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The main reason for buying this was the x10 zoom, it was one of the strongest zooms for the price at the time (about 5 years ago!) and means I can take closer pictures without moving myself.
I can't say it's intuitive to use, I can normally work stuff out for myself, but with this camera I frequently had to refer to the manual, even to work out simple stuff like deleting all pictures. But that is because it's more complicated than a normal point and shoot.
I understand that this is a bridge camera, a step above a point'n'shoot, but below a DSLR, so it's great if you want to get better at photography as it's a learning camera, and you can do stuff like set it to manual and change the shutter speed, some cool experimental photos can be taken like this. But then, you can also set it to auto and get decent pictures.
Battery usage is good, I have to take a spare set if going out for the day, but I think only because the batteries are getting old. I probably only use the camera on average about an hour a week, and batteries usually last for a month or so.
I kinda love this machine, it's very smooth, and makes lots of cool mechanical noises. It's smart looking; black and silver.
One of the few problems with this camera is that it feels hard to hold. It's very smooth, and there seem to be so few places to put your fingers - I guess because it is quite compact considering the number of dials and buttons it has, plus it has a huge screen. I always use the wrist strap, having said that, I haven't ever dropped it yet. It's not just that it feels unsafe, it is slightly distracting when trying to take pictures, the sensation of it slipping, and being unable to get a good grip.
Having owned numerous digital cameras in the past I have returned to my faithful old SX110 once more. I am a great fan of Bridge type cameras, I never trust myself to handle something as expensive or technical as a DSLR but don't want something so flimsy that it feels like a child's toy! Th SX110 is perfectly sized in my mind to be a real handful but iwth intelligent shaping and rounding leaving it fit easily and comfortably in the hand and is designed well ensuring easy access to the controls that you will need.
The 9 mega pixel sensor may sound rather crude in terms of today's megapixel mosters but the lens quality is very good and the pictures produced are of a surprising quality. A 10x optical zoom is unusual in a small camera and for me is the deal clincher bringing excellent quality in terms of smoothness and result with the only issue being the stability needed to maintain clarity at x10.
The large screen is combined with an EVF and a pop up flash, I find the screen easy to view in most light conditions and a faithful representation of what you can expect to see. Power is supplied by 2 AA batteries which may not be the most popular choice but is undeniably easy to replace and carry spares for when you are out and about. Storage is dealt with by the normal SD & MMC ports, sure it may not offer the flexibility of the big boys but these systems are reasonably quick and reliable.
In terms of shooting the camera is fast and responsive and does not suffer with the shutter lag that you sometmes find in cameras in this price range. The range of options is excellent with everything from the basic auto mode that does a great job in most cases to the ability to control exposure, white balance, a macro mode that produces superb results. As a beekeeper I particularly enjoy the macro mode for close ups of insects.
Overall I cannot recommend this camera enough, sure it isn't a DSLR but using photos from this I have won prizes at local shows. It's size will put some people off - it really is a handful, but once you scan through the feture list you can quickly see why! I know people will look at a 9MP sensor and chuckle, but I challenge you to try it out and see how good the optics are.
I bought this camera when it became apparent that the camera on my phone wouldn't cut it for family pictures any more. I needed something with better zoom, that could take clear pictures but no too advanced. I am an absolute beginner when it comes to photography and have no idea what all the different terms mean, so I didn't want a camera with bells and whistles I wouldn't use. This camera is perfect for my needs.
First off, I wouldn't class this as the most compact of cameras - it's a bit too big and bulky to fit into my pockets easily - maybe that's only an issue for women though. It does however, feel light to hold and it well made, with a sturdy plastic casing and easy to reach buttons. I will admit that our camera has been dropped outdoors several times, and still works perfectly. The screen is a great size too, meaning I can easily get an idea of whether or not a picture is worth deleting right away or saving.
The different picture settings are ideally labelled for someone such as myself, with kids&pets, sunset, indoor and beach settings getting the most use in our household. However, in auto and easy modes the camera has a perplexing tendency to request the flash be raised wen I don't feel it's needed, which wouldn't be a problem except that I find the flash on this camera leaves everything looking too bright and washed out. As a result, I almost never use the flash, and on the rare occassions that I do, I'm never completely happy with the results. This could be down to my lack of expertise though. There is also a great quality video mode, meaning that the camera really does tick all the boxes for this family.
The optical zoom is fantastic though and gives crisp clear results almost every single time it's used. It's one of the best things about this camera. It has an SD card slot that's easy to use and takes AA batteries, though at times I wish it had a rechargeable lithium battery. The longer we've had the camera, the less mileage we get out of the batteries, to the point where we would have to replace them every few days at moderate usage on holiday.
Overall, a great all rounder, that would suit most ability levels, and is especially user friendly for those of us who want to upgrade to a slightly better camera but don't know the first thing about photography!
I bouhg this camera as my old one was getting trashed, and I wanted a new one to shoot at the many gigs I go to, so optical zoom was a must for me.
