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High-end compact conundrum: Canon S95 vs. Panny LX5

Discussion in 'Other Systems' started by everythingsablur, Aug 19, 2010.

  1. everythingsablur

    everythingsablur Mu-43 Veteran

    Aug 4, 2010
    Toronto, ON
    Well, looks like Canon just took the wraps off the S95. Seems to stack up really well versus the LX5, just as the S90 was a strong foil to the LX3.

    Canon S95 specs: Canon unveils PowerShot S95 premium compact: Digital Photography Review
    Panasonic LX5 specs:
    Panasonic officially announces DMC-LX5 premium compact: Digital Photography Review

    They are more similar than they are different, with the LX5 on paper having the slight edge in many areas (wider angle, brighter throughout the focal range, higher ISO in high sensitivity mode, slightly bigger sensor, broader exposure range, faster max shutter speed, true hot shoe, ability to use the LVF1), while the S95 has the longer focal length, more ISO steps (on paper at least), finally gets an HD movie mode, can trigger a remote flash, way cool control ring, and would ostensibly have Canon's superior (opinion) JPEG engine. On paper, I think I would go with the LX5, but for whatever reason I just can't shake how amazingly small and light the S90/S95 are, even compared to the LX3/5.

    • Like Like x 3
  2. las Palm as

    las Palm as Mu-43 Regular

    I think, panasonic`s lx3 was perfect. But now with m4/3 the things change.
    Lx5, too big for a P&S, i prefer an Evil.
    S95, small like other P&S.
    I think Canon offer a better camera
  3. PeterB666

    PeterB666 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jan 14, 2010
    Tura Beach, Australia
    The LX5 isn't MFT. It is only 1mm wider, 5mm higher and 2mm skinnier depth than the LX3.

    Compared to the GF-1, the LX5 is 9mm skinner width, 6mm less high and 11.3mm less deep. As the lens of the LX5 largely retracts into the body when not in use, it is a fair bit smaller.

    That said, the S95 is smaller but so is the sensor and the lens zoom starts longer and is slower at the long end of the range.

    They are both fine pocket cameras.
    • Like Like x 1
  4. Rudi

    Rudi Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Aug 16, 2010
    LX5. As much as I like the S90, and now S95, from Canon, the extra "effective" 4 mm at the wide end makes all the difference! That is why I bought the LX3 for my compact (and won't be upgrading, thanks!).

    I wish it went even wider! :biggrin:



    • Like Like x 2
  5. photoSmart42

    photoSmart42 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Feb 12, 2010
    San Diego, CA
    I have the same dilemma looking for a pocketable companion to my GH1. The problem with the LX5 is that it's too big to be pocketable, and IQ-wise I'd rather have a GF-1+20/1.7 which isn't that much larger than the LX5. I lose the zoom, but I gain gobs of IQ. The S90/95 is truly pocketable with full manual control and RAW output. I think it's just tough to beat because of that in spite of the LX5's perhaps slightly better IQ and wide angle capability.
  6. Rudi

    Rudi Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Aug 16, 2010
    On paper, the difference isn't that much. In the flesh, the LX3/LX5 is still quite a bit smaller than the GF1. But you're right - the LX5 is not really pocketable! It really is a decision between quality and size, and that applies to both the LX3/S95 as well as the LX3/GF1 dilemma. :smile:
  7. Ray Sachs

    Ray Sachs Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Apr 17, 2010
    Near Philadephila
    Similarly, on paper the difference in size/weight between the LX5 and the S95 doesn't look that big, but when you actually handle them, the S95 (or at least the S90 - haven't actually seen a 95 yet obviously) is notably smaller. I wouldn't even say the quality is different - you're really trading off a wider zoom range for a smaller camera. Since my primary criteria in a true pocket camera is small size, the S90 was an easy call for me - I'd like the extra 4mm at the wide end, but not at the expense of not being able to easily slip it into a cycling jersey pocket. The S90 has been an excellent "other" camera for me. If I'm not concerned about being able to slip it in a pocket or if I want the extra wide angle, I just take my ep2 with the 9-18.

    In terms of IQ, they're both really quite incredible for such small cameras.

    • Like Like x 1
  8. JoeFriday

    JoeFriday Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 28, 2010
    Milwaukee, WI
    I have the same thoughts as Ray. Having played around with a friend's S90, I find it to be a highly pocketable camera. The kind that you can always have with you. And I have the same 'measurement' for a take-anywhere camera. Can it fit into my cycling jersey pocket? The Canon: yes. The Lumix: no.

    I've loved Panny cameras for a long time, and generally give them the edge in image quality (at least in decent light). But I'd pick up the S95 in this case.
  9. Rudi

    Rudi Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Aug 16, 2010
    Oh, I'm with Ray as well! :smile: But the thing is - it depends on how you arrive at the high-end compact. If I needed one and I already had a :43: camera, the S90/S95 might make more sense. In my case I was looking for a high-end compact to use with my DSLR outfit, so my needs were different (and so was my decision).

    It really is a compromise between size and image quality. The answer might also be different depending on how good your camera phone is. Personally, I would still pick the LX5. If I'm willing to carry a camera other than my iPhone, I would rather strap it to my belt and take the better image quality over a smaller package that might fit in a pocket. My pockets are often full, so I wouldn't fit a camera into my jeans pocket anyway. If I'm wearing cargo pants, the LX3 fits, so I don't see it as a burden over a more streamlined camera.

    The above are *my* requirements, and everyone has to make that compromise based on their own particular needs. But if I had to choose tomorrow, the LX5 would be number one on my list. :smile:
  10. Ogdilla

    Ogdilla New to Mu-43

    Aug 23, 2010
    If you're placing an emphasis on HD video, the nice thing about both of these is that they use CCD sensors which are less susceptible to the "rolling shutter" artifacts that CMOS sensors exhibit.
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