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Thread: P850 review

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
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    P850 review

    P 850 is in November-2005 upcoming reviews list on this site. Goodnews.
    I think it may get delayed (due to Jeff is moving) but Jeff does a commending job by providing lots of reviews everymonth in this overcrowded digital camera market.
    Thanks Jeff.
    Atindra

  2. #2
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    Oct 2005
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    London, ON - Canada
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    I was considering this camera as a gift for my in-laws primarily due to its price point compared to my camera. I think I'll take a pass on this one after reading the review here.

    The 850 is just not up to par with the competition in the crowded UZ market. The review on this site criticizes its 'fuzzy' images, poor high ISO performance (unusable 400/800), below average battery life, poor LCD resolution, poor low light visibility on LCD and EVF, poor low light focusing, poor manual focus, poor handling, loud zoom, painfully slow startup time (3.5 seconds!), min. focus distance in macro mode (10cm!), etc.
    Canon S2 IS - 1GB Sandisk Ultra II SD
    Adobe Photoshop Elements 4 & Premiere Elements 2

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
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    16

    take a second look..

    The camera is not as all bad as it sounds.
    Go and try one out before you decide against it.
    I own one and have been very pleased with it.

    Here are my comments on those apparent "drawbacks".

    1) Fuzzy images
    This could happen with a subject very close to the camera when not in macro mode... or if the focus is not aimed or locked on the subject. But in my experiences with this model I did not find a serious problem with images being "soft focused". The image stabilization made images more crisp than ever.

    2) Noise in ISO 400

    There is not one UZ camera that has low noise in this ISO. The Panasonic has got reviews at epinions which users complained about noise in that model. Seriously,, this is a sub $500 price point camera, what do you expect? If you want to get low noise in ISO 400/800 then step up to a Digital SLR like the Canon Rebel or Nikon D70. I wonder what a user/reviewer of this camera expects it to do.

    3) Battery Life

    It was ranked #3 on the list when compared to other competitive cameras. And that makes the battery life bad? Myself, I took hundreds of photos with this camera at a time and it lasts and lasts. The battery life is not at all below average.

    4) poor LCD resolution, poor low light visibility on LCD and EVF

    Personally, I found 2.5 inch LCD to be a great feature and also of high quality. It did not have poor resolution in my opinion - compare it to the small little tiny LCD in the Canon IS. This is a great feature of this camera and one of largest LCD screens in it's class.

    The EVF is also good quality and is adjustable. What is the problem?

    5) poor low light focusing

    its better than the kodak z740 even without the AF lamp. If you want great low light focusing then you have to get a camera with a laser or infrared senor, and pay a much higher price for it. You wont get much better than the P850 in low light focusing.

    6) poor manual focus

    It's the first Kodak that even has manual focus. It works if you know how to use it. And if manual focus is that important than you need an SLR.

    7) poor handling

    no problems in that category

    8) loud zoom

    finally something I can agree with. It does have loud zoom, especially compared to other competitive models. And with my P850 I didnt get the movie mode to "silence" the zoom motor (it can be heard well) so that is another dissapointment I had.

    9) painfully slow startup time (3.5 seconds!)

    3.5 seconds is painfully slow? not in my opinion. How fast is the fastest? 2.5 seconds? Is this even a consideration for a serious photographer? Come on!

    10) min. focus distance in macro mode (10cm!),

    If macro is what you need a camera for than you have the wrong camera.
    It is a HIGH ZOOM camera. They are not known for great macros.
    Last edited by Techie419; 12-07-2005 at 03:09 PM.

  4. #4
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    Sep 2005
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    Torrance, CA USA
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    I'll still take the P850 and its small flaws over the S2's too sharp (or too soft) and overexposed images, no record live histogram, low light focus errors, noisy images above ISO 200, difficult to see viewfinder and small LCD, too much CA and PF, and that it's limited to the highest shutter speed usable at wide aperatures. And don't even get me started on the colors, and memory card problems!

    But enjoy your S2, and we'll enjoy our Kodaks.

  5. #5
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    Aug 2005
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    SoCal
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rambler358
    I'll still take the P850 and its small flaws over the S2's too sharp (or too soft) and overexposed images, no record live histogram, low light focus errors, noisy images above ISO 200, difficult to see viewfinder and small LCD, too much CA and PF, and that it's limited to the highest shutter speed usable at wide aperatures. And don't even get me started on the colors, and memory card problems!

    But enjoy your S2, and we'll enjoy our Kodaks.
    Nobody even mentioned an S2 in this thread yet. Don't be bitter.

