Canon PowerShot S5 IS
Manufacturer: Canon Part number: 2077B001
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as of 08/30/2014
CNET editors' review
price range: $799.99
- Reviewed by: Lori Grunin
- Reviewed on: 06/10/2007
- Released on: 06/15/2007
The good: Tons of manual and automatic features; well-laid-out controls; solid body; nice LCD display.
The bad: Lens aberrations and vignetting; some processing artifacts; lacks raw file support; redesigned lens cap still pops off too easily.
The bottom line: Though it remains a good megazoom, thanks to continued image and lens artifacts, the Canon PowerShot S5 IS is slowly losing ground to competitors.
Best Super Zoom Available
by desertratchel on August 9, 2007
Pros: Performance. Plentiful and intuitive controls. Image quality
Cons: Battery door design takes some getting used to. Needs separate SD compartment
Summary: I'm appalled at the bashing this camera is taking across the net by expert reviewers and consumers alike. If I were a paranoid, I'd suspect that a conspiracy ...
Summary: I'm appalled at the bashing this camera is taking across the net by expert reviewers and consumers alike. If I were a paranoid, I'd suspect that a conspiracy exists to drive down the price of this splendid piece of photographic wizardry.
Yes, there are minor issues inherent with sensor size and zoom lens range. If you're planning to make poster sized prints, by all means get a different camera. But if you are planning most of the time to make average sized prints (8 X 10, for instance) and do the majority of your image viewing on your computer, this one is perfect.
At the moment, there isn't a camera of this class that offers better range of controls, imaging or performance. I've shot with the camera in all of its modes, and I'm very, very pleased with the quality of the images. Performance is top-notch across the board. Controls are broad and very intuitive. You can pluck your new camera out of the box and begin snapping very good pictures and movies without a glance at the instruction manual--although you'll want to to make fullest advantage of the amazing things this tool has to offer.
I'm an advanced amateur photographer, and I'm a perfectionist. If I can be more than satisfied with the S5 IS--and I am!--it's beyond my comprehension that anyone else could be disappointed with their purchase. For me it impressively bridges the gap between my EOS 30D and the tiny compact point-and-shoot in my bag.
If you want flawless, noise-free images, you shouldn't even be considering a camera in this class. You will be satisfied with nothing less than a digital SLR. But if you're looking for point-and-shoot ease with plentiful controls and ample zoom range with image stabilization, look no further. The Powershot S5 IS is THE camera.
26 out of 28 users found this user opinion helpful.
Puts the S series where is should be.
by winexz on June 26, 2007
Pros: Hot shoe, bigger LCD, better menu set up. Buttons are easier to reach.
Cons: Battery door is hard to close. Buttons are soft.
Summary: The longer I use it the happier I get. Unlike the S3 this is a real update of the S series camera. So many little changes were made that you ...
Summary: The longer I use it the happier I get. Unlike the S3 this is a real update of the S series camera. So many little changes were made that you are relearning things but overall made it a better camera.
First thoughts after buying;
1) The new lens cap is even worse. It seems like it pops off a lot easier then the S3.
2) While the batteries are now easy to get in and out it is now harder to close the battery door.
3) It is now heavy on the battery side. There must be more plastic this time, making it noticeably heavy when you hold it for the first time.
4) The increased body size is enough that you will have to hold the S5 with your right hand differently form the S2 or S3.
5) The button layout is easier to reach but are soft to push. There is not sensitive so you have to push hard to get a result.
6) The menus have changed some, the ISO now comes up as a pop up menu you can go back and forth with so you do not have to cycle through the whole list to get the setting you want. Overall it is streamlined.
The camera has had a overhaul. It is much more fitting the category of a prosumer camera then the versions that came before with the hot shoe and 2.5 LCD a long awaited addition. It still holds true to being a point and shoot by being simple to use and figure out. Two of its best selling points, AA batteries and a flip LCD are still there. More few more options have been added without taking away any of the previous ones.
For S2 and S3 users who own the lens and batteries already and still want more out of their camera this is a great buy. The upgrade from the S3 is noticeable and more then the casual user will most likely make it worth the money.
For a new user to the S series the 500 dollar starting price it is probably not be the best buy for you that amount of money. Once it drops in price then it would be in the right price range. Particularity for those who want the ability to choose their own settings and do not want the hassle of owning a SLR and multiple lenses.
