My poor baby camera (a Canon Power Shot SX1000 IS) broke, had it for almost three years and loved it to bits but I suddenly just couldn't turn it on anymore.
At first that almost felt like an almost good opportunity for an upgrade - I mean, 3 years with how fast these things go, are a long time for a piece of technology and I was basically hoping for something even more awesome at a similiar price to what I'd paid 3 years ago (basically like with a computer).
So I decided to stick with Canon and went for the Power Shot SX210 IS. It was shiny and although it felt a bit small, I was excited -- until I looked at the pictures it did on my computer. And it was terrible. Absolutely awful - green mushy pulps for tree-leaves and grass and grey pulps for trees and grey pulps for roads. Really bad.
When I went back to the shop and explained what I hated about it, the shop assistant recommended the Ricoh CX3, which I have now. But while it has some nice features (as the Canon did) my basic complaint is there just as much as before. Well, maybe a slight improvement but not enough to make me happy. And I was supposed to go lower on wide angle and optical zoom for better picture quality and it didn't improve it much - and it was more expensive.
So now it is between just accepting that this is the best I can hope for at this price range (around 300€) and this sensor size, or upgrade to a DSLR. The cheapest ranges there (Canon 1000D, Nikon D3000, Olympus E-450) all range between 380€ and 500€ depending on the kit of objectives and extras they come with and aparently promise drastic improvements. And I mean, if it did give me that much more of what I want, I'd be ok with dropping another 100€.
But at the same time, they are so not handy. I mean you can't just put them into the back-pocket of your jeans and that kind of stuff. And I feel a bit intimidated about all the fuctions and all the things you have to know. At the same time, I love that idea of course.