Review: Canon G11

Posted by Mark

I’ve had the Canon G11 for just over a month now and after using it practically on a daily basis. I did a lot of research before choosing to go with the G11 and I don’t regret my decision. I have mostly great things to say about this camera and will go through the different categories one by one.

Battery Life
I got my Canon G11 on December 11th and I charged it that same day. Its now January 15th and I still haven’t charged the camera since then. Not only that but the battery meter is still showing that the battery is full. This is perfect because it means when I travel I don’t need to pack the charger or buy an extra battery.

Usability and Feel
The camera doesn’t fit in my pocket so I spend most of the time either carrying it in my hand or in my bag if I am carrying one. It comes with a strap but it isn’t long enough to wear across the shoulder just around the neck which isn’t practical for me. The camera feels very solid and it’s also a bit heavy so it gives it a very durable feel. I love the dials on top and I use them a lot. I always keep the camera on “P” (Program Mode) which automatically adjusts the aperture and shutter speed but control the exposure (make the shot brighter or darker) I use the dial on the left to control that. On the right there are two other dials, one for the ISO which I also use a lot and the second to swap between the different programs. Other than the regular programs which you find on most cameras like aperture priority, shutter priority, automatic mode etc.. there are two custom modes called C1 and C2. These two positions contain your custom camera settings. For example I have C1 set the camera to “P”, change the format of the image to JPG, the dimensions to wide shot and the color setting to vivid. That’s the mode I use mostly when taking shots for my blog. C2 on the other hand sets the camera to “P” but then changes the image format to RAW+JPG and at full resolution (not wide). I use that setting in case there is a beautiful shot I want to capture at the highest quality. There are a ton of other settings you could also set for each mode as well but I won’t get into them here. I really wish my Nikon D90 had a custom mode feature and dials on top to control the iso and exposure.

Image Quality
It’s great for a point and shoot camera but no competition next to a good DSLR. The noise at fairly high ISO’s is pretty decent and I find myself often using ISO800 with no worries about the image coming out noisy with ISO1600 also being very usable. The only issue I have is with the white balance. Sometimes when indoors the images come out a bit too cold for my taste and that’s actually the only issue I have with the camera.

Swivel Screen
One of the coolest features in the camera for me is the swivel screen. It allows me to take pictures without having to hold the camera up to my face. I also like the fact that when the camera is not in use I fold the screen to face inwards which protects the screen while in my bag. For people who don’t like the swivel feature they can rotate the screen towards them and fold it in and keep it that way like a regular camera.

So overall I really love this camera. There were a lot of occasions where I wished I had purchased the Panasonic GF1 but in the end I realized the reason I got the Canon G11 is to use for my blog and when I travel and the GF1 although a great camera isn’t as practical (and also twice more expensive). I highly recommend this camera to anyone that is looking for small highly controllable and fully featured camera. I am going to give it a 4.5 out of 5, it looses points for the white balance issue I faced and the fact that it doesn’t fit in my jeans pocket.

If you’re interested in this camera it’s available in Kuwait for KD228 but I purchased mine from Amazon for just KD127.
Here is the link to the Canon G11 on Amazon [Link]


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20 comments, add your own...


  1. Pinkberry lover says:

    i was thinking of getting a smaller camera than my DSLR (D80),, i had a look at G10, liked it more than G11 ,, which one has a better pic qualitiy ? what do u recommend ?

  2. Mark says:

    The G10 is now discontinued because it was replaced by the G11. Both the G10 and G11 use the same image sensor but the G11 is much better at higher ISO’s. Plus the G10 lacks the swivel screen.

  3. desertsky says:

    Wow.Look at the price difference.It clearly shows how people are being ripped off in Kuwait.

  4. Bu Yousef says:

    I’ve been waiting for your review… Checked some shots on Flickr by this cam and they look good. The night ones are as you said a little too grainy.

    With no Nikon equivalent… I think my travel cam is going have to be this Canon! I’m getting tired of carrying my great but heavy D300 everywhere I go. It will have to only go with me to new destinations. The G11 will do the job for short trips to familiar places.

  5. iniesta says:

    mark, after a couple of weeks of searching for the right camera for me i decided that the G11 was the perfect choice, so i went to the dealer to check it out
    i was very impressed overall with the camera, but was very dissapointed with the fact that it has only 5x optical zoom
    i really like to use the zoom feature when taking pics, is this an issue with this camera or does it give more than enough zoom for everyday non pro use?
    i used my sis’s camera, a canon is20 which had 20x optical zoom and was blown away with its zoom capability, but the pics lacked that certian quality and came out a bit bland
    can you give your opinion since you used this camera for a month now concerning its zoom features
    thanks

  6. Mark says:

    Well 5X zoom is 5 more than I need. I hate zoom lenses and would rather have 1 great fantastic prime lens over a zoom lens any day. With my D90 even though I have the 18-105 kit lens I use my prime 28mm and 50mm 95% of the time. The GF1 for example if I got it would be with the 20mm prime lens.

    So I can’t tell you how good or bad the zoom is because I barely use it.

  7. vampire says:

    i’ve used the G9 and G10 and i fell in love,, it’s the best bang for the buck imo
    very user friendly

  8. Teddy B. says:

    I have the G10, and you can see the quality of the pics on my blog. I switched from my nikon to the g10 because I was tired of carrying a large camera. Day 135 to day 139 shows you the g10 versus my nikon d40 which has a powerful lens if you want to compare. As for the g11, no offence mark but the reason i didn’t get it was because of the swivel screen :P I’m very old school and liked the retro look of the canonG and the screen modernised it.

    It’s a beautiful camera!

  9. Mark says:

    lol my first proper digital Camera was a Nikon 2500 Coolpix which swiveled so for me it was great to get back to one.

  10. nowings says:

    i bought it for a friend from Abu Dhabi for 2499 AED, around 195 KD.

  11. Ghada says:

    I just used the G11 during a vacation trip. I am extremely happy and impressed with the pics. it can shoot in different modes and very low light. My relative, had the G10,was with me on the same trip and the difference in quality was obvious. despite the G11′s bulkiness and heavier weight, it was well worth it.

  12. ahmad says:

    got my g10

    in november from al ghanim @ 170 kd

  13. Question says:

    Mark !
    Whats the shipping weight for this item ? u used aramex ?
    i might buy 1 but i have to pay customs and aramex delivery so i need to know the shipping weight !

  14. AndyQ8 says:

    I still have a Canon G7 from 2004!

  15. Yours Truly says:

    Hey Mark, Do you still recommend this camera or something better has been released now (same class)? I also need it for my blog.

  16. Mark says:

    Would still highly recommend it and if I had to make a purchase today I would choose the same camera.

  17. Shahad says:

    Wow. Thanks a bunch!! This is going to be my new travelling camera :D

  18. Ed says:

    I gave the G11 a lot of thought, but finally I went for the mini twin brother, the S90, and it rocks. Is the same captor, but a F2 lens, can take pictures with even less light and it never leaves my pocket on a trip.

    http://www.wired.com/reviews/product/pr_canon_s90


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