With the Panasonic FZ50 and Sony H9, Canon really should have done more to make the S5 standout from the competition and worth its high price tag. The S5 is now where the S series should be, features, settings and a hot shoe.
9 out of 12 users found this user opinion helpful.
S5 IS is Merely a Beefed Up S3 IS (Nothing More)
by cdr_computers on July 22, 2007
Pros: Well Constructed, Well Planned Controls Design, True Stereo Recording
Cons: Image Aberrations, Vignetting, Barrel & Pincushion Distortion, Etc.
Summary: Originally owned the S2 IS (5 MP) which was excellent. Along came the S3 IS (6 MP) which was great, but I noticed that problems began to arise with the ...
Summary: Originally owned the S2 IS (5 MP) which was excellent. Along came the S3 IS (6 MP) which was great, but I noticed that problems began to arise with the S3 IS at the long end of the lens. Although this was an issue, I managed to work through the gripes. Now, here we sit chatting about the S5 IS (8 MP) version of the same camera with a bit more beef (not choice grade either). The bottom line here folks is that you had better not expect a grand leap if you already own the S3 IS. Rather, be prepared to be very dismayed with the results. The S3 IS produces much sharper and color-accurate images than the S5 IS. Additionally, the S5 IS has a problem with lens creep (for those of you who have not used it extensively and found this out as of yet). In reference to the batteries being placed with the SD slot, I feel that it is not even a relevant issue given that it’s so trivial compared to the poor image quality. I did not return the S5 IS, but I did give it to my nephew given that I knew I would take a 25% restocking fee hit which wasn’t acceptable. He’ll have plenty of fun with the camera and enjoy it for what it’s worth (not much of anything IMHO). The bottom line, if you’re going to spend this much money on the S5 IS, then you’re making a mistake. Buy the Nikon D40X or the Sony Alpha (or other comparable DSLR) which would be money well spent on quality. In conclusion, on a scale of 1 to 10, I would rate this unit as a 5 to be fair given the problems with the images. As a side note, I would like to add that I am a professional photographer who likes to carry around spur-of-the-moment cameras that take good pictures, and I argue that the S5 IS is one that should be avoided. Thanks for listening.
10 out of 15 users found this user opinion helpful.
Absolutely LOVE this camera!
by TisShannon on July 22, 2007
Pros: Ease of use!
Cons: Looked intimidating to 68 year old Mother!
Summary: I got one of these camera's for myself and my mother. I had an old digital camera, and it was time to update. We went up to the mountains ...
Summary: I got one of these camera's for myself and my mother. I had an old digital camera, and it was time to update. We went up to the mountains and pulled over on the side of the road. There was no way to get out, and take a picture of some RAMS and Elk on the side of the road. NO WORRIES!!! Opened my sun roof, and tilted the screen, holding the camera high up I could see what I was pointing at, and took some framable pictures of the wild life!! I can't be more thrilled with the picture quality, ease of use. Mom was scared to touch it at first. Now she is taking tons of photos!! My brother can't afford to get his kids photos professionally done. However, Grandma's photo's look like they were done in a studio!! I love this camera! I have used the S3 as well.. The best change frankly is being able to move that screen!! So this camera is definately a perfect fit for us!Updated
I liked the flip and twist screen, but it needed to be larger.. Reguardless, I do love the camera. I am sure if I had the S3, i'd love it too. .Then again, any Canon Camera I've ever bought, I've been happy with.
7 out of 8 users found this user opinion helpful.
Great Camera for General Shooting
by lmossa on October 7, 2007
Pros: image quality, ease of use/ergonomics, rotating screen
Cons: screen size, 12X zoom vs. Sony's 15X
Summary: I took quite a while evaluating this camera vis-à-vis the Sony DSC-H9 and went so far as to take memory sticks to the store to get sample images printed. ...
Summary: I took quite a while evaluating this camera vis-à-vis the Sony DSC-H9 and went so far as to take memory sticks to the store to get sample images printed. I also ended up buying the H9, but after working with it for a few days, decided it was not laid out very well (awkward to maneuver controls, etc.). The Sony had the benefit of the higher zoom and larger screen, but when it came all the way down to it, I returned the Sony (thanks, Best Buy, for a relatively smooth process except for the 15% restock fee!!) and bought the Canon. Truthfully, the 15%was a sizeable hit, but if I was going to have a camera, it was worth the price of research to get the right one.
