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Canon G5 X vs G9X Mark II

The Canon PowerShot G5 X and the Canon PowerShot G9 X Mark II are two digital cameras that were officially introduced, respectively, in October 2015 and January 2017. Both the G5X and the G9X Mark II are fixed lens compact cameras that are equipped with an one-inch sensor. Both cameras offer a resolution of 20 megapixels.

Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.

Headline Specifications
Canon G5 X versus Canon G9 X Mark II
Canon G5 X Canon G9 X Mark II
Fixed lens compact camera Fixed lens compact camera
24-100mm f/1.8-2.8 28-84mm f/2.0-4.9
20 MP, 1" Sensor 20 MP, 1" Sensor
1080/60p Video 1080/60p Video
ISO 125-12,800 (125 - 25,600) ISO 125-12,800
Electronic viewfinder (2360k dots) No viewfinder, LCD framing
3.0 LCD, 1040k dots 3.0 LCD, 1040k dots
Swivel touchscreen Fixed touchscreen
5.9 shutter flaps per second 8.2 shutter flaps per second
210 shots per battery charge235 shots per battery charge
112 x 76 x 44 mm, 353 g 98 x 58 x 31 mm, 206 g

Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Canon PowerShot G5 X and the Canon PowerShot G9 X 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.

Body comparison

The physical size and weight of the Canon G5 X and the Canon G9 X Mark II are illustrated in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three successive views from the front, the top, and the rear are shown. All size dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

The G9X Mark II can be obtained in two different colors (black, silver), while the G5X is only available in black.

Size Canon G5 X vs Canon G9 X Mark II
Compare G5X versus G9X Mark II top
Comparison G5X or G9X Mark II rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Canon G9 X Mark II is considerably smaller (33 percent) than the Canon G5 X. Moreover, the G9X Mark II is substantially lighter (42 percent) than the G5X. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the G5X nor the G9X Mark II are weather-sealed.

The battery packs of both cameras can be charged via USB, which can be very convenient when travelling.

The adjacent table lists the principal physical characteristics of the two cameras alongside a wider set of alternatives. If you want to switch the focus of the display and review another camera pair, just select a new right or left comparator from among the camera models in the table. Alternatively, you can also move across to the CAM-parator tool and choose from the broad selection of possible camera comparisons there.

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Body Specifications
  Camera
Model
Camera
Width
Camera
Height
Camera
Depth
Camera
Weight
Battery
Life 1
Weather
Sealing
Camera
Launch 2
Launch
Price (USD)
Street
Price
 
Canon G5 X 112 mm 76 mm 44 mm 353 g 210 n Oct 2015 799i
 
Canon G9 X Mark II 98 mm 58 mm 31 mm 206 g 235 n Jan 2017 529 i
 
Canon G5 X Mark II 111 mm 61 mm 46 mm 340 g 230 n Jul 2019 899 i
 
Canon G7 X Mark III 105 mm 61 mm 41 mm 304 g 235 n Jul 2019 749 i
 
Canon M100 108 mm 67 mm 35 mm 302 g 295 n Aug 2017 499i
 
Canon SL2 122 mm 93 mm 70 mm 453 g 650 n Jun 2017 549i
 
Canon G7 X Mark II 106 mm 61 mm 42 mm 319 g 265 n Feb 2016 699i
 
Canon G9 X 98 mm 58 mm 31 mm 209 g 220 n Oct 2015 529i
 
Canon M3 111 mm 68 mm 44 mm 366 g 250 n Feb 2015 679i
 
Canon G7 X 103 mm 60 mm 40 mm 304 g 210 n Sep 2014 699i
 
Panasonic LX10 106 mm 60 mm 42 mm 310 g 260 n Sep 2016 699 i
 
Panasonic FZ1000 137 mm 99 mm 131 mm 831 g 360 n Jun 2014 899i
 
Sony RX100 IV 102 mm 58 mm 41 mm 298 g 280 n Jun 2015 999i
 
Sony RX100 III 102 mm 58 mm 41 mm 290 g 320 n May 2014 799i
Notes: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.
(1) Number of images that can be taken on a full battery charge according to the CIPA-standard; (2) Official announcement.

