George poked his head into the office. “I’m heading off to Australia tomorrow for the annual ATI Conference” he said. “Would you be the one to ask for a camera to bring along with me?”
Yes, I was the guy to talk to. But what camera would I give him? The old Nikon D70s work well for departmental use, but for someone who doesn’t need the SLR functionalities, is trying to pack light, and would most likely run into difficult lighting situations . . . it just didn’t seem like the best route to take.
But there was another option. Buried for several months, this new idea suddenly sprang to life. GA had always considered purchasing a small, compact camera for occasions such as this, but there had never been a valid reason. This was certainly the excuse we needed!
After procuring permission, doing some meticulous research, and deliberating as a department, we came to a conclusion, drove off to the store, and brought back the new member of our department: the Canon PowerShot SX130 IS.
So why did we choose this camera?
- Of the thousands of compact cameras to choose from, it wasn’t hard to narrow it down to a few hundred when we chose to go with Canon. Choosing a brand is the first step, and choosing Canon was easy. You can’t go wrong with Canon.
- Now we had to decide how much we were willing to pay for it. (I didn’t know you could pay $500 for a compact, say, like the G12!) We decided our budget was $300 or less.
- Once this was determined, we had to decide what major components and features we wanted. These were on my list:
- Solid, durable, not-necessarily-small body
- 12x or more optical zoom
- 10 or more Mega Pixels
- ISO 1600 or more
- 28mm equivalent focal length or less
- HD Video
- Image Stablization
- Manual controls
- RAW shooting mode
- Then comes the best part: research! I looked over and compared many cameras before finalizing on the best possible option: the Canon PowerShot SX210 IS. It met and even surpassed every criteria (except for the RAW shooting mode which I found compacts don’t usually have these days anyway), and it was even less than $300!
- But lastly, you have to make a final decision. From another research source, the PowerShot SX130 IS was suggested. It was cheaper, still met the criteria well enough, and appeared easier to use. I was the one who had to make the decision. Would I go with the more expensive one that I knew was the best? Or would I go with the cheaper one, and hope it would meet our needs? Two major factors played out in the final decision: one, compact cameras depreciate very quickly; and two, money doesn’t grow on trees.
So, as far as I know, George is enjoying the pleasure of packing light and knowing that he doesn’t have to worry about technical difficulties when he whips out his new camera in the land down under.