Canon's SX100 IS was a huge hit largely due to the fact that it combined an 8 MP CCD with a powerful 10x optical zoom lens without putting a huge dent in the pocket. Now, the SX110 IS comes as its successor and packs a 9MP CCD with the same lens, for more or less the same price. Seems quite a deal doesn't it. Well, the SX110 IS has a lot to prove given its lineage. We at the Tech Labs have put it to test and here's how it performed.
The Canon SX110 IS has the same boxy look but is contoured differently. With dimensions measuring 111 x 71 x 45mm, the SX110 IS is a bit smaller and lighter than its predecessor but still won't fit in your shirt pocket. But the compact nature of the SX110 IS comes at a price. The camera loses slightly on the grip, as the right side has been flattened. Also, the power button has been moved diagonally across. Check the picture below.
It's not all that bad though. The back of the camera features the same buttons set as the SX100 but it loses the "rabbit teeth" like buttons arranged below the LCD in the SX100. It not only improves the looks but offers better access to all features as well. Also, it makes space for the bigger and better 3-inch LCD screen.
I must say the controls are well laid out, and are easy to understand and use. The mode dial is placed comfortably behind the zoom rocker, which has a central shutter release button. The power button is placed just ahead on of the mode dial and is a bit recessed, so you don't accidentally power down the camera instead of clicking a snap.
On turning the mode dial, an intuitive animation on the LCD indicates the change in the shooting mode and also displays the available modes. The modes scroll past with the current selection being highlighted.
The SX100 IS makes use of a scroll wheel that also acts as four-way arrow keys. It has a FUNC SET button in the middle, thus functioning like the five-way D-pad, commonly found on mobile phones. The wheel has a very smooth action, and clicks softly as it turns. However, it can be easy to accidentally bump it into another position as well.
Although the SX110 IS looks well-designed, I do miss the bulky feel of the SX100, especially since the SX110 still can't fit in my shirt pocket.