Pros Ultra fast, stunning image quality, fits in pocket
Cons No manual controls...needs at least fast shutter setting. No live histogram. No battery-life indicator.
Summary It's nothing less than shocking to me that this site still is publishing misinformation about this camera! Here's a quote from their editorial page under Who's It For: "Consumers who want a good-looking, compact camera and don't care much about image quality."
This is utter nonsense! The SD500 rivals the Canon G6 in image quality. I've had it for about a month and it is simply the best point-and-shoot your money can buy. I sincerely question the CNET reviewer's ability and/or their bias. If you want something resembling a REAL and professional review before plunking down your $500.00, I suggest going to dpreview or dcresource and reading the reviews there. I post under JTL at dcresource...check out my images if you want to see what this camera can do.Updated
CNET should be ashamed! You actually have to know how to use a camera before you review it!
Pros Can't tell didn't have it long enough to tell
Cons The LCD Screen Cracked
Summary I thought given all the "10" reviews about this camera that I would buy it in spite of being a bit pricey. I did see the review here and other places about a cracked LCD screen. I figured that the few people who reported that the LCD screen cracked on them was episodic and it would never happen to me. I received the SD500 on Monday, charged the battery and inserted the SD card that came with it, took a few pictures and waited until Thursday when the 2 GB SD card came that I had ordered. The camera was sitting on my home desk waiting for the new digital card and the weekend for the first round of serious shooting. It was NOT dropped or sat on or subjected to any other trauma -- it just sat on my desk in my home office – where no one goes but me. When I went to put in the new SD Card I looked at the LCD Screen -- CRACKED-- and the fluid gave a Jackson Pollock type appearance to the screen, black and blue and purple blotches and streaks --useless. I have called Cannon they are sending me an RFA-- I will let you know if they treat me well or otherwise.
Pros speed, design, sheer quality of pictures
Cons know your ISO, select low and hold camera well
Summary This camera is truely superb.
The startup time, quality of pictures and videos is outstanding.
Some more manual control would have been nice. And shooters in low light should either select the iso manually and/or make sure that they don't shake much, as the camera's chip goes for detail over smoothness. Also ensure that the low light focusing LED is pointing at the point you want in focus - and use the focus lock (something the cnet reviewer was obviously not familiar with).
I have showed the pictures I have taken to many of my colleagues, alot of whom have expensive dslrs. They say that they are the best pictures they have ever see from a compact. These are some shaky ones I took just after delivery:
I can strongly recommend this camera to anyone who doesn't need/want manual controls.
Pros small, fast, great picture quality
Cons underpowered flash
Summary I am probably one of the first people that now can say they have owned the new Sony DSC P-200 and the new Canon SD-500. In another review, I noted why I was not pleased with the picture quality of the Sony (lots of blurry pictures and unnatural color). I went out and got the Canon today. WOW! Big difference! I've taken about hundred shot with the Canon, in varying lighting situations, all in auto mode, and not one blurry picture!!! The quality, detail and clarity is much better than the Sony in my opinion. I did not conduct a rigorous test, but just took some identical shots in identical lighting with both cameras, and the Canon won hands down. Sharper pictures. More detail. More natural color.
The Canon is very small, definitely pocket sized, but still easy to hold firmly. It powers up quickly, so you won't miss that quick shot. I can't comment on most of the manual features of the camera because I've been shooting in auto mode, but based on my experience so far, manual adjustment, while available, won't be needed for most of the shots I will be taking. Once I have the time, I plan to explore all the high end features of the camera, but for now, I can't comment intelligently or fairly.
The only knock I have is that the flash is underpowered. This is a common problem with all ultra compacts, but I think I will probably go out and buy an external flash at some point. A few of my indoor shots could have benefited from a stronger flash, but even those shots were not all that bad.
Perhaps I have a defective Sony camera, but I have seen some other reviews where people had problems with blurry pictures, and it seems to be a known problem with the camera. After playing around with the Canon, I don't even want to take the chance of returning the Sony and getting a replacement. Its getting returned right away.
Pros Great physical design. Responsive.
Cons No High Speed Program! Noise in video.
Summary Good image quality. I expected more from a 7MP sensor and a Digic II processor. Lacking a high speed/sports mode is something I'll never understand in a camera of this caliber and price. You don't have a shutter or aperture priority mode...so the lack of a high speed program is a total dealbreaker for me.