Canon Mini Photo Printer – The Ideal Gift this Christmas

As a parent who wants to capture every moment with my little one, it is no surprise that I take a lot of photos. In fact, I have my camera in my bag every single time I am out with my family. I never felt the need to print out the photos because I have always thought I can look at them in my phone or camera if I want to. I bet this is the same for many of us. What I did not expect then, was that displaying the photos on our wall or shelves would actually mean something to my son. He talks about our photos from time to time. He talks about photos of his dad and me, asking why he is not in those photos. He likes looking at our family pictures taken at the zoo, at Universal Studios and while we were on a holiday. He remembers some details of the occasions we have celebrated when he sees these photos. While memories may fade, many of his are being deeply rooted thanks to the photographs I have printed. This is why I print at least two photo books a year.

This Christmas, I received a very thoughtful gift from Canon. I am extremely happy because I can now print my photos on the go. Behold, the Canon Mini Photo Printer has arrived!

When I opened the box, I was pleasantly surprised by the other items that were in the box too.

Along with the photo printer was – a tokidoki tote bag, a tokidoki case for my printer, a traveller’s notebook and…

A tokidoki charm, lanyard and stickers. The colour combination of this gift is just so sweet and pretty like Donutella! Even the case matches the colour of my printer (rose gold). So much thought was put into this gift and I am so grateful.

Fun with the Canon Mini Photo Printer

When they say mini, they mean mini. The size of this printer can fit in the back of my pocket. It is compact and very, very light.

All I have to do is download the Canon Mini Print App available on both Google Play and App Store to get started. As if fun size isn’t enough, I can get creative by adding fun frames, emojis and even texts using the app to personalise my photos. Finally, with just a tap on the print icon… Voilà!

The photos above are printed on the Canon ZINK photo paper. It has peel-and-stick back which makes it really convenient to just print and paste your print outs in your travelling journal if you are documenting your holiday. It is also smudge-free and tear resistant (good if you have kids with itchy fingers). As for me, I foresee myself pasting photos on the back of my phone and on my macbook.

The Premium Deal

If you are thinking of getting a fun and thoughtful gift for someone, the Canon Mini Photo Printer is definitely worth considering. It is priced reasonably at SGD 189 and is available in 3 colours – Rose Gold, Mint Green and Slate Grey. To sweeten the deal, from 14 November to 31 December 2018, Canon will throw in limited edition Tokidoki premiums (in my photo above) worth SGD 98 with every printer purchased. Find out more here.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have got to go back to my fun prints.

Canon EOS M5 Review

Got my hands on the Canon EOS M5 recently and I must say this has got to be one of the best EOS cameras I’ve tried so far. I own a point and shoot camera which I like a lot because of its convenience. That being said, I also had a lot of fun with the EOS M5 as I can play around with the settings of my photos. Here are some of its features that I like.

The Way it Looks

Grip : The rubberised hand grip is something which I truly appreciate. It improves the stability when taking photos and its deep contour provides a firmer grip of the camera. In fact, the grip is secure enough for me to hold the camera stably with one hand.

Front of camera, flash not shown here

Dials and Buttons : The EOS M5 has 4 dials – Main Dial, Dial Function Button, Exposure Compensation Dial, Quick Control Dials (top and rear). With the number of dials and buttons, it is no surprise the number of functions this camera has. I’ll be totally honest, I have customised my preferred settings such that I mainly toggle between the A+ (scene intelligent auto) mode and the C1 (custom) mode. You can either programme the dial functions to be of different functions or limit it to a specific set of functions you prefer. Just like how I set my preferred shooting mode to the C1 / C2 functions on the mode dial. I only use the top quick control dial to adjust the ISO setting (rarely though).

LCD screen:  The M5 has a 3.2-inch touchscreen LCD with 1620K dots of resolution. My favourite part of it is the flexibility of viewing the image because it can tilt 85° up and 180° down.

Electronic View Finder: The electronic viewfinder comes in handy when it is hard to see the image you are about to capture on the LCD display. This is especially so when taking photos with bright backgrounds, for me usually the sunlight when I am outdoors. This is a function I hardly use because my master eye is the eft eye. With M5’s compact body, I find my face pressing against my right hand while I snap away. So you can imagine how ridiculous I look.

Key Features

  • 24MP Dual Pixel APS-C CMOS Sensor
  • ISO 100 – 25600
  • 2.36M-dot electronic viewfinder
  • 1.62M-dot tilting rear touchscreen
  • Electronic video stabilization
  • 9 fps continuous shooting
  • Wi-Fi / Bluetooth

As most of the functions of M5 are somewhat similar to that of the M6’s which I have reviewed before here, I shall share what I really like about the M5.

Image Quality

I like how clear my photos look even without any customized settings. I started out using the Scene Intelligent Auto mode. By pressing the button halfway down, it allows the camera to achieve its focus and you will see a frame around the objects detected.

Shot indoor under natural light
Shot under indoor lighting

After configuring it to my preferred settings, I absolutely love the way my photos turned out. The EOS M5 is capable of producing sharp and low noise images. Here, I tested out my portrait shots.

