Canon PowerShot S95 or Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX5

Sometimes I do get to places just when God’s ready to have somebody click the shutter.
~Ansel Adams

I have to admit that in the pursuit of going as light as possible while backpacking, I do not haul my Canon D40X DSLR into the back country overnight. For the past two years my backpacking point and shoot has been a Canon SD 880 IS  that was recommended by KenRockwell.com . I think this camera did a great job portraying what I felt and saw in the natural world. My Canon SD880 IS sports a 28 mm wide-angle lens, is  small and light, and shoots pretty good video. It is now having multiple problems and needs to be replaced. I imagine due to being subjected to sand, cold, wet, and on occasion contact with granite rocks.

After researching and comparing multiple high-end point and shoot cameras I have narrowed my selection down to two cameras the Canon s95 or the Panasonic Lumix LX5:

OR

Specifications I would like:
1. point and shoot size
2. best possible quality images
3. wide-angle lens
4. f/2.0 lens for low light conditions or shallow depth-of-field
5. HD video
6. take decent macro photos

In the ideal world I would love to just walk into a camera store that offered both cameras, take photos with both cameras, upload them to my laptop, and then walk out purchasing the camera of my choice. Is that possible anyone? Does anyone have experience with either of these cameras? I would really appreciate any recommendations or suggestions.

7 Comments

  1. Wow, that’s what I was looking for, what a data! present here at this blog,
    thanks admin of this website.

  2. I don’t see a reason why you shouldn’t be able to test both cameras. If you bring your own SD card to a store and ask nicely, they should let you snap some test pictures…

    Do you know dpreview.com? It has a great comparison of both cameras plus the P7000.

    from http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/q42010highendcompactgroup/page18.asp
    “As far as image quality is concerned, none of these three cameras disappoint. All of them are capable of detailed, colorful results in JPEG mode, and even in poor light, noise is well-controlled considering the size of their sensors. At higher ISO settings best results are achieved by careful manipulation of their RAW output, but even JPEGs look fine at small print sizes or for sharing on the web. In terms of critical image quality, there isn’t much between them, but if we had to pick one camera purely on the basis of image quality we’d probably plump for the S95, for its sharp, detailed JPEGs.

    It’s a close run thing though – the P7000 gives excellent images, especially from RAW files and although it is slightly noisier at its highest ISO settings, the LX5 is capable of extremely high quality output. The LX5’s trump card, of course, is its multi-aspect sensor, which can turn out higher-resolution images at its various aspect ratios than the S95 or P7000. If you enjoy shooting panoramics, we’d certainly recommend the LX5 over the other two cameras here.”

    cheers,
    Frank

    • Thanks for the valuable input. I live in a very rural area and just might have to locate a camera shop a few hours away. So question…I noticed you mentioned in a post on your blog that you were thinking of purchasing an S95. Did you purchase a camera?

      • No, I bought the G12 instead. It is heavier (400g vs. 200g for S95) but has a slightly better lense, better controls (easy to change exposure, ISO and aperture), and an adjustable display.

        • An update: I just got a great tip on where to go and plan on shopping this weekend. How do you like the G12? I will be looking at that model also.

          Just saw your message re the point n shoot. Yes, you absolutely can test the cameras in-store! And yes, you should bring your own media card. Personal recommendation would be to go to LA and try Samy’s Camera (http://www.samys.com). They have several stores down south, the main store (and the I’ve been to) is on Fairfax Ave., just down the street from the Farmer’s Market. They have a LARGE variety of cameras and, more importantly, very knowledgeable and helpful staff. If you do go, be prepared to to spend time there — you’re going to love the place!!!

          Going to Samy’s … this weekend.

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