Canon PowerShot D20 Waterproof Compact Camera

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71% Tried & Tested
Overall, the PowerShot D20 offers a uniquely styled rugged body, good photo quality, and performance that'll satisfy its target audience.”

Read more of the review

Key Features

  • 12.1 MP 1/2.3" CMOS sensor
  • 28-140mm equivalent f/3.9-4.8 lens (5x optical zoom)
  • ISO 100-3200
  • 1080p / 24 fps HD video (H.264/MOV)
  • 3" TFT LCD with 461,000 dots
  • Intelligent IS picks best of six modes for the shooting conditions
  • Waterproof to 33'
  • Shockproof from 5'
  • 14° to 104°F operating temperature
  • Built-in GPS

Product Description

Canon's second waterproof rugged camera, the 12MP D20 has a 5x, image stabilized 28-140mm equivalent zoom lens and features the company's latest 7-mode IS system. It also includes GPS and a 460,000 dot 3.0" LCD. The camera's back-lit CMOS sensor allows the D20 to shoot 1080p24 movies accessible with a dedicated movie record button. The D20 is waterproof to a depth of 10m and shockproof from a height of 1.5m.

Overall, the PowerShot D20 offers a uniquely styled rugged body, good photo quality, and performance that'll satisfy its target audience. It wouldn't be our top choice for low light or movie recording, but for the photographer who will occasionally go underwater, the PowerShot D20 fits the bill.

Specs

Body type
Body type Compact
Sensor
Max resolution 4000 x 3000
Other resolutions 4000 x 3000, 4000 x 2248, 4000 x 2664, 2992 x 2992, 2816 x 2112, 2816 x 1880, 2816 x 1584, 2112 x 2112, 1920 x 1080, 1600 x 1200, 1600 x 1064, 1200 x 1200, 640 x 480, 640 x 424, 640 x 360, 480 x 480
Image ratio w:h 1:1, 4:3, 3:2, 16:9
Effective pixels 12 megapixels
Sensor photo detectors 13 megapixels
Sensor size 1/2.3" (6.17 x 4.55 mm)
Sensor type CMOS
Processor Digic 4
Image
ISO Auto, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200
White balance presets 6
Custom white balance Yes (1)
Image stabilization Optical
Uncompressed format No
Optics & Focus
Focal length (equiv.) 28–140 mm
Optical zoom 5×
Maximum aperture F3.9 - F4.8
Autofocus
  • Contrast Detect (sensor)
  • Multi-area
  • Center
  • Single
  • Continuous
  • Face Detection
  • Live View
Digital zoom Yes (5x)
Manual focus Yes
Macro focus range 1 cm (0.39)
Number of focus points 9
Screen / viewfinder
Articulated LCD Fixed
Screen size 3
Screen dots 461,000
Touch screen No
Screen type PureColor II TFT LCD
Live view Yes
Viewfinder type None
Photography features
Minimum shutter speed 15 sec
Maximum shutter speed 1/1600 sec
Aperture priority No
Shutter priority No
Manual exposure mode No
Subject / scene modes Yes
Built-in flash Yes
Flash range 3.50 m
External flash No
Flash modes Auto, Fill-in, Red-Eye reduction, Slow Sync, Off
Self-timer Yes (2, 10, Custom)
Metering modes
  • Multi
  • Center-weighted
  • Spot
Exposure compensation ±2 (at 1/3 EV steps)
Videography features
Resolutions 1920 x 1080 (24 fps), 1280 x 720 (30 fps) 640 x 480 (30, 120 fps), 320 x 240 (240 fps)
Format H.264
Videography notes Miniature Effect (HD, L) 6fps, 3fps, 1.5 fps iFrame Movie (HD)
Microphone Mono
Speaker Mono
Storage
Storage types SD/SDHC/SDXC
Connectivity
USB USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
HDMI Yes (Mini)
Wireless Eye-Fi Connected
Remote control No
Physical
Environmentally sealed Yes (Waterproof, Shockproof, Freezeproof, Dustproof)
Battery Battery Pack
Battery description Lithium-Ion NB-6L battery & charger
Weight (inc. batteries) 228 g (0.50 lb / 8.04 oz)
Dimensions 112 x 71 x 28 mm (4.41 x 2.8 x 1.1)
Other features
Orientation sensor Yes
Timelapse recording No
GPS BuiltIn
GPS notes GPS Tagging and Logger functions

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
Exposure and focus accuracy
Image quality (jpeg)
Flash performance
Low light / high ISO performance
Optics
Performance (speed)
Movie / video mode
Value
Tried & Tested
Tried & Tested
71 %
Overall Score

The PowerShot D20 is a good underwater camera, though it doesn't stand out in any particular area. It takes decent (though slightly soft) photos with pleasing colors (but expect a color cast when shooting underwater). Although light on features, the D20 is water, freeze, dust, and shockproof, and it didn't let us down in our testing.

Good For

Photographers who want a compact camera that can go for a casual swim, hike, or diving trip.

Not So Good For

Low light and flash shooters, manual control lovers, and movie enthusiasts

User Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars
  • FishyPix, Apr 14, 2012 GMT:
    Helped test the beta of this on the Great Barrier Reef

    CAVEAT: I have not used a production unit.. However, I was briefly a part of the testing team on the Great Barrier Reef with a beta unit and from memory, with the other cameras mounted on the same platform taking the same photos and video frames, the underwater shots from the D20 blew the competitors out of the water. I am concerned the lens has shifted from central (and big) to the ubiquitous small rectangle in the upper corner of the camera body which then instantly knocks down image ...

