When Canon revived its PowerShot S line-up with the S90 in August 2009, it was an acknowledgment of a clear need from photography enthusiasts for high-quality, controllable pocket cameras. Extensive manual control. The S95, released almost a year later, still uses the same formula – a relatively large sensor (for compact cameras at least), a 28-105mm equivalent zoom lens with a maximum aperture Fast f2 at wide angle and a multifocal lens. – Function dial control around the lens. But while its successor, the S100, looks the same on the surface, it’s a whole new camera in every way.
Crucially, the S100’s three main visual elements are all brand new. The lens range has been extended wider and longer, to a 5x zoom equivalent to 24-120mm; it retains a fast F2 maximum aperture at wide-angle but is limited to a rather unimpressive F5.9 in telephoto mode (a corollary of the camera’s compact size). Second, the S100 introduces Canon’s latest DIGIC 5 image processor, which the company says is six times faster than its predecessor, allowing for more sophisticated image processing and noise reduction. But perhaps most significantly, the S100’s image sensor is a 12.1 MP ‘high sensitivity’ CMOS sensor made by Canon in 1/1.7″ format (approximately 7.5 x 5.5 mm) ; is only the second in-house sensor the company has used in a compact camera after the 2008 PowerShot SX1 IS.
Canon says the new sensor uses the same technology as that used in their EOS SLR cameras, including an on-chip noise cancellation system and a microlens that covers more of the sensor area for improved its light-gathering properties. The company claims that this helps reduce noise and increase dynamic range; accordingly, the maximum available ISO has been increased to 6400. The 4-channel readout system also improves the continuous shooting speed, up to 2.3 fps compared to the S95’s maximum frame rate of 1, 9 fps. For real-time lovers, there’s also a scene mode that can shoot 8 frames at an impressive 9.6fps, but it’s limited to JPEGs and has no manual controls. labour.
The new sensor also allows the S100 to offer this year’s must-have feature: full HD movie recording at 1920×1080 resolution, with 24P output frame rate. Unlike the S95, optical zoom is available when recording movies. This enhanced video capability is aided by a revised control layout, which now includes a movie-record button directly below your thumb on the back of the camera. Other features enabled by the new sensor and processor include user control over noise reduction and a white balance system that can adjust different areas of the image separately to compensate for mixed light (when the camera is set to Smart Auto mode).
The lens’ optical image stabilization system has also been updated, with no less than 7 modes available for various purposes including macro, panning, video and tripod operation. The ‘Intelligent IS’ system automatically selects the mode it deems best suited to the current shooting situation. The S100’s lens also has a built-in neutral density filter, as seen on the PowerShot G series, to allow for the use of a larger aperture in bright sunlight.
Also new to the S100 is the built-in GPS unit, similar to the one used in the PowerShot SX230 HS ‘travel zoom’. This not only allows you to tag images with the location where they were taken, but also includes logging functionality that can track your movements (regardless of whether you are taking pictures or not) and plot the results. on Google Maps.
In terms of external design, the S100 has delicate thumb and thumb grips, which reduce the chance of the device slipping out of your hand if you’re not attentive and careful. The camera is also available in a ‘titanium silver’ version along with a more conventional black color – this is not the shiny silver of the Elph/Ixus series but a darker, more matte finish.
The S100 is available in a subtle matte ‘titanium’ finish, as well as black.
Compared to PowerShot S95 – key difference
The S100 is in effect a completely new camera compared to the S95; almost every major feature has been upgraded or updated:
- Lens range 24-120mm (equivalent), F2.0-5.9, built-in neutral density filter
- Canon CMOS sensor 12.1 MP 1/1.7″
- DIGIC 5 . image processor
- Continuous shooting 2.3 fps (9.6 fps for 8 frames in High Speed burst mode)
- Full HD movie recording (1080p24); H.264 compression, MOV . format
- Optical zoom in movie mode
- Super slow motion movie recording (640 x 480 @ 120fps, 320 x 240 @ 240 fps)
- Live movie button
- Built-in GPS device with image tagging and logging functions
PowerShot S100 vs. PowerShot S95 – side by side
|From the front, the S100 looks a lot like the S95. It’s a bit taller to accommodate a GPS device and also has a minimalist grip on the front.|
|Seen from the rear, the most obvious change is the S100’s red live movie button, but several other buttons have also changed in function. The ‘Ring Func’ button is customizable, offering the same options as the S95’s ‘S’ button.|
|The S100, if at all, is slightly thinner than its predecessor. The shutter button is larger, has a shiny silver finish, and the addition of a GPS unit has resulted in the Ring Func button being displaced from the top plate.|
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