Portrait Shot 1/3
Portrait Shot 2/3
Portrait Shot 3/3

** point to note : One thing to point out is, the quality of the images in this post are not as clear as the original ones that I have so I am sure it is due to the file compression by wordpress.

With a maximum iso of 25600, pictures taken under low-light scenes also turned out pretty decent.

Low light shot

Equipped with the mighty DIGIC 7 Image Processor, the M5 is able to keep its focus locked onto a subject and continuously shoot up to 7 frames per second. This is definitely a plus point to me since I capture mostly my kid who is always on the move. This way, I will surely get a shot that I want. I actually have a love hate relationship with this function because it stays ‘busy’ for quite some time after continuously shooting. Apart from that, I have no other complaints. See how clear the images are despite his movements?

With the built in wifi & bluetooth technology, we can also shoot remotely  without having to touch the camera. All I need is the Canon camera connect application and I can start snapping away from my mobile phone. Instead of setting the timer and rushing to fit into the frame, I can now set the camera on the table or tripod the click away from where I am. Put this to good use the other day when I was trying to video the boys at home and take photos at the same time.

taken with the remote shoot function

The other part to the Canon camera connect app is where I transfer my photos into my phones. All I need to do is have the wifi set up and the transfer will be completed in seconds. It is very easy to use.

There are many more functions which I am still exploring and slowly getting the use of, if you use the Manual (M) mode, you will find the different settings for picture styles :

  • Standard – general photography
  • Portrait  – ideal for close ups of people, smoothes the skin tone and hair.
  • Landscape – ideal for landscape shots like blue skies and green foliages.
  • Fine detail – For fairly vivid images with sharp edges and detailed textures
  • Creative filters – Monochrome, sepia etc.

You can also adjust the metering depending on what you are shooting.  Evaluative Metering where the settings are ideal for most scenes and useful for backlit subjects, Partial Metering for bright backgrounds such as backlit subjects, Spot Metering for specific small subject area.

Evaluative Metering
Spot metering (specific small subject area)
Monochrome

I had quite a good time using this camera so far and will continue to explore functions that I have yet to use. In my opinion, the greatest strengths of the EOS M5 are its overall design, the LCD touchscreen  and strong autofocus performance. This camera is relatively easy to use, which is important for me since I am more of a point and shoot person. The image sensor works very well too, which allows versatility and flexibility in  different shooting scenes. The EOS M5 is definitely a camera I would recommend if anyone is thinking of getting a Canon mirrorless camera.


Disclaimer: This is a personal blog. The opinions expressed here are solely my own

 

Holly Jolly Christmas with Canon

I love personalised stuff. Stickers, greeting cards, bag tags, magnets, cake toppers…You name it. Receiving something personalised to me, is like receiving a photo album filled with lovely photos of my family who mean a great deal to me, instead of a blank photo album which would make me feel like I am just one of the many people whom someone is buying a random gift for. This year we even personalised something we have never done before – a Christmas tree!

Last weekend, we had an enjoyable time at a Christmas get together with the wonderful people from Canon. We had great food and a whole load of fun decorating our own tree.

See how much fun we had? Im not totally sure if Isaac was happy because he got to decorate the tree or because he finally managed to get his hands onto a pair of scissors (under supervision of cause).

Apart from Isaac’s photograph as the tree topper, did you notice the cute little Santa sitting on the tree? Both the photo(s) and the Santa cut-out were printed by the Canon Pixma printers.

Check out how stylish the printer looks

If you are like me, someone who is afraid to lose your photos despite multiple back ups, the safest bet would be to get them printed. The PIXMA is super easy to use and the quality of the images are good. What I really like about the printer is the convenience being able to print directly from my mobile phone through wi-fi. Oh yes, the Canon’s new Pixma TS9170 even allows you to add filters to your photos!

Apart from the good printing quality in our photos above, I bet you will never guess just how interesting they are. The new Canon application, Message in Print allows us to input secret messages like animations or text into the photo prints. So how do we “decode” these secret messages? All you have to do, is download the Canon Message in Print application on your mobile phone and hold your iPhone over the photo. How cool is that?!

Personalising on a whole new level

Apart from the printers, we were also introduced to some newly released cameras. One of them was the EOS M100.

The EOS M100 and their funky kits

For a camera that has interchangeable lens, the EOS M100 has got to be one of the most compact cameras I have ever seen. It is pretty easy to use as compared to the EOS M6 which I have tested some time back. It has a single adjustment dial which makes it easy to use if you are new to photography. For amateurs like myself, the less controls or adjustments we have to make, the better it is.

Last but not least, you have got to see my favourite product… the Rayo S1!

Can you make out what it is? If your guess is that it is a power bank, you are right. If you think it is a speaker, you are also correct. Best part of it all is… it is also a mini projector! It is pocket-sized and has 3 functions I would most likely use, what is there not to love about this one? Canon never fails to impress us with their new products & they keep getting better. We can’t wait to see what they have in store for us the next time. Until then, have a great Christmas everybody!

