29 of 30 people found the following review helpful
Overall, an improvement,
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This review is from: Canon PowerShot S100 12.1 MP Digital Camera with 5x Wide-Angle Optical Image Stabilized Zoom (Black) (OLD MODEL) (Camera)
I assume you have read reviews complaining about lack of picture sharpness in some samples of this camera. I suggest reading the in-depth review at dpreview.com, which is a bit more detached and objective than some of the negative reviews here. (This is only natural. Someone who has spent the money to buy a camera, and has been disappointed, will react less objectively than a reviewer who tests four sample cameras, compares their image quality, and doesn't have to spend money on any of them.)
Personally I am satisfied with the lens on my sample of the S100, and I speculate that there were production problems in the first models to come off the line. You always run a risk by being an early adopter, especially if the model is brought to market hastily for the Christmas season, as this was.
S95 owners will find just enough differences in the controls to be irritated by the S100. After a relearning process, however, I felt that the functional changes were improvements, especially when I want quick access to aperture/shutter speed, ISO, and exposure adjustment. I also appreciate the completely new features such as GPS and automatic dynamic range compression. And most of all I like the wider lens. I am not so thrilled by the rougher finish of the metal body and the finger/thumb grips, presumably included to satisfy users who complained that the S95 was too slippery. I liked the S95's totally clean styling.
For those who never touched an S95 (or its predecessors), you have a treat in store: I consider this the most amazingly feature-packed pocket camera, besides being one of the smallest. Almost all the features from my full-size D5 mark II have been replicated here, and are fairly intuitively accessible. Or, of course, you can just set it to Auto. But that isn't why you want this camera, is it? The intended buyer, I think, is a fairly serious photographer who wants total feature-control in a package small enough to take anywhere, with minimal sacrifice of image quality. Yes, the small physical size of the 12MP sensor introduces some additional image noise compared with a full-frame camera, and you may miss the higher pixel count from time to time, but still--an incredible achievement, and very beautifully executed.