updated 08:35 am EDT, Mon May 7, 2007
Canon S5 IS and SD850 IS
Stepping up the performance of its high-end compact cameras, Canon today released two new models built on its DIGIC III chip and image stabilizers. The PowerShot S5 IS is the long-awaited replacement for the S3 which boosts resolution from 6 to 8 megapixels and uses the newer DIGIC processor for face detection in portrait shots and ISO 1600 sensitivity. The 12X optical zoom camera also has a new flash hot-shoe for better control of lighting and a larger 2.5-inch swiveling LCD. Software also sees an upgrade with a MovieSnap mode that captures full-resolution stills while recording VGA resolution movies. It ships in early July for $500.
Also a direct replacement for an earlier model is the SD850 IS, which takes over from the outgoing SD700 IS. It too sees an increase to 8 megapixels (from 7.1) and also gains a slightly extended 4X optical zoom. The LCD also upgrades to a 2.5-inch PureColor LCD with better color accuracy and a more scratch-resistant surface. Its software also changes with six different movie modes that adds fast frame rate modes for slow motion as well as a time lapse mode. The SD850 IS arrives sooner than its semi-pro counterpart in mid-June for $400.