Canon Powershot S60 Review

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Canon Powershot S60

Features & Controls

Canon Powershot S60

The new wide-angle 3.6x all-glass Canon 5.8-20.7mm zoom has a 28-100mm 35mm equivalent coverage with a maximum aperture of f/2.8-5.3. It features an Ultra high refractive index which makes it thin and compact. The sliding lens cover protects the lens when the camera is not in use.

Focus range is 44cm (1.4 ft.) to infinity in normal mode (W/T). Macro autofocus range is 4cm (1.6 in.) (wide-angle) / 30cm (1.0 ft.) (telephoto) to infinity.

Auto focus is accomplished via a 9-point Flexizone AF/AE system with user-selectable AF points visible on the LCD monitor. The S60 also features an AF assist illuminator for accurate focusing in dim to dark environments.

When powered down or in sleep mode the lens is retracted back into the camera body. The camera is powered on when you slide the front cover open.

Canon Powershot S60

The Manual focus option is enabled by pressing and holding the "MF" button while using the Up or Down on the 4-way switch. The manual focus range is 4cm (1.6 in.) to infinity. While manually focusing, the subject area covered by the active focusing point is digitally enlarged on the LCD to aid in critical focusing.

Canon Powershot S60

To save battery power or when outdoors in the bright light, switch off the LCD and frame your shots with the eye level optical viewfinder. There is no diopter adjustment. The LEDs on the side indicate recording, autofocus and flash status. The eye level finder shows approximately 87% of the captured image.

Canon Powershot S60

The builtin speedlight has 5 modes: Auto, Redeye reduction, Slow-sync (1st and 2nd curtain), Fill and Off. The flash coverage with ISO set to 100 is 55 cm to 4.2 m (1.8 ft. to 14 ft.) (W), 55 cm to 2.0 m (1.8 ft. to 6.6 ft.) (T).

Canon Powershot S60

On the top is the shutter release and the Mode Dial with positions for:

  • Custom - Save settings from any P, Tv, Av or M exposure mode for rapid recall. Also saves zoom position and focus distance if MF is used.

  • Manual - you set both the shutter speed and aperture. Exposure value is displayed when shutter is half-pressed.

  • Av (Aperture priority) - the camera automatically selects a shutter speed to match the aperture you set.

  • Tv (Shutter priority) - camera automatically selects an aperture setting to match the shutter speed you set. Available shutter speeds 1/1500 - 15 seconds. Noise reduction is enabled for shutter speeds of 1.3 seconds or longer.

  • Program AE - camera automatically set the shutter speed and aperture settings like AUTO but the user can change many options like white balance, exposure compensation, saturation, sharpness and more. You can "shift" the selected shutter/aperture combination, enter this mode by half-pressing shutter release and then press the AE lock button - now change by pressing the Right or Left button.

  • AUTO - camera sets almost everything automatically, this is "point and shoot" mode. You can set flash mode, macro focus and image size.

The pre-programmed "Image Zone" modes include:

  • Portrait - Sets a large aperture value to have a minimum depth of field so your subject is sharp but the background gets blurred.

  • Landscape - Sets the focus to infinity and uses a small aperture

  • Night Scene - Uses slow shutter speed (tripod recommended) to capture night backgrounds and synchronizes the flash to illuminate foreground subjects

  • Fast Shutter - When you need to capture fast moving subjects

  • Slow Shutter - when you need to blur motion such as river rapids (tripod recommended)

  • Stitch Assist - The user will be aided by the LCD when creating multi-image panorama pictures. Five types of assistance are available:
    1. Horizontal - left to right
    2. Horizontal - right to left
    3. Vertical - top to bottom
    4. Vertical - bottom to top
    5. Clockwise starting at top left.

  • Movie - capture full motion video and sound clips.

Canon Powershot S60

The zoom lens control is now mounted along the back edge, in playback the zoom control is used to enlarge the image and the wide control calls up the thumbnail display mode. Above the 4-way controller is the PLAY button and next to that is the Print/Share and Direct Transfer button. The 4-way controller lets you navigate menus and select images in playback. The SET button in the center accepts selections and lets you move the AF point in record mode. The DISPLAY button controls the color LCD and the amount of data that is overlayed on it. The Menu button calls up the onscreen menu system.

Canon Powershot S60

Above the LCD is the Flash mode button (thumbnail index button in Play mode) and the Macro focus button (the Jump button in Play mode). Down the left side of the LCD is the FUNCtion button which accesses the menus to change the camera's advanced settings. The "MF" button toggles the manual focus mode when held (in Play mode it's the single image Delete button.) The bottom button cycles through the AE metering modes (in Play mode it's the Sound Annotations button.)

Canon Powershot S60

The I/O ports are on the side:

The A/V OUT handles both the audio and video (NTSC or PAL, selectable).

The lower connector is the USB v1.1 data port.

Canon Powershot S60

Located in the battery compartment is a Compact Flash Type II card slot. The S60 is supplied with a 32MB CF card and can use any Type I or II solid state flash memory card or IBM/Hitachi Microdrive. FAT32 file systems are supported, there's no problem with cards and Microdrives larger than 2GB.

Approximate Still Image Capacity

Menu Selection File Size
32MB 64MB 128MB 256MB 512MB
Large/SuperFine 2,503 2,592 x 1,944 11 24 49 99 198
Large/Fine 1,395 2,592 x 1,944 21 43 88 177 354
Large/Normal 695 2,592 x 1,944 43 88 176 355 709
Medium 1/SuperFine 1,602 2,048 x 1,536 18 38 76 154 308
Medium 1/Fine 893 2,048 x 1,536 33 68 137 276 552
Medium 1/Normal 445 2,048 x 1,536 67 136 274 548 1,095
Medium 2/SuperFine 1,002 1,600 x 1,200 30 61 122 246 491
Medium 2/Fine 558 1,600 x 1,200 54 109 219 440 879
Medium 2/Normal 278 1,600 x 1,200 108 217 435 868 1,734
Small/SuperFine 249 640 x 480 120 241 482 962 1,891
Small/Fine 150 640 x 480 196 393 788 1,563 3,122
Small/Normal 84 640 x 480 337 676 1,355 2,720 5,203
RAW 4,725 - 5 12 25 51 102

Time of Recordable Movies

32MB 64MB 128MB 256MB 512MB
Movie/High 640 x 480 46 sec. 92 sec. 186 sec. 374 sec. 742 sec.
Movie/Medium 320 x 240 91 sec. 183 sec. 368 sec. 735 sec. 1,451 sec.
Movie/Low 160 x 120 242 sec. 486 sec. 973 sec. 1,954 sec. 3,902 sec.

Movies are limited to 3 minutes maximum per clip (30 seconds maximum for Movie/High). Above figures show total movie capacity on various CF cards, measured under Canon's standard test conditions, and may vary depending upon scene, subjects or camera settings.

Canon Powershot S60

The S60 is powered by a Canon NB-2LH 7.4V 720mAh lithium rechargeable battery pack. This is a higher capacity battery than the NB-2L used with the S50 (which may also be used with the S60.) A fully charged battery is good for approximately 240 images when using the LCD or up to 550 images when you use only the optical viewfinder. Or a playback time of approximately 210 minutes.

The NB-2LH pack is charged out of the camera in the included CB-2LT Compact Charger (100-240VAC). Charging time is approx 80 minutes or less. It plugs straight into an AC outlet, no cords required.

Canon Powershot S60

The optional WP-DC40 waterproof case allows the S60 to go to almost any sporting activity, from boating to snow skiing to scuba diving (130 feet max depth.)

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