Now, on to my experiences with the Canon. I already had a slim point-and-shoot with the Sony DSC-T70, which is great for up-close stuff, but especially as it aged, the zoom and flash compensation for zoom has degraded a bit. I bought the Canon for an upcoming trip to visit family in Belgium and Paris. Anyone who has been in Europe knows that some of the most beautiful photographs are at the top of the buildings (architecture, detail, etc.), so getting a camera better suited to zoom was a necessity. However, although I have been taking pictures for over 30 years (and I'm not too bad at it!), I'm not a professional photographer and want to get the best quality from the subject I am photographing without needing to stage and/or set-up special lighting, etc. The Canon seemed to meet the need.
Once we were on our way, I was not disappointed! The image quality, both on the camera's screen and the resulting printed photographs, would challenge a higher-end camera costing 10 times this one. During the course of 10 days, I took over 700 pictures, and not one of them was a disappointment. Of course, having enhancement software to bring out the things lurking in the shadows helped a lot, too, but if the camera had not been able to capture the detail, no amount of light and balance adjustment would have made a difference.
Since getting home, the camera has continued to capture amazing images of family (kids, grandma, etc.) and experiences (my son's friends' amazing TP-ing job on the house!).
Some day, I may break down and get the Rebel EOS, but maybe not because the I5IS is meeting all my needs.
6 out of 6 users found this user opinion helpful.
Suggest this additional review besides CNET
by perkman123 on October 13, 2007
Pros: Great all around camera for the price
Cons: Battery compartment difficult to use
Summary: I found this very helpful to have read (besides the CNET review) before my purchase of this camera:
Summary: I found this very helpful to have read (besides the CNET review) before my purchase of this camera:
4 out of 4 users found this user opinion helpful.
Long 12X zoom at a compact size but noisy at low light conditions
by morph11 on September 20, 2007
Pros: 12X zoom in a compact size , versatile
Cons: noisy pictures above ISO 100, low-res viewfinder
Summary: The good thing about this camera is its 12X zoom at a relatively compact size. I also enjoy its super-macro capability and the camera's overall versatility. I can take ...
Summary: The good thing about this camera is its 12X zoom at a relatively compact size. I also enjoy its super-macro capability and the camera's overall versatility. I can take clear pictures in broad daylight which are visibly better than those from my compact Sony 7.1 MP camera. However, at lower light conditions (e.g. late afternoon, indoors etc.) which requires higher than 100 ISOs, the pictures are quite noisy. In fact I would recommend using ISO-100 and brighten up the picture with some software tool. The built in flash can also help but at close range and indoors. Me overall experience is mixed: I like it but I am not enthousiastic about it. The noise problem under low light is really the biggest issue (lens cap coming off, lack of raw format etc. are just minor details in my opinion). Another thing that I do not like is the low resolution "electronic" viewfinder. Why not have just an optical one?
4 out of 4 users found this user opinion helpful.
So far, so good. I just got it, fresh out the box & all is well.
by RicoBolt on July 28, 2007
Pros: Good feel, good look, good pictures.
Cons: Noise, noise, noise.
Summary: First of all, I never had an S3, so for all those folks complaining that there was no improvement, sorry. This is the first go round for me and so ...
Summary: First of all, I never had an S3, so for all those folks complaining that there was no improvement, sorry. This is the first go round for me and so far I am completely enthralled. I waited because I didn't want a 6 mpxl camera and I got real excited when canon came out with a super zoom 8 mgpxl pnt & shoot. The IS really is not that great tho, cause I was thinking I could ride over a bumpy road, shoot, and all would come out OK. Gee. What a surprise. Also, the 'shooting' in the middle of movie making is still a mystery as I cannot find where these 'stills' are stored. But the camera is really nice, the pictures are superb and we're both doin just fine. I'm really liking it. But I've only had it 2 wks. I'll write again later, after we've spent more time together.
4 out of 5 users found this user opinion helpful.
Canon Baby Steps....Sony H9 better buy.
by dentalrep on June 12, 2007
Pros: Larger LCD, control layout, solid build quality
Cons: minimal improvement over last years model
Summary: Once again Canon rests on its laurels. Rather than come out with a camera that could blow away their competition (Which they could do easily)they make modest changes that ...
