Canon’s latest premium compact, the PowerShot G1 X Mark II, sets its sights on improving where the PowerShot G1 X left off. We find out whether the new model is a significantly better camera. Read our Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark II review...
Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark II review – Build and handling
In an effort to give the camera a premium look and feel, a stainless-steel chassis and aluminium exterior have been used, which makes the G1 X Mark II 24g heavier than the previous model. Pick it up and the body strikes you as being reasonably sturdy and robust, but it’s the new handgrip that transforms the handling. It allows you to curl your fingers around the body to get a more secure hold and it uses the same rubber grip that appears at the rear where the thumb rests beside the screen. Our only gripe about the grip is the way it isn’t integral to the design and is bolted to the body, suggesting it was an afterthought. From certain angles, especially from underneath, it has a rather disappointing finish.
The larger lens has two dual-control rings around the barrel, which can be customised to offer independent control of the most commonly used settings in different shooting modes. With the front control ring being as smooth as it is, it wouldn’t take much to knock it and accidently adjust the exposure. It is set up to control exposure compensation when the camera’s focusing mode isn’t set to manual focus, and we did accidently knock it a couple of times while out shooting. The rear control ring is easy to operate with the thumb and index finger when the camera is supported in the left hand, but it could do with being a touch smoother. The position of the mode dial is well placed on the corner of the body for control with the thumb and the general layout of buttons will be familiar to those who’ve used a PowerShot G-series model before. The only criticism regarding button placement concerns the playback and Wi-Fi buttons. The latter sits just above the thumb rest and was accidently pressed numerous times, while the placement of the playback button on the top-plate doesn’t feel like the best place for it. We’d much prefer to see it at the back of the camera, ideally where the MF button is found.