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CanonPowerShot SX20 IS Digital Camera
 
4.5

(based on 227 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (130)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (86)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (6)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (5)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

97%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Zoom range/performance (194)
  • Image stabilization (180)
  • Easy to use (107)
  • Good image quality (103)
  • Good in low light (103)

Cons

  • Lag / shutter delay (21)
  • Short battery life (17)
  • Poor flash (15)
  • Limited zoom (5)
  • Difficult to use (4)

Best Uses

  • Landscape/scenery (166)
  • Family photos (165)
  • Travel (161)
  • Wildlife (129)
  • Low light (97)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Photo enthusiast (100), Casual photographer (81), Semi-pro photographer (22), Pro photographer (5)
    • Was this a gift?:
    • No (39)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

Lots of Bang for not a lot of Bucks

I am a professional photographer and I use Canon digital SLR gear on a daily basis. I was looking for a smaller camera to take on trips and vacations when I didn't want to...Read complete review

I am a professional photographer and I use Canon digital SLR gear on a daily basis. I was looking for a smaller camera to take on trips and vacations when I didn't want to carry a big camera bag around with me. I also own a Canon G9 that had been serving this purpose until I decided I wanted a camera with more zoom power. After shopping around for cameras with long optical zoom capabilities, I settled in on the Canon SX20. The 20x optical zoom gives me the reach I want without breaking the bank. The second feature of this camera that really impresses me is the articulating LCD. This feature allows me to use the camera from angles and perspectives that I can't get with my SLR to produce creative images shot from the hip or even ground level as well as from above my head. This camera has all the control features that my SLRs have, so I can feel right at home using any of those shooting modes. The image quality produced by this camera is excellent for a camera in this class. The quality is not as good as some of the $2000+ SLRs, but this is not a $2000 camera and should not be compared to them. The camera is smaller than the SLR but larger than a pocket camera, so it still needs a small camera bag to be carried and transported properly. This camera has a standard threaded tripod mount on the bottom. It also has a hot shoe flash mount on top that will accommodate the entire line of Canon flash units. I have tried my Canon 550EX on it with great success. This camera is an all around great point-and-shoot camera with a LOT of features and benefits. I don't regret this purchase and I'm looking forward to a lot of great photos from this camera!

I don't really see any significant CONS with this camera. I guess if I had to complain about anything, I would complain about the neck strap that comes with this camera. For me, the neck strap isn't long enough to allow me to hold the camera far enough in front of my face so that I can see the LCD easily. I replaced the neck strap with a wrist strap. The camera also doesn't come with the full user's manual in printed form. It comes with a quick-start guide that has the basic information in it, but the full user's manual is included on the CD as a PDF file, and it gets loaded to your PC when you install the included software from that CD. The camera also comes with a lens hood that screws on to the end of the lens. This hood needs to be removed before using the onboard camera flash or the hood will cast a shadow in the photo.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Great camera for the price

We bought this camera for our daughter, after having many years of great experience with other Cannon cameras (SD1000, PowerShotA700, D60).
The camera is easy to use for a beginner,...Read complete review

We bought this camera for our daughter, after having many years of great experience with other Cannon cameras (SD1000, PowerShotA700, D60).
The camera is easy to use for a beginner, if used at ISO200 in standards modes. To get more sophisticated requires a lot of learning, mainly because of the multiple modes and options. The lack of a manual is a big think.
It is true that one can print a manual, but a manual printed with a home printer is huge and hard to carry around, while the manual usually provided with digital cameras is pretty compact. When you are out there and try to make a good shoot, not knowing by heart all the modes and options can hurt you.If the manual was handy, it is a big plus.
The picture quality at high ISO settings is too pixilated, does not compare even with our A700…. It is possible that some of the modes improve it, but if that is the case - we haven't discovered it yet.