Summary: Once again Canon rests on its laurels. Rather than come out with a camera that could blow away their competition (Which they could do easily)they make modest changes that keep them with the rest of the pack. They do not give enough features or improvements to justify an upgrade. Maybe they do not want to cut into their SLR product line?Updated
After looking at the differences in price with the S3 and the S5, you basically have to pay $200 for a little larger screen and a hotshoe. There is no advantage on image quality between these two cameras. Go with the S3 if those two features are not worth $200 to you.Updated
Once again I tried to make a product better than what it is and decided to stay with the H9 from Sony. They were very comparable cameras but I liked the Sony screen better. The S5 is a great camera if you do not have a S3 already or don't mind the extra $ for a couple of extra features. I am just going to cross my fingers and hope the S7 in 2008 is the end all of all zoom cameras.
7 out of 13 users found this user opinion helpful.
good 4 advanced photographers-little tough 4 beginners.
by aprilrain08 on February 26, 2009
Pros: Lots of scene options- great sport mode- easy to learn-great swivel viewfinder
Cons: Lens cap never stays on - lots of noise-hard to use custom and manual modes-zoom is in a bad place(you have to use your picture taking finger to also zoom which is hard during sport events.)
Summary: It's a great camera for someone who doesnt want to learn an SLR but wants more features and control.Overall it does take good pictures as long as you ...
Summary: It's a great camera for someone who doesnt want to learn an SLR but wants more features and control.Overall it does take good pictures as long as you dont zoom all they way out and then blow up the picture bigger than 8x10.
2 out of 2 users found this user opinion helpful.
- Manufacturer: Canon
- Part number: 2077B001
- Description: The ultra-powerful 12x optical zoom on the PowerShot S5 IS means you'll get the shot you want with no compromise, yet that's only the beginning of what makes this camera so exciting. The S5 IS is loaded with many of Canon's technologies including the DIGIC III Image Processor, so both still images and movies are rendered with fine detail and luminous clarity. And now ambitious photographers have even greater creative latitude thanks to an included hot shoe adapter that allows you to attach Canon Speedlite EX Series external flashes. PowerShot S5 IS is compact and portable, with streamlined controls and a sure, steady grip. And you'll want to take it everywhere, because inside is a level of photographic power that's truly impressive. 8.0 megapixels ensure deeply detailed images - giving you complete freedom to enlarge an image or any section of an image and crop to your exact specifications. The 12x optical zoom brings this compact digital camera into the realm of serious photography. It has the power to take you right up onto the stage and into the end zone for the shot you really want. Zooming is fast and silent thanks to the ultrasonic motor drive.
- Packaged Quantity 1
- Product Type Digital camera - Compact
- Resolution 8 megapixels
- Optical Sensor Type CCD
- Total Pixels 8,300,000 pixels
- Effective Sensor Resolution 8,000,000 pixels
- Optical Sensor Size 1/2.5"
- Optical Zoom 12 x
- Digital Zoom 4 x
- Image Processor DIGIC III
- Image Stabilizer Optical
- Auto Focus TTL contrast detection
- Digital Video Format AVI
- Image Recording Format JPEG
- AV Interfaces Composite video/audio
Exposure & White Balance
- Light Sensitivity ISO 1600,
- Exposure Metering Spot AF area,
- Exposure Modes Program,
- Shooting Programs Snow,
- Special Effects My Colors,
- White Balance Automatic,
- White Balance Presets Daylight,
Fluorescent light (daylight),
