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Canon SX70 Comparison Review

The Canon PowerShot SX70 HS is a fixed lens compact camera that was announced in September 2018 and is equipped with a 1/2.3-inch sensor. It offers a resolution of 20.2 megapixel.

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Is the Canon SX70 a good camera? The SX70 has a Camera Elo of 2195. This rating puts the SX70 among the top 30 percent of all superzoom compact cameras. In terms of its sensor size category (small sensor cameras), the SX70 ranks among the top 10 percent. Based on its within category standings, the camera earns a 4.5-star performance rating.

Headline Specifications
Canon SX70
Fixed lens compact camera
21-1365mm f/3.4-6.5
20.2 MP, 1/2.3" Sensor
4K/30p Video
ISO 100 - 3 200
Electronic viewfinder (2360k dots)
3.0 LCD, 922k dots
Swivel screen (not touch-sensitive)
10 shutter flaps per second
325 shots per battery charge
127 x 91 x 117 mm, 608 g


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Read on to find out more about the camera's size, sensor, features, reception by expert reviewers, and how it compares to other digital cameras.

Body comparison with a credit card

An illustration of the physical dimensions of the Canon SX70 vis-à-vis a credit card is provided in the side-by-side display below. Three consecutive perspectives from the front, the top, and the back are presented. All size dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

Canon SX70 vs credit card front
SX70 versus credit card top view
SX70 and credit card rear side

The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the Canon SX70 alongside a set of comparators. If you want to review a camera pair side-by-side, just select a right-side 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 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 SX70 5.0 in 3.6 in 4.6 in 21.4 oz 325 n Sep 2018 549 i
 
Canon SX740 4.3 in 2.5 in 1.6 in 10.5 oz 265 n Jul 2018 399 i
 
Canon 77D 5.2 in 3.9 in 3.0 in 19.0 oz 600 n Feb 2017 899 i
 
Canon G9 X Mark II 3.9 in 2.3 in 1.2 in 7.3 oz 235 n Jan 2017 529 i
 
Canon M100 4.3 in 2.6 in 1.4 in 10.7 oz 295 n Aug 2017 499i
 
Canon SX730 4.3 in 2.5 in 1.6 in 10.6 oz 250 n Apr 2017 399i
 
Canon SX60 5.0 in 3.7 in 4.5 in 22.9 oz 340 n Sep 2014 549i
 
Canon SX1 5.0 in 3.5 in 3.5 in 21.7 oz .. n Sep 2008 599i
 
Nikon B700 4.9 in 3.3 in 4.2 in 19.9 oz 350 n Feb 2016 499 i
 
Panasonic FZ80 5.1 in 3.7 in 4.7 in 21.7 oz 330 n Jan 2017 399 i
 
Sony HX400V 5.1 in 3.7 in 4.1 in 23.3 oz 300 n Feb 2014 499 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.

The listed prices provide an indication of the market segment that the manufacturer of the cameras have been targeting. The Canon SX70 was launched in the US market at a price of $549. 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.

Canon SX70:
Check Amazon price

Sensor comparison with a 35mm slide

The size of the sensor inside a digital camera is one of the key determinants of image quality. A large sensor will generally have larger individual pixels that offer better low-light sensitivity, provide wider dynamic range, and have richer color-depth than smaller pixels 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 are more costly to manufacture and tent to lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.

The Canon SX70 features a 1/2.3-inch sensor and has a format factor (sometimes also referred to as "crop factor") of 5.6. Within the spectrum of camera sensors, this places the Canon SX70 among the smaller-sensor digicams that favor affordability and compact design.

Canon SX70 sensor measures

Consistent information on actual sensor performance is available from DXO Mark for most cameras. This service determines an overall sensor rating, as well as sub-scores for low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and color depth ("DXO Portrait"). 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 SX70 1/2.3 20.2 5184 38884K/30p........
 
Canon SX740 1/2.3 20.2 5184 38884K/30p........
 
