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Friday, January 12, 2007

Canon PowerShot G7 – 1000 pictures in!

It’s now been a few months since I obtained my “elusive” Canon PowerShot G7 camera. I am happy to report that after taking over 1000 pictures with the camera, I am quite satisfied with the performance of the G7.

My usage of the PowerShot G7 has been entirely in casual situations to this point. Family occasions, travel, and a few musings have been the uses to see how well the capabilities of the camera perform. Neither have I tried out any accessories such as the available lens or underwater case. Overall – in a short summary, I have yet to be disappointed with the quality of the pictures taken from the camera.

Here are a few collections of photos that have been taking by the Canon Powershot G7 camera. (These photos were shot in the highest resolution however Picasa conveniently reduced the size so I could store more than one set of photos):

In terms of rating my experience with the camera thus far, here are the good and bad things I have found about the camera:

The Good:

  • Ergonomics. Great looking camera, buttons and dials can be accessed confidently without fumbling.
  • Photo Quality. Problems that I have had with my PowerShot 410D Elph are not manifested in the G7. For instance, my personal tendency to have “red-eye” is barely visible, and the image stabilization has worked wonders in both active situation and night photos where a flash is not used.
  • Zoom. The 6.0x optical zoom is excellent. Great way to get closer to the subject without going to the grainy digital zoom. The 10.0 megapixels enhances this, enabling you to crop any photo for basic prints to further enhance the image.
  • Reliability. The camera has had zero issues to report.
  • Longevity. I have yet to run out of the battery and had to switch out in the middle of taking pictures. In some cases, I have taken a couple hundred snapshots.
    Speed. The G7’s startup time is amazing low. It’s time between pictures, even for the storage of the 10 megapixel photos is also relatively quick.
  • Shoulder Strap. When I posted my first impressions about the camera, I was critical for Canon not including a wrist strap for the PowerShot G7. However, after carrying around the camera around for a day at Disneyland, I really appreciated the shoulder strap. By carrying it with the strap over one shoulder and underneath the other arm, it was very convenient. I barely noticed that camera and it was readily available for quick shots.

The Bad:

  • When to use. Given the positioning of the camera it is neither a SLR nor a light-weight pocket camera. That means you need to be intentional about carrying it with you. It does not have the “unconscious portability” that you find in the SD line of PowerShot cameras. You cannot simply slip it into your pocket or purse. It is not what the camera was intended for.
  • Wrist strap. Yes, I do since the praise of the shoulder strap above, but it would be nice to have a basic wrist strap to carry and hold the camera.
  • Accessories. The only knock I give is for the availability of a basic, very basic carrying case. The current ones available from Canon are pretty bulky & expensive. It was even difficult to find anything similar to the SD line from 3rd parties.

The Verdict:
The PowerShot G7 is a keeper of a camera. Even better news, is that you can find the camera readily available for about $500, about $100 below MSRP before any coupons or discounts. We will take it on every major trip we have and use it for our primary camera. However, it cannot be our only camera. Ashley and I still really need a basic camera that has the feel of “unconscious portability” that we can have with us at all times. Unfortunately the PowerShot G7 just does not fit the bill. So, in the coming weeks – we will be purchasing the Canon Powershot SD800 IS as a supplement to the G7 -- thanks to a Best Buy MyWishlist certificate. I will let you know how that goes!


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2 comments:

Ambrose said...

I have the G7 as well and agree with everything you said. I too don't like the shoulder strap and have gone with a wrist strap that I took off of an old Sony Walkman. Works much better. I can now stash the G7 in my coat pocket or in a small belt pouch easily. I also agree with you on cases. Canon does make a case for the G7 which they only sell in Australia and Japan called the SC-DC50 which looks like an old SLR case. It fits perfectly to the G7 and gives it that old-fashioned look which I really like! Unfortunately, it costs about $100 to get it here from Australia and I haven't been able to find a company to ship one to America from Japan!

http://www.w4rmk.com/canon/G7/shootout.asp
has some pictures of the SC-DC50...

Ambrose
moderator of the G7 Yahoo Group.
http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/CanonG7/

Ken Hanscom said...

Ambrose, thanks for the comment. Yeah, I too have seen that nice looking case, although even here in the U.S. it's more expensive than I would like! Plus, it seems like it would add more weight that just a normal soft case like what ships with the SD line.