Publisher: Course Technology Cengage Learning
Review by Conrad J. Obregon
Both for people interested in moving up to a camera that gives them more control than a point-and-shoot camera and for serious photographers interested in finding a more convenient walk-around camera than a digital single lens reflex camera, the Canon G10 and G11 (the cameras are quite similar) offer attractive options. Unfortunately, making the switch to a new set of controls and menus can be quite painful, especially given the instruction manuals that come with these cameras, because the manuals are amongst the most poorly organized of those for electronic devices. David Busch’s Canon Powershot G10/G11: Guide to Digital Photography tries to make it easier for G10/G11 users to understand how to control the camera.
After briefly extolling the virtues of the G10/G11, the authors begin with an exploration of most of the features of the cameras, both hardware and software, often including some explanation of the function of the different controls. In a subsequent chapter they go into greater details on the several menu settings found on the cameras, offering a listing of considerations for the settings, and occasionally a recommendation. Busch and Alexander then goes into discussions of exposure, focusing, zooming and light including flash. He finishes up with a very brief discussion of downloading and processing images.
The book goes from the general to the more specific, its goal being to get the reader capturing images as quickly as possible and then to develop additional skills. Although this may sometimes appear repetitive, it is useful for getting a handle on the menus and controls available.
Unfortunately one of the most critical elements in using the cameras is ignored. Unlike most point-and-shoots, the G10 and G11 allow the user to adjust aperture and shutter speed. The authors frequently refer to setting one or the other but, except for the description of fine tuning manual mode and a reference under long exposures, never tell the reader how to do that! (When in aperture (Av) or shutter (Tv) mode, a symbol will appear showing the current setting; turning the control dial will change the setting and call up a neat menu showing the settings. In fact the various uses of the control dial are poorly treated throughout.) Another advantage of the G10/G11 is the series of icons that appear on the LCD that show you the status of various settings and operations. Several of these icons are not explained.
The G10 and G11 are powerful cameras that enable the user to exercise substantial control over images. This book will help you to understand how to do that far better than the manuals that come with the cameras, but even so, the book does not cover everything essential for that control.