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Just Posted: Canon PowerShot G15 preview

By dpreview staff on Sep 17, 2012 at 08:00 GMT
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Just Posted: Our Canon PowerShot G15 hands-on preview. It would have been easy to assume the small-sensor PowerShot G series was at an end when Canon introduced the 1.5" sensor G1 X, but the G15 continues the 1/1.7" sensor tradition and looks back to the series' beginnings with the addition of a bright lens. The 28-140mm equivalent, F1.8-2.8 lens offers a pretty impressive specification in anyone's book (it's over a stop brighter than the G12, all the way through the range). So is the camera to stand up to the enthusiast camera onslaught? Read our preview to find out our early thoughts.

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Canon PowerShot G15

Comments

Total comments: 81
JoePhoto1
By JoePhoto1 (Oct 1, 2012)

What is the big deal about articulated screens? When the first digital cameras came out with LCD screens, the viewing angle was very limited, so an articulated screen was very useful. Today, it's possible to see the screen well enough for composition at 80 degrees off center or more so the articulated screen is only necessary for self portraits or shooting behind you. I'm happy to give up the extra mechanism for the weight and size advantage, not to mention the likely lower price.

0 upvotes
tutek
By tutek (Oct 2, 2012)

You are not right. Sometimes I look at a 90-degree, sometimes self-image, the difference in price? Maybe $ 5. How well is seen at 80 degrees? Narrow, deformed objects ... Obviously you composition is not important when you think so.

1 upvote
tutek
By tutek (Sep 24, 2012)

I have a G11 and Quick-Change filter adapter, only 3mm thin ring when the filter is not used. lensmateonline

Comment edited 3 times, last edit 4 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Sep 20, 2012)

Based on the photos here and specs for the new Canon G15 on the Canon web site, seems like you cannot mount a filter on the Canon G15's lens. True or false?

1 upvote
tutek
By tutek (Sep 20, 2012)

Može se montirati ali treba adapter. See lensmateonline

0 upvotes
justmeMN
By justmeMN (Sep 21, 2012)

On the Canon USA web site, click on "About PowerShot G15" "Supplies And Accessories". It looks like there is a Filter Adapter, but I don't know how well those work.

0 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Sep 23, 2012)

It is basically a passive barrel, almost certainly a plastic barrel. You un-twist a ring at the base of the lens, then twist the extra cost barrel accessory into it, and then on front of the barrel accessory you can twist a filter. I kid you not.

You will never be able to reach your zoom lens on the camera afterwards this way, and also even when the lens retracts when you shut the camera OFF, the filter barrel will be sticking out always.

A worst of all worlds "solution" to use a filter on a photographic lens, for sure. I thought this went out in the 1950s.

0 upvotes
tutek
By tutek (Sep 19, 2012)

After 80-100 zoom sony loses the advantage larger sensor (2.89 x larger surface area) because the 3.1 to 3.7 times slower lens. So G15 gives less noise in the telephoto area. Even G1X is not much better with a larger surface area 6.5 sensor (in the end, only 1.6 to 2.7 times). So where should the G15 ISO 100 to sony 300-400, G1X should 250-400ASA.

0 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Sep 20, 2012)

Huh, what did you just say, tutek?

0 upvotes
tutek
By tutek (Sep 20, 2012)

Thanks to stronger light lens G15 can record eg indoors with ISO 100 and G15 must use 300-400 which reduces the advantage larger sensor. Sorry google translate

0 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Sep 20, 2012)

Huh, what did you just say, tutek?

0 upvotes
peevee1
By peevee1 (Sep 21, 2012)

But how often do you use 100 mm+ vs the rest of the range in the dark?

0 upvotes
Azfar
By Azfar (Sep 19, 2012)

Now that they have got constant aperture across the focal length in super-zooms (FZ200 and V-lux 4) how long before we start seeing them in enthusiast compacts . Not that F1.8-2.8 is any bad. Still, i reckon it wont be long before we see one in this segment as well.

