Monday, January 7, 2013

Blog Name Change and New Camera Canon G1X

Hi guys! I've changed the blog name to "Paul's Photography Blog" instead of "Paul's SX130 IS" because I've got a new camera, and am going to be mostly using it now: the Canon Powershot G1X!

Top photo is the G1X, second photo is with the Raynox DCR250 Super Macro close up lens attachment.

It's a large sensor 'compact'. It's a fair bit bigger and heavier than most point and shoots (I actually love it's retro blockiness!), but it is smaller and lighter than a DSLR - but the neat thing is, it has an image sensor nearly as big as a DSLR image sensor, and with the same pixel size/quality/density. This means that if you took a 5000 pixel image with a DSLR, using the same lense range, and a 4300 pixel image with the G1X, then cropped the sides off the 5000 pixel image to make it 4300 as well, you'd have two photos showing the same image. When I used imaging resource comparometer to compare the G1X at 800 and 1600 iso with the Canon Rebels / EOS 500d, 650d, 60d, etc, the G1X really showed a lot more detail. From DXO lense quality ratings, apparently it's image quality is like a fixed-lense equivalent of a 7D with a 15-85mm IS USM lense. Anyway, the idea is, I didn't want interchangeable lenses, DSLR size and weight, but wanted something smaller that could provide the pixel detail quality of a DSLR image, so I went with the G1X.

What really blows me away with it is it's low light ability. Yesterday it was a hot day, and we had the house closed up. Blinds closed. Outside shades pulled down. This was about 4pm or 5pm I think, with inside lights off.

In the family room it was pretty dark, so I ramped up to 1600 ISO, and even to 12800 ISO, and took a bunch of shots handheld with no flash. I was really surprised by the results!

Here's our dog at 12800 ISO. He was a shadowy figure - and it would have come out a dark blob on the SX 130, but you can see him clearly here!

Here's some other shots. I'm really impressed with how clear and how much detail it shows over the SX130 - but the G1X does have an image sensor that is more than 6 times bigger than the SX130's sensor, so it shouldn't surprise me this much.

It doesn't do what most people call 'macro' photography by default with its lense. You can only get about 8" / 20cm away from something with its 'Macro mode' enabled, which is quite different to the 1cm macro on the SX130. However, taking a photo without any zoom of some miniatures, I was then able to just crop out all the empty space of the photo, so all that was left was the tiny miniature in the middle of the photo. Because there's so much detail even at 100% size, it turned out better than when I take macro shots with my SX130 ! The color accuracy, shading, etc, is so much better on the new cam. On this tie fighter, the SX130 was rendering the cockpit window in near total black, while now the dark grey window framework can be seen no problem.

I think I read that the reason that the G1X can't do things like 1cm macro zoom, is because of the size of the sensor and lens. People on forums were complaining about 8" minimum distance, but when I looked into DSLR lenses before getting the G1X, I found that the DSLR macro lenses weren't doing 1cm macro either! A couple of them were even further away than the G1X! So, if I wanted a bigger sensored camera, that's just one of the limitations to live with. And as above, cropping an image is no problem.

On a plus side though, the G1X can have a filter adapter attached to it, which means I can attach things like the Raynox DCR250 Super Macro close up lens onto the end of the camera! I'm still experimenting with it, but here's some hand held shots. They're a little bit blurry, because they were hand held and not on a tripod, and also because I'm still experimenting with the manual settings the G1X has.

So anyway, I just wanted to post a couple pics from the new cam. Really excited about the images it's producing! I'm definitely going to have to read up and learn to use more of the manual settings, as the correct manual settings definitely bring up a better looking image than having the camera decide the settings for me.

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