Canon 77D APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p23.613.397178
 
Canon G9 X Mark II 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p21.912.552265
 
Canon M100 APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p23.512.9127278
 
Canon SX730 1/2.3 20.2 5184 38881080/60p........
 
Canon SX60 1/2.3 14.2 4608 30721080/60p19.210.812739
 
Canon SX1 1/2.3 10.0 3648 27361080/30p........
 
Nikon B700 1/2.3 20.2 5184 38884K/30p........
 
Panasonic FZ80 1/2.3 18.0 4896 36724K/30p........
 
Sony HX400V 1/2.3 20.2 5184 38881080/60p........

Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. The SX70 indeed provides movie recording capabilities. The highest resolution format that the SX70 can use is 4K/30p.

Feature comparison

Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The adjacent tables list some of the other core features of the Canon SX70 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 SX702360 n 3.0 922 swivel n 1/2000s 10.0 Y Y
 
Canon SX740none n 3.0 922 tilting n 1/3200s 10.0 Y Y
 
Canon 77Doptical Y 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 6.0 Y n
 
Canon G9 X Mark IInone n 3.0 1040 fixed Y 1/2000s 8.2 Y Y
 
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 SX60922 n 3.0 922 swivel n 1/2000s 6.4 Y Y
 
Canon SX1202 n 2.8 230 swivel n 1/3200s 4.0 Y Y
 
Nikon B700921 n 3.0 921 swivel n 1/4000s 5.0 Y Y
 
Panasonic FZ801166 n 3.0 1040 fixed Y 1/2000s 10.0 Y Y
 
Sony HX400V210 n 3.0 921 tilting n 1/4000s 10.0 Y Y

One convenient feature of the SX70 is the presence of an on-board flash. While this built-in flash is not very powerful, it can at times be useful as a fill-in light to brighten deep shadow areas.

Connection 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 SX70 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 SX70-stereomonoY-micro2.0Y-Y
 
Canon SX740-stereomono--micro2.0Y-Y
 
Canon 77DYstereomonoY-mini2.0YYY
 
Canon G9 X Mark II-stereomono--micro2.0YYY
 
Canon M100-stereomono--micro2.0YYY
 
Canon SX730-stereomono--micro2.0YYY
 
Canon SX60YstereomonoY-mini2.0YY-
 
Canon SX1Ystereomono--YES2.0---
 
Nikon B700-stereomono--micro2.0YYY
 
Panasonic FZ80Ystereomono--micro2.0Y--
 
Sony HX400VYstereomono--micro2.0YY-

It is notable that the SX70 has a microphone port. Such an external microphone input can help to substantially improve the quality of audio recordings when a good external microphone is used.

The SX70 has a zoom lens built in (3.8-247mm f/3.4-6.5), which, in full frame equivalent terms, provides a focal length range from 21 to 1365mm. The camera is, hence, ready to shoot, while remaining more compact in size than an interchangeable lens camera with an optic that offers similar focal length and aperture specifications.

Expert reviews

While the comparison of the spec-sheets of cameras can offer a general idea of their imaging potential, it remains partial and cannot reveal, for example, the handling experience and imaging performance when actually working with the SX70. 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 where reviews by experts come in. The following table reports the overall rankings of the cameras as published by some of the major camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, photographyblog).

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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 SX70+ +..3.5/5..3.5/5 Sep 2018 549 i
 
Canon SX740+..4/5..4/5 Jul 2018 399 i
 
Canon 77D..82/1004.5/54.5/54/5 Feb 2017 899 i
 
Canon G9 X Mark II..75/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jan 2017 529 i
 
Canon M100+..4/5..3.5/5 Aug 2017 499i
 
Canon SX730+..4/5..4/5 Apr 2017 399i
 
Canon SX60+ +75/1004/5..4.5/5 Sep 2014 549i
 
Canon SX1+ ++..o3.5/5 Sep 2008 599i
 
Nikon B700+..4/5..4/5 Feb 2016 499 i
 
Panasonic FZ80+ +..4.5/5..4.5/5 Jan 2017 399 i
 
Sony HX400V+ +..4/5..4/5 Feb 2014 499 i
Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.

