It's not every day that Canon launches a whole new series of cameras, but with the announcement of the PowerShot SX100 IS that is exactly what it has done. The SX series aims to combine user-friendly automatic features and an easy-to-use interface with creative manual features for the more experienced user, which sounds like a good idea to me. It's certainly off to a flying start with the SX100 IS, which has a specification that will impress anyone looking for a capable compact camera.
It features a 10x zoom f/2.8-4.3 lens with optical image stabilisation, an 8.0 megapixel sensor with DIGIC III image processing, 1600 ISO maximum sensitivity, Face Detection Technology enhanced with new Face Select and Track function and dedicated Face Selector button, a 2.5in LCD screen and 18 shooting modes including full manual control.
It's a nice looking camera too, large enough to be easy to handle without being bulky, and a bit more aesthetically pleasing than the often rather boxy A-series. The body is plastic, but as usual with Canon products build quality is very good. The best news about the PowerShot SX100 IS is the price. It will be available from September 2007 priced £299.