While Canon didn’t really market the PowerShot G7 X Mark II at vloggers, it proved a popular choice with those users. It has a magical combination of a comparatively large sensor, a bright lens with a useful focal length range equivalent to 24-100mm, a flip-up touch-screen and a compact form. It’s ideal for slipping in your pocket to take everywhere and for using at arm’s length.
Now Canon has announced the Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark III. And although in some ways it doesn’t make a massive upgrade on the previous camera, there are a couple of features that could make it very popular indeed.
Firstly, whereas the Mark II’s maximum video resolution is Full-HD (1920 x 1080) at 59.94 / 50 / 29.97 / 25 / 23.98 fps, the PowerShot G7 X Mark III is capable of shooting 4K video 3840 x 2160 at 29.97 / 25fps without cropping. In addition, it can shoot Full HD (1920 x 1080) footage at 119.9 / 100 / 59.94 / 50 / 29 .97 / 25 fps. Those upper frame rates make high-quality slow-motion video possible.
And in an unusual move, there’s an option to shoot movies with a vertical movie aspect.
Crucially, there’s also a 3.5mm mic port. I could see this being used to connect a Rode Wireless Go for cable-free audio recording.
The clincher, however, is that the Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark III is able to live-stream video. That’s big news. Instead of having to shoot on your phone or use a complex set-up, you can shoot directly to Youtube using a dedicated camera.
There’s also a clean HDMI output should you want it.
Like the PowerShot G5 X II announced at the same time, the PowerShot G7 X Mark II has a 20.1Mp 1-inch type stacked CMOS sensor. This is a new sensor design for Canon and combined with the Canon Digic 8 processing engine, it enables very fast continuous shooting rates.
Like the PowerShot G5 X II, the G7 X III can shoot at up to 30fps (frames per second) in RAW Burst Mode for up to 70 images. Alternatively, it can shoot at 20fps for up to 89 C-RAW files, 55 RAW images or 118 Jpegs.
This sensor is fronted by an 8.8 – 36.8mm f/1.8-2.8 stabilised lens which has a 35mm focal length equivalence of 24 – 100mm. The 24mm end is a good option for arm’s-length video when looking at the screen flipped-up above the camera. The large aperture also enables the background to be blurred.
Build and Handling
The Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark III looks and feels very similar to the PowerShot G7 X Mark II. It’s familiar territory.
It has a fairly understated design, with a decent grip and thumb-rest. The control layout is also logical and easy to get to grips with. A mode dial on the top of the camera allows the shooting mode to selected quickly, with program, aperture priority, shutter priority and manual exposure being available along with a collection of automatic modes.
The exposure compensation dial sits below the mode dial, making good use of the space on the top-plate.
This good use of space continues onto the lens where a control ring lets key settings be adjusted quickly.
There are no surprises on the back of the camera. A dial around the navigation pad allows settings adjustments while the pad itself also provides a shortcut to the focusing, drive and flash options.
The 3-inch 1,040,000-dot screen is touch-sensitive and Canon doesn’t stint on its use. You can navigate through the menu and make setting selections by tapping and swiping on the screen. It’s quick and easy.
Crucially, the screen has a hinge that enables it to tip up through 180-degrees. That means it can be seen from in front of the camera. That’s essential to most vloggers.
I’ve was able to shoot with the Canon PowerShot G5 7 Mark III for a short while before its announcement. I found it a snappy performer, getting subjects sharp quickly and without fuss.
Like the PowerShot G5 X II which uses the same sensor, it’s capable of capturing a good level of natural-looking detail. It’s not possible to process the raw files yet, but the Jpegs look very good.
Noise is kept under good control up to around ISO 3,200. But the results at ISO 6,400 are also usable. At ISO 12,800 some details look a bit too smudged. They’re not really bad, but I’d aim to stick a lower sensitivity setting if possible.
Although the Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark III has a lot in common with its predecessor, I think the upgrade to 4K video and the live streaming capability make it a worthy upgrade. It looks set to become a very popular camera amongst vloggers and anyone looking to reach an audience quickly and easily. I’m looking forward to testing the live streaming when we get a review sample.
There’s lots of shooting to be done, but it’s clear that the PowerShot G7 X III is capable of producing very attractive images with an impressive level of detail.