Featuring a far-reaching 65x optical zoom lens, equivalent to 21-1,365mm in the 35mm format, the PowerShot SX60 HS Digital Camera from Canon will provide users with a compact, yet extremely versatile unit for capturing highly detailed images. Additionally, this camera is capable of full HD 1080p video recording at 60 fps and has an external microphone input for higher quality audio. The SX60 also combines a 16.1-megapixel High Sensitivity CMOS sensor and the DIGIC 6 image processor to create the Canon HS SYSTEM, allowing for accurate colors and fine detail to be captured in low-light conditions.
The SX60 offers two methods for composing images and video, either through the bright 3.0" vari-angle LCD display or an electronic viewfinder. Each features a 922k-dot resolution and works with the Zoom Framing Assist function to help track and capture subjects while at the furthest telephoto focal lengths. There is also a High Speed AF that when paired with the 6.4 fps continuous shooting speed you will be able to record a plethora of sharp stills and video at full resolution. Additionally, this camera is capable of RAW image capture.
Also packed into this camera is an Intelligent Image Stabilization system with eight different modes for getting the best possible image depending on the situation. And, in addition to all of the other features, the SX60 has built-in Wi-Fi connectivity with NFC for connecting to a compatible mobile device.
Canon PowerShot SX60 HS – Design and Handling
Like its predecessors, the Canon SX60 HS has a moulded plastic body that’s not too far off an entry-level DSLR in terms of style and frame. It’s large, but then a chunky body is required to offset the sheer size of the zoom lens when fully extended.
It feels robust,the Canon SX60 HS is a rather basic-feeling camera. Canon's tried to inject a slight sense of quality, though, by using aluminium for the outer part of the lens barrel. This is welcome, as this area will often be held or rested on something for a bit of extra stability.
Handling-wise the Canon SX60 HS is pretty good. The grip is large and we found it easy enough to wrap a good three fingers around it, giving you a firm hold of the camera. It’s arguably far more necessary than it is for most entry-level DSLR shooters, who are unlikely to need to deal with as extended a zoom range as offered here.
Canon PowerShot SX60 HS – Lens
So how much zoom do you get here? It’s a 65x lens, with focal range equivalent to 21-1365mm in the 35mm standard.
That’s a fairly dramatic increase compared to last year’s SX50, which offered the equivalent of 24-1200mm. You get more in each direction here: wider when fully retracted, and more zoom, too.
A 65x zoom is likely to make a few jaws drop, and rightly so given that it’s lengthier than most of the competition including the 60x Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ72 and the 50x Fujifilm X-S1.
The Canon SX60 HS offers a pretty intense stabilisation designed to let you shoot through most of the zoom range handheld. Canon says it offers the equivalent of 3.5 stops of shutter speed.
However, we found that at 1365mm – or anything close – you really need to use a tripod or monopod, or at least have somewhere to rest the camera for extra stability. Even if a fast shutter speed and the OIS are enough to keep photos sharp, it’s tricky just to keep your subject in the frame when shooting handheld.
Also, the maximum aperture of the Canon SX60 HS is just f/3.5-6.5. It’s quite slow, and both the cheaper Panasonic and Fujifilm rivals are faster, with f/2.8 maximum apertures. We’ll get onto the focusing and image quality effects of this later. But in short: don’t judge a lens simply by its magnification.