I haven't been disappointed with the zoom on this camera, although in some modes, it is really difficult to get good focus, even on auto focus mode. I find that at gigs I need to have the setting on 'kids & pets' mode in order to get good quality pictures while the singer/band is running around on stage, so the pre-installed settings can be a bit confusing, but there is also the option to manually adjust the ISO and focus if you wish (perks of a bridge camera).
I was also extremeley disappointed with the playback quality of the videos I recorded. Although the image was good, and the zoom didn't lose any clarity, the sound at gigs was appalling in comparison to my Sony T100.
Overall, good for photos, not great for videos.
Canon Powershot SX110 IS
I bought this camera about four months ago as the older one which I had was dated and not at all easy to use. The first thing that I noticed when looking for a camera was the size. I wanted one which I would be able to use on nights out, but would fit in to my handbag. This camera was perfect for both the size and quality which I was looking for.
The quality of the pictures is excellent. I have often taken my camera out at night and end up having awful pictures because of the lighting in places. I have not had this problem at all, in fact its the best camera I have owned . Its a reliable product which I use again and again. I would highly recommend this camera as It would be great for everyday use and holidays. The added video camera feature is also very good quality too
Those of you who have read a few of my previous reviews will release that I am somewhat addicted to cameras. I generally buy and sell them on a regular basis, which keeps my gadget addiction ticking over nicely. My latest contraption is the Canon 'Powershot SX110' - the updated version of the SX100, a camera that I previously owned and was impressed with.
Fitting into the 'compact' category, the nine Megapixel shooter is a sleek and rather pleasing looking device. It isn't quite as tiny as the really small cameras which can be purchased nowadays (110.6 x 70.4 x 44.7 mm), but it will just about squeeze into a shirt or jeans pocket. The slightly bulky size can be forgiven however, as the device houses an incredible 10x (36 - 360mm) optical zoom. Compared to most digital compacts which have an average of 3x optical zoom, the SX100 really is an impressive piece of equipment.
The camera, which takes an SD card as its main storage device, features a three inch LCD screen which is bright and fairly easy to view even in sunny conditions. Other features of note include an effective image stabilisation system which is designed to prevent blurry images caused by camera shake.
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The SX100 has an all plastic construction, meaning that it isn't quite as well made as its nearest superzoom rival - the all metal Panasonic 'TZ5'. That said, the camera does feel sturdy, and the choice of material means that the product remains fairly light at only 245 grams. The camera is comfortable to hold, and both the top dial and shutter buttons are in easy to access locations.
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In general, the SX110's image quality is of a high standard, with a fairly decent tonal range and well saturated colours. There is a slight tendency to overexpose, resulting in some blown highlights - although it is only occasional and therefore not a big issue. Images show slight noise (grain) at the lowest ISO settings (80 - 100), whilst ISO 400 introduces more substantial noise but is still useable. ISO 1600 pushes the boundary of acceptability, and should only be used for emergencies - although it's always good to have the option in low light situations. Overall though, the camera produces sharp and pleasing results, placing it in the top quarter of cameras in its class.
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The SX110 has a few different recording modes (all in AVI format) with a maximum resolution of 640 X 480 at thirty frames per second. Other options include a long play mode and a 320 X 240 setting. Clips are limited to 4 GB or 60 minutes (whatever comes first) and in general, the quality of the video is very good, producing decent results even in low light.
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The camera is powered by two AA batteries which fit into the underside of the handgrip. It is a bit unusual in this day and age for a camera not to ship with a rechargeable lithium pack - but with fairly good Ni-Mh batteries, you can probably get around 200-250 shots per charge, which is by no means bad.
User interface and menus
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Like the majority of Canon's compact range, the user interface is easy to use and should be understood by even digital camera novices. The are a wealth of options hidden away in the menu system, including access to some manual controls - which will impress the more advanced users.
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Although there aren't many downsides with this model, the lack of an optical viewfinder may alienate some people. Also, like its predecessor, the flash takes a long time to recycle, meaning that there is a bit of a wait between shots in dim conditions. To be honest, this doesn't really bother me, as it don't use it much anyway - however, if you're a frequent party-goer, then this factor may be an issue.
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Costing £186 from Amazon, and available for slightly less on eBay, I would give the Canon Powershot SX110 a high recommendation as a versatile and fun to use camera. Like its predecessor, the camera delivers an impressive image quality, and in combination with the great zoom range, I plan to keep this one for a while!
Technical Bits and Pieces
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Zoom: Optical 10x, Digital 4x (35mm equivalent: 36-360mm)
Aperture: f/2.8 - f/4.3
Exposure Compensation: +/- 2 EV in 1/3 stop increments
ISO Sensitivity: 80, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600
Shutter Speed: 1/60 - 1/2500 sec
Monitor: 3.0" TFT, 230,000 pixels
Flash Modes: Auto, Manual Flash On / Off
Shooting Modes: Auto, Program AE, Shutter priority AE, Aperture priority AE, Manual, Easy, Portrait, Landscape, Night Snapshot, Kids & Pets, Indoor, Special Scene
Memory card: SD, SDHC, MMC, MMC plus, HC MMC plus.
Power: Batteries 2x Size-AA Alkaline or NiMH Batteries (NB4-300)
Dimensions: 110.6 x 70.4 x 44.7 mm