- Max Shutter Speed 1/3200 sec
- Min Shutter Speed 15 sec
- Exposure Compensation ±2 EV range, in 1/3 EV steps
- Auto Exposure Bracketing 3 steps in 1/3 EV step
- Type Canon,
12 x x Zoom lens - 6 mm - 72 mm - F/2.7-3.5
- Focal Length Equivalent to 35mm Camera 36 - 432 mm
- Focus Adjustment Manual,
- Min Focus Range 19.7 in
- Macro Focus Range 0 in - 19.7 in
- Zoom Adjustment Motorized drive
- Lens Construction 9 groups / 11 elements
- Features Aspherical lens,
Ultrasonic Motor (USM),
- Camera Flash Pop-up flash
- Flash Modes Rear curtain sync,
Flash OFF mode,
- Features Flash +/- compensation,
- Effective Flash Range 1.6 ft - 17 ft
- Continuous Shooting Speed 0.9 frames per second,
1.5 frames per second
- Self Timer Delay 2 sec,
- Flash Terminal Hot shoe
- Additional Features Digital image rotation,
Display brightness control,
In-camera red-eye fix,
16:9 widescreen mode,
Auto ISO shift,
RGB primary color filter,
Auto power save,
Digital noise reduction,
Camera orientation detection,
Takes photos while movie recording,
USB 2.0 compatibility,
- Viewfinder Type LCD
- Viewfinder Color Support Color
- Viewfinder Diagonal Size 0.33 in
- Viewfinder Resolution 115,000 pixels
- Field Coverage 100%
- Dioptric Correction Range -5.5 to +1.5
- Type 2.5 in LCD display
- Display Features Rotating
- Microphone Operation Mode Stereo
- Connector Type 1 x USB,
1 x Composite video/audio output,
1 x DC power input
- Software Canon ZoomBrowser EX,
Drivers & Utilities,
System Requirements for PC Connection
- Operating System Support MS Windows 98 SE,
MS Windows XP,
MS Windows 2000,
MS Windows ME,
Apple Mac OS X 10.1.5 - 10.3
- Peripheral Devices USB port,
- Microsoft Certifications Certified for Windows Vista
- Included Accessories USB cable,
Audio / video cable
- Supported Battery AA
- Supported Battery 4 x AA Alkaline battery ( Included )
Memory / Storage
- Memory Card Slot SD card
- Supported Memory Cards SDHC Memory Card,
SD Memory Card
- Included Memory Card 32 MB SD Memory Card
- Image Storage Super-fine JPEG 3264 x 1832 : 11 VA - With 32MB card,
Fine JPEG 3264 x 1832 : 18 VA - With 32MB card,
Normal JPEG 3264 x 1832 : 39 VA - With 32MB card,
Super-fine JPEG 3264 x 2448 : 8 VA - With 32MB card,
Fine JPEG 3264 x 2448 : 14 VA - With 32MB card,
Normal JPEG 3264 x 2448 : 29 VA - With 32MB card,
Super-fine JPEG 2592 x 1944 : 11 VA - With 32MB card,
Fine JPEG 2592 x 1944 : 20 VA - With 32MB card,
Normal JPEG 2592 x 1944 : 41 VA - With 32MB card,
Super-fine JPEG 2048 x 1536 : 18 VA - With 32MB card,
Fine JPEG 2048 x 1536 : 32 VA - With 32MB card,
Normal JPEG 2048 x 1536 : 64 VA - With 32MB card,
Super-fine JPEG 1600 x 1200 : 29 VA - With 32MB card,
Fine JPEG 1600 x 1200 : 52 VA - With 32MB card,
Normal JPEG 1600 x 1200 : 99 VA - With 32MB card,
Super-fine JPEG 640 x 480 : 111 VA - With 32MB card,
Fine JPEG 640 x 480 : 171 VA - With 32MB card,
Normal JPEG 640 x 480 : 270 VA - With 32MB card
- Video Capture AVI - 640 x 480 - 13 sec - With 32MB card,
AVI - 320 x 240 - 19 sec - With 32MB card,
AVI - 320 x 240 - 34 sec - With 32MB card
Dimensions & Weight
- Width 4.6 in
- Depth 3.1 in
- Height 3.1 in
- Weight 15.9 oz
- Min Operating Temperature 32 °F
- Max Operating Temperature 104 °F
- Image stabilizer feature Optical stabilization helps prevent blurry pictures, especially for handheld cameras at slow shutter speeds or when using high optical zoom.
CNET Labs' Benchmarks
- Labs information All values are expressed in seconds. Please visit our <ref type="link" url="http://reviews.cnet.com/Labs/4520-6603 7-1014358-1.html">labs information page</ref> for information on how digital cameras are tested.
- CNET Labs Flash shot to shot time 2.1
- CNET Labs Shot to shot time typical 1.6
- CNET Labs Shutter lag bright 0.5
- CNET Labs Shutter lag dim 0.8
- CNET Labs Typical burst speed 1.6
- CNET Labs Wake up time 1.3