Canon Powershot SD900, or not…

I’m in the market for a new, compact point-and-shoot camera. I currently have a Canon Powershot S2 IS, which I’ve had pretty much since it came out. It think I may have even picked it up, coincidentally, the day it was released. But anyway. It’s rather large, which I like when I’m taking serious photos. I like the size and weight of it, as it feels pretty solid and handleable. I mean, I do have some complaints about it, but most are due to the simple fact that it is an older camera.

Anyway, I want a camera that can easily fit in my pocket, be pulled out when needed, and return from whence it came with haste. And I want at least 10Megapixels… just cause that’s what I want.

I’m looking at the Canon Powershot SD900. It looks like a pretty good product. I don’t need a whole lot of bells and whistles with the camera, but a few little enhancement would be nice. This is just a small camera to keep with me for when I see something of interest while out that I want to photograph. I like Canon products. As I said, I already have a Canon digital still camera. I also have a Canon HV20 video camera which I love. Canon is turning into my first choice in camera purchases.

I did have some questions about the SD900, such as:

1. How does the battery hold up? I heard that you get about 200 images on a charge which seems a bit low to me. My S2 IS uses AA batteries, and when I use Energizer Lithiums I get between 1000 to 1500 shots out of them. Of course, if this is just for me to use while on the road for randomness, 200 should be fine, but if I want to take a nice large gallery (of which I’ve done many in the 1000 – 2500 images range) that battery will be quite frustrating.

2. What special features and manual controls does it have, and which does it lack? How much control do I have over the thing and how much will the chipset inside decide without my input?

3. How good is the image quality? I mean, I know it’s 10Megapixels, but how does the chip handle color. Does it distort any parts of the picture? How well does it hold up in low-light? How good is the autofocus? How does it hold up with action shots? Etc…

4. Are there any other little things about it I should know about?

The other thing is that I am only willing to spend between $200 and $250 on it. Of course, that seems to pose a problem, being that the SD900 is a $400 camera, but I’ve seen it online in the range I want, so I’m not too worried about price.

So does anyone have this camera, and what do you think of it? Is there another comparable camera that may be a better fit and buy? I do also like Nikon if Canon had nothing really fit for what I need.

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