Any camera decision will obviously take relative prices into account. The listed launch prices provide an indication of the market segment that the manufacturer of the cameras have been targeting. The G9X Mark II was launched at a markedly lower price (by 34 percent) than the G5X, which puts it into a different market segment. Normally, street prices remain initially close to the MSRP, but after a couple of months, the first discounts appear. 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.

Sensor comparison

The imaging sensor is at the core of digital cameras and its size is one of the main determining factors of image quality. All other things equal, a large sensor will have larger individual pixel-units that offer better low-light sensitivity, wider dynamic range, and richer color-depth than smaller pixels in a sensor of the same technological generation. Moreover, a large sensor camera will give the photographer more control over depth-of-field in the image and, thus, the ability to better isolate a subject from the background. On the downside, larger sensors are more costly to manufacture and tend to lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.

Both cameras under consideration feature an one-inch sensor and have a format factor (sometimes also referred to as "crop factor") of 2.7. Within the spectrum of camera sensors, this places the review cameras among the medium-sized sensor cameras that aim to strike a balance between image quality and portability. Both cameras have a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 3:2.

Technology-wise, the G9X Mark II uses a more advanced image processing engine (DIGIC 7) than the G5X (DIGIC 6), with benefits for noise reduction, color accuracy, and processing speed.

Canon G5 X and Canon G9 X Mark II sensor measures

The two cameras under review do not only share the same sensor size, but also offer an identical resolution of 20 megapixels. This similarity in sensor specs implies that both the G5X and the G9X Mark II have the same pixel density, as well as the same pixel size. It should, however, be noted that the G9X Mark II is a somewhat more recent model (by 1 year and 2 months) than the G5X, and its sensor might have benefitted from technological advances during this time.

The Canon PowerShot G5 X has a native sensitivity range from ISO 125 to ISO 12800, which can be extended to ISO 125-25600. The corresponding ISO settings for the Canon PowerShot G9 X Mark II are ISO 125 to ISO 12800 (no boost).

G5X versus G9X Mark II MP

Since 2007, DXO Mark has published sensor performance measurements that have been derived using a consistent methodology. 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.

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Sensor Characteristics
  Camera
Model
Sensor
Class
Resolution
(MP)
Horiz.
Pixels
Vert.
Pixels
Video
Format
DXO
Portrait
DXO
Landscape
DXO
Sports
DXO
Overall
 
Canon G5 X 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p........
 
Canon G9 X Mark II 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p21.912.552265
 
Canon G5 X Mark II 1-inch 20.0 5472 36484K/30p........
 
Canon G7 X Mark III 1-inch 20.0 5472 36484K/30p........
 
Canon M100 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p23.512.9127278
 
Canon SL2 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p23.613.4104179
 
Canon G7 X Mark II 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p........
 
Canon G9 X 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p21.512.349563
 
Canon M3 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/30p22.811.8116972
 
Canon G7 X 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p23.012.755671
 
Panasonic LX10 1-inch 20.0 5472 36484K/30p........
 
Panasonic FZ1000 1-inch 20.0 5472 36484K/30p22.111.751764
 
Sony RX100 IV 1-inch 20.0 5472 36484K/30p22.812.659170
 
Sony RX100 III 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p22.412.349567

Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. Both cameras under consideration have a sensor with sufficiently fast read-out times for moving pictures, and both provide the same movie specifications (1080/60p).

Feature comparison

Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a variety of features. For example, the G5X has an electronic viewfinder (2360k dots), which can be very helpful when shooting in bright sunlight. In contrast, the G9X Mark II relies on live view and the rear LCD for framing. The adjacent table lists some of the other core features of the Canon G5 X and Canon G9 X Mark II along with similar information for a selection of comparators.

