ISO 3200 compact digital camera

ISO 3200 compact digital camera

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Fujifilm FinePix F30 Zoom:

It's pretty rare for me to be able to say if I bought a camera now, it would not be a Canon.

Pretty much all the compacts I've seen max out at ISO 400 (higher number means better performance in low light, basically). And most of them won't pick ISO 400 in full auto mode, you have to force it.

The latest in Canon's line of smallest cameras, the SD600, will do ISO 800 now. I was afraid they'd stick at ISO 400 forever to try to make me buy a DSLR.

This is pretty exciting. I believe last I looked, ISO 3200 was the highest you could get out of a DSLR.

Yup, you still can't get better than ISO 3200 out of a Canon DSLR: D30, 5D, 1D Mark II N, 20Da, 1Ds Mark II....

Thanks to [info]cyron_lj for the info. I should read http://www.dpreview.com/ more often.
  • The higher the "ISO" number the more noise you will see on any pixel. It takes a certain amount of time for the signal to settle. If the camera exposes and reads it too fast then the data will have noise on it, plain and simple. Regular analog film has these problems as well since the faster film has a larger grain. CCD stands for charge coupled device and the computer reads it by bucket brigade. If the CCD element is better it is possible to get less noise for the same amount of time and they are able to use it twice as fast for the same amount of noise. It is also possible that they just said "what the hell" and read it twice as fast anyway and if you want that mode you will have to settle with more noise.
    • Yup, but I've been pissed off they locked the ISO as low as 400 so long with the sensors they've had. Let me set it to what I like and I'll deal with the graininess - a 5mp picture scaled down to 640x480 - my most common usage, will generally be just fine.

      But they do say things like "In practical terms, it is a breakthrough in delivering crisp images, even at night-time, or with fast-moving subjects." a number of times, so I'm fairly optimistic about sensitivity improvement.
  • Yup, you still can't get better than ISO 3200 out of a Canon DSLR: D30, 5D, 1D Mark II N, 20Da, 1Ds Mark II....

    This isn't exactly true. If i wanted to have my EOS20D shoot at an effective 12,800 ASA, i could set it for ISO 3200, and dial in a -2 stop exposure compensation. [results will probably suck, but thats another thing entirely]

    You can do this with any of the canon point&shoots, and probably any of the others out there as well. So your compact that only goes to 400can most likely be tricked into giving you 1600 by doing the same thing.

    • On my d30 I often did that. The d30 only went to ISO 1600 but I'd often dial in two stops underexposure. Focusing was virtually impossible but occasionally I'd get a really nice image. In the worst of worlds, I'd be shooting that way and still need half second exposures (at f/1.4). Ah, the joys of shooting in the dark.
    • 4 months later I finally figured out what you're talking about here. I don't want a brighter picture, I want the equivalent of doing 2 stops exposure compensation and then have the camera automatically adjust the shutter speed faster to compensate for the exposure compensation.
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