Canon Announces New Toys: Part 4 PowerShot Compacts

I have a feeling some of the recommended cameras on Ken Rockwell’s site may be changing soon, and that is good news for everyone. To go along with all the other announcements, Canon is giving consumers new pocket cameras.

  • Canon PowerShot SX230 HS
  • Canon ELPH 500 HS
  • Canon ELPH 300 HS
  • Canon ELPH 100HS

All four cameras get Canon’s new HS system for better pictures in low-light situations. The cameras use a high-sensitivity sensor like in a DSLR to record better images in low-light, and this is the same system employed in the PowerShot G12 and PowerShot S95 except with a smaller sensor for compactness.

The Canon PowerShot SX230 will replace or sit just above the older PoweShot SX210 IS in the compact super-zoom range allowing 28-392mm equivalent range or 14x optical zoom. It can also record full 1080p HD Video with dynamic image stabilization. The camera finally adds a GPS sensor to record the locations of your photos.

The Canon ELPH 500 takes on a new model name and replaces the PowerShot (Digital ELPH) SD3500 IS bringing the ELPH name to the forefront from the 35mm film days. Like the SD 3500 IS the camera shoots 4.4x optical or 24-105mm equivalent with a fast f/2 lens when shooting 24mm for great low-light performance. The ELPH 500 packs a slew of new features controlled by the same touchscreen system as the SD 3500 IS including Super Slow Motion Movies, High-Speed Burst mode, Low Light mode, and Smart Auto for intelligent scene detection. Finally, for those desiring some control over their compact, the ELPH 500 offers Av and Tv modes to control your aperture or shutter speed.

The Canon ELPH 300 replaces the PowerShot SD 1400 IS as the supe-compact, mid-featured camera. The camera features the more traditional control of a Canon PowerShot rather than the touchscreen interface. The lens is more traditional lacking the fast f/2 wide aperture of the ELPH 500, but if you have owned any PowerShots you know what the lens is capable of. This camera should outshine with the new CMOS sensor behind the lens. The lens has 5x optical zoom or 24-135mm as well as Super Slow Motion Movie and High-Speed Burst mode. This is the smallest, lightest recent camera Canon offers (the SD780 IS is the smallest compact).

The Canon ELPH 100 brings the HS system to those on a budget. It gets most all of the features above except with a 28-112mm lens. For the value, this is a great little point-and-shoot camera.