Compared to... Panasonic DMC-FZ8

Finally we'll look at how the S5 IS compares to Panasonic's Lumix FZ8, which is a lot smaller than the S5 IS, and has one million fewer pixels, but has a similar lens and shares a broadly similar feature set. We've included comparisons at each camera's lowest ISO (S5 IS: 80, FZ8: 100) and ISO 400.

Studio scene comparison (@ ISO 80)

  • Canon PowerShot S5 IS: Aperture Priority mode, ISO 80, Default Image Parameters,
    Manual white balance, +0.67 EV compensation
  • Panasonic DMC-FZ8: Aperture Priority mode (F5.0), ISO 100, Default Image Parameters,
    Manual white balance, +0.7 EV compensation
  • Lighting: Daylight simulation, >98% CRI
Canon PowerShot S5 IS
Panasonic DMC-FZ8
ISO 80, 1/40 sec, F5.0
ISO 100, 1/60 sec, F5.0
3,176 KB JPEG
3,241 KB JPEG

If you ever wanted proof that image quality is about a lot more than pixel numbers take a look at the comparison above. The FZ8's Leica lens (even with its slightly soft bottom right hand corner) is simply superb and, though you're unlikely to see it in a standard print - the sharpness difference is immediately obvious at a pixel level. As usual our issues with the Panasonic are that the processing can look a little messy even at base ISO, meaning the Canon output looks cleaner.