Since whenever I (or anyone else) has come to this board looking for answers, we usually get them, I figured what the heck... If there are any photography hobbyists out there that can help me, it would be greatly appreciated. I have been looking to purchase a really good digital camera for my fiance for Christmas. After much research, I am torn between The canon S3/S5 Powershot series, and the Kodak Easyshare z812IS. At the risk of boring everyone to tears, let me give you every bit of information I am considering when weighing my options: I originally bought my fiance a Kodak point and shoot pocket camera (nothing fancy) for Christmas a few years ago when she mentioned that she wanted to be able to take pictures at get togethers and such. Well, she has really taken to the camera and recently has gotten into taking pictures of landscapes of places we visit. This year, she mentioned how she wants to start framing some and hanging them in the apartment. I figure now its time for an upgrade.
I was going to go the dSLR route, but she has no experience outside of point and shoot. A friend who is an amateur photographer suggested getting a slr-like camera and once she learns more about photography, make the big leap to dslr, maybe in a year or two.
The feature I was looking for are: ease of use, but with enough advanced features so that she can grow with the camera; quality of photos; durability; the ability to change lenses, etc (ie, accessorize); and a slr-like feel, so she can get used to the style.
After researching; I have become torn between the canon duo above or the Kodak.
The Canons are supposed to be just excellent, while I have heard amazing things about Kodak. I hear that the S3 is actually a much better value for the money than the S5, and that with a firmware upgrade that gives the S3 the ability to shoot in RAW format, there is almost no reason to spend the extra money on the S5, even with the extra 2 MP.
The Kodak, on the other hand seems to have just as high of a photo quality as the Canons, but appears to be a little more novice friendly, while providing advanced features as well. It shoots in HD, which is a plus, as well as a really cool panorama mode. Although the big con with the Kodak is the fact that it has poor battery life, and doesn't come with a recharger. This appears to negate the price difference between Kodak and Canon.
She is used to Kodak, but Kodak doesn't offer a dSLR that I am aware of, so when the time comes for the big upgrade, she will have to familiarize herself with the new system anyway. We have the easy share photo printer, and like the ease of use as well.
I have read virtually every review on both products, but cant find a satisfactory comparison of the canons and the Kodak. Does anyone out there have experience with one or both of these? Is there some dark horse camera I am not considering? Which should I buy?!?!?
Sorry about the long post, and I hope there is someone in W-land who has an idea of which is the best fit. Again, any help would be greatly appreciated.
Lens quality, sensor quality, you name it. Kodak isn't as horrid as some would have you believe, but it does not stack up to Canon (or Nikon for that matter) and I would easily pay more for one.
As far as ease-of-use, the Kodak might seem easier but there really is nothing tricky - even for a novice - about using a Canon, and if there might be an eventual jump to a DSLR then she might want to start investigating some of the more complex options anyway.
The fact that the Kodak takes 720p video is cute, but given that lens quality (or the quality of most digicams, not just Kodak in this regard) I wouldn't concern myself too much with that.