Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark II Compact Camera

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77% Silver Award
The G1 X II produces image quality that bests nearly all compact cameras, and also offers a plethora of customizable controls, three dial operation, a tilting LCD and optical EVF, and a comprehensive Wi-Fi feature.”

Read more of the review

Key Features

  • 13.1 megapixel at 4:3 / 12.8 megapixel at 3:2 aspect ratio 1.5"-type CMOS sensor
  • 24-120mm equivalent F2-3.9 lens with optical image stabilizer (5x optical zoom)
  • ISO 100-12800
  • Dual control rings
  • 3" tilting touch LCD with 1,040,000 dots
  • 1080/30p HD video
  • Optional electronic viewfinder with 2,360,000 dots (sold separately)
  • Raw and Raw+JPEG shooting
  • SD/SDHC/SDXC memory
  • Built-in Wi-Fi, NFC, and GPS

Product Description

Boasting a sensor that is 4.5x larger than a 1/1.7" sensor found in professional level point-and-shoot cameras, the PowerShot G1 X Mark II camera can produce high-quality images with a wide dynamic range. The G1 X II improves upon its predecessor in many ways. It's smaller, features a faster 24-120mm F2.0-3.9 lens (with closer focusing distances), a 31-point AF system, dual lens rings, a touchscreen LCD that can tilt upward by 180°, and Wi-Fi with NFC. While its 1.5"-type is a bit smaller than on the original, the G1 X II can shoot at 3:2 or 4:3 with the same field-of-view. The catch? No more optical viewfinder (though an EVF is optional).

Specs

Body type
Body type Large sensor compact
Sensor
Max resolution 4160 x 3120
Other resolutions 4352 x 2904, 4352 x 2448, 3120 x 3120, 2496 x 3120, 3072 x 2304, 3072 x 2048, 3072 x 1728, 2304 x 2304, 1840 x 2304, 2048 x 1536, 2048 x 1368, 1920 x 1080, 1536 x 1536, 1232 x 1536
Image ratio w:h 1:1, 5:4, 4:3, 3:2, 16:9
Effective pixels 13 megapixels
Sensor photo detectors 15 megapixels
Sensor size 1.5″ (18.7 x 14 mm)
Sensor type CMOS
Processor Digic 6
Image
ISO Auto, 100-12800
White balance presets 8
Custom white balance Yes (2 Custom settings)
Image stabilization Optical
Uncompressed format RAW
JPEG quality levels Superfine, fine
Optics & Focus
Focal length (equiv.) 24–120 mm
Optical zoom 5×
Maximum aperture F2.0 - F3.9
Autofocus
  • Contrast Detect (sensor)
  • Multi-area
  • Center
  • Selective single-point
  • Tracking
  • Single
  • Continuous
  • Touch
  • Face Detection
  • Live View
Digital zoom Yes (4X)
Manual focus Yes
Normal focus range 5 cm (1.97)
Macro focus range 5 cm (1.97)
Number of focus points 31
Screen / viewfinder
Articulated LCD Tilting
Screen size 3
Screen dots 1,040,000
Touch screen Yes (Capacitive)
Screen type sRGB PureColor II Touchscreen LCD
Live view Yes
Viewfinder type Electronic (optional)
Photography features
Minimum shutter speed 60 sec
Maximum shutter speed 1/4000 sec
Aperture priority Yes
Shutter priority Yes
Manual exposure mode Yes
Subject / scene modes Yes
Built-in flash Yes
Flash range 6.80 m
External flash Yes
Flash modes Auto, On, Slow Synchro, Off
Continuous drive 5.2 fps
Self-timer Yes (2 or 10 secs, custom)
Metering modes
  • Multi
  • Center-weighted
  • Spot
Exposure compensation ±3 (at 1/3 EV steps)
Videography features
Resolutions 1920 x 1080 (30p), 1280 x 720 (30p), 640 x 480 (30 fps)
Format MPEG-4, H.264
Videography notes Star Time-Lapse: 1920 x 1080 (15 or 30 fps), Digest Movie: 1280 x 720 (30 fps), Minature Effect: 1280 x 720 or 640 x 480 (1.5 - 6 fps)
Microphone Stereo
Speaker Mono
Storage
Storage types SD/SDHC/SDXC
Connectivity
USB USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
HDMI Yes
Microphone port No
Headphone port No
Wireless Built-In
Wireless notes with NFC
Remote control Yes
Physical
Environmentally sealed No
Battery Battery Pack
Battery description NB-12L lithium-ion battery and charger
Battery Life (CIPA) 240
Weight (inc. batteries) 553 g (1.22 lb / 19.51 oz)
Dimensions 116 x 74 x 66 mm (4.57 x 2.91 x 2.6)
Other features
Orientation sensor Yes
GPS None

First Impressions

The G1 X II's large sensor and fast, wide-ranging lens make for a large camera. Despite that, Canon has designed the camera in such a way that it can be operated with one hand - though the front dials encourage a two-handed approach.