Comment edited 32 seconds after posting
1 upvote
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Sep 20, 2012)

Especially since, for example, a Canon Super 8mm film camera made in the year 1968 (model #1218) already had a 12x zoom range, constant F1.8 zoom lens on it. As well as just about every other 8mm, Super 8, 16mm, and 35mm cine-style lens as well.

1 upvote
Petka
By Petka (Sep 28, 2012)

Resolution requirements for Super8 lens (and all TV lenses of the past) were really low, though. Resolution was under 0.5 MPix, now we have to get over 10 MPix resolutions from the same sensor area.

0 upvotes
DanielNCom
By DanielNCom (Sep 19, 2012)

I have G10 it a amazing compact camera...
I thing G15 better than previos model... with f1.8
I Hope next model G16 have same size with sensor G1X and Have good Zoom lens 10x, it make Phowershot G become Best Traveler compact camera

0 upvotes
johnparas11zenfoliodotcom
By johnparas11zenfoliodotcom (Sep 19, 2012)

I was waiting for an upgarde for my G12, i did not like the g1x.. This G15.. No swivel? I think i will finally have a nikon.. The P7700.. I have nikon dslrs and flashes.. And finally i can have an enthusiast nikon point and ahoot.. At least i can use my nikon flashes with iTTl.. At last.. Maybe..

I might just sell my G12 and buy the nikon p7700..

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
1 upvote
tutek
By tutek (Sep 19, 2012)

sony and nikon open the champagne after seeing the new Canon G15

2 upvotes
Shogun Fantastico
By Shogun Fantastico (Sep 19, 2012)

G12 had 10 megapixels, ok. Now there is G15, much bigger number (+3), with 12 megapixels. What I want to know and Canon should be explaining, why are megapixels always lagging behind model numbers? Swivel or no swivel, I think we have something on Canon here. We should stick together.

2 upvotes
JonSr
By JonSr (Sep 19, 2012)

When GF3 is being sold for $300. What Canon and Nikon is doing with their tiny sensor compact seems price gouging naive people.

1 upvote
bronson
By bronson (Sep 19, 2012)

While Canon is playing games... take away swivel, give it back.... take away "large" sensor, give it back(?).... Sony is quickly taking the place of this old school name with superior products in the sub-pro categories.

Canon has opportunities to be hitting home runs, but instead, they are striking out.

G owner.

2 upvotes
halc
By halc (Sep 18, 2012)

Why does Canon even bother with this?

The sensor is outdated and there is very little for even ex-owners in terms of upgrade-compulsion.

Just another me-too camera from a company that has become too me-too for their own good.

3 upvotes
tutek
By tutek (Sep 18, 2012)

See the G7 in 2006. year. What has changed in 6 years? Almost nothing!

1 upvote
calmwaters
By calmwaters (Sep 18, 2012)

I bought the G7 in 2006. I love that camera. However there are quite a few differences in the G15. This new camera is much faster. More resolution, wider ISO range,better video, RAW format, brighter lens, faster shutter speed and a slightly larger sensor. It's also cheaper than what I paid for the G7. There are a bunch of other less noticeable improvements so overall the camera has improved quite a bit the last 6 years.

1 upvote
JonSr
By JonSr (Sep 18, 2012)

@calmwaters don't we know now that 1/1.7" sensor size is what really matter as far as the quality is concerned. For the cost of G15, it really outlived its sensor size. G15 should have been at least m43 size if not APS-C. The cost just doesn't justify the size.

0 upvotes
YiannisPP
By YiannisPP (Sep 18, 2012)

JonSr, calmwaters' argument is perfectly valid, this is a much better camera at a lower price than the G7. Fact. Larger sensor would mean larger camera with such lens. Canon obviously wanted to keep the G15 smallish. For those who don't care about portability as much there is the G1X.

2 upvotes
calmwaters
By calmwaters (Sep 19, 2012)

@YiannisPP, thank you for clarifying my thoughts. I also bought the Oly ZX-1 last year and the sensor is very similar. People need to realize that there are quite a few of us out there who like what these cameras do. As you pointed out, a larger sensor will not work with these small lens. If you put a APS-C behind these lens it would be all crop.
Anyway, while I like what Canon has done with the G15, the new ZX-2 is looking like the stronger candidate.

