Canon Pow­erShot S120

Australian T3 - - RATED -

One of the small­est cams on test, but it’s a feisty lit­tle num­ber

Achiev­ing the per­fect shot re­quires speed and fore­sight – don’t worry, not from you, but from your cam­era. This small, stylish and solidly built 5x op­ti­cal zoom Canon de­ploys a next-gen­er­a­tion Digic 6 pro­ces­sor to take care of pace and smarts, cre­at­ing an aut­o­fo­cus re­sponse 50 per cent quicker than its S110 pre­de­ces­sor, plus con­tin­u­ous shoot­ing av­er­ag­ing nine frames per sec­ond.

A res­o­lu­tion of 12.1 megapix­els from a 1/1.7-inch CMOS sen­sor may not sound like the mak­ings of a pow­er­ful cam­era, but it’s the same chip found in the higher-end G16 and comes cou­pled with op­ti­cal im­age sta­bil­i­sa­tion, an ISO range that heads all the way up to 12,800 and easy to han­dle man­ual con­trols thanks to the Lens Con­trol Ring.

The lat­ter of­fers a short­cut to key set­tings, as well as a means of man­u­ally zoom­ing in or out with a twist of the wrist. Here, lens reach is the equiv­a­lent of a broad 24-120mm in 35mm terms, with fo­cal length set­tings in­cre­men­tally dis­played on the three-inch touch­screen. A pop-up flash is also neatly sunken into the top plate, with a man­ual ac­ti­va­tion lever at the side.

You won’t, how­ever, need the flash as of­ten as you’d think, be­cause the S120 is bet­ter equipped than most for low-light pho­tog­ra­phy. It can also pro­duce shal­low depthof-field shots that will make ev­ery­one as­sume you used a dig­i­tal SLR; just set it to de­fo­cus mode and snap.

Video qual­ity is equally as good, with full-HD 1080p footage at up to 60fps with stereo au­dio and ac­cess to full zoom­ing abil­i­ties. The record but­ton is on the back­plate, al­though we’d have pre­ferred it to be placed higher up for easy reach.

Add Wi-Fi to the mix for eas­ily trans­fer­ring and shar­ing pic­tures – don’t try to upload Raw im­ages – and you have a very nifty cam­era. We’d have liked a hand­grip and per­haps a viewfinder, but then we’re very tough to please.

Love Truly com­pact size. Easy man­ual con­trol us­ing the lens ring. Above-aver­age pic­ture qual­ity Hate Lacks a hand­grip and a viewfinder T3 Says A se­ri­ously com­pact cam with fea­tures and pic­ture qual­ity that punch above its weight

{Spec­i­fi­cat ion} Sen­sor 12.1-megapixel

1/1.7-inch CMOS dis­play 3-inch touch­screen Lens 24-120mm zoom 5x op­ti­cal ISO range 80-12800 Video 1080p at 60fps Stills ca pture JPEG,

Raw, Raw + JPEG con­nect iv­ity Wi-Fi Batt ery life Up to 300 shots

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