The Canon Powershot SX120 IS is a 10 megapixel digital camera with a 10x optical zoom lens. It has a fairly compact body size. The Powershot SX120 IS includes manual exposure controls, a 3 inch LCD screen and image stabilisation.
The manual exposure controls are likely to appeal to the more serious photographer, but there is also a fully automatic mode for anyone who is looking for a point and shoot digital camera offering some extra lens power.
Why Buy The Canon Powershot SX120 IS
As with other Canon digital cameras the Powershot SX120 IS offers a bit more than many of its rivals. In this case it is a set of manual exposure controls. Picture quality is also hard to beat.
110.6 x 70.4 x 44.7mm
Image Quality - See Sample Images Below
Outdoor Scenic Shots in Good Light
I like the overall look of this photo. Sun glare has been handled well with just a small amount of detail lost from the boat on the right. The shot has a crisp look to it and there is plenty of detail showing in the trees.
In terms of the sharpness of the picture this is about as good as it can get from a compact digital camera when zoom is not in use. The clarity produced by the Powershot SX120 IS is some way above standard.
If you blow the photo up to full resolution you will notice a small amount of purple fringing creeping in. Looking at this picture no other brand is able to match on a consistent basis the sharpness levels that Canon cameras manage.
This is final confirmation of the way the Powershot SX120 IS manages to focus on more distant subjects. Not many digital cameras manage to bring out this level of detail right across the shot.
Just the right amount of pink appears in the skin tones. The colours look natural and I like the way the shot looks.
One of the plus points with this picture is that there is very little light bouncing back off the face and into the lens. This reduces the amount of shine showing on the face. This is another good effort.
This is one of the brightest attempts I have seen at an indoor portrait without flash. The camera does very well to inject this level of light into the picture. Noise levels are controlled well, without being perfect. As long as you can find decent light you should be able to take some pleasant window lit portraits.
Macro, Colours and Noise
This is another example where you would be hard pressed to come up with better quality from a compact digital camera. The camera is able to focus from 1cm away from the subject and is a good choice if you would like to try your hand at some close up photography.
The key point about the colours for me is how well balanced they are. When vivid colour is required the Powershot SX120 IS is able to deliver it. At the same time, when a little subtlety is called for the camera is able to produce that too.
The Powershot SX120 IS handles noise a little better than most cameras I test. This can be seen from the indoor portrait test. Even so you need to be realistic with any expectations if you plan to increase the ISO setting.
Picture quality is impressive from a compact digital camera. I encountered very few problems and I would be happy to take this camera around with me waiting for the next photo opportunity.
This is a fairly typical digital camera offering some extra zoom. There is a raised grip area on the right hand side and the flash pops up on the top. It is available in black.
Shutter Lag Times
Single Shot With Flash
Five Shots With Flash
Turn on Time
Ease of Use
With some advanced features built into the camera you do not get the same ease of use as a basic point and shoot camera. There is an automatic mode you can use when you first buy the camera.
Points I Like
Photo quality - compact body - features
Where it Could Improve
Shutter delay with flash
If picture quality is the main buying point for you then you are likely to be very impressed with the Canon Powershot SX120 IS. Add in the manual exposure controls and it is hard to find a better camera of its type.
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