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Core Features
  Camera
Model
Viewfinder
(Type or
000 dots)
Control
Panel
(yes/no)
LCD
Size
(inch)
LCD
Resolution
(000 dots)
LCD
Attach-
ment
Touch
Screen
(yes/no)
Mech
Shutter
Speed
Shutter
Flaps
(1/sec)
Built-in
Flash
(yes/no)
Built-in
Image
Stab
 
Canon G5 X2360 n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/2000s 5.9 Y Y
 
Canon G9 X Mark IInone n 3.0 1040 fixed Y 1/2000s 8.2 Y Y
 
Canon G5 X Mark II2360 n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 1/2000s 30 Y Y
 
Canon G7 X Mark IIInone n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 1/2000s 30 Y Y
 
Canon M100none n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 1/4000s 6.1 Y n
 
Canon SL2optical n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 5.0 Y n
 
Canon G7 X Mark IInone n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 1/2000s 8.0 Y Y
 
Canon G9 Xnone n 3.0 1040 fixed Y 1/2000s 6.0 Y Y
 
Canon M3optional n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 1/4000s 4.2 Y n
 
Canon G7 Xnone n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 1/2000s 6.5 Y Y
 
Panasonic LX10none n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 1/4000s 10.0 Y Y
 
Panasonic FZ10002359 n 3.0 921 swivel n 1/4000s 12.0 Y Y
 
Sony RX100 IV2359 n 3.0 1228 tilting n 1/2000s 16.0 Y Y
 
Sony RX100 III1440 n 3.0 1229 tilting n 1/2000s 10.0 Y Y
The G5X has an articulated LCD that can be turned to be front-facing. This characteristic will be appreciated by vloggers and photographers who are interested in snapping selfies. In contrast, the G9X Mark II does not have a selfie-screen.

The Canon G5 X and the Canon G9 X 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.

Both the G5X and the G9X Mark II have zoom lenses built in. The G5X has a 24-100mm f/1.8-2.8 optic and the G9X Mark II offers a 28-84mm f/2.0-4.9 (focal lengths in full frame equivalent terms). Hence, the G5X provides a wider angle of view at the short end, as well as more tele-photo reach at the long end than the G9X Mark II. The G5X offers the faster maximum aperture.

Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the G5X and the G9X Mark II write their files to SDXC cards. Both cameras can use UHS-I cards, which provide for Ultra High Speed data transfer of up to 104 MB/s.

Connectivity comparison

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 G5 X and Canon PowerShot G9 X Mark II and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.

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Input-Output Connections
  Camera
Model
Hotshoe
Port
Internal
Microphone
Internal
Speaker
Microphone
Port
Headphone
Port
HDMI
Port
USB
Port
WiFi
Support
NFC
Support
Bluetooth
Support
 
Canon G5 XYstereomono--mini2.0YY-
 
Canon G9 X Mark II-stereomono--micro2.0YYY
 
Canon G5 X Mark II-stereomono--micro3.1Y-Y
 
Canon G7 X Mark III-stereomonoY-micro3.1Y-Y
 
Canon M100-stereomono--micro2.0YYY
 
Canon SL2YstereomonoY-mini2.0YYY
 
Canon G7 X Mark II-stereomono--micro2.0YY-
 
Canon G9 X-stereomono--micro2.0YY-
 
Canon M3YstereomonoY-mini2.0YY-
 
Canon G7 X-stereomono--micro2.0YY-
 
Panasonic LX10-stereomono--micro2.0Y--
 
Panasonic FZ1000YstereomonoY-micro2.0YY-
 
Sony RX100 IV-stereomono--micro2.0YY-
 
Sony RX100 III-stereomono--micro2.0YY-

It is notable that the G5X has a hotshoe, while the G9X Mark II does not. This socket makes it possible to easily attach optional accessories, such as an external flash gun.

The G9X Mark II is a recent model that features in the current product line-up of Canon. In contrast, the G5X has been discontinued (but can be found pre-owned on eBay). As a replacement in the same line of cameras, the G5X was succeeded by the Canon G5 X Mark II. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Canon website.

