Perhaps the most surprising of Canon's PowerShot announcements today is the SX100, the first in a new series of budget super zoom compact digital cameras. The PowerShot SX100 IS features a 10x optical zoom lens with optical Image Stabilizer, 8.0 Megapixel image sensor (1/2.5") and DIGIC III processor. It's also got face detection (of course) and a full complement of auto and manual exposure modes, plus a 2.5" LCD screen (there is no eye level viewfinder). It's not the prettiest camera Canon has ever made but it has a suprisingly comprehensive spec for a 'budget' model.

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Press Release (European):

PowerShot SX100 IS heralds a new era of affordable super zoom digital compacts

Amstelveen, The Netherlands, 20 August, 2007 - Canon announces the launch of the PowerShot SX100 IS – the first release in the new SX series of great value super zoom digital compact cameras. Combining high optical zoom and user friendly operation in a remarkably compact form, the SX series offers exceptional performance in the hands of any member of the family, and includes full manual control for those with more experience. The PowerShot SX100 IS features a 10x optical zoom lens with optical Image Stabilizer, 8.0 Megapixel image sensor, and DIGIC III* processor for superb image quality. Enhanced Face Detection Technology*, Red-Eye Correction and Auto ISO Shift features mean that users of any level can achieve impressive results.

“The PowerShot SX100 IS marks the debut of an entirely new category of compact camera,” said Mogens Jensen, Head of Canon Consumer Imaging, Europe. “Standing for high optical performance and ease of use, the SX series gives families the zoom they need at an accessible price point.”

Features:

  • 10x optical zoom lens with optical Image Stabilizer
  • 8.0 Megapixels
  • DIGIC III image processor
  • Face Detection Technology enhanced with new Face Select and Track function and dedicated Face Selector button
  • Canon’s total anti-blur solution with ISO 1600, Auto ISO Shift and optical Image Stabilizer
  • Improved Red-Eye Correction in playback
  • 2.5” LCD screen
  • 18 shooting modes including full manual control
  • Digital Tele-Converter and Safety Zoom*

* See Technologies Explained

Unbeatable Canon image quality

The compact 10x optical zoom lens is based on the proven lens configuration of the PowerShot S5 IS, with the number of moving lens elements kept to a minimum to ensure faster, power efficient operation. A 35mm film equivalent focal length of 36-360mm, gives the PowerShot SX100 IS an ideal zoom range for school sports days, family holidays or wildlife adventures. Canon’s lens-shift type optical Image Stabilizer – first developed for Canon’s market-leading EF lenses used with professional EOS SLR cameras – is incorporated to counteract the effects of camera shake in low light conditions and at full zoom. A second line of defence against camera shake is Auto ISO Shift, which can be selected by the user to boost the ISO setting just enough to combat the effects of unintended camera movement. Two further ISO features – manually selected high ISO settings up to ISO 1600 and High ISO Auto – combat the blur caused by typical subject movement, as well as camera shake when low light conditions would normally require a longer exposure.

Better photos made easy

The DIGIC III image processor powers several features that make it easier for everyone to produce better photos. Face Detection Technology quickly and accurately detects faces in a scene then adjusts the focus, exposure and flash output settings for the best possible people shots. A new Face Select and Track function enables the user to manually give priority to an individual face from up to 35 faces detected in the frame. A dedicated Face Selector button immediately switches to Face Select and Track from any mode, allowing users to quickly pick out family members at school plays or crowded tourist attractions. The PowerShot SX100 IS also incorporates improved Red-Eye Correction in playback, which uses Face Detection Technology to identify and digitally remove red-eye from captured images.

Versatile shooting options

The PowerShot SX100 IS comes equipped with several preset Special Scene modes optimised for common family shooting situations. Modes include Night Snapshot, Kids & Pets, Fireworks and Snow. Advanced modes such as Manual, Program, Shutter speed Priority and Aperture Priority give experienced users more control. An impressive 1cm Macro mode enables detailed close-up photography, while the ability to choose a smaller AF frame size gives users finer control when focusing on smaller subjects. Creative photo effects such as Black & White or Vivid can be applied to images when shooting in any mode with My Colors. Video recording with sound is available for those special movie moments, including a new Long Play (LP) VGA mode that effectively doubles the amount of video that can be stored on a memory card.