The above review scores should be interpreted 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 comparisons of ratings among very different cameras or across long time periods have little meaning. Also, kindly note that some of the listed sites have over time developped their review approaches and their reporting style.

Canon SX70 FAQ

Below are some additional questions and answers concerning some particular features of the SX70.

What is the technology behind the imaging sensor in the SX70?

The camera has a BSI-CMOS (Backside Illuminated Complementary Metal–Oxide–Semiconductor) sensor at its core.

Which image processing chip is used to convert the raw signal into an image file and perform noise reduction and image sharpening?

Canon equipped the SX70 with the DIGIC 8 image processor.

What is the ISO sensitivity range of the SX70?

The camera has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 3200.

Does the camera have a selfie-friendly screen?

Yes, the LCD-screen of the SX70 is flexible and can be turned to be front-facing for capturing selfies.

Is it difficult to use manual focus lenses with the Canon SX70?

The SX70 offers focus peaking as a manual focus aid. This feature works by placing a colored highlight on in-focus zones within the image.

Does the Canon SX70 feature an autofocus assist light?

Yes, the camera has a lamp built-in that can illuminate the subject and improve autofocus in low-light settings.

Does the Canon SX70 support the Ultra High Speed (UHS) bus interface for SD cards?

Yes, the camera can indeed use UHS-I cards (data transfer speed of up to 104 MB/s).

Which battery does the SX70 use?

The camera gets its power from the LP-E12 (here at amazon), which is a rechargeable Lithium-Ion power pack.

Where can I find the best deals for the SX70?

Grey imports from Asia, as found on eBay, are often very attractively priced. However, these cameras come without a warranty from Canon.

Camera to camera comparisons

If you would like to see a side-by-side review of this and another camera, just make your choice using the following search menu. There is also a set of direct links to comparison reviews that other users of the CAM-parator app explored.

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    Specifications Summary
    Camera Model Canon SX70
    Camera Type Fixed lens compact camera
    Camera Lens 21-1365mm f/3.4-6.5
    Launch Date September 2018
    Launch Price USD 549
    Sensor Specs
    Sensor Technology BSI-CMOS
    Sensor Format 1/2.3" Sensor
    Sensor Size 6.17 x 4.55 mm
    Sensor Area 28 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 7.7 mm
    Crop Factor 5.6x
    Sensor Resolution 20.2 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 5 184 x 3 888 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 1.18 μm
    Pixel Density 71.80 MP/cm2
    Moiré control no AA filter
    Movie Capability 4K/30p Video
    ISO Setting 100 - 3 200 ISO
    Image Processor DIGIC 8
    Screen Specs
    Viewfinder Type Electronic viewfinder
    Viewfinder Field of View 100%
    Viewfinder Resolution 2360k dots
    LCD Framing Live View
    LCD Size 922k dots
    LCD Attachment Swivel screen
    Shooting Specs
    Focus System Contrast-detect AF
    Manual Focusing AidFocus Peaking
    Maximum Shutter Speed 1/2000s
    Continuous Shooting 10 shutter flaps/s
    Silent Shootingno E-Shutter
    Time Lapse Photographyno Intervalometer
    Fill Flash Build-in Flash
    Storage Medium SDXC cards
    Second Storage Option Single card slot
    UHS card support UHS-I
    Connectivity Specs
    External Flash no Hotshoe
    USB Connector USB 2.0
    HDMI Port micro HDMI
    Microphone Port External MIC port
    Wifi Support Wifi built-in
    Bluetooth Support Bluetooth built-in
    Body Specs
    Battery Type LP-E12 power pack
    Battery Life (CIPA)325 shots per charge
    Body Dimensions 127 x 91 x 117 mm
    (5.0 x 3.6 x 4.6 in)
    Camera Weight 608 g (21.4 oz)

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