Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Camera buying opportunity

I've got the opportunity to buy a used Powershot s5 IS here in Seoul. The offer is 500,000 for the camera, all the included software and manuals, two memory cards plus a battery charger. The camera is about a year old. Is it worth it? Here are the specs: http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/canons5is/. I'm going to check out the camera on Saturday.


  1. Call me a stalker Joanna, but I just saw your post on this camera. It's not a good deal.
    It's a FAAAANTASTIC camera... I have one myself, but you can get it new for 500,000. Actually, my friend just bought one in Busan for $480,000 brand new.
    Check out a camera store before buying an old one.
    It's a FAAANTASTIC camera though. You'll love it.

  2. As a semi professional/professional photographer for more years than I care to count, I have had about a dozen different DSLR's over the past 5-6 years. From the Canon XT to the 5D and a lot in between in terms of DSLR's and from the Canon G1 to the G9 in terms of pocket digicams, I can say this in all honesty, unless you print BIG, and I mean in the 13"x19" territory like I have done, most digital cameras will be fine for your intended use. The model you have here is NOT a DSLR. It just looks like one. It will not have the low ISO advantage of a DSLR. At its lowest ISO, it will do fine. But, it is also 2 years old already and that, in digital camera years, is OLD unless it's a DSLR. DSLR's have a longer life span owing to the fact of better image quality to begin with. I would recommend the Canon XTi with the new 3 rd generation kit lens with IS as a GREAT beginner DSLR. It will do your for years and years to come.

    I just sold all my Canon pro gear (5D, 30D, 24-70 f2.8, 70-200 f.2.8, 580EXII, 430EXII, etc., etc.) in preparation to head out to Korea this Sept. I currently have this: http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/panasonicdmclx3/

    It is currently amongst the BEST for image quality in a small easy to carry form factor because it can shoot RAW with all the advantages of post processing afterwards.

    It's a very confusing world out there for camera buyers if you don't know too much about the gear. But, the website you have here is also the BEST place to do your research. They are the absolute world leader in camera reviews and trustworthy info. Also, and I know some will argue with me, but my opinion is based on personal experience in working in the field as a pro, Canon and Nikon make the best DLSR's, period. The other makes have their winners here and there, too. But, not in terms of absolute quality for DSLR's. Other makers have winners in pocket digicams, like the Panasonic I currently own.

    Have fun!

  3. Camera shopping gives me a headache. I really have very little idea on what I want. I know I want something with high ISO and Aperture and Shutter Priority. I don't care too much about megapixles, because whatever it is will be sufficint. I think I'm working with mostly 2 megapixel photos right now, since I never set my camera on its highest quality setting (3.2 megapixles). Most of the other information is mumbo jumbo to me. And it's terrible, because every time I settle on a camera I want, someone convinces me not to buy it. Maybe I should stop asking for advice... but I really do want the best one I can get. I only really want to spend 600,000 max.. preferably less.

  4. Sorry. Goofed on that model number. It's the XSi, not Xti (an older model). This one here:


  5. ALWAYS use the highest quality setting with the LEAST amount of compression possible You want the best file you can get just in case you have that once in in a life time shot. Anything else and you're just throwing away money by buying a camera with lots of megapixels and not using them to their full extent.

    Anyways, check out my website and you'll know I'm not full of it! There are basics to everything and this IS one of them.

  6. I dont understand compression.... I don't even know if my camera can do that.... I just take my photos on the medium quality setting.....

  7. It's the settings that say either "Fine", or "Super Fine", or "Normal", etc. This determines how much compression goes into the making of the jpeg image file. The less compression (Super Fine, or Fine, depending on your camera and how they name the settings) the better the quality of the final file generated. Less artifacts and the like. When an image is viewed at 100% pixel level, this really shows how good it actually is. Although, this only applies to on screen viewing, it will have an impact on real world prints, especially big prints.

    If you look at some of the full size sample images at dpreview, you can really tell what is a good camera vs a really bad camera in terms of image quality of its jpeg output. To use lower quality settings just wastes all the potential of the camera. And, as you do cropping after the fact, it is even more important to start with as much good data as possible. If at all possible, you should crop in camera; ie., compose the image as a finished composition right there and then. I now there are some circumstances were this is not possible for the shot you want. In this case, pick another composition. To be a good photographer, you must use good technique and work at it. It's not as easy as it seems. That's why the pros are the pros and most people struggle with it. A bit of education in fine art would help for the artistic side of things as this is what good composition is all about.

    Sorry for the digression. To easily know that you have the best settings, just take a look at how many images the camera says you can take with those settings. The fewer it says, the better the quality of the final output jpeg. Simple as that because the files get very large and the card will hold fewer of them.

    Hope this helps.