and RAW files are excellent. But, after all, this camera remains a small-sensor digicam, which means no real depth-of-field management and short dynamics (highligths rendering is average). I like subtile bokeh and smooth transitions, it's a pity...

2. Yes, G11 has an excellent ergonomic body with analog controls. IMHO, that is THE point of supremacy of this digicam : real usefull controls to manage sensibility and capture parameters, an average size which gives a good handle, a medium weight, mobile LCD screen... You can really drive the G11 to capture pictures as a DSLR... but it's not as fast as the cheapest DSLR of the market. Very hard to react to a sudden scene : time to switch on the camera, time for zoom lens to be effective, time to focus, shutter lag... Again, it's still a small-sensor compact camera we have here, definitively slow...

3. No, G11 is not a discrete camera ! I don't know why, but all the time i used the G11, people were looking at me in the street... People's eyes seemed to be attracted by this medium-sized digicam with a mobile screen, i didn't understand the reason why... Very strange. I am quieter with my huge Zeiss Distagon 35 mounted on my heavy Nikon D700 ! It was really a surprise for me, i didn't expect that... Oh yes, with 140mm maximal focal length it was possible to capture distant scenes, due to this excellent and versatile zoom lens. But very hard to approach people, whereas it's something i use to do.

4. Last reason : my wife didn't like it and prefered to keep Lumix LX3... which is very close to this seemingly excellent S90. I must admit that today, if i had to choice again a digicam, i think i would try it, it seems to be a LX3-like but with Canon ergonomics excellence.

That was the end of my second small-sensor trial. First one was Lumix LX3 that i quickly found too familial and consumer-oriented, i let it to my wife for holidays and children...

I am now involved in new adventures with a used Leica M8 but that's another story... ;)

leonardobarreto.com
December 23rd, 2009, 01:56 PM
Cedric,

I guess you never know until you have the camera. I hope I get a different experience.

As I mentioned before, I had a good experience with a large D viewfinder camera before, it was the Z4040C or similar. I am sure that it was much slower than this Canon.

I have and love my D300, but I don't know why there are no prime DX lenses other than 30mm. For example 12mm, 18mm ? my SD 12-24 F4 Tokina lens is very good, but heavy and big.

This camera's mission will be to document the family and take on travels. The D300 is just too much for going through Miami airport if you consider that I also want to take my laptop. (a 13" MacBook Pro has made that side much easier from an earlier 15" ).

So, for traveling it will be the 13" MacBook Pro + Canon G11 and the 2 AA battery strobe. No extra lenses...

The first test for the G11 will be to upload images to my Stock agency Alamy.com They have a very strict IQ and if it passes then I can keep on submitting ...

Eventually I see myself with a Four Thirds Micro body and lenses, but they also have not announced any 20mm or 28mm equivalent primes, have they?

I will definitively keep you posted, and by the way, my G11 is being shipped as we speak ...

Cedric MASSOULIER
December 24th, 2009, 02:24 AM
Hi Leonardo,

One thing is sure : choices and needs are specific to each photographer ;)
There's no a global truth about stuff, the only real test is to use it during a long enough time and to check the results.

G11 remains an excellent camera, with the best IQ you can find for such a small-sensor body, very much better than one of my Lumix LX3. Results are really great.

But i need a very fast camera which reacts immediately... i also need a system which allows me to get fine depth of field and smooth backgrounds when i want. I already own a fantastic DSLR combination : Nikon D700 with prime Zeiss lenses. It's really good, comfortable and usefull... but it's also really too big and too heavy to carry it everyday and in every situation.

At the moment, Leica M are the best cameras i found for my everyday need and use. But i know some photographers who do excellent work and who couldn't use a Leica M due to its restrictions... My only problem now is the expensiveness of Leica stuff... So i have to reduce other stuff that i don't really use.

So G11 is not for me. More exactly : small-sensor cameras are not for me and it's not a good idea to invest in such an advanced body when i know it won't be able to fully satisfy me. But that's MY need and MY choice. ;)

leonardobarreto.com
December 24th, 2009, 08:25 AM
The perfect camera is the one that you sand the black paint of and begin to see the metal. And that takes a long time. I don't think it even happens a lot lately with photographers upgrading so often.

Then there are the cameras you know are not going to be practical but you want them anyway.

I recently got a Hasselblad with an 80mm and a Distagon 50mm on eBay that I must admit have yet to begin using. It is compact system, but sooooo heavy.

Then there are other systems that you have and don't want to let go --like my PhaseOne P25/AFD with a huge sensel size, probably the largest there is--,

The interesting part is that having the G11 will allow me to bring the Hasselblad on my New York trip ....