Buying a digital P&S camera Fuji FinePIx F600EXR or Canon Powershot SX230HS
My Panasonic DMC-F7Z finally bit the dust. I am looking for a high zoom P&S camera for my wife, as she doesn't want to tote around a big camera anymore.
I have read reviews all over the internet for both the F600EXR and the SX230HS, and I can still not come to a conclusion on which one to buy. What I am looking for is good image quality in both low light, indoors, and daylight. I know I won't get as good as a DSLR, but I want the best of the P&S at this price range. I will also use it for shooting movies occasionally also (like my son's soccer games, children's choir, beach trips, etc....).
I know that the F600EXR best settings is to shoot it at 8MP and not the 16MP setting. I will probably mess with settings manually when I learn the camera to get the best possible picture, but my wife is more of a just turn it on and start taking pictures type person.
I can get the F600EXR for $169.99 right now, and Staples runs sales on the SX230HS occasionally where if I can catch the next sale I can get it for about the same price, otherwise it would be about $200-225 range.
the canon has manual focus which the fuji does not but the Fuji has onboard memory of 39mb which the canon does not according to the web site
Yeah I saw that review. The issue I have with a lot of the reviews on the F600EXR on pages such as this is that they use the 16.1MP setting (highest quality) which on a small sensor shows a lot of noise. Most users and professionals using that camera said to use the EXR mode and the medium setting (8MP) and it reduces noise nicely, and most of them criticize the professional "Review" sites for not doing tests in 8MP mode because for most people if they are not blowing up the picture bigger than 11x14 or so, they would never have an issue with an 8MP picture.
That is why I was coming here hoping some people that had one of these would chime in. The few review sites that take into account that the best setting for the F600EXR is 8MP not the 16.1MP end up having rave reviews over it, and they say it is better than the SX230HS, but then you have the normal review sites that use the maximum MP setting and give it bad reviews compared to the SX230HS.
Between these two, go for the Canon. The EXR series require a lot more fiddling around to get the best possible pic. The Nikon 9300 is likely worth a look also (the older 9100 had better IQ than the Canon SX230 imho).
I'd personally go for the Finepix F600EXR for a few reasons:
A) Raw shooting. Raw images have a lot more leeway and can be recovered a lot easier than a JPEG. You can play with the images and they're lossless
B) Larger sensor. Fuji has a 1/2" sensor and Canon has a 1/2.3" sensor. This typically means better looking images, sharper detail, etc
C) Wider angle zoom lens. When looking at 35mm film equivalents, the Fuji's wide angle is similar to 24mm whereas Canon's wide angle is similar to 28mm. That's a big difference and would be important for me.
The Canon does have a wider aperture at and it can shoot 1080p at 24p, but, I'm not sure it's something I'd personally worry about.
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