Dpreview has posted some REALLY good shots taken with the Canon S90. There's some easily usable shots at iso 1600 and even one at 3200!
This camera seems to have incredible potential.
here you go: http://www.dpreview.com/gallery/canons90_preview/
I looked at them over the weekend and didn't say "wow". Most seemed to be begging for sharpening. Is it just the high ISO that you liked? Of all the compacts around, this one got my attention when it was launched so I was looking forward to seeing what it would do.
Actually what I liked was the organic feel it has, instead of the general overly digital look that most cameras tend to present these days.
As for the ISO I haven't seen any other cameras on this league that can deliver what I saw there. The LX3 was the one that came closest but the IQ at iso 1600 didn't come close to the one presented here.
I'm not going to get overly excited like I did with the E-P1 though. This time I'm going to wait for it to be out for testing before I buy it...darn early adopter syndrome.
I've taken a second look at the photos during lunch in my home monitor and the photos don't look as good as they did the first time. I still like them, but my work monitor deceived me a little bit.
I think the ISO 1600 portrait is the best one I have seen from any small camera until now. That includes the F70 and F200. Unfortunately, one doesn't have the possibility to compare cameras under identical conditions. I wish I had the F200 and S90 for one day to compare for high ISO street shots.
Pity no RAW files were up loaded.
Look pretty awful to me, high iso is very good, low iso is terrible, just a smudge. (yes I noticed that before reading all the furor on the forums about it!)
Waiting for RAW files though before I decide not to buy. It's a lot of money for a high iso only machine.
I am not a painter, nor an artist. Therefore I can see straight, and that may be my undoing. - Alfred Stieglitz
Well – I got one and I LOVE it*. I haven't had this much fun with a camera in years. Image examples HERE are nearly all straight out of the camera.
* Caveat: I enjoy reading about the high level gear, processing and test procedures often discussed on this site. But I'm having too much fun with the S90 to take it's deficiencies seriously. I'm a 20-year commercial photographer who's had it with carrying 60lbs of camera gear on vacation. This pocket camera pocket camera means more to me than image quality – it represents freedom, spontaneity, trusting bellboys with ALL my bags and enjoying vacations [gasp] without a tripod.
I think it also comes down to whether you like to shoot plain and then work the image on post or if you like the camera to shoot the image exactly the way you want it right out of the camera. As I always work the images on PS things like sharpness really don't bother me. In a compact like this what I want is dynamic range, high iso performance, good controls, raw and for it to be really portable (I really cannot put my LX3 on a jeans pocket).
Some of them look quite good at both low and hi ISO.
However I do see what appears to be highlight clipping in a couple.
This might suggest a lack of highlight DR. Having gotten spoiled by the F200EXR's it is hard indeed to go back...
more detail samples from japanese site...
I am enjoying the S90 while here presenting a workshop in the Caymans. The manual controls are a joy to use.
FWIW, I use the ring outside the lens to set ISO (I can't believe how handy this is); the rear dial to set aperture; one click and the same control sets exposure compensation; the shortcut button locks exposure, and I use face tracking mode for focus. If I don't like its choice, I repress the shutter button and it chooses other points.
It is very fast to use. I have attached a self-adhesive piece of grippy material a tech friend gave me to the front RHS for finger grip; it improves the handling enormously.
It's a true pocket camera; I was surprised to find I left the G1 at home this trip but don't regret it for a second.
Lili, how is the UI on the Fuji—the sensor sounds great. cheers all, kl
I had the DP1; very nice images and excellent colour but, for me personally, the 28mm EFOV is too limiting for the kind of images I make when travelling or around the house. 40-50 is perfect.
The DP2 was a disappointment: it just felt unresponsive to me, and I really did not like that loud focussing sound. Forget stealthy.
Richard Freniac now makes a grip for the S90; that will be the one (and only) accessory I get for this toy. See here:
I had his grip on the DP2, and it improves the tactile experience and increases the sense of security in the hand remarkably.
Lars and Kit, both of you raise good points.
For me, the switch to the GRDIII boiled down to the most compact of the bunch with the best IQ and smoothest operation.
The Sigma IQ was most pleasing, but everything else was frustrating. The Dl4 did it all, and pretty good at it too, but not as pocketable and the toy-like controls made adjustments too cumbersome.
The S90 seems like a good concept, and is small and fairly priced. While the 28mm on the GRd III is very limiting for me as well, I have decided to try and work with the focal length in exchange for the amazing IQ and ingenious UI and ergonomics.
If only they would come out with a 40 or 50 GRD! Though I doubt it, with the introduction of the GRX.
I just read up on the barrel distortion of the S90, apparently it's quite heavy (5-10%?) and corrected in firmware/software. Sounds a bit like Bose's concept for speakers: make cheap speakers with no flat response, then compensate in the amplifier - so your're stuck with the Bose amp. Or in this case, Canon software (or compatible).
This trend worries me - camera makers delegating more to processing software to save a buck or two on lens design and manufacturing.
As it turns out, G11 is now a real bargain in the US compared to Sweden (less than half the price), so I'm asking a friend go get one and bring over. Quite a contrast to January when I got my D700, we had the lowest prices worldwide back then.