Review on the EOS M6

Before becoming a parent, I always felt that taking photos with the mobile phone was sufficient. I had a camera, but it was under utilised because I felt that it was a hassle to bring it out. Then I had a change of mind because I had a kid and realised how much I wanted to capture our moments with him whenever I can. I guess this is also because I had so little photos of myself when I was a kid, so I take as many photos as I possibly can so Isaac will have them to look back at. After starting to take photos with the camera, I hardly shoot with my mobile phone simply because the quality of the image versus that of a camera’s is just too vast.

Recently, I managed to get my hands on the Canon’s EOS M6 and have been shooting with it instead of my Canon G7x. I would like to highlight that I am not a professional photographer and have never tried other cameras of similar range. Hence, all opinions below are based on my experience with the camera.

The Canon EOS M6 is a 24.2 megapixel mirrorless digital camera. It has a touch screen interface and has a deep grip which allows a firm and comfortable hold. As an amateur to cameras, these are probably the main things I’d consider before deciding on a camera.

What I like about the EOS M6:

This 24.2-megapixel camera produces good quality images in both JPEG and RAW format. There is minimal noise and vibrant colours, even the photos taken at its default settings look good.

The touchscreen of this camera flips up to 180° and is viewed above the camera. This is ideal for people who like taking selfies. I personally think it is an important function because I use it to get my toddler to look at the camera like it is a mirror. For some unknown reason, I realised that most kids I know of seem to like looking into the mirrors. In addition, with the touch focus and touch shutter functions, the screen becomes an essential part of operating the camera. What I like most about the touchscreen, is its sensitivity. Whenever I want to change the shooting preference based on specific scenes, I will change it by selecting via the screen because it is more convenient than using the control dial. With just a tap on the screen, I can move the autofocus area. I use the autofocus function a lot because it really helps in obtaining sharper photos. The one change I made to the LCD display is its brightness. At its default brightness, the display is hardly visible when I am outdoors (which is most of the time) when it is bright. What I did was adjust the brightness to the maximum and we are good to go.

The Wi-Fi function allows me to pair with my iPhone easily. All I need to do, is download Canon’s Camera Connect app and all photos/videos can be transferred to my phone instantly without the use of any computers. It is that simple and convenient. One other thing I absolutely love about this camera, is that it allows me to shoot remotely by controlling it with my phone. This is especially important for me because I have limited number of photos with my kid. Why so? The reason is because I am usually the one taking the photos. So kudos to whoever invented this remote shooting function because now i can take photos of my son and myself together all at a tap on my phone screen.

Us, looking at ourselves from the phone before remote shooting
Us, looking at ourselves from the phone before remote shooting

The Canon EOS M6 has a number of shooting modes which is great if you are one who likes playing around with the settings when taking photos in different scenes. One of the most straightforward methods is to shoot with camera-determined settings. The camera automatically selects the optimal settings for specific scenes. All you have to do, is point and shoot. Easy peasy.

If you are like me, someone who has a certain preference with the way my photos look, you will most likely use Creative Assist with this camera. This function will allow you to shoot using your favourite settings. You can adjust defocusing, image brightness, contrast, saturation and colour tone of your photos and then save the settings for all future shots when you use the Creative Assist function.

You can also choose a mode matching the shooting scene if you turn the mode dial to [SCN]. When this is selected, you can choose from shooting portraits, landscapes, close-up, moving objects (great for children photography!), evening scenes and even food. The camera will automatically configure the settings for optimal shots. The photo below is Isaac on the moving carousel. It was taken with the use of the ‘moving object’ function which will shoot continuously as the camera keeps the subject in focus.EOS2

Lastly, you can also take your photos with creative filters pre-set in the camera. Of cause, they can be interactively adjusted to suit your liking. These are some of the effects which I like.

M
Soft Focus effect
Fish Eye
Fish Eye Effect
Toy Camera
Toy Camera Effect

What I like do not like about the EOS M6:

I personally feel that this camera is not one you would use if you are going to do any shooting under dim lighting conditions (like most indoor playgrounds) even though there is a feature that should enable you to do so. That being said, it is subjective as we all have different expectations. There is also a possibility that I just did not set the camera right. Here’s how one of my night shots look like: EOS3

The other thing which I think would be good to have, is if the camera would just allow me to take photos silently. I tried to search and disable the shutter noise in the settings but to no avail. Sometimes I try to take candid photos of my kid so he continues what he is doing without knowing his photo is being taken. The moment he knows I am snapping away, he stops whatever he is doing. When I started using this camera, I totally forgot about the shutter noise one morning, and decided to take photos of the half-awake boy. “Click Click” went the camera and his eyes instantly widened. He gave me this ‘what are you trying to do’ look:

The Look
The Look. 

On the overall, I must say it actually took me some time to adapt to this camera because I am so used to shooting in Auto mode when I use my Canon G7X. But once I got the hang of it, I started to really like it. This camera is probably most suitable for those who like exploring all the different camera controls and manually setting their own style at different shooting scenes. With the image quality and colour rendition I strongly feel that the Canon EOS M6 has delivered where it really matters.

 


Disclaimer: This is a personal blog. The opinions expressed here are solely my own