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Canon's logo. Click here to visit the Canon website! Canon announces the PowerShot G5
(Monday, June 2, 2003 - 02:00 EDT)

Canon has today announced its new PowerShot G5 digital camera, a model some readers may already have known was on the way, since details were briefly (and accidentally) leaked on a Canon Europe website just recently.

The PowerShot G5 is essentially a 5 megapixel version of the existing PowerShot G3, with a black body. The camera uses the exact same f2.0 4x optical zoom lens as its predecessor, and should be similar in most other respects except those related to resolution. One other interesting footnote - we've been told that the PTP protocol support on the G5 has been enhanced somewhat, so you can actually fire the camera and capture an image directly from within Windows XP, without having to use Canon's proprietary software. Whilst not likely a hugely important issue for most users, this is certainly a worthwhile change and will please more than a few potential buyers, we're sure...

As yet, Canon USA have not provided us with press release, photos or specifications although we do know the camera is being launched here simultaneously with the European announcement, for which a press release follows. US pricing will be $899 (MSRP), with street prices likely nearer to the minimum advertised price (MAP) of $799. The PowerShot G3 will remain in the lineup, and although its list pricing remains unchanged, its MAP price has been reduced to $649 from $699.

Once the US release and / or photos or specifications become available, you'll find the details on our news page. In the meantime, our friends at Dutch website LetsGoDigital.nl have already been hands-on with the PowerShot G5 (we should be receiving one shortly as well), and have posted a brief preview article with several photos of the camera.

Original Source Press Release:

Canon's 5.0 Megapixel PowerShot G5: Brimming with features for total control.

Amstelveen, The Netherlands, 2 June, 2003. Canon, a leader in photographic and imaging technology, today launches the superbly specified 5.0 Megapixel PowerShot G5. With an extremely fast f2.0, 4x optical zoom, Canon’s most advanced compact offers serious amateur and professional photographers unrivalled image quality. 12 shooting modes deliver the sort of flexibility and versatility typically only found in high-end SLRs.

Canon’s proprietary DIGIC (DIGital Imaging Core) processor delivers consumate image quality with 2 fps1 speed and efficiencies in power consumption to help give the PowerShot G5 one of the longest battery lives of any digital compact on the market. 450 high-resolution shots can be taken and stored on a single charge2. An extensive range of optional lenses, flashes and accessories cements the PowerShot G5’s position as a system camera for the serious user. A robust body featuring metal elements and a stylish black finish gives professional looks to match its performance.

“The popularity of our G-series amongst professional photographers has confirmed the need in the market place for a high-end compact with the functionality of an SLR” explains Hiroshi Komatsuzaki, Head of Canon Consumer Imaging Europe. “With 5.0 Megapixels, a fast 4x zoom lens and 12 shooting modes, this is a serious camera designed to meet the stringent needs of the most demanding of amateur and professional photographers”.

Super fine detail
The PowerShot G5’s 5.0 Megapixel CCD sensor delivers the high resolution expected of a camera in this class, allowing photo prints up to A3 in size as well as more scope for image cropping. The reduction of pixel size necessary to achieve a 5.0 Megapixel CCD calls for extremely high levels of lens performance. Canon’s engineers employed their expertise in lens and optics technologies to optimally match the lens to the sensor resolution.

Precision lens technology
Canon’s tradition of superb lens quality continues with a fast f2.0 (W) to f3.0 (T) 4x optical zoom lens, (7.2 to 28.8mm) that is equivalent to a 35-140mm lens in 35mm format. Chromatic aberration that plagues lesser quality digitals has been all but eliminated with the incorporation of 2 aspherical elements. Extremely fast and accurate focusing is achieved by controlling focusing with the movement of just one rear element. An optical neutral density (ND) filter – unique to Canon – is built into the lens to reduce light by 3 stops, permitting creative slow shutter /large aperture settings in bright conditions. FlexiZone AF/AE allows users to specify the particular spot in the frame from which to focus and meter - ideal for off-centre and even on-the-edge compositions - and focus bracketing takes extra shots focused in front of and behind the subject.

Flexibility unlimited
A choice of twelve modes gives users complete control over the camera in every possible shooting situation. Along with all the fully manual and aperture/shutter priority modes expected in an advanced digital, the PowerShot G5 includes two Custom modes for storing preferred camera settings, Portrait and Landscape modes to minimise/maximise depth of field appropriately, and a Night Scene mode providing slow sync speed for realistic shots balancing exposure to maintain both background and foreground detail. StitchAssist works in 5 modes to enable precise alignment of up to 26 images for panorama and poster shots that are merged with supplied PhotoStitch software. 180-second video clips with sound can be recorded in movie mode. Photo effects include sepia, vivid colour, black and white, neutral and low sharpening.

A vari-angle 1.8-inch LCD monitor can be fully rotated to allow for shooting with the camera close to the floor or high in the air and a mirror image display for easy self-portraits. For ultimate quality and post processing flexibility, images can be stored in Canon RAW format – even after a shot has been taken in JPEG mode. Flexibility is further extended with a raft of features including ±2 stop Auto Exposure Bracketing (AEB) in 1/3 stop increments, 1st and 2nd curtain flash synchronisation and interval shooting for time lapse photography.

High-end processing, high-end performance.
The complex algorithms required to accurately process functions such as white balance and color rendition have all been integrated onto Canon’s unique high speed DIGIC processor. This allows the PowerShot G5 to deliver stunning quality images with no trade-off in camera responsiveness. By keeping all key functions onto a single chip, power consumption is also reduced. The PowerShot G5 employs the powerful BP-511 rechargeable Li-Ion battery to allow up to 450 high-resolution shots or 6 hours playback from a single charge.

System Camera
Canon’s wide range of specialised accessories further expands the capabilities, versatility and creative potential of the camera. A 0.7x wide converter and 1.75x tele converter cover a 10x zoom range of 24.5 – 245mm (35mm equivalent). True macro photography is available with a 58mm close up lens and professional Macro Ring Lite MR-14EX or Macro Twin MT-24EX flash units. The PowerShot G5 offers full support of Canon’s extensive EX series Speedlite flash units including wireless sequential firing of multiple independent banks of remote flashes, unheard of in competing digital cameras.

Direct Print
Directly connectable to all Canon Direct Print printers, The PowerShot G5 delivers superb quality photo prints without needing a PC. Simply connect the camera to a Canon Direct Print printer; select the desired shot and full colour photo printing begins. With 5.0 Megapixels, the PowerShot G5 has the resolution essential for premium-quality large-format A3 prints.

The PowerShot G5 comes with the following software:

  • ZoomBrowzer EX (Windows) & ImageBrowser (Macintosh) – Central to image management, ZoomBrowser EX / ImageBrowser files, prints and transfers images between camera and computer.
  • File Viewer Utility – for fast transfer, preview and conversion of RAW image files.
  • Picture Transfer Protocol – PowerShot G5 uses PTP communication for driverless connection to Windows XP and Mac OS-X (v10.1/v.10.2).

Also included are Canon’s PhotoStitch, RemoteCapture and PhotoRecord software.

All figures quoted are based on Canon’s standard testing method

1. Using high-speed continuous shooting mode, recording images in Large/Fine mode.
2. 450 shots with LCD monitor on, approximately 1050 shots with the LCD monitor off

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