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Canon G9 X Mark II vs SX720

The Canon PowerShot G9 X Mark II and the Canon PowerShot SX720 HS are two digital cameras that were announced, respectively, in January 2017 and February 2016. Both the G9X Mark II and the SX720 are fixed lens compact cameras that are based on an one-inch (G9X Mark II) and a 1/2.3-inch (SX720) sensor. The G9X Mark II has a resolution of 20 megapixels, whereas the SX720 provides 20.2 MP.

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

Headline Specifications
Canon G9 X Mark II versus Canon SX720
Canon G9 X Mark II Canon SX720
Fixed lens compact camera Fixed lens compact camera
28-84mm f/2.0-4.9 24-960mm f/3.3-6.9
20 MP, 1" Sensor 20.2 MP, 1/2.3" Sensor
1080/60p Video 1080/60p Video
ISO 125-12,800 ISO 80-3,200
No viewfinder, LCD framing No viewfinder, LCD framing
3.0 LCD, 1040k dots 3.0 LCD, 922k dots
Fixed touchscreen Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)
8.2 shutter flaps per second 5.9 shutter flaps per second
235 shots per battery charge250 shots per battery charge
98 x 58 x 31 mm, 206 g 110 x 64 x 36 mm, 270 g

Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Canon PowerShot G9 X Mark II and the Canon PowerShot SX720 HS? 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

An illustration of the physical size and weight of the Canon G9 X Mark II and the Canon SX720 is provided in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three consecutive views from the front, the top, and the rear side 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 SX720 is also available in two color-versions, but different ones (black, red).

Size Canon G9 X Mark II vs Canon SX720
Compare G9X Mark II versus SX720 top
Comparison G9X Mark II or SX720 rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Canon SX720 is notably larger (24 percent) than the Canon G9 X Mark II. Moreover, the SX720 is markedly heavier (31 percent) than the G9X Mark II. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the G9X Mark II nor the SX720 are weather-sealed.

The power pack in the G9X Mark II can be charged via the USB port, so that it is not always necessary to take the battery charger along when travelling.

The following table provides a synthesis of the main physical specifications of the two cameras and other similar ones. In case you want to display and compare another camera duo, just click on the right or left arrow next to the camera that you would like to inspect. Alternatively, you can also use the CAM-parator to select your camera combination among a larger number of options.

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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 G9 X Mark II 98 mm 58 mm 31 mm 206 g 235 n Jan 2017 529 i
 
Canon SX720 110 mm 64 mm 36 mm 270 g 250 n Feb 2016 379i
 
Canon 2000D 129 mm 101 mm 78 mm 475 g 500 n Feb 2018 449 i
 
Canon SX740 110 mm 64 mm 40 mm 299 g 265 n Jul 2018 399 i
 
Canon SX70 127 mm 91 mm 117 mm 608 g 325 n Sep 2018 549 i
 
Canon 77D 131 mm 100 mm 76 mm 540 g 600 n Feb 2017 899 i
 
Canon 200D 122 mm 93 mm 70 mm 453 g 650 n Jun 2017 549i
 
Canon M100 108 mm 67 mm 35 mm 302 g 295 n Aug 2017 499i
 
Canon SX730 110 mm 64 mm 40 mm 300 g 250 n Apr 2017 399i
 
Canon G7 X Mark II 106 mm 61 mm 42 mm 319 g 265 n Feb 2016 699i
 
Canon SX620 97 mm 57 mm 28 mm 182 g 295 n May 2016 279 i
 
Canon G9 X 98 mm 58 mm 31 mm 209 g 220 n Oct 2015 529i
 
Canon SX710 113 mm 66 mm 35 mm 269 g 230 n Jan 2015 349i
 
Canon S120 100 mm 59 mm 29 mm 217 g 230 n Aug 2013 449i
 
Panasonic TZ90 112 mm 67 mm 41 mm 322 g 380 n Apr 2017 449i
 
Sony HX99 102 mm 58 mm 36 mm 242 g 370 n Aug 2018 449 i
 
Sony HX95 102 mm 58 mm 36 mm 242 g 370 n Aug 2018 429 i
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 naturally be influenced heavily by the price. The listed launch prices provide an indication of the market segment that the manufacturer of the cameras have been targeting. The SX720 was launched at a markedly lower price (by 28 percent) than the G9X Mark II, 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 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. 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.

