Saturday, February 13, 2010

S90 vs SD1200

Sure, why not. I know it is not quite fair to pin the Canon SD1200IS against the more expensive and slightly larger Canon S90IS, but I had the chance to borrow the S90 from a co-worker and instead of just taking photos with it, I also brought along the SD1200. I had little time, so I decided to take a walk and take all photos in "auto" mode, i.e. the green rectangle on the Canon cameras. I did try to compose the shots as similar as possible. In the end of this "review", there are links to all photos, direct out of the camera. I also put together a 100% crop comparison of the ISO series, and some random crops from some other photos. Note that full auto (green rectangle) means that not always the same ISO was used. But, it shows what happens if you do go auto with both cameras.

The result? Surprisingly little difference actually. The S90 has about 1 stop ISO advantage, i.e. ISO 800 on the S90 is about the same noise level as the ISO400 on the SD1200. But that is almost it. And... here are my pros and cons on the S90. Have in mind that I have only used this camera for a day or so.

  • Nice build, nice screen
  • Nice lens (F/2.0 at wide)
  • Nice with extra, configurable, wheel around lens
  • Manual controls
  • Horrible button placement on top for one handed operation, power and shutter is not right position
  • Scroll wheel on back, easy to move by mistake (like G11)
  • Compared to SD1200 camera, heavier and larger

If this was my only camera, I would be annoyed with the button placement at first, but probably get over it. If it is only used sometimes, I think I would continue to be annoyed. Overall, even with my comments, it is a nice camera.

Ok, some photos... Always the S90 first, SD1200 second.


There are more photos, and the last one has ISO100-1600 also. They can be downloaded here:
Photo-01 S90 - Photo-01 SD1200
Photo-02 S90 - Photo-02 SD1200
Photo-03 S90 - Photo-03 SD1200
Photo-04 S90 - Photo-04 SD1200
Photo-05 S90 - Photo-05 SD1200
Photo-06 S90 - Photo-06 SD1200
Photo-07 S90 - Photo-07 SD1200
Photo-08 S90 - Photo-08 SD1200
Photo-10 S90 - Photo-10 SD1200
Photo-11 S90 - Photo-11 SD1200
Photo-12 S90 - Photo-12 SD1200
Photo-13 S90 - Photo-13 SD1200
Photo-14 S90 - Photo-14 SD1200
Photo-15 S90 - Photo-15 SD1200
Photo-16 S90 - Photo-16 SD1200

Photo-20 S90 ISO 100 - Photo-20 SD1200 ISO 100
Photo-20 S90 ISO 200 - Photo-20 SD1200 ISO 200
Photo-20 S90 ISO 400 - Photo-20 SD1200 ISO 400
Photo-20 S90 ISO 800 - Photo-20 SD1200 ISO 800
Photo-20 S90 ISO 1600 - Photo-20 SD1200 ISO 1600

And here is a photo with 100% crops. The first are the ISO 100-1600 series, and then from the other photos. S90 on the left.

Now, if I only has the new Canon SD1300IS to compare these two with :) The SD1300 is the upcoming "replacement" for SD1200, but not quite. 2 more megapixels, no optical viewfinder, and lens starts at 28mm like the S90.

1 comment:

Stoytcho said...

Thank you for your post. I am considering buying a Canon SD120 IS at the moment and was wondering if the IQ would be as good as the S90, but now reading your review I am sure it will. Obviously all Canon cameras are good in good light. I am aware they are not DSLR and thats fine for me.