With full manual exposure control and the ability to save images as raw files, the Canon PowerShot S90 may be the perfect compact camera for the demanding enthusiast photographer
White balance and colour
In its default colour style, the PowerShot S90 produces bright images with good colour saturation. However, there are plenty of other colour settings should you wish to add more punch or tone down the colour saturation. For holidays and events I recommend using the Vivid style for boosting the saturation of the colours to create striking images. Conversely, landscapes with brooding skies may benefit from the neutral colour setting. A custom My Colors style can also be created, saved and applied to all JPEG images.
Of course, colour styles are not applied to raw files. By their very nature these files contain just the raw image data from the camera. However, if you open the S90’s CR2 raw files in Canon’s Digital Photo Professional software, it is possible to apply any of the default colour styles to a raw image before saving it as a JPEG file.
The AWB setting did a great job and produced good results on bright sunny days, in overcast conditions and when under fluorescent and tungsten light. Similarly, the daylight balance setting produces neutral results on a sunny day, and good images when the sky was overcast.
One useful white balance-related feature is the ability to be able to set the control ring so that it adjusts the blue/amber white balance shift. Turning one way adds more blue, while turning the other adds more amber. Although I generally found better uses for the control ring, it was handy to be able to adjust the white balance quickly in this way.