User-friendly design

The first camera in Canon’s SX-series employs a new design sensibility, applying distinctive curves to a traditional form. A remarkably compact and ergonomic design means the PowerShot SX100 IS can be used by even the youngest members of the family. An intuitive button layout and control dial makes it easy for beginners to operate common controls, while allowing advanced users quick access to other features.

Ready for sharing

Users can prepare images for instant sharing on blogs, online galleries or as email attachments with the new Image Resize function. This function enables users to downsize images to 1600x1200, 640x480 and 320x240 sizes direct from the camera – also helpful when memory space is limited. The PowerShot SX100 IS is compatible with HC MMCplus memory cards, giving users the option to use memory cards from other mobile devices – such as mobile phones and MP3 players – in their camera.

Additional Information

Printing

The PowerShot SX100 IS features a dedicated Print menu for quick access to direct print options. Full PictBridge support means users can print directly to any PictBridge compatible printer without the need for a PC. A Print/Share button allows one-touch printing and easy uploads to Windows or Mac systems.

Memory Card Support

In addition to SD, SDHC and MMC memory cards, the camera supports the new MMCplus and HC MMCplus formats for storage of up to 32GB. It comes supplied with a 32MB memory card.

Software

The PowerShot SX100 IS comes bundled with the following Canon Software:

  • ZoomBrowser EX 6.0 (Windows), ImageBrowser 6.0 (Mac): For organising and editing images, movies and slideshows, or creating and printing digital photo albums.
  • PhotoStitch 3.1 (Windows), 3.2 (Mac): For creating panoramic photos from multiple images.

The bundled software supports Windows 2000 (SP4), XP (SP2), Vista and Macintosh OS X v10.3-10.4. Purchasers of the camera are eligible for membership of CANON iMAGE GATEWAY*, 100MB of online ‘personal gallery’ space for sharing stills and video with family and friends.
*CANON iMAGE GATEWAY is not available in all European countries. Please see www.cig.canon-europe.com for available countries. Movie upload requires users to download and install the movie upload task, available after registration from the CANON iMAGE GATEWAY site.

Accessories

A range of optional accessories includes:

  • High Power Flash (HF-DC1)
  • Soft Case (DCC-700)
  • AC Adapter Kit (ACK800)
  • Battery and Charger Kit (CB4-300)

Canon PowerShot SX100 IS specifications

  PowerShot SX100 IS
Sensor

• 1/2.5" Type CCD
• 8.0 million effective pixels

Image sizes • 3264 x 2448
• 2592 x 1944
• 2048 x 1536
• 1600 x 1200
• 640 x 480
• 3264 x 1832
Movie clips • 640 x 480 @ 30fps
• 320 x 240 @ 30fps
• 160 x 120 @ 15fps
Maximum clip length • 640 x 480, 320 x 240: 4GB or 1 hour
• 160 x 120: 3 mins
File formats • JPEG (Exif v2.2)
• DPOF 1.1
• AVI (Motion JPEG + WAVE)
Lens • 36-360mm (35mm equiv)
• 10x optical zoom
• F2.8-4.3
Image stabilization Yes (Lens-Shift)
Conversion lenses No
Digital zoom up to 4x
Focus TTL
AF area modes • Face Detection AiAF
• 1-point AF (center or Face Select and Track)
• Manual focus
AF lock Yes (on/off selectable)
AF assist lamp Yes
Focus distance Closest focus distance 1cm
Metering • Evaluative (linked to Face Detection AF frame)
• Center-weighted average
• Spot (center)
ISO sensitivity • Auto
• High ISO Auto
• ISO 80
• ISO 100
• ISO 200
• ISO 400
• ISO 800
• ISO 1600
AE lock Yes (on/off selectable)
Exposure compensation +/- 2EV in 1/3 stop increments
Shuttter speed 15-1/2500 sec
Modes

• Auto
• Program AE
• Shutter Priority AE
• Aperture Priority AE
• Manual
• Portrait
• Landscape
• Night Snapshot
• Kids & Pets
• Special Scene
• Stitch Assist
• Movie