Reviewed by 227 customers

Displaying reviews 1-20

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(0 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Great camera for the money

By ICU2

from Pacific Northwest

About Me Photo Enthusiast

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Easy To Use
  • Good Image Quality
  • Good Image Stabilization
  • Large Clear LCD

Cons

    Best Uses

      Comments about Canon PowerShot SX20 IS Digital Camera:

      Not so many adjustments that you get overwhelmed, but enough to make it do what you want. Love the ability to change shutter/fstops, and see the effect on screen.

      • Ease of Operation:
      • 8
      • Was this a gift?:
      • No

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      5.0

      Great Camera for a Novice

      By Big D

      from Phoenix, AZ

      About Me Casual Photographer

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Easy To Use
      • Fast/accurate auto-focus
      • Good Image Quality
      • Good Image Stabilization
      • Large Clear LCD
      • Short Lag Time

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Family Photos
        • Indoors/Low Light
        • Landscape/Scenery
        • Sports/Action
        • Weddings/Events
        • Wildlife photos

        Comments about Canon PowerShot SX20 IS Digital Camera:

        We use for general photography indoor & outdoors. Easy to use. Great Pictures. Well made. Has Auto, Semi-manual, Full-manual modes, and Hot Shoe. Included hood, lens cap, and was threaded for screw-on filters. Uses AA batteries (easy to obtain in a pinch)

        • Ease of Operation:
        • 9
        • Was this a gift?:
        • No

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        5.0

        great action photos

        By DonS

        from Eastern PA

        About Me Photo Enthusiast

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Easy To Use
        • Good Image Quality
        • Great Zoom
        • Large Clear LCD
        • Short Lag Time

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Landscape/Scenery
          • Sports/Action
          • Travel
          • Wildlife photos

          Comments about Canon PowerShot SX20 IS Digital Camera:

          Spent a month in Florida w/ this camera. I was very pleased w/ the resulting shots I got. Took a lot of action shots, golfing and softball tourneys. Great stop action photos. A little heavy, but that's the price you pay for available everywhere AA (4) batteries.

          • Ease of Operation:
          • 8
          • Was this a gift?:
          • No

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          4.0

          I am enjoying this camera.

          By 10-E

          from Coral Springs, Florida

          About Me Photo Enthusiast

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Good Image Quality
          • Good Image Stabilization
          • Great Zoom
          • Nice Body Color

          Cons

          • Lag / Shutter Delay

          Best Uses

          • Family Photos
          • Indoors/Low Light
          • Landscape/Scenery
          • Travel
          • Video

          Comments about Canon PowerShot SX20 IS Digital Camera:

          I new I wanted a point and shoot camera that gave me shooting flexibility. The research I did lead me to this refurbished model. The Pros: feature rich, 20X zoom, HD video, Zooming while video and hot shoe to name a few. The Cons: no auto pop up flash, gotta get used to the video record button not being the same as the shutter button.

          Overall, I am quite satisfied because I know what the cameras abilities are as well as it's limitations. Still new to using it, but I've enjoyed what I've been able to do already!

          • Ease of Operation:
          • 6
          • Was this a gift?:
          • No

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          5.0

          good deal

          By alunyov

          from Manalapan, NJ

          About Me Casual Photographer

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Easy To Use
          • Fast/accurate auto-focus
          • Good Image Quality
          • Good Image Stabilization
          • Great Zoom

          Cons

          • Poor Flash
          • Short Battery Life

          Best Uses

          • Landscape/Scenery
          • Sports/Action
          • Travel
          • Video

          Comments about Canon PowerShot SX20 IS Digital Camera:

          Proc:- cheapest price ([$]), event for refurbished.- good quality of photos for non-DSLR camera- good quality of HD video- better (and cheaper) camera then PowerShot SX30 IS- 20x zoom(!)- easy to useCons:- I think it was a bit used camera, cause of few small scratches at the bottom side of camera.- small screenI do not regret it. I bought it for making photos during trip and I liked it. I have Canon 450D for making high quality photos but it is good for home purpose not for trips. Wouldn't change my mind if I would have such chance.