0 upvotes
Sad Joe
By Sad Joe (Sep 18, 2012)

Sorry Canon - this shows the same naff - 'only what we have to do' approach as the new 6D - I'd suggest you bin the G series and update the GX series instead. In the meantime I'll continue to use my S90 - the last time that Canon really made the compact camera market take notice.

1 upvote
Nimenion
By Nimenion (Sep 18, 2012)

No way.

I need a 24-120mm (or more @ tele end) and fast (about 2,0-2,8 for a zoom).

So, again, the lack of wide angle spoils the treat!

1 upvote
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Sep 20, 2012)

Same here. I might have bit on the G15 at 24mm UWA, not interested in a non-removable lens camera that starts wide angle at an arcane standard of 28mm.

24-90mm lens Panny Lumix DMC-LX7 with a brighter lens looks much better, actually.

Still, I will probably get nothing smaller than a 1-inch sensor, and more likely 1.5-inch or Micro 4/3. After all, size does matter.

1 upvote
Photato
By Photato (Sep 18, 2012)

Finally a decent lens. The G5 lens started at f/2.0, but No articulated screen on this one?! I pass.
Now you see it, now you don't. Hehe, typical Canon.

0 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Sep 20, 2012)

Since Canon had a nice constant F1.8 12x zoom range optic on their #128 film camera back in 1968, this lens on the G15 could have been designed a few yeaas before that, is that what you had meant?

I just love these classics, don't you?

0 upvotes
nathanleebush
By nathanleebush (Sep 17, 2012)

I think Canon gets that this is a dying product category. Why buy small sensor compacts when engineering teams are putting much larger sensors in smaller bodies (RX100) and smartphone manufacturers are wrestling sensors approaching the same size into their products.

So Canon is phoning it in.. slightly updating specs (while actually removing features) and knowing the name will carry. I see so many clueless people at art openings and fashion shows with these things, blissfully unaware that they could get vastly more features for the same money, but their friends told them to buy this, and it "just takes amazing pictures" if you ask them.

5 upvotes
nathanleebush
By nathanleebush (Sep 17, 2012)

Canon reminds me of Apple, and specifically The Onion article about the iPhone from last week: "With CEO Tim Cook stating that desperate customers would surely 'line up like idiots' to purchase the offensive product anyway, Apple announced today the release of the company’s new iPhone 5, which features the N-word boldly embossed on its back"

They refuse to innovate and will pay the price in the long term.

3 upvotes
howardroark
By howardroark (Sep 17, 2012)

It reminds you of Apple? The iPhone 5? I don't think it does considering the fact that you're trying to insult Canon and Apple. Apple certainly does take its time adding certain features, but early benchmarks put the 5 well ahead of the current leader, the Galaxy S III, in terms of graphics and processing speed. Apple is known for getting away with a lot in terms of hardware, but when friends of mine buy an Android and want their iPhones back a week later I just laugh and point at them.
Oh, I'm not trying to get into one of those endless open versus closed system discussions, but I think most Apple haters are programers that wouldn't know a decent user interface if it fell out of the sky, landed on their face, and wiggled. The same people who say "why do we need Windows when the DOS prompt is so intuitive and simple to use." Just for the record, I hate Windows and use a PC and have plenty of programming experience....but I refuse to build my own system.

Comment edited 3 times, last edit 7 minutes after posting
2 upvotes
Ronnie 1
By Ronnie 1 (Sep 17, 2012)

Galaxy s3 is still ahead in the benchmarks i read and i seen one that had Apple ahead but was found out to have made a mistake.

6 upvotes
howardroark
By howardroark (Sep 17, 2012)

The trick to the story you mention is that it uses a benchmark that no app can live up to since they aren't optimized for four cores. Either way, I've known four people who traded their iPhone 4 in for an SIII....they all plan to sell them and order the iPhone 5 because the SIII is such a pain to use.

