Canon PowerShot S95
The ultra-compact Canon PowerShot S95 produces stunning photos and beautiful video. It also gives the user a great amount of control with a manual feature set. For those who are used to carrying around a dSLR, this ultra-compact is a great alternative. It also features 720p video capture upgrade and much improved image stabilization. It does have a few issues that serious photographers will find annoying, including lack of speed and short battery life.
The Canon PowerShot S95 is very attractive model that is capable of producing very clear photos. It was designed with the user in mind. It has a complete set of manual controls to allow the user adjust the settings to their liking. It also has 720p video which captures images beautifully.
The S95 is a bit slow in comparison with other models. It also does not give the option for low-compression JPEGs to occupy less storage. The battery life is also fairly short, so if you are looking to take this camera with on a trip, you should invest in an additional battery.
The image quality is top-of-the-line, with most photos being of approximately 12:1 compression. It produces clean JPEGs although you would probably be able to get more if you were shooting raw. There is a visible difference between raw and JPEG shots. Metering and exposure are consistent, but the color saturation tended to be inaccurate. The microphone provided very full sound, especially for an ultra-compact camera. It is designed and built well, and is among the smallest and lightest camera in its class. It may feel too small for photographers used to something heavier and bigger, so testing it out is key.
The battery life is quite short, making this camera a less-than-ideal option for sight seeing or extended periods of picture taking. If you purchase this model, it is strongly suggested that you invest in an additional battery. This way you won’t miss out on a great photo due to a dead battery.
The Canon PowerShot S95 is somewhat slower than its previous model, but not by much. It takes 2 seconds to power up and shoot which is about 0.2 seconds longer than earlier S90s. The S95 operates at a comfortable pace which allows you to set up your pictures nicely. This top-of-the-line camera also features a dial for manual and scene modes. You can easily save your favorite settings for quick-mode dial access. There is also a front ring that can be set up to control the light sensitivity (equivalent of film speed), exposure compensation, white balance, aspect ratio, and more. The back controls are more or less the same as the S90 model, but with a greatly improved dial for adjusting contextual settings.
The Canon PowerShot S95 is overall the best alternative that an advanced shooter will find in the current ultra-compact lineup. It doesn’t have a ton of “cool” features, but it does give a solid performance. If you are looking to photograph anything that moves quickly, like kids and wildlife, you will have to switch to a different camera. If you are more into taking pictures of stationary subjects, this tiny camera is a portable powerhouse that travels well and fits conveniently in your pocket.