Canon S1 IS vs Fujifilm S5500

Discussion in 'Fuji' started by John Ewing, Oct 14, 2004.

  1. John Ewing

    John Ewing Guest

    Any thoughts on the pros and cons of these two? Read some bad press on the
    Canon autofocus in low light but generally favourable comments on the image
    stabiliser performance. Fuji has a reasonbly priced wide angle lens.

    Not after pro quality results - just the best features for a medium compact
    at around $500 to $800 max.
    Previously had a Fujifilm 2800Zoom (until it was dropped) - it was a good
    starter for someone with my modest skills/knowledge.

    John Ewing, Oct 14, 2004
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  2. John Ewing

    Miro Guest

    I would rather have the G6 for the extra $50-$100.

    Let me assure you that you can learn more with a superior tool than you can
    ever expect to gain from a poor tool. If in doubt buy nothing and save up
    for a used DSLR or a new 300D.
    Miro, Oct 14, 2004
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  3. if you just want a good quality camera for happy snaps go for the S5500,
    otherwise the canon
    Sam @ Digital City, Oct 14, 2004
  4. John Ewing

    Justin Thyme Guest

    The fuji suffers terribly from chromatic abberations. If you can convince a
    store to take a sample shot with it (something with items with a fair amount
    of contrast between them) at the wide and tele end of the zoom, then look at
    it onscreen or printed at 8x10 and you will think the S5500 is a bucket of
    pus. You will have more purple than you can poke a stick at.
    The canon OTOH will produce beautiful pictures, and the IS is really helpful
    if you are trying to handhold with a fair amount of zoom in anything less
    than bright sunlight. The canon is let down a little by being only 3MP, but
    if you never enlarge bigger than 8x10 you won't be disadvantaged by that.
    The canon is about $200 more expensive than the fuji, but if you want
    something in similar price range to the fuji but much better lens quality,
    look at the kodak dx6490 (4mp, 10x, schneider lens) or the Olympus c765
    (4mp, 10x). both these cameras have wide angle adapters available, and are
    far better quality than the s5500. If your budget stretches to it the
    panasonic dmcfz10 is an excellent buy.
    Justin Thyme, Oct 14, 2004
  5. John Ewing

    Miro Guest

    happy snaps = crappy snaps.
    Miro, Oct 14, 2004
  6. John Ewing

    Witold Guest

    The Canon S1 IS is a well thought out camera with a lot of features, with
    almost DSLR-like accessibility to many of the controls. Once pre-focused,
    the shutter response seems to be quite fast.

    The S1's autofocus in low light isn't too bad at the shorter focal
    lengths. Once you get beyond about 150mm, though, it does have some
    trouble when the light is lower, especially with lower contrast subjects,
    with the S1 hunting and failing to lock on and ending up way out of
    focus. In bright light it's autofocus speed is OK, but that really only
    applies as long as you have stationary subjects.

    There is very noticeable chromatic aberration when the lens is used wide
    open at the long end of the zoom range with high contrast images (e.g.
    branches up against a bright cloudy sky). Stopping down does seem to
    help, but it means that you may need to increase the ISO even with the
    benefits of IS working for you.

    At ISO 50 and 100 its images are relatively noise free, ISO 200 is
    usable, but ISO 400 loses lots of details and is quite noisy and grainy
    looking, especially in the shadows.

    The zoom is very fast, and requires a careful delicate touch on the zoom
    control to slow it down for framing.

    When there is some noticeable white in an image, the automatic white
    balance seems to do a good job in general. However, when there is no
    distinct white region present, the auto white balance can be tricked,
    which needs correction in an image editing program to restore the color
    balance. Of course, it is possible to set the white balance to one of the
    presets, or to do a custom white balance setting.

    The S1's EVF is useful, but is is very low in resolution and therefore
    quite grainy. You can activate a histogram display of the just taken
    image, with flashing highlights, which is handy if you are shooting one
    frame at a time.

    The S1's continuous frame rate is very slow, and the EVF/LCD blanks out
    in an irritating manner for quite a while.

    The flash seems reasonably powerful and if you shoot wide open it has a
    good range in the ISO 50 and ISO 200 settings.

    The movie mode is quite good as well, 640x480 and 30 frames/sec. Being
    AVI format, it chews up memory space, with approximately 4.5 minutes
    fitting on a 512 MB CF card.

    The S1 is definitely not a DSLR, but neither does it cost as much as one.
    The S1 seems to be available for around $660, whereas the Fuji S5500 is
    about $520. In comparison, a Canon G6 is about $1040, which is
    considerably higher in price. The S1 starts at 38mm focal length (35mm
    equivalent) at the wide end, and a 28mm wide angle capability would have
    been quite useful for many shots. The Fuji S5500 starts at 37mm, which is
    much the same as the lens on the S1. The IS on the S1 will certainly help
    a lot if you intend to shoot at the 200-370mm focal lengths.
    Witold, Oct 15, 2004
  7. John Ewing

    John Ewing Guest

    Your detailed appraisal is much appreciated, Witold
    And thanks also to the other respondents.
    As a result I may set my sights higher and aim for a $1000 unit - just to
    get a better lens.

    John Ewing, Oct 16, 2004
  8. John Ewing

    cyclone Guest

    The canon is about $200 more expensive than the fuji, but if you want
    fz10 might not be what the OP calls medium compact. However the newer fz3
    would be and is an excellent camera.

    cyclone, Oct 18, 2004
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