Powershot SX280 HS Review - Canon’s Latest Travel Zoom Camera Model (Part 2)

9/14/2013 11:47:22 AM


Additional samples and the product images are available in the device database, you can add your own review, images and product rating.




The portraits with flash have noticeable red-eye – though that it doesn’t appear creates lots of issue to other objects. Colors is excellent with the result of the camera producing incredible images with brilliant saturated colors by using the camera at wide angle or shooting at a very far distance of the lens, and the exposure is reliable.

Lens quality

Testing images from the lens

Testing images from the lens

Macro shooting focus at 5cm means that you can have a good macro image, though it’s not as close as other cameras. There’re many levels of good detail at both ends of the lens, as well as the commonly seen level of chromatic aberration or purple border, though this can be seen more clearly when using full optical zoom. The lens works well, and when there’re some barrel-shaped and cushion-shaped distortions, this is pretty small and unnoticeable in daily shots.

ISO image noise level

ISO testing image

ISO testing image

ISO ISO80 - ISO6400 range – it has been expanded since the previous version of this camera. Image noise level is low at ISO80, ISO 100, and ISO200, with a slightly increasing level at ISO 400. Noise increases again at ISO800, with some lost details which can be seen at ISO 1600. ISO3200 produces pretty strong noise level but the result is usable if the images are resized. ISO6400 should avoid for best due to high noise level.

White balance effect

White balance testing image

White balance testing image

Auto white balance (AWB) produces a warm image in tungsten light, with the fluorescent presets performing much better. AWB works well under fluorescent light, with the fluorescent preset resulting in a pretty warm image.

Digital filter

Digital filter

Digital filter

This camera has some effects and scene shooting modes that can be used to change the appearance of the images, as well as make an image from possible to impossible and vice versa, which includes manual NightShot mode. It can also be chosen from some color settings, with a custom setting allowing you to change the contrast, sharpness, saturation, red, green, blue and skin tones. The camera doesn’t have HDR mode, instead of that the operating range can be improved by using the iContrast options.


Video recording process is smooth with 60fps frame rate, and the camera records at full HD with stereo sound. Optical zoom is available while both fast and slow recording speeds are available. Though the lens noise can be heard quite clearly when using zoom, so slower speed is recommended.


Canon PowerShot SX280 HS is available at $375, a reasonable pricing for the money you spend, it’s only a little more expensive than the same camera from Nikon and Panasonic, and competes against the following camera, with the latest pricing info:

·         Fujifilm FinePix F770EXR, 20x, GPS, $268.5

·         Fujifilm FinePix F800EXR, 20x, Wi-Fi, $352.5

·         Nikon Coolpix S9500, 22x, Wi-Fi, GPS, $360

·         Panasonic Lumix TZ40, 20x, Wi-Fi, GPS, $360

·         Sony Cyber-shot HX50, 30x, Wi-Fi, $493.5

You also need to buy a memory card and a sleeve or a bag to keep your camera safe and protected – rely on our full instruction to buy the camera bag.


Canon PowerShot SX280 HS provides lots of optical zoom in a compact body and has some features that travelers will find attracting, including even GPS and Wi-Fi. Image quality is good with excellent color and the good level of the details. 14fps high speed shooting mode will also be attractive, though it’d be better if it’s available in all modes, and could have been used for an auto HDR mode. It will also be better if having suitable built-in auto panoramic mode. One of the biggest problems with SX280 is very short battery life, even shorter when using GPS and Wi-Fi. However, if you’re looking for excellent image quality in a compact camera, with large zoom, Canon Powershot SX280 HS is recommended for your choice.


·         12mp BSI CMOS sensor with low noise level

·         GPS and Wi-Fi integrated on the inside

·         Amazing image quality

·         Excellent color

·         Good image quality at max zoom

·         Compact and can be put into the pocket

·         Good structure quality

·         Continuous shooting mode at 14fps


·         Lack of panoramic mode

·         14fps shooting only available at special mode

·         Lack of HDR mode

·         Short battery life

Technical specs


·         Max lens aperture:  f/3.5 - f/6.8

·         35mm equivalent: 25mm - 500mm

·         Optical zoom: 20x


Image sensor

·         CCD pixels: 12.1Mp (Megapixels)

·         Pixels (W): 4000

·         Pixels (H): 3000

·         Sensor type: Back-lit CMOS (B.S.I.)

·         Sensor size: 1/2.3 inch

·         Aspect Ratio: 4:3, 3:2, 16:9, 1:1


LCD screen

·         LCD screen: 3in   

·         Screen res: 461,000 dots

·         Touch screen: No


Focusing process

·         Focusing mode: Autofocus, Face Detection, Manual, AF Tracking

·         Min Focus: 5cm


Brightness adjustment

·         Shortest shutter speed: 1/3,200 sec

·         Longest shutter speed: 15 sec     

·         Light mode: A, Program, Aperture-Priority, Shutter-Priority, Manual

·         Format: Multi Pattern, Centre-weighted – Average, Centre Spot

·         ISO light sensitivity: 100-3200

·         White balance: auto, manual, outdoor/daylight, cloudy, incandescent, fluorescent

·         Exposure Comp:   +/-2    


Shooting option

·         Continuous shooting: 14fps



·         Filming mode: yes

·         Res: 1,920x1,080, 1,280 x 720 720p, 640 x 480 VGA

·         Video FPS: 30

·         Stereo sound: yes

·         Video close-up zoom: yes


Other features

·         Image stabilization: yes



·         HDMI: yes

·         USB: USB 2

·         Wifi: yes



·         Memory type: SD, SDHC, SDXC

·         File type: JPG


Power source

·         Battery type: Rechargeable Li-ion Battery NB-6L

·         CIPA reading: 210


Coming with the box:

·         Digital Camera PowerShot SX280 HS

·         Wrist Strap WS-DC11, Battery Pack NB-6L

·         Battery Charger CB-2LYE, AC Cable

·         Interface Cable IFC-400PCU,

·         User Manual Kit



·         Weight: 233g        

·         Width: 106.3mm

·         Height: 62.8mm

·         Depth: 32.6mm


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