Canon PowerShot S120 hands-on, the best pocketable compact just got better

The Canon PowerShot S120 gives one of our favourite pocketable compact cameras - the PowerShot S110 - the update treatment. We tested out the latest snapper on the Canon stand at this year's IFA electronics show to see whether it delivered more of the good stuff.

There's something about the S120's size that's just right. Granted, it's externally no different from its predecessor but this is one of those cameras that just doesn't need to be. There is one subtle change to the lens: the 24-120mm range's maximum aperture is now f/1.8-5.7 (not f/2.0-5.9) which translates into an additional third stop of light. A modest benefit, but a benefit nonetheless.

READ: Canon PowerShot S110 review

Despite its small size, the S120 has a 1/1.7in sensor on board that's larger than most average compacts and the inclusion of the latest Digic 6 processor promises better image quality. Whether it is we can't yet tell - it's tough when a camera is tethered down to a pedestal on a show floor.

What we did feel was the improvement to autofocus speed. The S120 touts a 50 per cent speed improvement compared to its predecessor, and even while our brains weren't able to measure how accurate this figure is, it felt like a step up compared to before.

A decent touchscreen experience, function ring for customised settings adjustment, image stabilisation and a quality build wrap up the experience. It's much the same as before, only better. The PowerShot S120 looks to be a cracker of a camera. But an expensive one, given its £449 launch price.



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