Canon G1 X Mark II vs M6 Mark II
The Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark II and the Canon EOS M6 Mark II are two digital cameras that were revealed to the public, respectively, in February 2014 and August 2019. The G1X Mark II is a fixed lens compact, while the M6 Mark II is a mirrorless interchangeable lens camera. The cameras are based on an 1.5-inch (G1X Mark II) and an APS-C (M6 Mark II) sensor. The G1X Mark II has a resolution of 13 megapixels, whereas the M6 Mark II provides 32.3 MP.
Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.
Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark II and the Canon EOS M6 Mark II? Which one should you buy? Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their body size, their imaging sensors, their shooting features, their input-output connections, and their reception by expert reviewers.
The physical size and weight of the Canon G1 X Mark II and the Canon M6 Mark II are illustrated in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three consecutive perspectives from the front, the top, and the back are available. All width, height and depth measures are rounded to the nearest millimeter.
If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Canon M6 Mark II is somewhat smaller (2 percent) than the Canon G1 X Mark II. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the G1X Mark II nor the M6 Mark II are weather-sealed.
The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete and possibly misleading, as the G1X Mark II has a lens built in, whereas the M6 Mark II is an interchangeable lens camera that requires a separate lens. Attaching the latter will add extra weight and bulk to the setup.
Concerning battery life, the G1X Mark II gets 240 shots out of its NB-12L battery, while the M6 Mark II can take 305 images on a single charge of its LP-E17 power pack. The power pack in the M6 Mark II can be charged via the USB port, which can be very convenient when travelling.
The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the two cameras alongside a broader set of comparators. If you would like to visualize and compare a different camera combination, you can navigate to the CAM-parator app and make your selection from a broad list of cameras there.
|1.||Canon G1 X Mark II||116 mm||74 mm||66 mm||553 g||240||n||Feb 2014||799|
|2.||Canon M6 Mark II||120 mm||70 mm||49 mm||408 g||305||n||Aug 2019||849|
|3.||Canon M50 Mark II||116 mm||88 mm||59 mm||387 g||305||n||Oct 2020||599|
|4.||Canon M50||116 mm||88 mm||59 mm||390 g||235||n||Feb 2018||779|
|5.||Canon M6||112 mm||68 mm||45 mm||390 g||295||n||Feb 2017||779|
|6.||Canon M5||116 mm||89 mm||61 mm||427 g||295||n||Sep 2016||979|
|7.||Canon M3||111 mm||68 mm||44 mm||366 g||250||n||Feb 2015||679|
|8.||Canon T6s||132 mm||101 mm||78 mm||565 g||440||n||Feb 2015||649|
|9.||Canon XC10||125 mm||102 mm||122 mm||1040 g||370||n||Apr 2015||2,499|
|10.||Canon SX60||128 mm||93 mm||114 mm||650 g||340||n||Sep 2014||549|
|11.||Canon G16||109 mm||76 mm||40 mm||356 g||360||n||Aug 2013||549|
|12.||Canon S120||100 mm||59 mm||29 mm||217 g||230||n||Aug 2013||449|
|13.||Canon G1 X||117 mm||81 mm||65 mm||534 g||250||n||Jan 2012||799|
|14.||Canon T1i||129 mm||98 mm||62 mm||520 g||400||n||Mar 2009||799|
|15.||Canon XSi||129 mm||98 mm||62 mm||524 g||500||n||Jan 2008||799|
|16.||Olympus Stylus 1||116 mm||87 mm||57 mm||402 g||410||n||Oct 2013||699|
|17.||Panasonic LX100||115 mm||66 mm||55 mm||393 g||300||n||Sep 2014||899|
|Notes: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.|
Any camera decision will obviously take relative prices into account. The retail prices at the time of the camera’s release place the model in the market relative to other models in the producer’s line-up and the competition. The G1X Mark II was launched at a lower price than the M6 Mark II, despite having a lens built in. Usually, retail prices stay at first close to the launch price, but after several months, discounts become available. Later in the product cycle and, in particular, when the replacement model is about to appear, further discounting and stock clearance sales often push the camera price considerably down. Then, after the new model is out, very good deals can frequently be found on the pre-owned market.
