Friday, May 20, 2011

New Cycling Camera

Over the last few months, I have been carrying my new D-SLR camera during bike rides. When not able to carry that camera, I used my point-and-shoot camera (Canon A1100). As I started doing more HDR photography, the A1100 just did not meet my needs.

The only photo format available on the A1100 is JPG. While it does a good job, I wanted a camera that shoots RAW and bracketed exposures. Looking online, there just did not seem to be many cameras that do RAW and bracketed exposures, and those I did see, where way to large to carry in my cycling jersey packet.

Today, it was time to hunt in earnest. Sam's Club - Kodak Z990 - too large. Best Buy (Council Bluffs) - just no decent selection at all. Nebraska Furniture Mart - Voila! The sales clerk (Courtney) showed me the Canon S95.

The camera is actually smaller that my A1100. Perfect for the cycling jersey.

PRO: Photo format is JPG, RAW, or JPG & RAW. Can set shooting mode as "Bracketed" exposures. Bracketing +/- 2EV (corrected from previous version of this post). Video recording is MOV. 3.8x optical zoom (enough for my purpose). SD, SDHC cards.

CON: Li-Ion battery (prefer AA). No optical viewfinder. 10 MPix (would have preferred large count, but sufficient).

Took a couple test photos. Soon found that the CR2 (Canon Raw) format is not the same as the CR2 on the EOS T1i. Once I loaded the software disc, I could process the photos.

Working on software issues. Photoshop Elements 9: Updated version 9.0.3 on the Vista desktop works with the S95. Cannot update Elements on the Windows 7 laptop (keeps saying the server is busy). Without the update, the S95 RAW files are not readable. Wrote inquiry on the Photoshop Elements Forum.

Photomatix Light: I had been using version 1.0. Did not work with the S95. Updating to version 2.0 did the trick.

HDR Photo Pro: While it will load the file, the colors are wrong. Same problem on both computers. Wrote inquiry on the EverImaging Forum.

Hope that the problems can be resolved as I like the camera. Watch for some test photos when the rains are gone and I can ride my bikes again.

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