Scene modes

• Portrait
• Landscape
• Night Snapshot
• Kids & Pets
• Night Scene
• Indoor
• Foliage
• Snow
• Beach
• Fireworks
• Aquarium

White balance • Auto
• Daylight
• Cloudy
• Tungsten
• Fluorescent
• Fluorescent H
• Custom
Self timer 2 or 10sec, custom
Continuous shooting • Approx 0.8fps until card is full (AF / LiveView)
• Approx 1.3fps until card is full (LCD monitor off)
Image parameters My Colors (My Colors Off, Vivid, Neutral, Sepia, Black & White, Custom Color)
Flash • Auto, Flash On, Flash Off, Slow Sync, Red-eye reduction
• +/- 2EV in 1/3 stop increments
• Face Detection FE compensation
• Safety FE
• Flash exposure lock
• Manual Power Adjustment (3 levels)
• Range (Auto ISO): 50cm - 3.0m (wide) / 2.0m (tele)
Viewfinder No
LCD monitor • 2.5-inch P-Si TFT
• 172,000 pixels
• 100% coverage
• 15 levels of brightness adjustment
Connectivity • USB 2.0 Hi-Speed
• AV out (PAL / NTSC switchable)
Print compliance PictBridge
Storage • SD, SDHC, MMC, MMCplus , HC MMCplus compatible
• 32 MB card supplied
Power • 2x AA Alkaline or NiMH batteries
• Optional AC adapter ACK800
Weight (no batt) 266g (9.4 oz)
Dimensions 108.7 x 71.4 x 46.7 mm (4.3 x 2.8 x 1.8 in)

Technologies Explained

DIGIC III

Canon’s DIGIC III (DIGital Imaging Core) image processor manages all of the camera’s primary functions to optimise operating efficiency. Advanced image processing algorithms deliver superb image detail and colour reproduction with accurate white balance. High-speed processing results in outstanding responsiveness, rapid auto focus and extended continuous shooting ability. DIGIC III also powers advanced Noise Reduction Technology and Face Detection AF/AE/FE.

Face Detection AF/AE/FE

Canon’s Face Detection AF/AE/FE system automatically detects up to nine faces within a frame before adjusting the focus, exposure and flash to ensure optimal results. It is able to determine which faces are intended to be the subject, instantly reverting to the standard AF system if no face is detected as the primary subject. The new Face Select and Track feature allows users to select one face from up to 35 detected faces using the dedicated Face Selector button, which will then be tracked as the subject of the scene for as long as the face remains within the frame.

Optical Image Stabilizer

The PowerShot SX100 IS uses a lens shift-type Image Stabilizer (IS) system to detect and correct slight camera shake that can cause image blur. Minute vibration gyros detect lens tilting caused by hand shake. These signals – 4,000 per second – are processed by a single-chip IS controller, which discriminates between hand shake and intentional camera movements. Shake signals are sent to the IS unit, which moves one of the lens elements accordingly to deflect the light rays and cancel out the effects of shake. For improved accuracy and responsiveness, the moving lens element is supported on tiny ceramic spheres. In addition to minimising friction, ceramic spheres avoid some of the problems that can affect metal spheres, such as thermal expansion and magnetism. The optical IS of the PowerShot SX100 IS allows photographers to shoot at shutter speeds up to 3 stops slower with no perceptible increase in image blur.

Digital Tele-Converter and Safety Zoom

Similar to placing an accessory lens on the front of the camera, Canon’s Digital Tele-Converter adds a constant zoom to every shot – 1.6x or 2.0x, depending on the image size selected. While optical converter lenses cause a reduction in aperture and consequently require a slower shutter speed, the Digital Tele-Converter maintains aperture size, reducing the risk of image blur.

Safety Zoom protects the image from interpolation at high levels of digital zoom, allowing users to extend zoom magnification without sacrificing image quality.

Level of Safety Zoom possible at each image size setting without loss of image quality:

Large
Medium 1
Medium 2
Medium 3
Small
SX100 IS
10x
13x
16x
20x
40x

Additional Images