The design of the G1 X II has changed considerably compared to its predecessor. Gone is the 'two level' top plate - used to house the optical finder - which gives the G1 X II a more traditional rectangular shape. The grip on the G1 X II is smaller than on the original, though the optional 'custom grip' closes the gap. Also note that the front dial on the G1 X is gone on the G1 X II, replaced instead by an additional dial around the lens.

The lens is longer (24-120mm) and faster (F2.0-3.9), and the latter makes the camera pretty compelling when you throw in its 1.5"-type sensor. The autofocus system is much faster according to Canon, and you can finally focus on something remotely close to the camera (5cm).

Read the entire First Impressions Review on DPReview.

Reviews

DPReview Conclusion

Scoring is relative only to the other cameras in the same category at the time of review.

Score Breakdown
Poor Excellent
Build quality
Ergonomics & handling
Features
Metering & focus accuracy
Image quality (raw)
Image quality (jpeg)
Low light / high ISO performance
Viewfinder / screen rating
Optics
Performance
Movie / video mode
Connectivity
Value
Silver Award
Silver Award
77 %
Overall Score

The PowerShot G1 X Mark II is an enthusiast compact whose fast lens and large sensor allow it to produce impressive photos in both bright and low light. Its well-built body offers three dials, and numerous controls can be customized. That said, there are numerous improvements that could be made, especially in terms of dynamic range and responsiveness.

Good For

Those desiring a flexible compact camera that's even good for portrait photography.

Not So Good For

User Reviews

4.38776 out of 5 stars
  • HussainJanjua, Apr 19, 2014 GMT:
    smart Gadget

    Its amazing gadget by Canon

    Continue Reading

  • servic, Apr 21, 2014 GMT:
    Great all-rounder with focusing issues

    I like the camera as it is except for several issues: The standard grip is not designed for the weight of the camera. Since the camera is heavier than most compacts, I unintentionally press camera controls and it is somewhat annoying. The optional grip is way too expensive. So I'd rather keep nagging around than buy this grip. I don't want to invest my money in this Canon's carefully designed marketing rip-off (larger grip should cost some 5 cent more in production). The other issue that ...

    Continue Reading

  • jonrobertp, Apr 22, 2014 GMT:
    cool lens and iso capability

    I have the G1X2 and also the RX100.   The new G1X has a nice thumb grip to hold it better.   The speed of all functions is very good, right there with the RX.    The lens is sharp at the long end even at 3.9, and best at 5.6.   At the wide end its typical wide open, a bit soft as experienced photogs might expect, but mostly at very close shooting distances.  For the street at dusk, I won't worry about it.  Not that bad.   If 2.8 is enough light, that's of course better at 24mm. At 6400 iso it ...

    Continue Reading

  • jgersh, Apr 23, 2014 GMT:
    Only an incremental improvement from basic PowerShot

    I am a middling enthusiast who only buys a camera every three years... so my previous camera was the SX130, a very capable machine! After intensive studying of dpreview, I lighted on the new G1X Mark II. It's a great camera! Its behavior in low-light is excellent, and the AF speed is tremendously improved, the WiFi is cool, all factors in my purchase.  But my expectations of IQ were far too high.  I figured that three years from now (when I buy my next camera) a 1.5" sensor will be common, ...

    Continue Reading

Questions & Answers

QUESTION

Question on Canon G1X Mark II Setting

I am reading the manual for my G1X Mark II. I usually use the P setting. But one area of the manual that interests me is the Dynamic Range and Shadow Correct features. First question: In my settings, these areas are not available to me to change. Why? And how can I make these settings active? Second question: how good are these settings? And, by that, I mean, as a photographer I understand dynamic range and shadow detail. I guess I want to know, is there any downside to using these settings? Thanks, Jeff

infocus asked
12 days ago

ANSWERS

Are you shooting RAW? It's only available if shooting JPEG. A bit about DR correction here : http://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/54726170 Shadow correction will just lift the shadows/midtones (when the camera think it's necessary..). That won't really increase the noise, but can make it more visible. Continue Reading

Steen Bay answered
12 days ago

I'm shooting RAW+JPEG. Continue Reading

infocus answered
12 days ago

Yep that's why. You'll have to shoot jpeg only to gain access to the settings. Continue Reading

