Art and Photography

What is wrong with my new Canon Powershot camera?

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  • Aug 14th, 2017 5:34 pm
[OP]
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What is wrong with my new Canon Powershot camera?

So will be going on a cruise in a few weeks so we decided to get a new camera. For the last 5 years, I have had a Sony CyberShot which was an excellent camera but it had sustained lots of damage and it was time to replace it.

I did my research and narrowed it down to a few models. In the end, we went with Canon Powershot SX420, with 42x zoom and 20 MP. Reviews were pretty good.

I hate buying things online, especially something like a camera. So I tried BestBuy first and strangely enough, they had already ran out of this model even though it had gone on sale just the day earlier. No other nearby stores had it.

So I checked Amazon.ca and they had a very good deal going on. So I bought it and got it last week.

Man, to say I am disappointed with the picture quality (and the camera itself overall) is a massive understatement. So much so that I am thinking there is a defect with it or something. Heck even the LCD display is not clear or crisp. And when I upload the pictures to my computer or iPhone, they look like they were taken with an old and basic camera.

And it is not even about whether I am using the right settings or mode for the picture. I am taking simple pictures where the 'Auto' mode is enough. I even showed the pictures to other family members and they too agreed that a camera by Canon with such specs should do a lot better. Needless to say I have emailed Amazon (third party seller store) to return this crap.

My question to you guys, could a camera be damaged to cause it to produce such low quality pictures. I don't think it was damaged during packaging or transport as it looks perfect with no scratches. But are there other parts that could be defective from the start that cause it to take pictures of such low quality despite its high specs?
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[OP]
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Kinda off topic but this experience reaffirms why I hate shopping for such items online.

First thing, if you want to return it, you can't just go back to the store to return it. You have to wait for a label, go to a post office, mail it and then wait for it to arrive and then another few days to get your money back.


Then there is the issue of customer service. of this was bought from BestBuy (sadly there are no other big electronic store left) or another camera store. With online purchasing, there is no one I can talk to and show them why I am not happy with the camera etc.

I know in the minority in this as majority of people like to buy things online. But it is just not for me. The experience is frustrating. The only exception being books
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Why is anyone even looking at Cybershot and Powershot cameras in 2017? At minimum you should be looking at 1" or 4/3" sensors.

With that 1/2.3" powershot you should expect picture quality similar to smartphones.

Try older RX100 or something and see what bigger sensors can do.
[OP]
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hiddenthread wrote: Why is anyone even looking at Cybershot and Powershot cameras in 2017? At minimum you should be looking at 1" or 4/3" sensors.

With that 1/2.3" powershot you should expect picture quality similar to smartphones.

Try older RX100 or something and see what bigger sensors can do.
Thanks a lot for the reply! Funny you talk about sensor size, I literally was just reading about it too, as I had no clue about its important and may be the reason why image quality is poor depote its boasting all these pixels and zoom.
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This is why rfders like to PM at bb with online stores.

Like it was mentioned, is hard to get a good results from a small sensor but may be the compression is set high on the jpg or resolution is set too low ??

Probably helps if you could upload a sample shot so we can read the exif.
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I have been researching and yes image sensor is important.

The funny thing is I took our my older cameras with 5MP and 7MP respectively and took pictures of the same setting/lighting and with my iphone 6 and the iphone 6 blew them both away. It was insane how much difference there was.

But I assume iphone 6 has the same image sensor as the other cameras though so is it just MP count or something else?
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speedyforme wrote: I have been researching and yes image sensor is important.

The funny thing is I took our my older cameras with 5MP and 7MP respectively and took pictures of the same setting/lighting and with my iphone 6 and the iphone 6 blew them both away. It was insane how much difference there was.

But I assume iphone 6 has the same image sensor as the other cameras though so is it just MP count or something else?
I'm not an expert but there are a lot of factors effecting picture quality: sensor size, lens quality, number of pixels, size of the pixels, image processing, possible picture blur and on and on...

OP: you may want to consider a new or lightly used DSLR or mirrorless camera either purchased from a store (open box from BestBuy or Henrys or other) or something from Kijiji. A friend recently purchased a used mirrorless camera with lens from Kijiji. It was "like new" with box and all accessories and had a shutter count less than 150 - and it takes fantastic pictures.

There is a reason professionals use professional grade DSLR's...part of it is their reliability and available accessories and lenses - another part is the picture quality they produce.
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bvit6667 wrote: I'm not an expert but there are a lot of factors effecting picture quality: sensor size, lens quality, number of pixels, size of the pixels, image processing, possible picture blur and on and on...

OP: you may want to consider a new or lightly used DSLR or mirrorless camera either purchased from a store (open box from BestBuy or Henrys or other) or something from Kijiji. A friend recently purchased a used mirrorless camera with lens from Kijiji. It was "like new" with box and all accessories and had a shutter count less than 150 - and it takes fantastic pictures.

There is a reason professionals use professional grade DSLR's...part of it is their reliability and available accessories and lenses - another part is the picture quality they produce.
I am looking for a travel camera - light weight and small enough to use that produces better pics than the iphone 6 or google pixel we own.

I assume the thing that usually separates these from a camera is zoom in general?

What recommendations are there for those who want to spend less than say $500? I'm having a hard time finding something...
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speedyforme wrote: I am looking for a travel camera - light weight and small enough to use that produces better pics than the iphone 6 or google pixel we own.

