With a week ahead of time to its official release in our country, on may 21st, Canon has given us the first unit that has arrived to Spain of the new model of the acclaimed PowerShot G series, the G1X Mark II.
It has been two years since the presentation of the G1X that started off as the first of the G series with a CMOS sensor of an inch and a half, only 20% smaller than an APS-C used by the low-end reflex cameras. This model had an optic of 28-112 mm (35 mm equivalent), with a luminosity of 1:2.5-5.8.
Because of its high price, it competed against midrange and compact models with interchangeable lenses. Its focal distances and its luminosity, modest for a model of its category, the precision of the automatic focus, improvable, the burst mode’s performance, limited to 6 photos at maximum speed, and the meager battery life, gained this model a lot of criticism from the users.
Two years later, it looks like Canon has taken note of all this criticism with the new Canon PowerShot G1X MarkII.
Canon PowerShot G1X Mark II, a camera for telling stories
The new GX1 Mark II has a new CMOS sensor of an inch and a half installed, much like its forerunner, but in this case, in a 3:2 and 4:3 multiformat with 12.8 and 13.1 effective mega pixels respectively.
The new model incorporates wider optics with a somewhat shorter angle, 24 mm and an optic zoom that reaches 120mm (5X). The strongpoint of this new optic is the luminosity it offers, with an enviable maximum opening of 2 and 3.9 at the edges.
The task is made easier by a maximum ISO of 12800, with a contained level of noise, an intelligent stabilizing system and the neutral density filter used by the G series. The combination is almost perfect.
The minimum focal distance should also be highlighted as it passes from 20 cm at an angle and 85 cm with the lens on the initial G1X model, to only 5cm and 40 cm in this new Mark II version.
Smaller but somewhat heavier and with new controls
On a design level, it presents some dimensions that are a bit more contained tan the first G1X, this comes mostly from having eliminated the optic viewfinder.
This will probably be one of the most criticized decisions, but in our opinion it is a good thing, since from the first models of the G series, the viewfinder didn’t quite finish finding its place.
However, in the absence of the integrated viewfinder, the possibility of getting an electronic one with an XGA resolution that can be mounted on the top of the body exists. It is an essential accessory that, having a real 100% coverage permits and facilitates improving the composition of the photograph.
On the top of the new G1X Mark II, the exposure compensation control dial has disappeared as well as the front dial, which have been replaced by a double control ring on the lens, both completely customizable. One of them is continuous and the other one works in steps. This enables the user to move over all the menus, shoot with preset focal distances or adjust the focus with precision.
Flipping screen and touch technology
If we focus on the back, the first thing that draws our attention is the screen. The new model, like its predecessor, incorporates a 3”movable monitor.
However in this case it is not completely articulated and it is limited to tilting 180° up and 45° down.
It consists on a touch panel that makes handling of the camera easier. Something curious is that the control dial and the macro, the flash configuration or the sensibility buttons haven’t disappeared, as it often occurs when a touch function is incorporated to the screen. This is a positive detail to appreciate.
Unlimited bursts at 5.2 pps with an UHS-1 card
Another feature to point out is the new burst mode. Now, the G1X Mark II is capable of reaching shooting rates of up to 5.2 photos per second with the only limitation being the card’s capacity.
It is advisable to use SD units compatible with the new UHS-1 technology. In direct burst mode, the number decreases to 3.1 shoots per second and to 3 if we force the focus in each exposure.
And because it couldn’t be any other way, the new G1X incorporates WiFi and NFC, so linking this camera with a Smartphone is really easy, and synching images and even shooting wirelessly from a distance from your phone, its kid’s play.