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Wednesday, January 4, 2017

How To Pick The Right High-End PowerShot Camera For Your Photography

Canon PowerShot G9X Mark II camera

Canon has just announced the PowerShot G9X Mark II camera. For those trying to decide which model of G series PowerShot camera to buy, the following excerpt from Canon Digital Learning Center may help.

The five models in the premium, high-end PowerShot series for 2017 include :

PowerShot G1 X Mark II 

The flagship model, with unique 1.5-inch CMOS sensor (largest in the PowerShot series), and wide-aperture, 5x (24–120mm equivalent) zoom lens for available-light shooting

• PowerShot G3 X 

The long-zoom model, with two important fundamental features:  a large, 1-inch, 20 million pixel CMOS sensor, and an excellent 25x zoom lens (24–600mm equivalent)

• PowerShot G5 X 

The advanced camera with electronic eye-level viewfinder (only EVF among current G-series models).  Fast f/1.8~2.8, 4.2x zoom lens (24–100mm equivalent); full array of features and user control.

• PowerShot G7 X Mark II 
20 million pixels, on a large 1-inch CMOS sensor, but a flat, compact form-factor better suited to many travelers and casual users.  Again, a fast, f/1.8~2.8, 4.2x zoom lens.

The most compact model in the premium G-series.  An expert’s compact camera, with numerous user controls, but in a pocketable size and form-factor.  3x (28–84mm equivalent) zoom lens; still has the large 1-inch sensor size, for superior low-light imagery (compared to majority of slim, compact digital cameras).

The new G9 X Mark II features

If you know the previous Canon PowerShot G9 X, you know the fundamentals of the new-for-2017 G9 X Mark II model.  The same lens, same 20.2 million pixel resolution, the same super-compact form factor, and controls highlighted by a large Control Ring surrounding the base of the lens.  But there are numerous refinements and additions to the Mark II camera.

Enhanced Wi-Fi® connectivity — Bluetooth, “always-on” technology

New for 2017 is the addition of Bluetooth technology, to help in providing and maintaining wireless connection between the G9 X Mark II and mobile devices like smartphones.  Unlike previous systems, which exclusively relied on more power-consuming Wi-Fi technology, the new Bluetooth connectivity aims to have a low-power method of initially connecting and then maintaining consistent connection to your device.  Any time you actually connect and are transferring image files, the system switches seamlessly to traditional Wi-Fi, which has greater bandwidth and is better able to work with original still image or video files.

The enhanced wireless and Bluetooth capability also means your smartphone (or tablet) can be an easily accessible remote controller, using the updated Canon v.2 Camera Connect app (for compatible Android and iOS devices).  This includes remote Live View shooting, as well as remote playback of images on the camera’s memory card and viewing them on the mobile device’s screen.

Control Ring operation

New with the G9 X Mark II is easy, user-defined command over what the Control Ring adjusts. Combining the elegant touchscreen interface with this innovative ring, users now only have to touch a small Control Ring icon on the LCD panel to toggle between different user adjustments via this ring.

For instance, in a shooting mode like Aperture-priority (Av mode), touching the icon toggles the ring through adjusting the lens aperture, the ISO, and Exposure Compensation.  It’s easy and quick to touch the icon to tell the system what you want to control, and then turn the Control Ring to make the changes you want.  This change alone makes the Mark II even better-suited to the expert photographer that wants a super-compact camera, but doesn’t want to sacrifice the type of control he or she may be used to with their larger interchangeable-lens cameras.

New DIGIC 7 processor

You won’t see this feature when you look at the camera, but its benefits show in a number of important ways.  With more robust and faster processing capabilities, the G9 X Mark II now gives about one stop better high-ISO image quality (digital noise levels at ISO 1600, for instance, are about the same as the previous model’s when it was shot at ISO 800).  AF tracking of moving subjects around the picture area is noticeably more responsive.  New features like in-camera RAW image processing, Time Lapse video, and even faster initial start-up times are now possible, with this added processing power.  In short, this is an important upgrade, with multiple benefits that photographers of many different levels will come to appreciate.

Higher performance 

Significantly faster shooting speeds, for longer continuous bursts, with the G9 X Mark II :

• Full-resolution JPEGs:  up to 8.1 shots per second; burst rate 38 continuous shots

• RAW images:  up to 8.2 shots per second; burst rate 21 consecutive shots

Drive speeds slow somewhat when the camera’s continuous, Servo AF is active, but even here, up to 5.3 frames per second is possible with full-res JPEG images.  Any way you slice it, this is a brisk-performing compact camera, and this will surely please many experienced shooters looking for responsiveness in a compact camera.

Dual Sensing Image Stabilization

Canon has enhanced in-camera optical stabilization, by now using two sources to detect shake and camera movement.  Traditionally, Canon has relied on gyro sensors, within the lens or camera body, to detect any such movement.  In the G9 X Mark II, Canon adds to this the ability to detect shake off the imaging sensor, giving an important source of added information for shake-correction.  Armed with this Dual Sensing IS system, the G9 X Mark II provides up to 3.5 stops of shake-correction with its (equivalent) 28–84mm lens.  Please note:  This new Dual Sensing capability means that only detection of camera shake and movement is done at the imaging sensor… the G9 X Mark II uses this added info to provide enhanced optical stabilization — only — within the lens.


An already great PowerShot G9 X design has been refined, and the newest Mark II version is arguably even a better fit for its target audiences.  The new ability to instantly change what the Control Ring adjusts, by simply touching an icon on the LCD monitor, is a huge enhancement for any user who wants to go beyond the simplest full-auto shooting.  And, the advent of Bluetooth with its Wi-Fi features means this is a camera that can more easily shoot and share, which many of today’s users want.

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