I assume the thing that usually separates these from a camera is zoom in general?

What recommendations are there for those who want to spend less than say $500? I'm having a hard time finding something...
For home, just flip through flyers and get any mirrorless on sale that has future. Safest bets are Sony, Fuji and Panasonic/Olympus ones. You can also get high performance point and shoot but I find those are even more expensive than interchangeable lens cameras. You will likely find more deals in DSLR if size/weight isn't important. 2-3 year old model is not a problem so don't be afraid to go there.

For paid gig, this is different story and lot of times DSLR is still the more cost effective option.
Last edited by hiddenthread on Aug 8th, 2017 8:40 am, edited 1 time in total.
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speedyforme wrote: I am looking for a travel camera - light weight and small enough to use that produces better pics than the iphone 6 or google pixel we own.

I assume the thing that usually separates these from a camera is zoom in general?

What recommendations are there for those who want to spend less than say $500? I'm having a hard time finding something...
Did a quick search and found that BestBuy has open box Sony A5000 with 16-50 lens for $430 with free shipping. This is just one quick example but this camera is small, light and seems to get good reviews and has a 20.1 MP APS-C sensor. You may not be satisfied with just a 16-50 lens depending on the type of pictures you are interested in taking.
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Sony A5000
Nikon D3300/D3400

Both good choices. I don't follow much about Fuji (more expensive lens, smaller market) or Pana/Olympus (smaller sensor). Nothing good on Canone for $500 range. Also look at Pentax DSLRs as they generally provide better bang for the buck.

I wouldn't call any DSLR tiny especially since mirrorless is out. You can't put it into pocket when you are going for dinner. You will need a camera bag that will have to follow you everywhere.
Last edited by hiddenthread on Aug 8th, 2017 8:55 am, edited 2 times in total.
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jackrabbit000 wrote: Comparing the D3400/D5500 to the more expensive D610/750 series or the full frame camera bodies for example, they are tiny.
We are talking $500 Home use camera.
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bvit6667 wrote: Did a quick search and found that BestBuy has open box Sony A5000 with 16-50 lens for $430 with free shipping. This is just one quick example but this camera is small, light and seems to get good reviews and has a 20.1 MP APS-C sensor. You may not be satisfied with just a 16-50 lens depending on the type of pictures you are interested in taking.
I have never use a mirrorless camera, let alone anything beyond P&S and Auto lol. Although I am willing to learn a bit, this is mainly to just improve the quality of my photographs while traveling and having optical zoom instead of the camera phones.

I am weary about extra pieces/parts like lens and other things.
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And this camera uses CCD sensor which makes it worse in majority of indoor lighting shots. Most modern phone will produce better IQ than this camera.
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speedyforme wrote: I have never use a mirrorless camera, let alone anything beyond P&S and Auto lol. Although I am willing to learn a bit, this is mainly to just improve the quality of my photographs while traveling and having optical zoom instead of the camera phones.

I am weary about extra pieces/parts like lens and other things.
Big sensor P&S will do but those are not cheap. It's a niche market. (as an extreme example: Sony RX1R is a full frame P&S for $3000-4300) Sony lists RX100 1" at $569.99 but I don't know who actually has in stock at not-inflated price.

As a result you got choice of either using smartphone or mirrorless/dslr, but nothing in between. Even if you only use auto you will get better picture out of bigger sensors. You will keep lens for a long time, longer than camera body. Only downside is even smallest lens+body is not gonna be as compact as P&S.
Last edited by hiddenthread on Aug 8th, 2017 10:57 am, edited 1 time in total.
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traderjay wrote: And this camera uses CCD sensor which makes it worse in majority of indoor lighting shots. Most modern phone will produce better IQ than this camera.
You are talking the camera I bought?

So I shouod stay away from 2/3 1?
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Woodbridge905 wrote: You are talking the camera I bought?

So I shouod stay away from 2/3 1?
Whether is CCD or CMOS, 1/2.3" size should be the first flag. That is same as what's in Smartphone.

You want biggest sensor in reasonably sized package. A5000/A5100 is prime example of that.
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The other bad thing about this camera is the flash: I have to manually open it everytime I need to use it. Never had this with my previous two cameras.

And the WiFi function? Keeps failing and rarely works?
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Woodbridge905 wrote: You are talking the camera I bought?

So I shouod stay away from 2/3 1?
Here are some good info and comparison - http://photoseek.com/2013/compare-digit ... inch-type/

I would go for at least one inch and above or else your phone is the better choice.
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Woodbridge905 wrote: The other bad thing about this camera is the flash: I have to manually open it everytime I need to use it. Never had this with my previous two cameras.

And the WiFi function? Keeps failing and rarely works?
I'm not sure why it's not auto popping up. As long as you are in full auto mode, and it detects light is not enough, it should. The camera may have bias towards non-flash photos to make picture look better (because flash on camera is never good; you only get deer in the headlight look).

If you can return, I would suggest doing so but then I don't have answer if you need long range zoom on upcoming trip. You can get A5000 for under $500, but that will only go up to 3.125x. A cheap long range zoom will be $250 or $300 on top of that.

At around $500 ($550 tops), it will be soft zoomed in image at best so I don't think having 40x or 60x is going to get "wow" photos. You take more photos wide than zoomed in; this is the case for pretty much anybody who uses it on trips. So if I had to give up on one aspect, it would be zoom range.

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