Review summary

So what is the bottom line? Is the Canon G5 X better than the Canon G9 X Mark II or vice versa? The listing below highlights the relative strengths of the two models.


Advantages of the Canon PowerShot G5 X:

  • Easier framing: Has an electronic viewfinder for image composition and settings control.
  • More flexible LCD: Has a swivel screen for odd-angle shots in portrait or landscape orientation.
  • More selfie-friendly: Has an articulated screen that can be turned to be front-facing.
  • Better light gathering: Has a lens with a wider maximum aperture (f/1.8 vs f/2.0).
  • Wider view: Has a wider-angle lens that facilitates landscape or interior shots.
  • More tele-reach: Has a longer tele-lens for perspective compression and subject magnification.
  • Better lighting: Features a hotshoe and can thus hold and trigger an external flash gun.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been on the market for longer (launched in October 2015).


Arguments in favor of the Canon PowerShot G9 X Mark II:

  • Better jpgs: Has a more modern image processing engine (DIGIC 7 vs DIGIC 6).
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (8.2 vs 5.9 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • More compact: Is smaller (98x58mm vs 112x76mm) and will fit more readily into a bag.
  • Less heavy: Has a lower weight (by 147g or 42 percent) and is thus easier to take along.
  • Longer lasting: Gets more shots (235 versus 210) out of a single battery charge.
  • Easier wireless transfer: Supports Bluetooth for image sharing without cables.
  • More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced category (34 percent cheaper at launch).
  • More modern: Was introduced somewhat (1 year and 2 months) more recently.

If the count of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a measure, the match-up finishes in a tie (8 points each). However, the pertinence of the various camera strengths will differ across photographers, so that you might want to weigh individual camera traits according to their importance for your own imaging needs before making a camera decision. A professional wedding photographer will view the differences between cameras in a way that diverges from the perspective of a travel photog, and a person interested in cityscapes has distinct needs from a macro shooter. Hence, the decision which camera is best and worth buying is often a very personal one.

G5X 08:08 G9X Mark II

How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Canon G5 X and the Canon G9 X Mark II place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Travel-Zoom Camera listing 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 G5X or the G9X Mark II. User reviews that are available, for instance, at amazon can sometimes shed light on these issues, but such feedback is all too often partial, inconsistent, and inaccurate.

Expert reviews

This is why hands-on reviews by experts are important. The following table reports the overall ratings of the cameras as published by some of the major camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, and photographyblog). 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.

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Review Scores
  Camera
Model
camera
  labs  
dp
review  
ephoto
  zine  
imaging
resource
photography
  blog  
Camera
Launch
Launch
Price (USD)
Street
Price
 
Canon G5 X+ +78/1004.5/54/54.5/5 Oct 2015 799i
 
Canon G9 X Mark II..75/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jan 2017 529 i
 
Canon G5 X Mark II+82/100....4/5 Jul 2019 899 i
 
Canon G7 X Mark III+ +81/1004/5.... Jul 2019 749 i
 
Canon M100+..4/5..3.5/5 Aug 2017 499i
 
Canon SL2+ +78/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jun 2017 549i
 
Canon G7 X Mark II+ +81/1004.5/54/54.5/5 Feb 2016 699i
 
Canon G9 X+ +..4.5/54/54.5/5 Oct 2015 529i
 
Canon M3o75/1004.5/54.5/54/5 Feb 2015 679i
 
Canon G7 X+ +77/1004.5/53.5/54.5/5 Sep 2014 699i
 
Panasonic LX10+ +81/1004/54.5/54.5/5 Sep 2016 699 i
 
Panasonic FZ1000+ +82/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jun 2014 899i
 
Sony RX100 IV+ +85/1004/54.5/54.5/5 Jun 2015 999i
 
Sony RX100 III+ +82/1004.5/54.5/55/5 May 2014 799i
Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.