The size of the sensor inside a digital camera is one of the key determinants of image quality. A large sensor will tend to have larger individual pixels that provide better low-light sensitivity, wider dynamic range, and richer color-depth than smaller pixel-units in a sensor of the same technological generation. Further, a large sensor camera will give the photographer additional creative options when using shallow depth-of-field to isolate a subject from its background. On the downside, larger sensors tend to be associated with larger, more expensive camera bodies and lenses.
Of the two cameras under consideration, the Canon G1 X Mark II features an 1.5-inch sensor and the Canon M6 Mark II an APS-C sensor. The sensor area in the M6 Mark II is 29 percent bigger. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 1.85 and 1.6. The sensor in the G1X Mark II has a native 4:3 aspect ratio, while the one in the M6 Mark II offers a 3:2 aspect.
Technology-wise, the M6 Mark II uses a more advanced image processing engine (DIGIC 8) than the G1X Mark II (DIGIC 6), with benefits for noise reduction, color accuracy, and processing speed.
With 32.3MP, the M6 Mark II offers a higher resolution than the G1X Mark II (13MP), but the M6 Mark II has smaller individual pixels (pixel pitch of 3.23μm versus 4.49μm for the G1X Mark II). Yet, the M6 Mark II is a much more recent model (by 5 years and 6 months) than the G1X Mark II, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixel-units.
The resolution advantage of the Canon M6 Mark II implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the M6 Mark II for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 34.8 x 23.2 inches or 88.4 x 58.9 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 27.8 x 18.6 inches or 70.7 x 47.1 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 23.2 x 15.5 inches or 58.9 x 39.3 cm. The corresponding values for the Canon G1 X Mark II are 20.8 x 15.6 inches or 52.8 x 39.6 cm for good quality, 16.6 x 12.5 inches or 42.3 x 31.7 cm for very good quality, and 13.9 x 10.4 inches or 35.2 x 26.4 cm for excellent quality prints.
The M6 Mark II has on-sensor phase detect pixels, which results in fast and reliable autofocus acquisition even during live view operation.
The Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark II has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 12800. The corresponding ISO settings for the Canon EOS M6 Mark II are ISO 100 to ISO 25600, with the possibility to increase the ISO range to 100-51200.
Consistent information on actual sensor performance is available from DXO Mark for many cameras. This service assesses and scores the color depth ("DXO Portrait"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports") of camera sensors, and also publishes an overall camera score. The following table provides an overview of the physical sensor characteristics, as well as the sensor quality measurements for a selection of comparators.
| DXO |
|1.||Canon G1 X Mark II||1.5-inch||13.0||4160||3120||1080/30p||21.5||10.8||581||58|
|2.||Canon M6 Mark II||APS-C||32.3||6960||4640||4K/30p||..||..||..||..|
|3.||Canon M50 Mark II||APS-C||24.0||6000||4000||4K/24p||..||..||..||..|
|13.||Canon G1 X||1.5-inch||14.2||4352||3264||1080/24p||21.7||10.8||644||60|
|16.||Olympus Stylus 1||1/1.7||11.8||3968||2976||1080/30p||20.7||11.6||179||51|
|17.||Panasonic LX100||Four Thirds||12.7||4112||3088||4K/30p||22.3||12.5||553||67|
Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. The two cameras under consideration both have sensors whose read-out speed is fast enough to capture moving pictures, but the M6 Mark II provides a better video resolution than the G1X Mark II. It can shoot movie footage at 4K/30p, while the G1X Mark II is limited to 1080/30p.
Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The G1X Mark II and the M6 Mark II are similar in the sense that neither of the two has a viewfinder. The images are, thus, framed using live view on the rear LCD. However, optional viewfinders – the EVF-DC1 for the G1X Mark II and the EVF-DC2 for the M6 Mark II – are available as accessories. The following table reports on some other key feature differences and similarities of the Canon G1 X Mark II, the Canon M6 Mark II, and comparable cameras.
|1.||Canon G1 X Mark II||optional||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||1/4000s||5.2||Y||Y|
|2.||Canon M6 Mark II||optional||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||1/4000s||14.0||Y||n|
|3.||Canon M50 Mark II||2360||n||3.0||1040||swivel||Y||1/4000s||10.0||Y||n|
|13.||Canon G1 X||optical||n||3.0||922||Swivel||n||1/4000s||1.9||Y||Y|
|16.||Olympus Stylus 1||1440||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||1/2000s||7.0||Y||Y|
The reported shutter speed information refers to the use of the mechanical shutter. Yet, some cameras only have an electronic shutter, while others have an electronic shutter in addition to a mechanical one. In fact, the M6 Mark II is one of those camera that have an additional electronic shutter, which makes completely silent shooting possible. However, this mode is less suitable for photographing moving objects (risk of rolling shutter) or shooting under artificial light sources (risk of flickering).
The Canon G1 X Mark II and the Canon M6 Mark II both have an intervalometer built-in. This enables the photographer to capture time lapse sequences, such as flower blooming, a sunset or moon rise, without purchasing an external camera trigger and related software.
Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the G1X Mark II and the M6 Mark II write their files to SDXC cards. The M6 Mark II supports UHS-II cards (Ultra High Speed data transfer of up to 312 MB/s), while the G1X Mark II can use UHS-I cards (up to 104 MB/s).
For some imaging applications, the extent to which a camera can communicate with its environment can be an important aspect in the camera decision process. The table below provides an overview of the connectivity of the Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark II and Canon EOS M6 Mark II and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
| WiFi |
| NFC |
|1.||Canon G1 X Mark II||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|2.||Canon M6 Mark II||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y|
|3.||Canon M50 Mark II||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y|
|13.||Canon G1 X||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|16.||Olympus Stylus 1||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
It is notable that the M6 Mark II has a microphone port, which can help to improve the quality of audio recordings by attaching an external microphone. The G1X Mark II does not feature such a mic input.
The M6 Mark II is a recent model that features in the current product line-up of Canon. In contrast, the G1X Mark II has been discontinued (but can be found pre-owned on eBay). As a replacement in the same line of cameras, the G1X Mark II was succeeded by the Canon G1 X Mark III. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Canon website.
So what conclusions can be drawn? Which of the two cameras – the Canon G1 X Mark II or the Canon M6 Mark II – has the upper hand? Is one clearly better than the other? Below is a summary of the relative strengths of each of the two contestants.
Reasons to prefer the Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark II:
- Ready to shoot: Has a lens built-in, whereas the M6 Mark II requires a separate lens.
- Sharper images: Has hand-shake reducing image stabilization built-in.
- Easier device pairing: Supports NFC for fast wireless image transfer over short distances.
- More affordable: Was introduced at a lower price, despite coming with a built-in lens.
- More heavily discounted: Has been available for much longer (launched in February 2014).
Arguments in favor of the Canon EOS M6 Mark II:
- More detail: Has more megapixels (32.3 vs 13MP), which boosts linear resolution by 61%.
- Better image quality: Is equipped with a larger and more technologically advanced sensor.
- Richer colors: The sensor size advantage translates into images with better, more accurate colors.
- More dynamic range: Larger sensor captures a wider spectrum of light and dark details.
- Better low-light sensitivity: Larger sensor produces good images even in poorly lit environments.
- Better jpgs: Has a more modern image processing engine (DIGIC 8 vs DIGIC 6).
- Better video: Provides higher definition movie capture (4K/30p vs 1080/30p).
