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Canon Powershot S95 Review

Canon Powershot S95 ReviewRecently I spent some time in Florida with my family from Ireland and I had the pleasure of using my Dad’s Canon Powershot S95 compact camera.  Although this is now an “older” Point and shoot camera I was so impressed with it I thought I’d do a little review on it.  afterall, is it really necessary to buy the absolute latest model of camera since the manufacturers change them every six months or so.  Watch the video below and let me know your thoughts on this.


Video Transcript:

Hey there! This week I’m in sunny…or maybe not so sunny Florida, and I thought I’d take the chance to give you a little hands  on review of a camera that my Dad actually brought with him. It’s called the Canon S95, it is a Powershot point and shoot camera.

This camera has been around for a couple of years, so it has actually now been replaced by the S110 but I just thought I would give you a quick overview on this camera because I’m really excited to use it. It’s really nice and then we can do a comparison with the new camera and see what the differences are.

So, the Powershot S95 is a very high spec compact camera. As you can see it’s really small – it fits pretty much on the palm of my hand. I’s a really good little camera for anybody who likes to take photos that are just a little bit more than what they can get with their phone. It is also  really good for people who are used to using a digital SLR – if you like to use the manual exposure mode such as Aperture Priority, Shutter Priority and even Manual Exposure or even if you are just trying to experiment with your photography a little bit and you want to move a little bit outside of just point and shoot, this would be a great camera for you.

The first thing that you notice on your camera is that it has a really big 3 inch LCD screen. This means that there is no viewfinder on the camera which can be a little bit off putting to some people. But because it so big and it so clear I find that it isn’t a problem to use. You have the mode dial up here just like the digital SLR and you have all the same sort of modes – the P, TV, AV and M and then of course you have a whole bunch of custom  modes that you can set for specific types of photography and you can have good fun playing around with those.

Powershot S95The lens is a really  bright 2.0 lens. IThat means you can shoot in really low light and you don’t need to use your flash because the aperture can really open up wide  and can let in a lot of light at f/2.0 The lens has also a wide angle lens which is great for taking landscapes or group shots and means that you don’t have to zoom way  back or move way back. You can just use the wide angle lens

It also has a x3.8 optical zoom lens which is a little on the small side and I think that this is something that they really improved in the newer version of this camera – I think they have got up to 5X optical zoom now which is better. But considering that it has such a compact little body, it is pretty impressive to have the wide angle plus a bit of a zoom there too.

So the one thing that I really love about this little S95 camera is that it really feels nice to use it in your hand. It has a little nice coating at the back that gives a little bit of a grip and it has this little ring that can be fully customized to whatever you want it to be. For example now I have to set to control the ISO because I have been shooting a lot in low light here and we have been using this camera with no flash, so I wanted to push the ISO up and play around with it rather than have to go in and play around the menu. You could also set this dial to control exposure compensation,the one that we talked about in my last video. You can have it set to focus, white balance and if you like that feeling of zooming your digital SLR, this is quite similar to that by using this custom ring function here right at the top. S95 also has a really good movie mode, and it will capture 720p movie in high definition and it is really more than you need if you are just going to watch it on your computer or making your little imovies so it is really – a nice feature to have in a camera. It’s all in one so you don’t have to worry about taking another device with you.

One of the awesome features with this camera if you are used to using a digital SLR is this camera can actually shoot in raw and not just in Jpeg which means that you have full control over all of your exposure settings and your white balance. And if your are used to using your digital SLR shooting in raw then this is a nice compliment to that.

I didn’t want to take by big camera down to the beach with me because you know sand gets everywhere so we just pop this little camera into a ziplock bag and you can take it out and play with it on the beach – and I still have the full editing capability use with this little compact camera.

The main difference between this particular camera and newer models seems to be that they have increased the zoom to 5x optical zoom which is nice and they have changed this LCD screen at the back to a touch screen. Now, I have to be honest I’m not a huge fan of the touchscreen LCD screen because you tend to get finger prints all over it. But you know now with iphones and ipads we are kind of already used to using a touch screen. So it is just a matter of wiping off.  They have also included a wireless technology so you can transfer your photos directly from your camera to your printer-if you have a wireless printer.

It also has the new Canon HDS technology which means that is very good for shooting in low light which I already found that this is great for shooting in low light. So, I can only imagine the S110 is even better for that. So all in all I would have to say is that I really love this camera and I’m kind of envious that my dad has it. I might consider getting one the S110’s for just everyday shooting and when I don’t like to carry the DSLR around with me all the time, this would be something that I think would really compliment my kit, and you know there are always times when you just don’t want to bring your DSLR. I will also recommend this for somebody who is interested in getting into photography but just don’t want the full expense of a digital SLR. These cameras are the high end of the compact camera range and think it is around $379 which definitely isn’t cheap but it something that it would be worthwhile as an investment – just to see if you get a feel for manual photography and to be able to control your exposure and play around with some of the settings.

If you have the Canon Powershot S95 or any of the later versions, I would love to hearwhat you have to say about it in the comments below!


Canon Powershot S90 Review

One of the coolest things about my job teaching people how to use their cameras, is  that I get to play around with all the latest camera gadgets and gear.   This week I had the pleasure of meeting a new student and she wanted to learn how to use her Canon Powershot S90.  I was so impressed with the camera that I wanted to share my thoughts on it with you guys.

Canon Powershot S90

Canon Powershot S90

Firstly, if you are looking for a camera that’s advanced enough to allow you to shoot in RAW, control your Shutter Speed, Aperture, ISO, shoot in low light conditions but without the bulk of of a DSLR then the Canon Powershot S90 is the camera for you.

It has a super bright f2.0 lens and a high ISO rating of 3200 which essentially means you can shoot in really low light conditions without having to turn on that nasty flash or worry about motion blur and camera shake.  With such a wide aperture lens you’ll also benefit from a nice shallow depth of field (otherwise known as a blurry background!) in your pictures which is great for stunning portrait shots.

The Canon Powershot s90 is so small and compact it will easily fit into a purse, diaper bag or pocket.   I think that this is a great camera for women as it really does just fit nicely in my hand.  I found it really easy to access all the functions but I could see this as being a problem with bigger man hands though, as the controls are set quite closely together.

It also features a brand new design feature namely the Control Ring on the front of the camera that can be set to control ISO, Focus, exposure or White Balance.  This is something unique to this camera and kinda gives it an old school feel for me.  I like it!

Canon Powershot S90

Canon Powershot S90

One more thing that you can do with the Canon Powershot s90 and that is go diving with it. That’s right  –   the addition of an special underwater casing turns the Powershot S90 into one of the best waterproof digital cameras around allowing you to shoot fantastic shots as you scuba, snorkel or just when your messing about in boats. Because of that bright f2.0 lens it’s a fantastic underwater camera.  That’s one of the main reasons why my student bought it and I can’t wait to see her pictures from her diving trip.

S90 Underwater Casing

S90 Underwater Casing

Overall I was really impressed by the level of features and flexibility packed into the Powershot s90’s compact body.  I would definitely say that this camera is an excellent choice if you want to begin to move out of Auto Mode, without having to make the jump up to a DSLR.  Or if you already have a DSLR and you’re looking for a handy point and shoot camera, you’ll find that the Canon Powershot S90 will not disappoint on features or picture quality.  It’s no wonder that this is the compact camera of choice for many professionals out there.

If you’re on the look out for a new camera you can check out the Canon Powershot S90 here from my friends over at B and H Photo and get free shipping if you are here in the US.  I’m thinking this will be my next buy…

Happy snapping


P.S. If you already own the Powershot S90 or end up buying it, please comment below and let me know what you think of it.