Of the two cameras under consideration, the Canon G9 X Mark II features an one-inch sensor and the Canon SX720 a 1/2.3-inch sensor. The sensor area in the SX720 is 76 percent smaller. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 2.7 and 5.6. The sensor in the G9X Mark II has a native 3:2 aspect ratio, while the one in the SX720 offers a 4:3 aspect.

In terms of chip-set technology, the G9X Mark II uses a more advanced image processing engine (DIGIC 7) than the SX720 (DIGIC 6), with benefits for noise reduction, color accuracy, and processing speed.

Canon G9 X Mark II and Canon SX720 sensor measures

Despite having a smaller sensor, the SX720 offers a slightly higher resolution of 20.2 megapixels, compared with 20 MP of the G9X Mark II. This megapixels advantage comes at the cost of a higher pixel density and a smaller size of the individual pixel (with a pixel pitch of 1.18μm versus 2.41μm for the G9X Mark II). Moreover, it should be noted that the G9X Mark II is a somewhat more recent model (by 10 months) than the SX720, and its sensor might have benefitted from technological advances during this time that further enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixels. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the SX720 has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.

The Canon PowerShot G9 X Mark II has a native sensitivity range from ISO 125 to ISO 12800. The corresponding ISO settings for the Canon PowerShot SX720 HS are ISO 80 to ISO 3200 (no boost).

G9X Mark II versus SX720 MP

Since 2007, DXO Mark has published sensor performance measurements that have been derived using a consistent methodology. This service is based on lab testing and assigns an overall score to each camera sensor, as well as ratings for dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), color depth ("DXO Portrait"), and low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"). The table below summarizes the physical sensor characteristics and sensor quality findings and compares them across a set of similar cameras.

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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 G9 X Mark II 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p21.912.552265
 
Canon SX720 1/2.3 20.2 5184 38881080/60p........
 
Canon 2000D APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/30p22.611.9100971
 
Canon SX740 1/2.3 20.2 5184 38884K/30p........
 
Canon SX70 1/2.3 20.2 5184 38884K/30p........
 
Canon 77D APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p23.613.397178
 
Canon 200D APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p23.613.4104179
 
Canon M100 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p23.512.9127278
 
Canon SX730 1/2.3 20.2 5184 38881080/60p........
 
Canon G7 X Mark II 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p........
 
Canon SX620 1/2.3 20.2 5184 38881080/30p........
 
Canon G9 X 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p21.512.349563
 
Canon SX710 1/2.3 20.2 5184 38881080/60p........
 
Canon S120 1/1.7 12.0 4000 30001080/60p21.311.924656
 
Panasonic TZ90 1/2.3 20.2 5184 38884K/30p19.110.610636
 
Sony HX99 1/2.3 18.0 4896 36724K/30p........
 
Sony HX95 1/2.3 18.0 4896 36724K/30p........

Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but also of capturing video footage. Both cameras under consideration are equipped with sensors that have a sufficiently high read-out speed for moving images, and both provide the same movie specifications (1080/60p).

Feature comparison

Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The G9X Mark II and the SX720 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. The table below summarizes some of the other core capabilities of the Canon G9 X Mark II and Canon SX720 in connection with corresponding information for a sample of similar cameras.

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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 G9 X Mark IInone n 3.0 1040 fixed Y 1/2000s 8.2 Y Y
 
Canon SX720none n 3.0 922 fixed n 1/3200s 5.9 Y Y
 
Canon 2000Doptical n 3.0 920 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
 
Canon SX740none n 3.0 922 tilting n 1/3200s 10.0 Y Y
 
Canon SX702360 n 3.0 922 swivel n 1/2000s 10.0 Y Y
 
Canon 77Doptical Y 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 6.0 Y n
 
Canon 200Doptical n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 5.0 Y n
 
Canon M100none n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 1/4000s 6.1 Y n
 
Canon SX730none n 3.0 922 tilting n 1/3200s 5.9 Y Y
 
Canon G7 X Mark IInone n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 1/2000s 8.0 Y Y
 
Canon SX620none n 3.0 922 fixed n 1/2000s 2.5 Y Y
 
Canon G9 Xnone n 3.0 1040 fixed Y 1/2000s 6.0 Y Y
 
Canon SX710none n 3.0 922 fixed n 1/3200s 6.0 Y Y
 
Canon S120none n 3.0 922 fixed Y 1/2000s 12.1 Y Y
 
Panasonic TZ901166 n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 1/2000s 10.0 Y Y
 
Sony HX99638 n 3.0 922 tilting Y 1/2000s 10.0 Y Y
 
Sony HX95638 n 3.0 922 tilting n 1/2000s 10.0 Y Y

One differentiating feature between the two cameras concerns the touch sensitivity of the rear screen. The G9X Mark II has a touchscreen, while the SX720 has a conventional panel. Touch control can be particularly helpful, for example, for setting the focus point.