- Better live-view autofocus: Features on-sensor phase-detection for more confident autofocus.
- Better sound: Can connect to an external microphone for higher quality sound recording.
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (14 vs 5.2 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- Less disturbing: Has an electronic shutter option for completely silent shooting.
- More flexible: Takes interchangeable lenses and can thus be used with specialty optics.
- Longer lasting: Gets more shots (305 versus 240) out of a single battery charge.
- Easier travel charging: Can be conveniently charged via its USB port.
- Easier wireless transfer: Supports Bluetooth for image sharing without cables.
- Faster buffer clearing: Supports a more advanced SD data transfer standard (UHS-II vs UHS-I).
- More modern: Reflects 5 years and 6 months of technical progress since the G1X Mark II launch.
If the number of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the M6 Mark II is the clear winner of the contest (17 : 5 points). However, the relative importance of the various individual camera aspects will vary according to personal preferences and needs, so that you might like to apply corresponding weights to the particular features before making a decision on a new camera. A professional wildlife photographer will view the differences between cameras in a way that diverges from the perspective of a family photog, and a person interested in architecture has distinct needs from a sports shooter. Hence, the decision which camera is best and worth buying is often a very personal one.
How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Canon G1 X Mark II and the Canon M6 Mark II place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Travel-Zoom Camera and Best Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera listings whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.
In any case, while the specs-based evaluation of cameras can be instructive in revealing their potential as photographic tools, it remains partial and cannot reveal, for example, the shooting experience and imaging performance when actually working with the G1X Mark II or the M6 Mark II. At times, user reviews, such as those published at amazon, address these issues in a useful manner, but such feedback is on many occasions incomplete, inconsistent, and unreliable.
This is why expert reviews are important. The table below provides a synthesis of the camera assessments of some of the best known photo-gear review sites (amateurphotographer [AP], cameralabs [CL], dpreview [DPR], ephotozine [EPZ], photographyblog [PB]). As can be seen, the professional reviewers agree in many cases on the quality of different cameras, but sometimes their assessments diverge, reinforcing the earlier point that a camera decision is often a very personal choice.
|1.||Canon G1 X Mark II||3/5||+||77/100||4/5||4.5/5||Feb 2014||799|
|2.||Canon M6 Mark II||..||+||85/100||4/5||4/5||Aug 2019||849|
|3.||Canon M50 Mark II||4/5||..||..||4.5/5||3.5/5||Oct 2020||599|
|4.||Canon M50||..||+||79/100||..||3.5/5||Feb 2018||779|
|5.||Canon M6||..||..||80/100||4/5||4/5||Feb 2017||779|
|6.||Canon M5||4/5||+||82/100||4/5||4/5||Sep 2016||979|
|7.||Canon M3||4/5||o||75/100||4.5/5||4/5||Feb 2015||679|
|8.||Canon T6s||5/5||+||77/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Feb 2015||649|
|9.||Canon XC10||..||..||80/100||..||..||Apr 2015||2,499|
|10.||Canon SX60||3/5||+ +||75/100||4/5||4.5/5||Sep 2014||549|
|11.||Canon G16||4/5||+||..||4.5/5||4.5/5||Aug 2013||549|
|12.||Canon S120||..||+ +||..||4.5/5||4.5/5||Aug 2013||449|
|13.||Canon G1 X||5/5||+||76/100||4/5||4.5/5||Jan 2012||799|
|14.||Canon T1i||..||+ +||74/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Mar 2009||799|
|15.||Canon XSi||..||+ +||+ +||4/5||4.5/5||Jan 2008||799|
|16.||Olympus Stylus 1||..||+ +||..||4.5/5||4.5/5||Oct 2013||699|
|17.||Panasonic LX100||5/5||+ +||85/100||5/5||5/5||Sep 2014||899|
|Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.|
Care should be taken when interpreting the review scores above, though. The assessments were made in relation to similar cameras of the same technological generation. Hence, a score should always be seen in the context of the camera's market launch date and its price, and comparisons of ratings among very different cameras or across long time periods have little meaning. It should also be noted that some of the review sites have over time altered the way they render their verdicts.
