A small zoom camera is the Canon PowerShot G5 X Mark II. It is easy to hold, incredibly portable, and produces excellent image quality right out of the box. It has an ND filter integrated into the lens, which offers you a little more flexibility in choosing your shutter speed or aperture while shooting in bright circumstances, though we haven’t tested this function yet. It also has a reasonably handy pop-up viewfinder. Unfortunately, neither its photography nor video autofocus ability is particularly noteworthy, and the overall video quality in FHD and 4K is mediocre. It also has a limited battery life, depending on your settings and usage habits.
Build and handling
With an electronic viewfinder housed in a casing on top of the camera, the original PowerShot G5 X had a pretty appealing “micro-DSLR” look. The brand-new G5 X Mark II is quite distinctive. The viewfinder housing is gone, and the electronic viewfinder is now built into the body utilizing a pop-up/slide-out design that Sony pioneered with its RX100 line of cameras.
Because of this, the new model is much more pocketable than the previous one, but it has also lost a lot of the personality and charm of the original design, despite being more useful. This has allowed for a smaller, neater, rectangular body design. Hmm.
We were informed that this purposeful similarity between the new G5 X Mark II and the G7 Mark III’s launch-time appearance. You have to look attentively to distinguish between the two because the control layout and external design are so similar.
It is true that the retracting viewfinder keeps the camera’s design more compact, but it is a hassle to open it up and then slide out the eyepiece before using it. At 2.36 million dots, it doesn’t have the highest resolution EVF on the market, but it is sharp, clear, and functional.
The customizable lens control ring, “stacked” mode and EV compensation dials, and general impression of quality are all things we enjoy. The fact that this camera is so small, however, obviously limits its general usability. If you don’t like taking pictures with it, a camera that fits in your pocket is likely to stay there.
The PowerShot G5 X Mark II feels remarkably comparable to operate, with fast and positive AF at typical focus distances and zoom settings, and especially quick and efficient face identification. It shares the same sensor, processor, and autofocus mechanism as the G7 X Mark III.
Less striking is the image quality. We anticipated clear, sharp results because the G5 X Mark II’s 1-inch sensor is far bigger than the typical compact camera sensor and halfway to the size of a DSLR or mirrorless camera. However, while the exposures in our test photographs were generally extremely well balanced and the colors in the images were realistic, vibrant, and saturated, the level of fine detail was less outstanding.
It was upsetting to see that a high-end compact camera lacked the same kind of noise reduction that we are accustomed to seeing in smartphones and point-and-shoot cameras. To be fair, it’s lot less noticeable, but it’s still there. The distinct smoothing effect in highly textured material, as well as the very shoddy image sharpening, which can leave faint halos around some objects, are disappointing when you zoom in and compare the G5 X Mark II’s fine detail reproduction to that of an APS-C camera. Megapixel count is not everything.
Compared to its predecessor, the new Canon PowerShot G5 X Mark II is unquestionably more compact and potent. It now boasts a more powerful 4K video recording capability, a longer-range 5x zoom lens, and a more compact design because of its pop-up EVF. Was it wise of Canon to omit a microphone jack, though? This seems like a mistake in a time when vloggers and content makers are so skilled. Although Canon will point out that the less expensive G7 X Mark III does include a mic socket, the lack of a viewfinder on this camera makes it feel like you’re being forced to make a decision you shouldn’t have to.
The PowerShot G5 X Mark II allows for a significant lot of control over image capture and output thanks to EOS-style control and in-camera raw processing.
The balance between shadows, highlights, and midtones in the majority of scenes appears to be achieved by the metering system in a predictable manner. To avoid brighter features from being lost in some high-contrast pictures, such as those with darker foreground details and clouds in the sky, you’ll need to either activate Highlight Tone Priority or employ exposure compensation.
At its widest apertures, the lens can be a little soft, especially at the wide-angle end and the borders of the frame, but things much improve when you zoom in and/or decrease the aperture.
Although lateral chromatic aberration, which manifests as color fringing around the margins of details approaching the edges of the frame, is extremely obvious in raw files, this may be easily fixed. Distortions are generally well controlled.
Noise performance is generally excellent in the three-figure ISO range and has respectable results in the lower regions of the four-figure settings, as we would expect from a camera with a 1-inch sensor. You may wish to adjust this to the Low setting or process noise out of raw photos because some people may find the default degree of noise reduction to be a little heavy-handed in some scenes.
Although not quite as crisp as it may be for a camera of this type, 4K videos generally have decent quality. The footage has few glitches, and while there is some rolling shutter as you walk around the subject, it is not a problem with moderate movement and broader focal lengths.
When using the touchscreen, focus can be moved extremely easily between two spots in the scene. You can also call up an ND filter when shooting in strong light, which is quite helpful because you would otherwise have to use a shutter speed that is too quick to keep motion seeming natural.
A 20MP 1-inch sensor is also included in the RX100 Mark V, which also has a control ring around the lens and an EVF that can be activated as needed. Although it lacks a physical grip and a touchscreen and has a shorter 24-70mm f/1.8-2.8 (35mm equivalent) lens, it boasts a more sophisticated 315-point phase-detect AF system and is slightly smaller overall. Although the RX100 V’s 24fps burst mode appears to be slower than the G5 X II’s 30fps raw burst option, it accomplishes this feat admirably with autofocus and auto-exposure. And it’s less expensive.