The Canon G9 X Mark II has 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 G9X Mark II and the SX720 have zoom lenses built in. The G9X Mark II has a 28-84mm f/2.0-4.9 optic and the SX720 offers a 24-960mm f/3.3-6.9 (focal lengths in full frame equivalent terms). Hence, the SX720 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 G9X Mark II offers the faster maximum aperture.

Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the G9X Mark II and the SX720 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 G9 X Mark II and Canon PowerShot SX720 HS 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 G9 X Mark II-stereomono--micro2.0YYY
 
Canon SX720-stereomono--micro2.0YY-
 
Canon 2000DYmonomono--mini2.0YY-
 
Canon SX740-stereomono--micro2.0Y-Y
 
Canon SX70-stereomonoY-micro2.0Y-Y
 
Canon 77DYstereomonoY-mini2.0YYY
 
Canon 200DYstereomonoY-mini2.0YYY
 
Canon M100-stereomono--micro2.0YYY
 
Canon SX730-stereomono--micro2.0YYY
 
Canon G7 X Mark II-stereomono--micro2.0YY-
 
Canon SX620-monomono--micro2.0YY-
 
Canon G9 X-stereomono--micro2.0YY-
 
Canon SX710-stereomono--micro2.0YY-
 
Canon S120-stereomono--mini2.0Y--
 
Panasonic TZ90-stereomono--micro2.0Y--
 
Sony HX99-stereomono--micro2.0YYY
 
Sony HX95-stereomono--micro2.0YYY

The G9X Mark II is a recent model that features in the current product line-up of Canon. In contrast, the SX720 has been discontinued (but can be found pre-owned on eBay). As a replacement in the same line of cameras, the SX720 was succeeded by the Canon SX730. 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 how do things add up? Is the Canon G9 X Mark II better than the Canon SX720 or vice versa? The listing below highlights the relative strengths of the two models.


Advantages of the Canon PowerShot G9 X Mark II:

  • Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
  • Better image quality: Features a larger and more technologically advanced imaging 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 7 vs DIGIC 6).
  • More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (1040k vs 922k dots).
  • Fewer buttons to press: Is equipped with a touch-sensitive rear screen to facilitate handling.
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (8.2 vs 5.9 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • Easier time-lapse photography: Has an intervalometer built-in for low frequency shooting.
  • Better light gathering: Has a lens with a wider maximum aperture (f/2.0 vs f/3.3).
  • More compact: Is smaller (98x58mm vs 110x64mm) and thus needs less room in the bag.
  • Less heavy: Is lighter (by 64g or 24 percent) and hence easier to carry around.
  • Easier travel charging: Can be conveniently charged via its USB port.
  • Easier wireless transfer: Supports Bluetooth for image sharing without cables.
  • More modern: Is somewhat more recent (announced 10 months after the SX720).


Reasons to prefer the Canon PowerShot SX720 HS:

  • Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
  • Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/3200s vs 1/2000s) to freeze action.
  • 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.
  • More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced category (28 percent cheaper at launch).
  • More heavily discounted: Has been on the market for longer (launched in February 2016).

If the count of individual advantages (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the G9X Mark II is the clear winner of the match-up (15 : 6 points). However, the relevance of individual strengths will vary across photographers, so that you might want to apply your own weighing scheme to the summary points when reflecting and deciding 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.

G9X Mark II 15:06 SX720

How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Canon G9 X Mark II and the Canon SX720 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Travel-Zoom Camera and Best Superzoom 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 says little about, for example, the shooting experience and imaging performance of the G9X Mark II and the SX720 in practical situations. 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.

