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CES 2012: Canon introduces point-and-shoot with large sensor

Consumer Reports News: January 09, 2012 03:38 PM

Ever since Nikon unveiled new SLR-like, mirrorless, models in 2011, camera enthusiasts have eagerly awaited news that Canon will finally enter that market. With today’s announcement of three new point-and-shoot models, Canon goes halfway there.

Among the new models, only the PowerShot G1 X has an image sensor almost as big as those found on Canon SLRs which, at first glance, would put it in the same category as other SLR-like models. Except that it has only a fixed 4x optical zoom lens, and doesn't accept interchangeable lenses. It’s also quite pricey.

The two new ELPHs, the PowerShot ELPH 520 HS and PowerShot ELPH 110 HS, include some intriguing new features. New smart features extend face detection, including a Face ID mode, which lets you make certain faces a priority (in terms of focus and exposure) based on age, and Sleeping Face recognition, which disables the flash, assist beam and sound when the camera sense someone is sleeping.

Here are some additional specs on the new cameras:

-- The 14-megapixel PowerShot G1 X, $800, comes with a 4x zoom, top sensitivity setting of ISO 12800, HDR setting, high-speed burst mode (without minimizing full resolution), RAW capability, 3-inch swiveling display and a hot shoe, for attaching an external flash.

-- The 10-megapixel PowerShot ELPH 520 HS, $300, has a 12x zoom, top ISO range of ISO 3200 and 3-inch LCD.

-- The 16-megapixel PowerShot ELPH 110 HS, $250, has a 5x zoom, 24mm wide-angle lens, top ISO range of ISO 3200 and 3-inch LCD.

All the PowerShots capture full-HD 1080p video. The PowerShot G1 X will be available in February, and the other two PowerShots in March.

Canon also unveiled several new full-sized compact M-series and entry-level R-series Vixia camcorders, some of which offer WiFi connectivity via a WiFI network or in conjunction with DLNA-compatible HDTVs. The WiFi models include the Canon Vixia HF M52 (with 32 GB of internal memory, $750), Vixia HF M50 (with 8 GB of internal memory, $650), Vixia HF R32 (with 32 GB of internal memory, $550) and Vixia HF R30 (with 8 GB of internal memory,$450)

All the new Vixia camcorders will be available in March.

Terry Sullivan

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