Eight "features" point and shoots need to lose

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Report: Steve Jobs Is In The Office Today

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Oh man, this guy totally read my mind. I shoot with a Rebel XSi so I don’t have to deal with this stuff on a regular basis, but point and shoots are full of useless and/or legacy features that really ought to go. This list over at Photography Bay gets it right, and I’ve got a couple of my own.

  • Digital Zoom
  • Essentially just clicking the magnifying glass on the image you’re looking at, this has always been bad and should never have been implemented in the first place.

  • Too many pixels
  • Cramming ten or more megapixels onto a tiny, tiny sensor is asking for general image quality weirdness, and more megapixels to see the bad glass in.

  • High ISO
  • This goes for DSLRs too. ISO above 10,000? Give me a break, noise is already out of control at 1600. Work on effective noise reduction or dynamic pixel binning, don’t just push the gain.

  • Smile shutter
  • I haven’t had occasion to work with this, but not being able to pick the exact moment I take a shot would be unbearable for me. The tech is cool, but meh.

  • Simulated shutter noise
  • If you’re not using a flash, I actually don’t mind a little noise to let your subject know when they can relax, or let you know the instant the picture is taken. Unfortunately, I hear shutter noises that are maybe a second long. Not helpful.

And can we add:

  • In-camera “effects”
  • White balance and color space are one thing, but sepiatone, brush stroke, etc are completely ridiculous and look terrible. If you really must do that, do it in iPhoto or something.

  • A million “modes”
  • Let’s be honest. Unless it’s on manual, the thing is on full auto all the time. Setting it to “portrait” or “outdoors” or what have you is just limiting its parameters, and probably mistakenly.

  • Ostensibly helpful custom software
  • I’m happy to install a driver or plug-in for the camera so it gets recognized easily. But I’m not going to install your weak-ass image editor when there are free and versatile ones available freely or included with my OS.

Anyone else have some pet peeves they’d like excised from your otherwise-great point and shoots?

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