Other camera comparisons
Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? In case you are interested in seeing how other cameras pair up, just make a corresponding selection in the search boxes below. Alternatively, you can follow any of the listed hyperlinks for comparisons that others found interesting.
Specifications: Canon G1 X Mark II vs Canon M6 Mark II
Below is a side-by-side comparison of the specs of the two cameras to facilitate a quick review of their differences and common features.
|Camera Model||Canon G1 X Mark II||Canon M6 Mark II|
|Camera Type||Fixed lens compact camera||Mirrorless system camera|
|Camera Lens||24-120mm f/2.0-3.9||Canon EF-M mount lenses|
|Launch Date||February 2014||August 2019|
|Launch Price||USD 799||USD 849|
|Sensor Specs||Canon G1 X Mark II||Canon M6 Mark II|
|Sensor Format||1.5" Sensor||APS-C Sensor|
|Sensor Size||18.7 x 14.0 mm||22.5 x 15.0 mm|
|Sensor Area||261.8 mm2||337.5 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||23.4 mm||27 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||13 Megapixels||32.3 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||4160 x 3120 pixels||6960 x 4640 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||4.49 μm||3.23 μm|
|Pixel Density||4.96 MP/cm2||9.57 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||Anti-Alias filter||Anti-Alias filter|
|Movie Capability||1080/30p Video||4K/30p Video|
|ISO Setting||100 - 12,800 ISO||100 - 25,600 ISO|
|ISO Boost||no Enhancement||100 - 51,200 ISO|
|Image Processor||DIGIC 6||DIGIC 8|
|DXO Sensor Quality (score)||58||..|
|DXO Color Depth (bits)||21.5||..|
|DXO Dynamic Range (EV)||10.8||..|
|DXO Low Light (ISO)||581||..|
|Screen Specs||Canon G1 X Mark II||Canon M6 Mark II|
|Viewfinder Type||Viewfinder optional||Viewfinder optional|
|LCD Framing||Live View||Live View|
|Rear LCD Size||3.0inch||3.0inch|
|LCD Resolution||1040k dots||1040k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Tilting screen||Tilting screen|
|Shooting Specs||Canon G1 X Mark II||Canon M6 Mark II|
|Focus System||Contrast-detect AF||On-Sensor Phase-detect|
|Manual Focusing Aid||Focus Peaking||Focus Peaking|
|Max Shutter Speed (mechanical)||1/4000s||1/4000s|
|Continuous Shooting||5.2 shutter flaps/s||14 shutter flaps/s|
|Electronic Shutter||no E-Shutter||up to 1/16000s|
|Time-Lapse Photography||Intervalometer built-in||Intervalometer built-in|
|Fill Flash||Build-in Flash||Build-in Flash|
|Storage Medium||SDXC cards||SDXC cards|
|Second Storage Option||Single card slot||Single card slot|
|UHS card support||UHS-I||UHS-II|
|Connectivity Specs||Canon G1 X Mark II||Canon M6 Mark II|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||mini HDMI||micro HDMI|
|Microphone Port||no MIC socket||External MIC port|
|Wifi Support||Wifi built-in||Wifi built-in|
|Near-Field Communication||NFC built-in||no NFC|
|Bluetooth Support||no Bluetooth||Bluetooth built-in|
|Body Specs||Canon G1 X Mark II||Canon M6 Mark II|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||240 shots per charge||305 shots per charge|
|In-Camera Charging||no USB charging||USB charging|
116 x 74 x 66 mm
(4.6 x 2.9 x 2.6 in)
120 x 70 x 49 mm
(4.7 x 2.8 x 1.9 in)
|Camera Weight||553 g (19.5 oz)||408 g (14.4 oz)|
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