40x optical zoom in your pocket, but how’s the I.Q.? Canon SX720 First Shots posted
posted Wednesday, April 13, 2016 at 4:16 PM EST
We crave generous zoom range in a small package, and why not… it's tantalizing! There's power in that long zoom range, versatility, and so many shot possibilities open up to you. And if it comes in a package you can easily fit in a vest pocket or small purse, hey, all the better! This is what the 40x Canon SX720 offers in a nutshell.
But zoom range in a compact body has always come with its trade-offs. Technological advancements continue as always, but when you're dealing with small sensors with a ton of megapixels crammed onto them, and complex lenses occupying a small area, you're still bumping hard and fast into the laws of physics and just how far you can push image quality boundaries.
And this is one of the main reasons you come to us! It's nice to hear about what something can do on paper (like that 24-960mm eq. zoom range!) but you also want some idea of what to expect in the real world from the image quality. Our laboratory First Shots are a great place to start, as they allow you to compare this camera in our world-renowned Comparometer to its predecessor, the current competition or any camera we've ever tested.
Below are a few side-by-side 1:1 comparisons at base ISO and ISO 800 to get you started against its predecessor, the 30x Canon SX710 (also 20.3mp), the 30x Panasonic ZS60 (18.1mp) and the 30x Sony HX90V (18.2mp). The slight difference in target size is due to the small variation in sensor resolution against the ZS60 and HX90V.
This is where the real fun begins, because cameras with 1/2.3" type sensors have traditionally not been able to handle much beyond ISO 400. And ISO is very important for a long-zooming camera because you tend to need faster shutter speeds as you zoom farther, and also for anything like capturing sports or wildlife.
Dive into our Comparometer to see more of the above images and to make your own comparisons, and see our Canon SX720 Samples Page for access to individual images and EXIF data (note: there are no RAW files available with this camera).
• Canon SX720 • Lab Samples • Comparometer •
• Canon SX710 vs Canon SX720 •
• Panasonic ZS60 vs Canon SX720 •
• Sony HX90V vs Canon SX720 •
• Best SX720 Prices •
(Thanks for making your camera purchases through one of our trusted affiliate links! You'll get the same low price, and the satisfaction of knowing that you've single-handedly helped us keep these tests and reviews coming your way.)