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I am very seriously considering purchasing a Canon SX30IS 35X zoom camera.

I would really appreciate any comments from owners/users of this camera.

The majority of my shooting will take place outdoors, but I would like to hear opinions of how it performs in indoors also...(low light shooting, etc.)

In addition, if anyone would highly recommend something similar from another maker I am all ears!

Thanks to you all, John B.

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closed as off-topic by mattdm, MikeW, Paul Cezanne, John Cavan Nov 3 '13 at 20:58

This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:

  • "Questions seeking product or service recommendations are off-topic because they tend to become obsolete quickly. Instead, describe your situation and the specific problem you're trying to solve." – mattdm, MikeW, Paul Cezanne, John Cavan
If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

3  
Hi John, mind not using ALLCAPS? On the internet this means your yelling your text, you don't want to shout this question, right? –  Davy Landman Jan 16 '11 at 18:59
    
Davy has a point. I've fixed the text, but please bear this in mind for the future. –  John Cavan Jan 16 '11 at 19:06
    
See also photo.stackexchange.com/questions/6908/… and photo.stackexchange.com/questions/6731/… where I've added some answers, and some other cameras have been mentioned. I haven't used the SX30IS but I was very happy with my SX10IS. –  drewbenn Jan 16 '11 at 19:37
1  
So, this makes a good example of a fine equipment-recommendation question that really just isn't right for this site. See meta.photo.stackexchange.com/questions/529 –  mattdm Jan 23 '11 at 2:13
1  
I'm a strong inclusionist, but here I agree with @mattdm - off-topic. @John, I think your best course of action is to go find some reviews. For a camera like this you'll have several reputable review sites to choose from, I'm sure. –  Reid Jan 28 '11 at 23:50

1 Answer 1

It's a great bridge camera, but it won't do anything that spectacular. Just be weary of the cruddy autofocus and grain.

I got this camera to replace my dinky little 5MP point-and-shoot. It was a huge upgrade. The resolution was much better, it had more options, and it felt like a D-SLR. After I used it for a while, I realized that it was not really what I was looking for. Sure it looks nice, but the zoom isn't something to choose a camera for. The picture quality isn't the greatest (it just loves to set it's ISO to 1600 each time, so expect noise galore in low light situations), but my main issue was the autofocus.

The autofocus is really bad. I was taking pictures at a wedding, and they all looked nice and dandy on the LCD (that's one plus about it, though. That swiveling viewfinder is one thing I miss), but when I opened them up on the computer, they were completely blurry. It was pretty bad, and I managed to salvage only about 15 pictures from a 4GB memory stick.

I'm not sure if bridge camera uses a different algorithm or method for autofocus than a D-SLR does, but I must say, it's really cruddy. The other reason I spent a few hundred extra and got the Canon T2i (the 550D) was because the SX30 IS didn't have a single remote trigger port. Sure is has BULB mode, but that feature is completely useless without a remote trigger.

The lesson I learned (twice) was not to buy a camera just because it has some feature you like. I got the T2i because if had 1080P video recording capabilities (and because it had everything the SX30 IS didn't), but to tell you the truth, I've only recorded only around 10 minutes of video over the past three months I've had this camera (but I've taken over 20,000 pictures!). I really should have gone Nikon, but it's way too late for that.

I also do a lot of shooting outdoors, but this camera won't do anything that spectacular. It's main limitation is the autofocus and grain.

This is just my personal opinion, so do what you want. Good luck!

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Yes they DO use a different AF systems than DSLRs, it is called contrast-detect (actually DSLRs use it in Live-View). Normally DSLRs use Phase-Detection which is much faster. Only 4 non-DSLRs exist which use Phase-Detection, the Fuji F300 EXR (travel zoom with 15X and manual controls - see neocamera.com/review.php?id=75) & Z800 EXR (ultra-compact, no controls) and the Sony Alpha SLT-A55 (neocamera.com/review.php?id=148) & SLT-A33 (both ILCs with an EVF). –  Itai Feb 8 '11 at 19:56