3 upvotes
dgmessenger
By dgmessenger (Sep 18, 2012)

That settles it. "Four" people in "your circle" want iPhone5s. Argument is over. Apple wins. Let's move on now and stay on topic.

1 upvote
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Sep 20, 2012)

Shove your Apples already, folks.

0 upvotes
justmeMN
By justmeMN (Sep 17, 2012)

My speculation is that Canon removed the articulated screen, for the sake of product differentiation.

If you want an articulated screen, Canon wants you to buy a (more expensive) G1 X.

1 upvote
Charrick
By Charrick (Sep 17, 2012)

Too bad. Canon is walking a fine line. The articulated screen was a big selling point. I wouldn't consider this camera without it. And instead of going for the G1 X, people might look elsewhere.

4 upvotes
howardroark
By howardroark (Sep 17, 2012)

Considering the likely price difference between the G15 and G1 X when the G15 hits the streets they'll probably push quite a few people up to the G1 X. There might be a few people who will stick with the G15 for "macro" (P&S cameras shouldn't use that term....it should be called "flower mode" or something instead of watering down a term that should mean something).

1 upvote
calmwaters
By calmwaters (Sep 18, 2012)

@howardroark do you even know the definition of macro? I bought my ZX-1 for taking shallow depth of field and macro shots. If a 2.5cm vertical object will not fit in your viewfinder you are typically taking a macro shot. My Oly, and I suspect this G15 fit in that category. Yes there are much better cameras with much better lens out there to accomplish these shots but it's these small cameras that fill my purposes. I like the images they produce and the cost is not prohibitive.

1 upvote
dgmessenger
By dgmessenger (Sep 18, 2012)

Agree. However, to howardroark's point, G1 X does not have macro (the reason I returned it - couldn't do the type of food photography I wanted).

1 upvote
calmwaters
By calmwaters (Sep 19, 2012)

@dgmessenger, yes this is true and while the G1X has a great sensor and produces very nice images it's not great in low light and pretty much useless for macro. That is why my picks, the ZX-2 and the G15 will always be sought after. It's very hard to find anything this compact for this price to do this kind of photography.

1 upvote
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Sep 20, 2012)

G1 X is also pretty much useless for video, I hear.

1 upvote
tutek
By tutek (Sep 17, 2012)

I think Canon should immediately issue a version of G15 VASC (Vari-Angle Swivel Screen) if he wants to retain customers.

10 upvotes
LiSkynden
By LiSkynden (Sep 17, 2012)

Exactly. No flip out screen is so NO for G15 for me :(

2 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Sep 20, 2012)

No can't do, as that would have added as much as US$2 to the manufacturing cost of the G15. Well, maybe only a buck fifty, but still... money is honey, don't you know?

1 upvote
SantaFeBill
By SantaFeBill (Sep 17, 2012)

Interesting that so many here don't seem to like the G15. As a Nikon fan and user of their DSLRs, I was looking forward to Nikon's replacement for the P7100. The P7700 was for me and a good number of others a real disappointment. If the P7700 had been announced with the specs of the G15, I'd have my pre-order for it in now. As it is, if the IQ and QC of the G15 are up to expectations, I'll buy it instead.

1 upvote
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Sep 20, 2012)

P7700 smokes G15, at least on paper. What is it that you do NOT like about the P7700, SF Bill?

0 upvotes
ThomasH_always
By ThomasH_always (Sep 17, 2012)

Pity that the optical viewfinder has not been improved. For me its an invaluable tool in my G12, but I wish I would have rudimentary focus information in it. And it could be a bit bigger as well. Brighter lens in the G15 is an advantage, of course, however I became quite attached to the flippable LCD screen, and I will have to do some thinking if I really want to replace G12 by a G15.

1 upvote
Gesture
By Gesture (Sep 17, 2012)

Exactly. Canon could try harder.

0 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Sep 20, 2012)

They saved probably a couple of bucks in mfr-ing costs by crazy gluing the LCD screen to the body. Re. the parallax view OVF, we had these 40-50 years ago on film cameras but with some sort of focus-assist function thrown in. With Canon, it's just a hole.

