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Bridge cameras make for excellent travelling companions, offering the flexibility of a zoom range far larger than any D-SLR's lens but in a relatively small body.
This segment of the market seems to be defying the general downturn in compact camera sales, probably because of the extended flexibility that they offer, especially when compared to a smartphone.
While in terms of physical size, the SX60 isn't far off that of an entry-level DSLR, it features a much smaller sensor. It houses a 16.1 million-pixel 1/2.3 inch CMOS sensor (the same physical size as most compact cameras on the market). It does at least bring a jump in four million pixels from its predecessor the SX50HS.
At the moment, the SX60 represents the market leading position in terms of the zoom range, offering a huge 65x optical zoom. It provides a 21mm equivalent focal length at the wide angle end of the range and 1365mm equivalent at the telephoto end. At its widest point, the maximum aperture available is f/3.4, falling to f/6.5 at the zoom end.
Canon also has ZoomPlus technology, a type of digital zoom that boosts that range to 130x, or an incredible equivalent of 2730mm. ZoomPlus retains the resolution of an image shot using the optical zoom by interpolating pixels. A standard digital zoom is available to push that even further to 5460mm, but there will be a loss in image quality.
Full manual control is available, and like the SX50 before it, so is the ability to shoot in raw format - a clear indication that the company expects the SX60 to be used by advanced enthusiasts. There's also a range of automatic modes, semi-automatic and scene modes.
For those who like to get creative, there are a couple of options with the SX60. First of all there's the Creative Shot mode – this will take one shot, plus 5 more with different random effects and crops applied. There's a variety of different subsets you can choose from, but you don't get absolute control over the digital filters which are applied. Secondly, there is a dedicated filters mode which allows you to choose a specific filter.
It's starting to become more common now, but the SX60 is equipped with inbuilt Wi-Fi and NFC. This allows you to use your smartphone or tablet to remotely control the camera, as well as giving you the option of transferring images taken on it quickly to your device for sharing online, via email and so on.
On the back of the camera is fully-articulated, 922,000-dot, 3-inch screen. It's not touch-sensitive though. It is joined by a 922,000-dot, 0.17-inch electronic viewfinder on the top of the camera.
The SX60 is a replacement for the SX50 which has been on the market for some time now. The SX50 boasted a 50x optical zoom, but it also had the ZoomPlus technology to boost that up to 100x. It also didn't have inbuilt Wi-Fi and NFC, so there's been quite a few improvements made to the camera.
In terms of competition, the SX60 goes up against the previous market leaders (in terms of zoom range at least), the Sony H400 and the Panasonic FZ72, which offer a 63x and 60x optical zoom, respectively.