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New Toy: Canon Powershot S3 IS

I’ve recently been jonesing for a more elaborate digital camera, after using point-and-shoots since I switched from 35mm film in 2000. Back when I graduated from high school, I got a Canon EOS Elan IIe 35mm SLR, and it was a fantastic camera. I still have it; it’s in pristine condition. Unfortunately, I somehow doubt I could ever go back to film after enjoying the luxuries of digital. I mean…return to 36 exposures per roll and lose that awesome review as-you-go capability? I don’t think so.

So after a lot of painstaking research, I ordered myself a new camera a couple weeks ago. I couldn’t afford a digital SLR — even though prices on them have come way down in recent years — so I went with a superzoom, or what’s also called a “bridge” camera (because it acts as a bridge between a point-and-shoot and a digital SLR!). It’s a Canon Powershot S3 IS. Pictured below is my complete haul, which I ordered piecemeal from three different online retailers.

Canon Powershot S3 IS and accessories

I actually received my new toy a week ago, but hadn’t even had a chance to use it until today. Even today’s use was abbreviated, but I took a few photos around the yard, all of which utilized full manual mode. I particularly like experimenting with shallow depth of field, as you might notice from the gallery I put up on Flickr. See the rest of the photos here.

The Powershot S3 IS features a 12x zoom, optical image stabilization, a 6 megapixel sensor, a swing-and-tilt camcorder-like LCD screen, and a 640×480, 30fps movie mode with CD quality stereo sound. It runs on four AA batteries, so I bought eight 2700mAh rechargables to handle the load, as well as a 2 GB SD card. The Powershot S3 was recently superseded by the Powershot S5 (which is ridiculously overpriced), and that resulted in prices on the S3 going through the floor. It seemed like a great time to pick one up.

Now I just need to get my butt out of the house and find some interesting stuff to take pictures of!

Apple and I went out this evening with the intention of dropping by a somewhat scenic location and grabbing some pics of the GTO, but it started to rain, so that put the kibosh on that. (We looked at Verizon phones at Circuit City instead.) We’re thinking of going to the beach pretty soon and taking some pictures down there; since we live in this scenic area and all, we might as well make use of it. Although personally, I would rather photograph interesting examples of urban decay than the same old cliched beach and sunset pictures, but that’s the problem with Naples…if anyone ever spots any decay, they sweep it under the rug within five minutes.

I know I haven’t posted much lately; I’ve got some things to say, but have been too busy working on a story lately. Yes, that one. It’s really getting good now.