Canon PowerShot S100


A new digital camera on the market

Canon is a respected brand with a long history of producing great quality cameras aimed at photography lovers. The company’s PowerShot S95 was a very popular device for a long time and now the recent S100, a direct follow-up of that one, promises to address some of the flaws of the S95 and become the next best-loved Canon camera. Is it really an efficient product? We tested it and wrote the following review for your enjoyment.

Design improvements

The latest Canon PowerShot S100 comes with some improvements when talking about its design, but the device is almost identical to the S95 in size. It measures 2.3″ x 3.9″ x 1.1″ and comes with a weight of 198g. Black and silver are the colors you’ll find this camera in. The metal construction makes the product solid. As opposed to the S95 model, the S100 features a tiny grip on the front and a rubberized thumb rest on the rear; during our tests, the two made the device easier to hold and shoot with. The control ring around the lens, a feature which made this camera unique, is still in its place. With it we could effortlessly control exposure compensation, shutter speed, white balance, ISO sensitivity, aspect ratio and many other settings.Canon-PowerShot-S100

3 inch LCD display

The Canon S100 has a fast 24-105mm (35mm equivalent) lens; however, long exposures in bright conditions were a bit frustrating. Fortunately the camera offered a neutral density filter that helped reduce the amount of light coming in to the lens, making it possible to use longer exposures when snapping pictures where a long exposure is desirable.

The screen of the device we checked is a 3″ LCD, the same as the one on the PowerShot S95. Its 460k dots resolution made it possible to use the camera in bright sunlight and still see what was on the screen with perfect ease.

Some speed problems

Images were bright and sharp in both good and low light; colors, exposure and tonal range looked good and accurate. When we wanted to take photos in late-afternoon November light we soon became very frustrated, because any zoom beyond the camera’s widest one required boosting the sensitivity setting. JPEG quality was superb up to ISO 200 and good up through ISO 800. But there are definitely better cameras out there in terms of image quality. Videos we shot with the Canon PowerShot S100 also looked well-saturated and sharp and the audio quality was more than satisfying. Content played back at 240 or 120fps; capture time wasn’t limited. We can’t get over the fact that this camera is slower than what we’ve rated so far; snapping two sequential shots proved to take longer than it should: we registered 2.6 seconds for raw, 2.4 seconds for JPEG and 2.8 seconds for flash.

Short battery life

Furthermore, this camera comes with no hot shoe, so you’ll miss the ability to employ a wireless or external flash controller. The product also struggled when we wanted to take photos of moving subjects; so we don’t recommend it for that.

The most important feature on the S100 is a GPS receiver which can be used for geotagging photos. We played around with it for a bit and liked what we saw.

Battery life is very short; we managed to use the camera for around 2 hours before it needed a recharge, so you might want to look at other devices to buy this Christmas.

Review conclusion

The Canon PowerShot S100 is, in conclusion, one of the smallest and most comfortable cameras today which still manages to give a really nice performance, despite flaws such as short battery life and slowness.

Technical specifications

Sensor* 12.1 Megapixel Canon CMOS sensor (1/1.7 type)
Lenses* Ultra-wide 24mm, f/2.0, 5x zoom lens. Intelligent IS
Connectivity* Full HD, HDMI
Geotagging* GPS
Other features* HS System with powerful DIGIC 5
* High-speed Burst HQ
* Lens Control Ring, NR Control & RAW
* Smart Auto, Multi-area WB
Display* Large 7.5 cm (3.0 inch) LCD display