Canon has just announced a number of new products, with a new lens and high-end compact camera among them. The new lens is a replacement for the older, 2011 release of the 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS kit zoom lens for Canon APS-C sensor DSLR cameras. The Powershot G16 enthusiast compact camera is a direct replacement of the Powershot G15. The lens and camera offer minor improvements over their predecessors.
1) EF-S 55-250mm F/4-5.6 IS STM Lens Details
When compared to the older lens, the new STM release has but a couple of improvements and is really just a mild update. Canon is continuing to update their low-end kit lenses with the new STM stepping motor. The whole point of this AF motor is to minimize autofocusing noise during video recording and make autofocusing smoother and more reliable under those conditions. Full-time manual focus override is available, but you will need to first engage the motor by half-pressing shutter release button. Another improvement is also regarding autofocus, as this lens now incorporates internal focusing.
Everything else seems to be the same, including the plastic lens mount. Priced at $350, it is a little bit more expensive than the “older” lens. Then again, this is not the sort of purchase you would make after owning the previous version – most tend to upgrade to a higher-end lens rather than a newer release of the same budget kit zoom. If you own the older EF-S 55-250mm IS II, there isn’t really anything all that tempting about this lens for you to consider upgrading.
2) Canon Powershot G16 Compact Camera Details
As with the lens, the new enthusiast point-and-shoot is just a minor update over the previous G15 which itself isn’t even a year old. As with the “new” Canon EOS 700D that was announced a few months ago, the G16 carries very minor improvements and can hardly be called a new model. Basically, everything about it is the same as in G15 – including the 12.1 megapixel sensor and 28-140mm equivalent lens. The only real difference is the built-in WiFi connectivity and a newer processor, called DIGIC 6. Canon says the new processor should improve low-light, high ISO performance, autofocus and reduce shutter lag. Another improvement is the 12.2 frames per second shooting speed, but it only last for the first 6 frames or so. Video recording is now upped to 1080p60.
Canon G series of compact cameras have always been very well received by enthusiast photographers and even professionals wanting a small, capable companion to their bulky DSLRs. The G16 continues to deliver that, but now faces stiff competition from the likes of Fujifilm X20. In order to stay competitive, Canon will have to come up with actual improvements eventually. Right now, if you were looking to purchase G15, the new model priced at $550 makes sense. However, unless you really need that WiFi and possibly slightly swifter performance, upgrading for existing G15 owners is quite unnecessary.
3) Official EF-S 55-250mm F/4-5.6 IS STM Lens Press Release
Here is the official press release for the new lens:
CANON INTRODUCES NEW EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM TELEPHOTO ZOOM LENS
New Stepping Motor Lens is the Perfect Companion for the EOS 70D, EOS Rebel SL1, and EOS Rebel T5i Digital SLR Cameras
MELVILLE, N.Y., August 22, 2013 – Canon U.S.A., Inc., a leader in digital imaging solutions, is proud to introduce the new EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM telephoto zoom lens. Created to be the perfect companion lens for the EOS 70D, EOS Rebel SL1 and EOS Rebel T5i Digital SLR cameras, the EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM lens expands Canon’s line of Stepping Motor (STM) lenses to six models – the EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM, the EF 40mm f/2.8 STM, EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM, EF-M 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM, EF-M 22mm f/2.0 and the new EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM lens. Canon’s Stepping Motor lenses allow for the capture of high-quality still and video images and reduce motor noise from the lens so cameras, such as the new EOS 70D, will capture the sound of the video scene being recorded without the interruption of noise by the focusing motors.
The EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM telephoto zoom lens offers high magnification in a compact and lightweight EF-S telephoto zoom lens with an Optical Image Stabilizer for up to 3.5* equivalent stops for shake correction. The lens’ stepping motor and newly-designed focus mechanism support Canon EOS Movie Servo AF (available on select EOS cameras) to provide smooth and quiet continuous autofocusing during video shooting, as well as when shooting photos.
