Canon G15 review

What does this upgrade of the popular G12 offer?

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  • Direct dials and buttons
  • Sleeker body than G12
  • Great f/1.8 lens


  • No touchscreen
  • No articulating screen
  • Poor viewfinder

After quite a significant waiting period, the Canon G12 has finally been upgraded in the shape of the 12.1 million pixel Canon PowerShot G15, unveiled at Photokina 2012.

At first glance, the Canon G15 looks pretty similar to the Powershot G12, but there are a few significant differences. The most notable of these is the stacked or overlapping dials on the top that enable both the mode dial and the exposure compensation dial to be squeezed on to the right side of the camera's top plate.

Although these could potentially be a turn-off for novices, they enable more experienced photographers to set the exposure mode and adjust the exposure quickly.

Canon PowerShot G15 review

The lens has also seen a bit of a refresh, being the first Canon compact camera to feature an f/1.8 optic. This maximum aperture reduces to f/2.8 at the telephoto end of the 5x (28-140mm equivalent) zoom lens.

This should make it possible to restrict depth of field more effectively, to separate the subject from the background.

The style of the Canon G series won't appeal to everyone. They've never been the prettiest, with a distinct utilitarian look. The Canon G15 doesn't do much to change this, with the same basic shape. Unfortunately, it doesn't have the same retro charm that Fuji has managed to give its cameras such as the Fuji FinePix X10 and the Fuji FinePix X100.

Canon PowerShot G15 review

Nevertheless, it's a sort of no-nonsense design that has found favour with many enthusiast and professional photographers, so it's easy to see why Canon has stuck with it.

Canon has taken the perhaps unusual decision to remove the articulating screen that was found on the Canon G12 and replace it with a fixed, 3-inch, 920,000 dot version. This does make it a little more pocket friendly than its predecessor, and it could be that Canon is hoping that more serious photographers will plump for its larger Canon G1 X camera.

The Canon G15 was launched at the same time as the Canon S110, which is a much smaller compact camera that also features GPS and Wi-Fi built into the body, along with a touchscreen and an f/2.0 lens. We can't help but wonder if Canon has spent more time on the PowerShot S110 and provided the PowerShot G series with only minor upgrades.

There have been a lot of premium compact cameras announced this year. The Canon G15 is priced at £549.99/AU$598/US$499 at launch, and it goes head to head with the Panasonic LX7, Sony RX100, Olympus XZ-2 and the Samsung EX2F.

Tech Specs

Product TypeCompact Camera
Battery Size SupportedProprietary Battery Size
Green CompliantYes
Maximum Video Resolution1920 x 1080
Effective Camera Resolution12.1 Megapixel
Wide AngleYes
Product FamilyPowerShot
HD Movie ModeYes
Memory Card SupportedSecure Digital (SD) Card, Secure Digital Extended Capacity (SDXC), Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC) Card, Eye-Fi Card
Image StabilizationOptical
Optical Zoom5x
Digital Zoom4x
Brand NameCanon
FeaturesContinuous Shooting Mode, Self-timer, Live View, Orientation Sensor, Face Detection, External Flash Shoe, Smile Detection, Wink Detection
Screen Size7.6 cm (3")
Video FormatsMOV, MPEG-4
Viewfinder TypeOptical
Weight (Approximate)352 g
Green Compliance Certificate/AuthorityWEEE, RoHS, REACH, ErP
Image Sensor Size1/1.7" (7.60 mm x 5.70 mm)
Maximum Image Resolution4000 x 3000
Display Screen TypeLCD
Height75.9 mm
Width106.6 mm
Depth40.1 mm
Focal Length6.10 mm to 30.50 mm
Image FormatsJPEG, RAW
External FlashOptional
Focus ModesAuto, Manual
ManufacturerCanon, Inc
Product ModelG15
Product NamePowerShot G15 Digital Compact Camera
Product LinePowerShot
Exposure Control
  • Program AE
  • Shutter Priority AE
  • Aperture Priority AE
  • Manual
Aspect Ratio16:9
Manufacturer Part Number6350B010AA
Manufacturer Website Address
Marketing Information

Equipped for serious photography, the compact PowerShot G15 boasts a bright f/1.8-2.8, 5x zoom lens, fast AF and a high-sensitivity Canon CMOS sensor for capturing superior photos and Full HD movies.

Package Contents
  • PowerShot G15 Digital Compact Camera
  • Battery Pack NB-10L (with Terminal Cover)
  • Battery Charger CB-2LC / CB-2LCE
  • Neck Strap NS-DC11
  • Software CD-ROM
  • Getting Started
  • Warranty Card
Limited Warranty1 Year