by Mike McNamee Published 01/10/2008
The number and complexity of shooting modes borders on the ridiculous; why anybody would ever wish to be bothered with 25 shooting modes is a mystery. I found myself hundreds of yards behind my walking companions just stopping to try a macro shot and then turn the camera back to 'normal' mode. The level of complexity might look good as bullet points on the point-of-sale box, but does little for ease of use - I was rapidly yearning for the esoteric simplicity of the Canonet!
The only simple change is the ISO, which occupies a prominent position on the top plate with its own dial. The pdf manual runs to 274 pages so you are in for a long read before you can understand how everything works. It is ironic that I can pick up almost any Canon or Nikon D-SLR and get an image out of it without recourse to any manuals, but this consumer product is unfathomable to anybody over the age of 50 - it's almost as bad as my digital watch, another gizmo that is entrusted to the children to alter!
Within the parameters that are set by the camera type and price point, the G9 is a solid, well-made and stylish little camera with quite a retro look and feel. Inside it is anything but retro, being jam-packed with features, rather too many features for the author's taste, but others may have different views. Providing it is used at less than 200ISO you are in with a fighting chance of creating an image that could be used professionally, either in an emergency or for a less demanding task.
As well as the aerial shooting we used the camera in a number of social situations (family gatherings, country walks and the like) sinwpwhere it performed adequately, but not outstandingly, however, if for any reason you wish to leave the SLRs behind it will get the event recorded and it is some way better than your mobile phone.
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