View Full Version : Canon Powershot SD850 or Sony Cybershot T-100

06-18-2007, 12:43 AM
I've done a lot of research about the two cameras, but I still can't seem to make up my mind. They both look like very good cameras.

What is your opinion? Which one would you prefer?

Thank you

David Metsky
06-18-2007, 05:50 AM
We need to know a bit about what is important to you in order to give good advice. Please fill out the questionnaire at the top of the forum so we have a place to start.

Rachel Archer
06-18-2007, 07:11 AM
Dear Maya,

David is right, filling out the questionnaire in the Sticky at the top of this section in the forum is important to help give people a better idea of what you're looking for.

Having said that, and despite my almost-total newness to digital cameras, I feel confident in the wisdom of stating that I would not consider the Sony Cybershot DSC-T100, thanks in no small part to DCResource's own Jeff Keller and his recent review of the Sony T100. Here's some of what he had to say about it that ruled it out for me:

"Contrary to all the labels on the box the T100 came in, the camera doesn't output video at "Full HD 1080" (1080p). Instead, it outputs video at 1080i, though most people won't be able to tell the difference. If you're just viewing one photo at a time, they will not fill the screen, unless you took them in the 16:9 mode. The only way to see them full screen is to use the slideshow feature, and then everything looks really nice. For some bizarre reason, movies cannot be played back at all when using the HD cables...

You cannot delete a photo right after it's taken -- you must first enter playback mode...The image quality choices have been greatly simplified on the T100 compared to previous T-series models. You can no longer select how much compression is applied to an image -- only its resolution -- and that's too bad...

...it's not a camera I would own myself...

It has a huge 3-inch screen on the back, though it's not great in bright outdoor light. The buttons that sit to the right of the screen are small and cramped. There's no optical viewfinder on the DSC-T100. The biggest design annoyance on the camera has to be that darn sliding lens cover, which doubles as the camera's power switch. I can't tell you how many times I've put the camera into a pocket or bag and had the camera turn on accidentally...

The T100 has the same Cross Media Bar menu system as some other recent Sony cameras, and I'm not a fan of it. The regular record and playback menus are sluggish to use, and require too much button-mashing to navigate. The Home Menu is a confusing mess, and the camera would've been better off without it...

The only Mac software bundled is the Music Transfer application, which didn't work as advertised. No Mac image editor is included. Last, but not least, the full camera manual is on CD-ROM, which is a step backward from previous T-series models."

It sounds to me like what Sony has done with this camera is try to entice their typical Sony Store gadget-hungry customers with a lot of promises and apparent extra features that you would expect from a high-end place like Sony. The problem is that more than a few of the features/apps (like their Music Transfer application software, for example) don't work, so chalk that up to false advertising. I am leery of their other promises after I see them fail to come through on those. And sure enough, their big promise of "Full HD 1080p" movie output, on the box and sure to be a selling point for many, is patently false. Sony doesn't deserve your business when they lie, plain and simple.

Then there's simply preferential things. I like and want the optical viewfinder in a camera, which is part of the reason I'm going for the Canon Powershot SD800 IS; the Sony T100 has none. The LED on the Sony is bigger, yes, but apparently doesn't work very well at all in outdoor light, so it sucks on sunny days. That's a lotta days, lol. The Sony's sliding lens cover which doubles as its power switch sounds like a royal turn-off for almost anyone: can anyone say dead batteries??? From Jeff's words on this matter, I'd guess this is more of a likelihood than a Sony salesperson in-store would care to admit to.

Lastly, re: image quality - my impression after reading Jeff's review was that the Sony T100 has enough problems with noise reduction artifacts, even at very low ISOs, that it's simply a crap camera. Here's a relevant excerpt:

"The DSC-T100 turned in an average performance in our macro test. Since the camera lacks any custom white balance feature, it was unable to get accurate color under my quartz studio lamps, hence the brownish color cast. That won't matter for most folks, but if you shoot under mixed or unusual lighting, you may want to find a camera with custom WB. Aside from that, the subject is sharp, though there are some fuzzy details to be found (look around the eyes and nose). This could be either due to noise reduction (at ISO 80?!) or too much JPEG compression."

The last two sentences speak volumes to me.

Jeff hasn't reviewed the Canon Powershot SD850 IS yet here on DCResource, but I assume it is a better version of the SD800. Lacking knowledge of whether this or that has been upgraded or enhanced (or taken out), I'll be going with the SD800. My advice is to choose the Canon, not the Sony. Bear in mind I am a total noob, relying heavily on good ol' Jeff to guide me.

Good luck and before you decide, fill out the questionnaire and wait for some of the much more experienced regulars around here to post in your thread. *hugs* :D


Rachel :)

David Metsky
06-18-2007, 08:01 AM
Actually, the SD850 is the replacement for the SD700. Don't ask. For my needs the SD800, with a better wide angle lens and IS, is the leader in that line.