Also, does the shape of the image you see in it changes somehow when you are recording 16:9 AR video?

0 upvotes
calmwaters
By calmwaters (Sep 17, 2012)

This is going to be a hard pick between the Oly ZX-2 and the G-15. The Canon has the longer zoom but is lacking in the mode area. The Oly has a tilted, touch screen as opposed to the fixed one of the G-15. I think the images will be very similar as they both have the same sensor type and size. Both have fast, bright lens. I think the Oly is lighter and more compact. I think the Canon is $100 bucks cheaper and that might be the decider for many although I think the Oly has better build quality.

3 upvotes
Sdaniella
By Sdaniella (Sep 17, 2012)

Uh-oh, Canon's doing the ol' back-step removal of their G-Classic VASS (Vari-Angle Swivel Screen) AGAIN??? Hate it... when the G7 came out... same thing

DITTO: Canon is holding off TOO LONG on offering a built-in 24mm equivalent FOV wide lens. STILL only 28mm, and the G1X missed the 24 mark too, even though at least it retained Classic-G VASS. 24 had SLOWLY crept into the SX series and S100, not G !
:(

SO... when will a 24mm FOV Equivalent VASS-endowed PowerShot G series, with EOS-1 mini-dual controls FINALLY SHOW UP?

All the more reason for a PowerShot Pro1X (a wider 24mm successor to the original PowerShot Pro1)... a G1X sensor would be PERFECT... pls? make it a 24-120mm (or 24-96mm would even be fine for me; at worst, a 24-72... hehehe... too close to EF24-70 (for Canon's comfort), eh??? lol...)

Well, at least NO ONE can WHINE about the smaller sensor where it can still offer 1cm MACRO, which the G1X cannot do as well with a larger sensor (nor others with larger sensors, period)

Comment edited 4 times, last edit 9 minutes after posting
10 upvotes
justmeMN
By justmeMN (Sep 17, 2012)

@sdyue The Canon G5 had a built-in intervalometer, and came with a remote control. The tradition of feature removal continues...

3 upvotes
howardroark
By howardroark (Sep 17, 2012)

The tradition of cost-benefit ratio continues. My first iPod (iPod photo 40GB) came with a USB cable, Firewire cable, charger, headphones, holster, pouch, dock, AV cable, and even iTunes on CD. It was $350 (price the day after it was discontinued instead of MSRP of $500). The current iPod classic may be a hundred bucks less and have four times the memory (not to mention video, etc) but you get headphones and a USB cable with it. Companies are discovering that they can save money on the little things without ruining their sales even if a few people see it as a deal breaker.
Don't get me wrong, it'll take a serious update to the G1 X to impress me at this point. The G15 and S110 are just as disappointing as their predecessors. I don't see the Nikon P7700 as all that impressive either, but for many people cameras in the high end of the medium sensor P&S market they are perfect.

Comment edited 47 seconds after posting
2 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Sep 17, 2012)

I think it a mistake for Canon to skip the articulated screen, they can be a real help when shooting discreetly. Or shooting video. Canon should know this well, since they've tried in the past to forgo articulated screens on some G series cameras.

Comment edited 4 minutes after posting
8 upvotes
iudex
By iudex (Sep 17, 2012)

It´s all business. We add one thing and take away another, so that we can return it with bells and whistles back in the next generation. However in my opinion 1,3 EV faster lens is a much more important feature than articulated screen.
Anyhow I would appreciate wider lens (24 or at least 25 mm).

Comment edited 37 seconds after posting
3 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Sep 17, 2012)

iudex--

Right I get that they want to be able to sell "G16s" when that camera comes out.

However, Canon has tried giving up the articulated screen in this series and they weren't treated seriously, about the same time the Gs weren't shooting raw. (Samsung has now made that mistake with the EX2.)

Yes the faster lens is a big deal.

