Canon PowerShot SX240 HS
Canon PowerShot SX240 Camera Review
The Canon PowerShot SX240 HS is a 12.1 MP point-and-shoot camera that I am currently using. This digicam is great for anyone who wants to take pictures that are better quality than most smartphones, but doesn't want to spend so much on a digital SLR. Especially good for travel and vacation trips because it has a powerful 20x optical zoom, has some impressive features and is easy to use.
Additionally, you can capture Full HD (1080p) video clips with the SX240. Also, Canon's HS (High-Sensitivity) and Intelligent IS (Image Stabilization) systems help capture high-quality photography, even in low light. Let's review some of key features of this digital camera.
In the photo gallery below, you will see some of the pictures I've taken with this digital camera using several its features. Other similar Canon PowerShot camera models like the SX240, are the SX260 and the SX280. They are similar, but have a few additional features compared to their predecessors.
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What's Inside the Package: Canon PowerShot SX240
I purchased this Canon camera as it went on sale and I'd been keeping an eye on it. Before I talk about the key features of this digital camera, I wanted to provide a quick overview of the contents of the package. Besides the actual PowerShot SX240 camera, the package includes a rechargeable lithium-ion battery pack (NB-6L) along with a terminal protective cover and a battery charger.
There are two types of battery chargers, CB-2LY (that connects directly in the power outlet) or CB-2LYE (that requires a power cord to connect to the power outlet). Obviously, your package will include only one of these.
My package came with the CB-2LY charger. The package also includes an interface cable which helps you connect the camera to your computer (to download your pictures) and connect it directly to a printer, if you wish to print your pictures. There is no internal memory, so you will require an SD card to start taking pictures.
And finally, you will also get a solution CD-ROM, "Getting Started" guide, wrist strap, and a warranty card. In the section below, I will share with you some of the key features of the Canon PowerShot SX240 that I like most.
Buy Canon PowerShot SX240 at Amazon
The Canon Powershot SX240 is the digital camera that I'm currently using. In the review below, I've covered some of my favourite features of this point-and-shoot camera.
It has 12.1 MP resolution with image stabilization and is equipped with a DIGIC 5 image processor, capable of capturing full HD quality video clips with stereo sound, and comes with a 20x optical zoom. It has a 3.2-inch LCD screen and has HDMI connectivity as well. Check the SX260 and SX280 models below that have additional features like GPS and Wi-Fi capability.
Canon PowerShot SX240 Key Features
Well first off, you should know that this is a point-and-shoot camera, but it has some key features that makes it unique, for example, the Smart Auto mode that has scene detection technology. As you use the camera to take pictures, this Smart Auto technology determines the scene mode and displays it on the screen.
Apart from the regular Auto mode, that makes point-and-shoot cameras popular, the Canon PowerShot SX240 is also equipped with a manual focus. This provides a range of manual exposure modes for experienced photography enthusiasts. Through these manual exposure modes (P, Tv, Av, and M), you can adjust the exposure, shutter speed and the aperture value.
The "Tv" manual mode helps you adjust the shutter speed while automatically adjusting the aperture value. The "Av" manual mode helps you adjust the aperture value while automatically adjusting the shutter speed. And finally, the "M" manual mode allows you to adjust both, the shutter speed and the aperture value manually, to achieve your preferred exposure.
This Canon PowerShot SX240 has several other shooting modes, apart from the ones (auto and manual modes) mentioned above. For example, under the "SCN" (or Scene) mode, you can adjust the camera when taking pictures in low light or at night, with snowy backgrounds, shooting fireworks, making skin look smoother, as well as correcting white balance.
Also, under the SCN mode, you can set the camera to take fast 10.3 fps (frames per second) burst continuous shooting. In this mode, you can take up to ten shots, in rapid succession, while holding the shutter button all the way down. For best results of this feature, it is recommended that you use an SD card with Speed Class of 6 and above. This is great when capturing pictures with a lot of movement like sports, birds in flight, or any other moving objects that are otherwise difficult to capture in a single shot.
The other useful feature is the Auto Clip Recording or the Movie Digest shooting mode. Having this feature activated, the camera records short (between 2 to 4 seconds) video clips automatically while you're taking pictures during the day. At the end of each day, a movie digest is created by combining images into one file. One drawback of using this mode is that it will drain your battery faster.
With the Canon PowerShot SX240, you can shoot 1080p HD quality video clips as well as slow motion (in 240 fps Slow Motion Movie mode).