J_dpr answered
12 days ago

QUESTION

RE G1X MKII review. Shutter release pause when 1/2 pressed

This is a DPR quote from page 8 of their review of this camera.  But they offer no additional explanation.  Who, in 2014, that knows anything about digital cameras would buy a camera that "pauses" 1.5 sec after every 1/2 press of the shutter release?  Do all G1X IIs do this?  I mean I don't exactly believe, or understand that statement.  Can someone on this forum offer some further explanation? or enlightenment?   Or, do G1XMK II owners here experience this 1.5 sec pause-- sounds like a wicked shutter lag to me-- if true? I really like the specs and lens of this camera, but am concerned about the following DPR review quote: "As mentioned on the shooting experience page , the G1 X II can be unresponsive at times. The 'clicky' inner dial does not always respond when you turn it, and the whole camera pauses for about 1.5 seconds after the shutter release is halfway-pressed." Thanks.  John

JohnLock asked
2 months ago

ANSWERS

On page 5: "Once that was set up, I was pretty happy, but I did notice that the inner dial could be flaky at times. On some occasions, the camera didn't notice that the inner dial had been 'clicked' to the next detent, so you had to turn it another click for it to respond. This is especially a problem when you've had the shutter release button halfway-pressed and release it to change settings - the dial takes a second or so to 'wake up'. We'd argue that this is worse than having a dial that gives no feedback: a dial whose feedback doesn't correlate with its actions." The delay you're quoting is the time it takes for the wheel to "wake up" if you half-press the shutter and then release it without taking a shot. Continue Reading

Joseph Black answered
2 months ago

I just got my G1X MkII yesterday.  I took some test shots on the way to work this morning - landscape/scenic style "static" subjects.  In the last couple of weeks I have used an RX100 Mk1 on a family vacation, a Sony A77 for kids soccer, and a Sony RX10 while hiking.  I did not notice any issues with the shutter, startup time, or other delays in operation - the G1X seemed fine to me.  I will try to test it out on some shots of the kiddos tonight, but my initial impression is that speed of operation is not an issue for me. - Mark Continue Reading

MarkusF answered
2 months ago

Joseph Black;  thanks much.  I didn't necessarily relate the two parts of that paragraph, but on re-reading it, your explanation makes sense and makes me feel better.  And thanks to other posters for responses. I guess that would bring up the next question:  how often is the inner ring "not responsive"?, and are they all like that-- or is it maybe camera specific?-- as in sort of a glitch?  I shoot almost exclusively in Av mode so would need that ring to be very aperture responsive. I did own the original G1X and found it to have superb image quality through ISO 3200, but in the end it was not very responsive (slow to operate) and then too the lack of close focusing was an issue for me. I don't really need another camera, but that fast 24-120 lens makes me want it pretty seriously.  I presently have 3 Oly OM-D cameras-- 2 EM10s and an EM1.  I've also used Canon APS-C and FF cameras along w/ Olympus for many years, so I'm used to Canon's menu system. Thanks again. John Continue Reading

JohnLock answered
2 months ago

QUESTION

From Olympus EM-10 to Canon G1x MK2 or G7x?

Hi Guys, I had Canon G15, upgraded to Olympus EM-10 (with 25mm prime lens), but want to switch back to Canon G series. Now I'm not sure if I should get G7x or G1x MK2. Obviously with either one there will be a downgrade in terms of image quality and features, but I'll get a smaller camera with a versatile zoom lens and much better user interface/button layout. I usually shoot people. To get an idea about my style I've included some shots taken with G15 and EM-10 at the end of this post. I was going for G1x MK2 but according to the reviews it has a limited dynamic range and unreliable metering (overexposing). Also the lens at F2.0 is not that good. Having that said, for some reason I still like this camera! G7x is also tempting. Apparently doesn't have G1x issues but most likely has less shallow DoF. I don't care about operation/focus speed and only shoot JPEG. I get Canon EPP price (around $150 below MSRP) but price is not an issue or deciding factor. Any advices to help with ...

Saman Shamim asked
4 days ago

ANSWERS

Warranty Information

"Canon U.S.A., Inc. and Canon Canada Inc. (collectively "Canon") warrant to the original end‐user purchaser, when delivered in new condition in its original container, that the Product will be free from defects in materials and workmanship under normal use and service for a period of one (1) year from the date of original purchase. Product returned to a Canon repair facility and proven to be defective upon inspection will, at Canon’s sole discretion and without charge, be (a) repaired utilizing new, remanufactured, repaired and/or recycled parts; (b) exchanged for a new Product or; (c) exchanged for a refurbished Product, as determined by the Canon repair facility. Warranty exchange or replacement does not extend the original warranty period of the Product. "

Go to Canon USA's warranty page for more information. DPReview GearShop is an authorized Canon dealer in the United States.

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