  6. #6
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    Yes - this isn't an 850 vs. S2 thread. Yeesh - take a chill pill...

    Anyway... I understand how easy it is to get defensive about a significant purchase decision but let me clarify a few things that I find unacceptable about the 850 and why we will likely by a different camera for my in-laws.

    1) USB 2.0 (High Speed) - they don't want to use a card reader - they don't want to fumble around with taking the card in and out and they travel a lot and will be downloading to various PCs and their notebook when around town. 2.0 high speed should be the min. standard for all digicams going forward.

    2) 3.5 seconds for start-to-record time is ABYSMAL - read: lost shots. Argue this point all you want but when your subjects are primarily kids/grandkids, it would be a shame to miss spontaneous priceless moments due to startup lag when there are better options out there, i.e. start-to-record time for the Canon S2 is 1.3 seconds, 2.1 seconds for the Sony DSC-H1, and less of a comparable is the Panasonic FZ30 at 1.1 seconds.

    3) Low light focusing - how can it NOT get "much better than the P850" when it doesn't even have an AF assist lamp!

    Anyway, a lot of it is personal preference but I would suggest that an average rating/recommendation is not too out of line for this camera given all the little 'niggles'. However, with that said, it is probably well suited to many people, especially at its competitive price point.

    Enjoy your cameras!
    Canon S2 IS - 1GB Sandisk Ultra II SD
    Adobe Photoshop Elements 4 & Premiere Elements 2

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Risky Business
    Yes - this isn't an 850 vs. S2 thread. Yeesh - take a chill pill...
    Well, it's obvious you chose the S2 over the P850 - so yeah, it comes into play. And I was simply stating my opinion of why I picked the P850 over the S2, I hope that's okay. And there's no need to take a chill pill here - it's quite cold enough where I'm at already!

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by swgod98
    Nobody even mentioned an S2 in this thread yet. Don't be bitter.
    Sheesh, someone's a bit defensive about their Canon.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rambler358
    Well, it's obvious you chose the S2 over the P850 - so yeah, it comes into play. And I was simply stating my opinion of why I picked the P850 over the S2, I hope that's okay. And there's no need to take a chill pill here - it's quite cold enough where I'm at already!
    Rambler - your selective reading skills are quite acute... If I was only pro-S2, I wouldn't have been considering the 850 for my in-laws now, right? Quite honestly, I was hoping that the 850 would fit the bill 'cause here in Canada, it truly fits the 'bill', i.e. cheaper!

    And FYI - I bought my S2 before the 850 was released - I didn't buy it 'over' the 850 (but I probably would have...). Actually, I may have considered the 880 if it was out when I bought my camera but I would miss the image stabilization...
    Canon S2 IS - 1GB Sandisk Ultra II SD
    Adobe Photoshop Elements 4 & Premiere Elements 2

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rambler358
    Sheesh, someone's a bit defensive about their Canon.
    Well, I wasn't going to bother defending the S2, but I found your accusations a bit random since you went off on a tangent for no apparent reason about how the S2 sucks...Now that I've come back, I figure maybe I should defend it...just a little...So people who are reading this don't get the wrong impression from someone who is throwing out (some) garbage that is mostly unfounded.

    S2's too sharp (or too soft) and overexposed images: Some people think the images are soft...My camera seems to provide me good images and I have no reason to complain (maybe the phrase, ignorance is bliss, is appropriate here? Though I have worked with/tested many Olympus and Canon model cameras).

    No record live histogram: I haven't missed it, but it would be a nice feature to have.

    Low light focus errors: Don't they all? *boggle* The P850 doesn't even have an autofocus assist light...

    Noisy images above ISO 200: I agree, the S2 really needs to have dSLR performance...again *boggle*

    Difficult to see viewfinder and small LCD: I haven't had problems and I shoot outdoors (soccer) all the time.

    Too much CA and PF: Can't argue this point. Though they all exibit PF.

    It's limited to the highest shutter speed usable at wide aperatures: The S2 goes down to 1/3200. The P850 only goes to 1/1000. How can you even bring this "feature" up as if it were an issue!? lol

    And don't even get me started on the colors: The colors are quite representative of the subject matter, are they not? It's the Kodak that oversaturates things...

    And memory card problems!: I have had 0 memory problems. Or maybe it's because there are 100x more S2's out there than P850's and we hear a lot more problems because of that.

    It's perfectly fine to discuss camera features (+ or -), but this is a discussion forum to help other people with their purchases (before and after). Going off about how a camera sucks (without any details) doesn't help anyone make the right decision for themselves.

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