The review scores listed above should be treated with care, though. The assessments were made in relation to similar cameras of the same technological generation. Thus, a score needs to be put into the context of the launch date and the launch price of the camera, and rating-comparisons among cameras that span long time periods or concern very differently equipped models make little sense. It should also be noted that some of the review sites have over time altered the way they render their verdicts.

Canon G5 X:
Check Ebay offers
Canon G9 X Mark II:
Check Amazon price

Other camera comparisons

Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? If you would like to see a different side-by-side camera review, just use the search menu below. Alternatively, you can follow any of the listed hyperlinks for comparisons that others found interesting.

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    Specifications: Canon G5 X vs Canon G9 X 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 Specifications
    Camera Model Canon G5 X Canon G9 X Mark II
    Camera Type Fixed lens compact camera Fixed lens compact camera
    Camera Lens 24-100mm f/1.8-2.8 28-84mm f/2.0-4.9
    Launch Date October 2015 January 2017
    Launch Price USD 799 USD 529
    Sensor Specs Canon G5 X Canon G9 X Mark II
    Sensor Technology BSI-CMOS BSI-CMOS
    Sensor Format 1" Sensor 1" Sensor
    Sensor Size 13.2 x 8.8 mm 13.2 x 8.8 mm
    Sensor Area 116.16 mm2 116.16 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 15.9 mm 15.9 mm
    Crop Factor 2.7x 2.7x
    Sensor Resolution 20 Megapixels 20 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 5472 x 3648 pixels 5472 x 3648 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 2.41 μm 2.41 μm
    Pixel Density 17.18 MP/cm2 17.18 MP/cm2
    Moiré control Anti-Alias filter Anti-Alias filter
    Movie Capability 1080/60p Video 1080/60p Video
    ISO Setting 125 - 12,800 ISO 125 - 12,800 ISO
    ISO Boost 125 - 25,600 ISO no Enhancement
    Image Processor DIGIC 6 DIGIC 7
    DXO Sensor Quality (score) .. 65
    DXO Color Depth (bits) .. 21.9
    DXO Dynamic Range (EV) .. 12.5
    DXO Low Light (ISO) .. 522
    Screen Specs Canon G5 X Canon G9 X Mark II
    Viewfinder Type Electronic viewfinder no viewfinder
    Viewfinder Field of View 100%
    Viewfinder Magnification
    Viewfinder Resolution 2360k dots
    LCD Framing Live View Live View
    Rear LCD Size 3.0inch 3.0inch
    LCD Resolution 1040k dots 1040k dots
    LCD Attachment Swivel screen Fixed screen
    Touch Input Touchscreen Touchscreen
    Shooting Specs Canon G5 X Canon G9 X Mark II
    Focus System Contrast-detect AF Contrast-detect AF
    Manual Focusing AidFocus PeakingFocus Peaking
    Max Shutter Speed (mechanical) 1/2000s 1/2000s
    Continuous Shooting 5.9 shutter flaps/s 8.2 shutter flaps/s
    Time-Lapse PhotographyIntervalometer built-inIntervalometer 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-I
    Connectivity Specs Canon G5 X Canon G9 X Mark II
    External Flash Hotshoe no Hotshoe
    USB Connector USB 2.0 USB 2.0
    HDMI Port mini HDMI micro HDMI
    Wifi Support Wifi built-in Wifi built-in
    Near-Field Communication NFC built-in NFC built-in
    Bluetooth Support no Bluetooth Bluetooth built-in
    Body Specs Canon G5 X Canon G9 X Mark II
    Battery Type NB-13L NB-13L
    Battery Life (CIPA)210 shots per charge235 shots per charge
    In-Camera Charging USB charging USB charging
    Body Dimensions 112 x 76 x 44 mm
    (4.4 x 3.0 x 1.7 in)
    98 x 58 x 31 mm
    (3.9 x 2.3 x 1.2 in)
    Camera Weight 353 g (12.5 oz) 206 g (7.3 oz)

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