“The addition of the EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM lens to the STM family of lenses strengthens Canon’s support for the growing number of photographers and video enthusiasts utilizing DSLRs to not only shoot high-quality still images but video too,” said Yuichi Ishizuka, executive vice president and general manager, Imaging Technologies & Communications Group, Canon U.S.A. “Noise reduction in movie mode is essential and video aficionados will particularly find the silent and smooth auto-focus capabilities of this new lens outstanding.”
The EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM telephoto zoom lens features one UD lens element, reducing chromatic aberration throughout the zoom range for excellent image quality with high resolution and contrast. It features enhanced lens coatings to help ensure superb color balance while minimizing ghosting and flare and a 7-blade circular aperture creates beautiful, soft backgrounds. For outstanding performance, a new compact six-group zoom system provides a maximum magnification of 0.29x at the telephoto end. Full-time manual focus is available in AF mode. The front element does not rotate during focus, which is beneficial when using polarizing filters. Minimum focusing distance is 2.79 ft./0.85m. The lens’ rear focusing system, high-speed CPU and improved AF algorithm allow for high-speed autofocusing.
The EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM telephoto zoom lens is scheduled to be available in late September for an estimated retail price of $349.99. For more information about the EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM telephoto zoom lens, visit www.usa.canon.com/cusa/consumer/products/cameras/ef_lens_lineup.
* Based on CIPA (Camera & Imaging Products Association) standards. Testing performed using EOS 7D at focal length of 250mm (400mm in 35mm equivalence).
4) Official Canon Powershot G16 Press Release
Here is the official press release for the G16 compact camera:
PowerShot G16 Digital Camera
The PowerShot G16 digital camera builds upon the success of the PowerShot G15 by utilizing some of Canon’s most innovative technologies. The first PowerShot in the G-series to come equipped with built-in Wi-Fi® technology, the G16 has the ability to share images and video to social networking sites such as Facebook®, Twitter®, YouTube®, and Flickr® or via email through the use of CANON iMAGE GATEWAY. Users can also upload images from almost anywhere via their compatible iOS® or Android™ device with the download of the free Canon CameraWindow app.
The PowerShot G16 features a 28-140mm wide-angle lens with an aperture range of f/1.8 – f/2.8, which helps while shooting in low-light conditions or for users who want to create a dramatic shallow depth-of-field with soft backgrounds. The G16 is equipped with Canon’s HS System, which combines a DIGIC 6 image processor and a 12.1-megapixel High-Sensitivity CMOS image sensor, allowing for enhanced low-light image quality.
With improved AF times and reduced shooting lag over previous G-series models, the advancements to Canon’s AF system help ensure users never miss a shot. Continuous shooting speeds of up to 9.3 frames-per-second are possible with the PowerShot G16, allowing users to capture images in full resolution as they happen***. The G16 also captures 1080p/60p Full HD video, and includes a built-in stereo microphone and an HDMI output so users have the ability to view videos on their HDTV.
The PowerShot G16 also features new shooting modes to capture breathtaking images day or night. The new Star mode gives users the ability to capture the brilliance and wonder of the night sky through the use of three scene modes. “Star Nightscape” lets users shoot the radiance of stars in a landscape image, while the “Star Trails” mode captures trails of stars to turn them into a luminous still image. “Star Time Lapse Movie” captures continuous still images of the stars and then combines each to create a stunning video replicating the motion of the stars in the night sky.
In addition, the camera’s creative handheld HDR Scene mode automatically combines multiple shots of a scene to help create an image with a greater dynamic range without the necessity for a tripod. HDR Scene mode includes Natural, Art Bold, Art Embossed, Art Standard and Art Vivid options.
For photographers who want the convenience and ease-of-use of a compact camera with the feel of a DSLR, the PowerShot G16 features dials and controls similar to those on Canon’s EOS Digital SLR cameras. It is also compatible with Canon Speedlite flashes and select accessories.
The PowerShot G16 is scheduled to be available in October 2013 for an estimated retail price of $549.99.