Just over a year ago, I ordered a Canon G9 and made my first post about it. Since then, I’ve posted at least 80 articles about my experiences with the G9 along with an occasional bit of news or other link. (See the labels on the left hand side of the blog for an index.) In the past year, the G9 has been by my side (well, in the bag over my shoulder) almost every day.
Even though I’ve done a lot with the G9, yesterday was the first trip to the zoo for my G9 and also for my granddaughter. Another first – as simple as it seems – was that I used the on-camera flash for fill. The day was bright and clear but the zoo was full of shadows and I was not always able to get the best angle to the sun. As usual, I shot in raw, Av mode but this time turned on the flash with flash compensation reduced by 1/3. This worked out well.
Thinking back over the past year with my G9, I began by talking about my trusty G3. The G3 still works as well as ever but is rarely used. During Hurricane Gustav, I did use the intervalometer of the G3 but fortunately recorded nothing of serious consequence.
Noise at high ISO was an early concern for G9 images and I’ve worked with noise reduction techniques quite a bit ever since. In fact, noise reduction and comparisons is my latest on-going project. I’ll summarize my conclusions about G9 noise by saying that the results at ISO 400 are usually OK for me if I get the exposure right and use raw mode. In a pinch, I do use ISO 800 rather than miss a picture entirely.
I’ve used the G9 almost every day since getting it and have taken 8599 pictures with the G9. True, many of those were learning or experimental shots but most were taken with at least some hope of getting a ‘keeper’. My keepers include 22 photos posted in a public G9 gallery and roughly twice that number of more personal shots in private galleries. By my count, I’ve printed 11 keepers at 12x18 inches in addition to test shots; several dozen keepers at 8x10 (OK, mostly of my granddaughter) and hundreds of snapshots. Some of my G9 shots were entered into the monthly competition sponsored by my local camera club and occasionally get some sort of recognition. Like many photographers these days, most of my work lives only in computer memory and is shown only on a computer screen.
Friday, I held a G10 in my hot little hands. Having used the G9 so much, the G10 felt very familiar and almost intuitive to use. The G10 is a nice camera and I wouldn’t hesitate to get one except that I already have a G9.
For the foreseeable future, the G9 will remain my everyday work horse of a camera. I recently bought a few new flash gadgets as well as Photoshop CS4 and will be writing about those as soon as I finish my self imposed study on G9 noise reduction.