Expert reviews

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 (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 G9 X Mark II..75/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jan 2017 529 i
 
Canon SX720+..4/5..4.5/5 Feb 2016 379i
 
Canon 2000Do..3.5/5..3.5/5 Feb 2018 449 i
 
Canon SX740+..4/5..4/5 Jul 2018 399 i
 
Canon SX70+ +..3.5/5..3.5/5 Sep 2018 549 i
 
Canon 77D..82/1004.5/54.5/54/5 Feb 2017 899 i
 
Canon 200D+ +78/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jun 2017 549i
 
Canon M100+..4/5..3.5/5 Aug 2017 499i
 
Canon SX730+..4/5..4/5 Apr 2017 399i
 
Canon G7 X Mark II+ +81/1004.5/54/54.5/5 Feb 2016 699i
 
Canon SX620........4/5 May 2016 279 i
 
Canon G9 X+ +..4.5/54/54.5/5 Oct 2015 529i
 
Canon SX710+..4/5..3.5/5 Jan 2015 349i
 
Canon S120+ +..4.5/5o4.5/5 Aug 2013 449i
 
Panasonic TZ90+ +..4/5..4/5 Apr 2017 449i
 
Sony HX99....4/5..4.5/5 Aug 2018 449 i
 
Sony HX95.......... Aug 2018 429 i
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. A score, therefore, has to be seen in close connection to the price and market introduction time of the camera, 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.

Canon G9 X Mark II:
Check Amazon price
Canon SX720:
Check Ebay offers

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 your choice using the following search menu. As an alternative, you can also directly jump to any one of the listed comparisons that were previously generated by the CAM-parator tool.

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    Specifications: Canon G9 X Mark II vs Canon SX720

    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 G9 X Mark II Canon SX720
    Camera Type Fixed lens compact camera Fixed lens compact camera
    Camera Lens 28-84mm f/2.0-4.9 24-960mm f/3.3-6.9
    Launch Date January 2017 February 2016
    Launch Price USD 529 USD 379
    Sensor Specs Canon G9 X Mark II Canon SX720
    Sensor Technology BSI-CMOS BSI-CMOS
    Sensor Format 1" Sensor 1/2.3" Sensor
    Sensor Size 13.2 x 8.8 mm 6.17 x 4.55 mm
    Sensor Area 116.16 mm2 28.0735 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 15.9 mm 7.7 mm
    Crop Factor 2.7x 5.6x
    Sensor Resolution 20 Megapixels 20.2 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 5472 x 3648 pixels 5184 x 3888 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 2.41 μm 1.18 μm
    Pixel Density 17.18 MP/cm2 71.80 MP/cm2
    Moiré control Anti-Alias filter no AA filter
    Movie Capability 1080/60p Video 1080/60p Video
    ISO Setting 125 - 12,800 ISO 80 - 3,200 ISO
    Image Processor DIGIC 7 DIGIC 6
    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 G9 X Mark II Canon SX720
    Viewfinder Type no viewfinder no viewfinder
    Viewfinder Magnification
    LCD Framing Live View Live View
    Rear LCD Size 3.0inch 3.0inch
    LCD Resolution 1040k dots 922k dots
    LCD Attachment Fixed screen Fixed screen
    Touch Input Touchscreen no Touchscreen
    Shooting Specs Canon G9 X Mark II Canon SX720
    Focus System Contrast-detect AF Contrast-detect AF
    Manual Focusing AidFocus Peakingno Peaking Feature
    Continuous Shooting 8.2 shutter flaps/s 5.9 shutter flaps/s
    Time-Lapse PhotographyIntervalometer built-inno Intervalometer
    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 G9 X Mark II Canon SX720
    External Flash no Hotshoe no Hotshoe
    USB Connector USB 2.0 USB 2.0
    HDMI Port micro HDMI micro HDMI
    Wifi Support Wifi built-in Wifi built-in
    Near-Field Communication NFC built-in NFC built-in
    Bluetooth Support Bluetooth built-in no Bluetooth
    Body Specs Canon G9 X Mark II Canon SX720
    Battery Type NB-13L NB-13L
    Battery Life (CIPA)235 shots per charge250 shots per charge
    In-Camera Charging USB charging no USB charging
    Body Dimensions 98 x 58 x 31 mm
    (3.9 x 2.3 x 1.2 in)
    110 x 64 x 36 mm
    (4.3 x 2.5 x 1.4 in)
    Camera Weight 206 g (7.3 oz) 270 g (9.5 oz)

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