Canon G11


Canon: Do you have a DSLR? When you’re getting ready to take the kids to the park or on a mini-vacation do you cringe at the thought of having to lug that big DSLR? More than 80-percent of the time I just grab my tiny Canon compact digital camera and go. Yes, picture quality will suffer but at least I’ll actually get some pictures. But is there a compact-ish digital camera that takes pictures like DSLRs that I can take with me almost everywhere I go? I thought I had the answer when I was researching Panasonic’s DMC-LX3 yesterday night. It goes for, mmm… it was going for $499.99 on Amazon (I did note that Amazon had just one in stock). Now the price has jumped to $630! Maybe that’s not so bad since thanks to Canon.

Canon just announced the G11, the successor to the G10. The G-Series from Canon have been the flagship compact digital cameras and have earned many positive reviews over the years. According to Canon, the G11 is: “Designed for those looking for a pocket-sized camera with SLR functionality.” If Canon’s claim is true that this little G11 is what I have been searching for, what relief! But I must stay calm until real reviews come in since the small portion of my brain that is logical is telling me that a marketing person wrote that. I used to be a marketing person and I know that things can be exaggerated. Just a bit.

Here are some specifications to back that claim:

  • Image Sensor: 10.0 Megapixel 1/1.7-inch CCD High Sensitivity System
  • Lens: Optically Image Stabilized 6.1-30.5mm (28-140mm 35mm film equivalent) f/2.8-4.5 with 5x Optical Zoom
  • Monitor: 2.8-inch VGA vari-angle PureColor System LCD
  • ISO: 80/100/200/400/800/1600/3200
  • Storage: SD/SDHC, MMC/MMCplus, HDC MMCplus
  • Image: JPG, CR2 (RAW) with Maximum Resolution of 3648 x 2736
  • Movie: MOV (H.264) at 640 x 480/30fps
  • Two Mode Dials: Adjust ISO, Exposure Compensation, Recording Modes (RAW+JPG)
  • Flash: Built-in, Speedlite Flash System Compatibility
  • Availability: October 2009
  • Price: Estimated at US$499.99

That is an excellent price. I think. Maybe not. When you compare that price to a low-end DSLR, for instance a Canon’s Rebel XS with a EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS is going for $499.00 on Amazon, the $499.99 price for the G11 seems a bit high. Of course, the G11 street price should go down a bit when it becomes available but as you can see a low-end DSLR with a kit lens plays in the same price territory. Sure the G11 is much smaller but the Rebel XS probably takes much better pictures, even despite the G11 having optical image stabilization. The correct marketing message should be: “Designed for those looking for a large pocket-sized camera with SLR functionality and price.”

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