    Continue Reading

Questions & Answers

QUESTION

Canon D20 accessories

Hello, Besides buying the Canon AKT-DC2 kit is there anywhere else I can find a carabiner strap for the D20 along with the special strap mounts "lock-screw tip caps."  Basically looking for something similar to the AKT-DC1 style where I can put in the lock-screw tip cap that is attached to the carabiner strap that has a clip on hook. Thanks,

Adeptjr asked
1 year ago

ANSWERS

QUESTION

Best camera for video? ( out of this list )

Hi. I'm thinking of buying a "tough" camera for video recording. I can't figure out which one of these cameras are the best, I'm not too good with cameras. The only things that matter to me are the video quality and the audio. PLEASE HELP ME! I'm a dumb guy, I can't figure this stuff out and could really use some help from some experts. The only things that matter to me are the video quality and the audio. Price doesn't matter. The only things that matter to me are the video quality and the audio. GPS features don't matter. The only things that matter to me are the video quality and the audio. Customizability doesn't matter. The only things that matter to me are the video quality and the audio. Please help me, thanks! The cameras are... Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-TX30 Canon PowerShot D20 Nikon Coolpix AW100 Olympus Tough TG-2 iHS Olympus Tough TG-830 iHS Thank you sooooo sooooo much for your help. It really means a lot to me.

Exoquatic asked
4 months ago

ANSWERS

Tough cameras are not notable for image quality, though the interchangwable lens dAW100 is quite decent and in a very different class from the rest.   I have a related V1 and the video is quite pleasing, if not up with the very best mirrorless models.  It's far better than most point & shoots, which is what other tough models are based on.   I would expect the AW100 to be quite decent, though without the mic input so audio not so good.   Unfortunately, audio is a weak point of just about all cameras that don't have mic inputs.   Tiny stereo mics pick up wind noise and lens noise, as well as just not sounding very good. There was a recent dpr comparison of cameras in this class.   I'm sure they touched on video, though maybe not in much detail. Continue Reading

MarkInSF answered
4 months ago

I think you mean the Nikon 1 AW1.  And yes, that would be my choice too. I have used the Panasonic TS/FT series in the past, and while good cameras, they would never be my first choice if video quality is important. The Nikon 1 AW1 has so many plusses over the rest.  Not the least of which are: - Larger sensor - Shoots RAW (for stills, that is :-D ) - Interchangeable lenses Continue Reading

GodSpeaks answered
4 months ago

There are beasts in video, but should you not look at video camcorder instead? For good price and good size, I´d recommend Canon Powershot G16. Continue Reading

crashpc answered
4 months ago

QUESTION

First DSLR - Which One?

Hello all... I am new to this site and am interested in photography. I have been a point-and-click guy my whole life and am ready to make a jump into the DSLR world with my first DSLR purchase. I want a camera that I can grow INTO and not OUT OF. I currently use a Canon D20 for vacationing underwater shots, and it works quite well for its purpose. My main camera to this point is a Canon G12. I thought about going mirrorless with a Fuji X-E2 at a friends recommendation. However, this doesn't go fully automatic. I will need to be able to do that so my wife can use the camera as well, not to mention I will need to as I start to learn. After about a week's worth of research and asking friends in the field, I have narrowed it down to 2 choices (if you have a better one, I am willing to listen)... - Canon EOS 70D - Nikon D7100 Which one of these models do you prefer for a beginner photog? I will be taking some short movies, and shooting lots of family shots as we vacation, my girls ...

Rono007 asked
2 months ago

ANSWERS

You mentioned the Canon EOS 70D and Nikon D7100. These are rather over the top for your needs. You'd be able to do everything you want with an entry level model like Nikon's D5100, D5200, D5300 and D3200 or Canon's entry level models ( or Pentaxes or Sony's ). I know you want to "grow into them" but these are really all very capable systems and what you need to take great shots with any camera is technique, technique, technique. So any Nikon entry level system with maybe the 18-105, 18-140 or the 18-55 and 55-200 VR or 55-300 VR lenses would be fine. On Canon, again, pretty much any entry level DSLR of the last few years and the 18-55 and 55-250 lenses. And a book on photographic technique. Continue Reading

darklamp answered
2 months ago

I'd be inclined to believe that the OP has made a reasonable decision, and also has friends who can assist him. We have no idea of his financial position or degree of commitment and skill level. I think the 7100 (for example) would be an excellent choice. Some forum members have trouble stretching the budget to a basic camera, while others have no trouble picking up several FF cameras and a dozen or so lenses. Happily, I'm somewhere in the middle of this range, and I can see the OP's point in going after good gear. Continue Reading

WryCuda answered
2 months ago

Here's a little more advice. There are a few accessories you'll want to get with or shortly after your DSLR purchase: Memory cards: SanDisk Extreme 32 GB is PLENTY (over 1,000 RAW images!). Even 16 GB is a LOT (640 RAW images, or about 3,500 JPEGs). A faster, more expensive card won't improve performance at all (I tested them myself to be sure). Get a second 4GB card to keep in your bag just in case (as in, "just in case you left your card attached to the computer"). Card Reader: Most computers have built-in readers, but a USB 3 reader may be faster. Spare Battery: Get a non-Canon spare battery. Your dealer should be able to refer you to a good battery that will cost about $25 less, and work just as well. Strap: I really hate the garish "Canon 70D" straps that come with the camera. It's kind of tacky to walk around advertising your camera model to the world, and it's not a very comfortable strap. OpTech makes excellent, inexpensive, Made in USA straps of neoprene which are very ... Continue Reading

MarshallG answered
2 months ago

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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