The Canon Powershot G9 is a 12 megapixel digital camera with a 6x optical zoom lens. Those headline features only tell part of the story as the Powershot G9 is about the most advanced compact camera on the market. In terms of features it has a roll call similar to what you would expect from an SLR camera. It is ideal for a photography enthusiast or someone who owns an SLR, but is looking for a more portable second camera.
106.4 x 71.9 x 42.5
Image Quality - See Sample Images Below
Outdoor Scenic Shots in Good Light
My first outdoor scenic shot gets my tests off to a good start. I can see from the brickwork on the building that the camera is capable of taking sharp photos where the light is good. The sharp focus also holds as you move out towards the edges of the photo.
The Powershot G9 handles the glare of the sun as well as most other cameras manage. This means that there is a loss of detail where the sun directly strikes the boats. This problem is accentuated at this time of the year when the sun is lower in the sky.
This is a good attempt at a wide angle shot. As with any camera with the scene somewhat distant this photos is not as sharp as all the other test photos.
With the zoom lens fully extended the Powershot G9 manages to produces a pleasingly sharp shot. There is plenty of detail evident on the boats in the photo. Again checking the brickwork on the buildings in the shot I can see the camera is still capable of very sharp focus from a decent distance.
I like this photo. I have used the face detection setting to ensure the face is in sharp focus and a white balance setting of cloudy to pep up the colours in the shot. Both of these settings work well and this is a good result. I also like the brightness of the shot.
This is another photo that works well. The photo is sharp and bright. There was a touch of red eye in the original shot, but I was able to clean this up by using the red eye correction tool.
Perhaps this photo is just a bit darker than I would like to see, but it is still a much better effort than most cameras manage. Considering the indoor lighting the shot is much sharper than I am used to seeing.
Macro, Colours and Noise
On a recent review I mentioned the fact that the macro shot was a good indicator as to the overall quality of the lens. Well the macro shot I have taken with the Powershot G9 is outstanding and is one of the very best I have taken in all the tests I have made. The key point for macro shots is clarity and I don't think this photo could be much sharper.
Colours more than any other part of a photograph are all about personal taste. The colours produced by Canon digital cameras in general are more or less perfect for me. They are vibrant without being too strong.
There is more detail showing in this shot than most other cameras are able to manage. You should be able to use this setting and get acceptable shots in some lower light situations. By the time you have pushed the ISO level above 400 picture quality does begin to fall. At ISO 1600 there is a clear fall off in the standard of the photo.
The Powershot G9 scores well in just about every area. It outperforms just about every other consumer camera on the market.
The Powershot G9 has quite a chunky design. If I say it resembles a small brick you may get the wrong idea as what this does is give the camera a very sturdy feel. It is a good size to take a decent grip of and will appeal to many people looking for a "real" camera.
Shutter Lag Times
Single Shot With Flash
Five Shots With Flash
Ease of Use
With all the features packed into the camera it is never going to score highly for ease of use. By adding a couple of extra dials though Canon have certainly improved usability and it is quicker to change key settings with the Powershot G9 than with most other compact cameras.
Points I Like
Picture quality - viewfinder - features - red eye correction tool - macro shot - LCD screen quality
Where it Could Improve
Shutter lag times are longer than SLR lag times
The Canon Powershot G9 ticks all the right boxes for me. In terms of picture quality it is difficult to find much better in a compact camera. It is also packed with features and it will be hard for me to let this camera go. Recommended.
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