Michael Topham tests Canon’s pocket-friendly compact with a pop-up electronic viewfinder
Canon PowerShot G5 X Mark II: Image quality
Pocket compacts with 1-inch sensors produce impressive detail for their size and the G5 X Mark II is no exception. It doesn’t resolve the same level of detail as the Canon PowerShot G1X Mark III, but manages to outperform cameras and smartphones with smaller sensors, which rely heavily on their noise reduction algorithms when challenged in low-light. Tests through the ISO range revealed detail-rich results with low noise are achieved between ISO 125-800. Detail drops below 3000l/ph beyond ISO 800, and pictures become noticeably noisy at ISO 6400, but are still useable.
Canon PowerShot G5 X Mark II: Resolution
At its lowest ISO 125 setting the sensor manages to resolve a very creditable 3300l/ph. At ISO 400 the resolution drops to 3200l/ph and again to 3000l/ph at ISO 800. As the sensitivity is increased noise affects the resolution more, with 2800l/ph and 2600l/ph being recorded at ISO 1600 and ISO 3200 respectively. It resolves 2,200l/ph at ISO 12,800 and 2000l/ph at its expanded setting of ISO 25600. This resolution result is consistent with what was recorded by the original G5 X up to ISO 12,800.
From the crops below, multiple the number beneath the line by 200 to calculate the resolution in lines per picture height.
Canon PowerShot G5 X Mark II: ISO and Noise
The G5 X Mark II delivers clean images between ISO 125 and ISO 400. Inspect images taken at ISO 400 closely and you can just start to make out noise appearing in darker areas. Take advantage of being able to shoot in raw and you’ll find you can comfortably go up to ISO 1600 and only need apply minimal noise reduction in post processing to achieve great results. I’d be willing to push to ISO 3200 (and ISO 6400 at a push) if a low-light situation demanded it, but these settings do demand a little more noise reduction to be applied. Users should look to give ISO 12800 and ISO 25600 a wide berth as the increased noise at these settings has a significant impact on the level of fine detail that’s resolved.