Stereo quality sound is recorded while taking video clips, however, no sound is recorded when taking slow-motion video clips.
Another useful feature of this digital camera is that you can use the zoom feature while recording video clips, but not for slow-motion. And finally, slow-motion video clips are limited to approximately 30 seconds. Overall, I like these video features on this Canon camera.
This camera also has an amazing 20x optical zoom (25-500mm) feature with image stabilization which is one of my favourite features.
The combined zoom, that is, optical and digital, is up to 80x. This is a great feature to have especially when capturing objects that are at a distance as well as objects that one can get close to, like birds and animals.
And finally, one of the features of this Canon camera that helps take great pictures is Image Stabilization which reduces the effect of "camera shake" while taking pictures, including macro (or close-up) shots. I also like the large 3.2-inch LCD screen and the HDMI connectivity.
Videos of Canon PowerShot SX280 Camera
The videos below include unboxing and review of the latest Canon PowerShot SX280 which is the successor to the SX240 and SX260. You will also find videos testing the full HD quality video of the camera as well as the 20x optical zoom feature. I decided to include videos of the SX280 model instead of the SX240 and SX260 models because it's the latest version and has a better image processor including additional features. Check the photo gallery section below for sample pictures taken with the SX240 Canon camera.
Canon PowerShot SX240 Battery Pack and Charger
As mentioned earlier, the SX240 comes with a single rechargeable lithium-ion battery pack and a battery charger. In my experience, it takes about a couple of hours to fully charge the 3.7 volt DC lithium-ion battery.
When charging the battery, you will see an orange LED light up once you plug in the battery charger into the power socket. Once the camera battery is fully charged, it will display a green LED light (as shown in the images above).
In order ensure that your battery lasts longer, make sure that you do not charge the battery for over 24 hours. One of the drawbacks that I’ve found with regards to this Canon camera is its battery life.
If you’re going to use the camera all day, one rechargeable battery will not be sufficient, especially if you’re using features like the Movie Digest and High-Speed continuous burst shooting. Therefore, its best to have carry an additional battery pack because you can’t use regular AA batteries either if your battery runs out.
SD Cards Compatible with Canon PowerShot SX240
The Canon PowerShot SX240 uses Secure Digital (SD) cards to store your digital pictures. The camera doesn't come with any internal memory nor does the package include an SD card. Therefore, you will need to buy one that is compatible with this camera. Using the correct SD card is very important to get best results.
It's always best to refer to your camera's User's Manual to check which SD card is compatible. This particular Canon PowerShot camera is compatible with SD, SDHC, SDXC storage memory cards.
As you probably know, SD cards have Speed Classes. You can use any Speed Class from Class 2 up to Class 10, in this Canon camera, however, an UHS (Ultra-High Speed) Class SD card will not be compatible. Therefore, make sure that you check the specification before buying your SD card.
Also, microSD cards of similar compatibility, as mentioned above, will work with an adapter on the Canon PowerShot SX240 HS digital camera. And finally, Eye-Fi SD cards (Wi-Fi enabled) are also compatible with this camera.
Pictures Taken with My Canon PowerShot SX240 CameraClick thumbnail to view full-size
Canon PowerShot Camera Specs Comparison Chart
Above you will find a comparison chart comparing the three models of the Canon PowerShot camera mentioned in this review (SX240, SX260, and SX280). As indicated earlier, the later model (SX280) has a few more features and functionality like GPS and Wi-Fi capability, including an improved image processor.
Also, full HD videos can be recorded in 30 and 60 fps (frames per second). Below you will find the two later camera models, the SX260 and the SX280 which can be purchased directly at Amazon.
Buy Canon PowerShot SX260 at Amazon
The PowerShot SX260 camera is the successor to the SX240. Though they look similar and have many identical features, like 12.1 MP, 20x optical zoom, and full HD video quality with stereo sound, the SX260 has built-in GPS functionality. Below, you will find the SX280 which is an enhanced model.
Buy Canon PowerShot SX280 at Amazon
The PowerShot SX280 camera is the successor to the SX260 model. At first glance they look quite similar and do have several identical features, like 12.1 MP resolution, 20x optical zoom, full HD video quality with stereo sound, and built-in GPS functionality, but additionally the SX280 has Wi-Fi capability and can record HD video at 60 fps.
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Updated: September 20, 2014
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