0 upvotes
BeanyPic
By BeanyPic (Sep 17, 2012)

Good move by Canon, using the 12mp sensor with the HS system with f/1.8 at the bottom end. Focusing on IQ and still giving full control. A lot of other brands are being over lead by consumers with no understanding of digital cameras. Just make a camera that gives a good pick and not be spec lead by the uneducated.

5 upvotes
SasaDF Ita
By SasaDF Ita (Sep 17, 2012)

SHELF!!

When the others offer a bigger sensor like the Rx-100 with a focal relatively similar (ok 1.8 only in wide, but it's a ZEISS!) at minor prize, the Canon remains a step (or two thinking to the 20mp vs the 12mp) back within the sony.

Is this why instead the G13 or the G14, they've presented today directly the G15?

I'm going to amazon to order mine Rx100...

walk on
sasadf

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 2 minutes after posting
3 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Sep 17, 2012)

Remember you can't mount a filter on the Sony. Or an external flash. But to be fair those things aren't important for some.

0 upvotes
tutek
By tutek (Sep 17, 2012)

Adapter for 49 or 52mm filters, look at the page lensmateonline

0 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Sep 20, 2012)

"Remember you can't mount a filter on the Sony."

True enough, HowaboutRAW. Of course, based on the photos and specs for the new Canon G15, you cannot mount a filter on the Canon, either.

http://www.usa.canon.com/cusa/consumer/products/cameras/digital_cameras/powershot_g15#Specifications

1 upvote
Edmond Leung
By Edmond Leung (Sep 17, 2012)

Still 1/1.7? No way.
Canon should learn more from Sony RX1.

1 upvote
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Sep 17, 2012)

Canon has a near APSC sensored camera, the G1X?

Neither that nor the G15 is tiny like the Sony RX100. But at least the Canons take filters.

Comment edited 4 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
iudex
By iudex (Sep 17, 2012)

Canon has two different ways: one is the G series with all possible external controls, hot-shoe, filter thread and a viewfinder; the other way is the minimalistic and truly pocketable S series ( that has to give up on some features to remain pocketable). RX100 goes in the way of S100, i.e. no VF, no hot-shoe etc. (however going much further in terms of sensor and lens).

2 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Sep 20, 2012)

It's news to me that the Canon G15 takes filter -- how did you come to that conclusion, HowaboutRAW?

0 upvotes
Ibida Bab
By Ibida Bab (Sep 17, 2012)

I would ad a larger sensor, fold-out lcd, AAs and we are near perfect. I wondering towards a Pentax or a Sony this Fall.

1 upvote
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Sep 17, 2012)

G1X.

1 upvote
toml99
By toml99 (Sep 17, 2012)

Spot on HowaboutRAW. The G15 isn't meant to compete with the G1X.

Comment edited 22 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
tutek
By tutek (Sep 17, 2012)

G15 with Fixed LCD, small sensor and only 12 megapixel, , is the canon slept a few years?

3 upvotes
T_O_M_E_K
By T_O_M_E_K (Sep 17, 2012)

…and only 12 megapixel…

If you need very large prints you should look at Nikon D4 that lists at $5,999.95 and not Canon G15. D4 has sensor area that is almost 21 times larger than that in G15 and offers 16.2 megapixels. WHAT? Only 16.2 megapixels!

Sometimes less is more.

1 upvote
Michael_13
By Michael_13 (Sep 18, 2012)

The 12 MP and F1.8 are about the best design decisions for this camera.

2 upvotes
John De Bord Photography
By John De Bord Photography (Sep 17, 2012)

I don't see this as a step back at all, especially given the lens on the camera.

3 upvotes
iudex
By iudex (Sep 17, 2012)

I agree. This is the most interesting camera of Canon today´s novelties. At least improving the lens speed by 1,3 EV is much more important than Wi-fi and similar features in S110& co.

3 upvotes
Blackfjord
By Blackfjord (Sep 17, 2012)

One small step for a camera....one giant leap towards losing market share..

8 upvotes
lifeispixels
By lifeispixels (Sep 17, 2012)

...yawn...

1 upvote
Superka
By Superka (Sep 17, 2012)

It is a step back.

2 upvotes
Total comments: 81