          • Ease of Operation:
          • 8
          • Was this a gift?:
          • No

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          4.0

          AWESOME CAMERA!

          By Erick

          from Upper Marlboro, MD

          About Me Photo Enthusiast

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Easy To Use
          • Fast/accurate auto-focus
          • Good Image Quality
          • Great Zoom
          • Small / Compact

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Travel
            • Wildlife photos

            Comments about Canon PowerShot SX20 IS Digital Camera:

            This cameras effortlessly takes great photos. It has plenty of features and a great zoom range.

            • Ease of Operation:
            • 9
            • Was this a gift?:
            • No

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            (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

             
            4.0

            Good bang for buck

            By JM

            from Bakersfield

            About Me Casual Photographer

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Easy To Use
            • Fast/accurate auto-focus
            • Good Image Quality
            • Good Image Stabilization
            • Great Zoom
            • Nice Body Color

            Cons

              Best Uses

              • Family Photos
              • Landscape/Scenery
              • Sports/Action
              • Travel
              • Video
              • Weddings/Events
              • Wildlife photos

              Comments about Canon PowerShot SX20 IS Digital Camera:

              I bought this camera primarily for video. I already own a T2i but wanted something light and without having to worry about carrying around extra lenses.Got this SX20 and so far so good. Video quality is really nice! Not close to a T2i type quality but for the price of [$] that I paid for (refurbished) I can't complain. I've taken a few pics around the house and they are good too.

              • Ease of Operation:
              • 9
              • Was this a gift?:
              • No

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              4.0

              pre entry for proffesional slr's

              By ilgordoso

              from pharr, tx

              About Me Casual Photographer

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Fast/accurate auto-focus
              • Good Image Stabilization

              Cons

              • Limited Zoom

              Best Uses

              • Family Photos
              • Landscape/Scenery
              • Travel
              • Video
              • Wildlife photos

              Comments about Canon PowerShot SX20 IS Digital Camera:

              i love taking photos and videos and i like to have the best of this 2....this camera makes this happen...HD video and crisp photos....

              • Ease of Operation:
              • 7
              • Was this a gift?:
              • No

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              4.0

              " Best camera ever had"

              By Bushido Karate Shotokan

              from Raleigh, NC

              About Me Casual Photographer

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Easy To Use
              • Fast/accurate auto-focus
              • Good Image Quality
              • Good Image Stabilization
              • Short Lag Time
              • Small / Compact

              Cons

              • Limited Zoom

              Best Uses

              • Family Photos
              • Indoors/Low Light
              • Landscape/Scenery
              • Sports/Action
              • Travel
              • Wildlife photos

              Comments about Canon PowerShot SX20 IS Digital Camera:

              I really like this camera, nice pictures, good grip, easy to use and good price.

              • Ease of Operation:
              • 8
              • Was this a gift?:
              • No

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              (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              Wow ! nice camera

              By the photo king

              from san francisco ca

              About Me Casual Photographer

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Easy To Use
              • Fast/accurate auto-focus
              • Good Image Quality
              • Good Image Stabilization
              • Good in Low Light
              • Great Zoom
              • Large Clear LCD

              Cons

                Best Uses

                • Family Photos
                • Indoors/Low Light
                • Landscape/Scenery
                • Wildlife photos

                Comments about Canon PowerShot SX20 IS Digital Camera:

                first thing i am not a pro .. very much a amatuer or below that .. i seen the reveiws on my Canon sx20 last year in 2010 i really wanted that camera ... so finally i could afford one .. what can i say its kicks %@# really ... i took it out and took some pretty incredable shots... i am so glad i bought the camera .. thanks B&H ..

                • Ease of Operation:
                • 10
                • Was this a gift?:
                • No

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                4.0

                Good refurbished camera for a just price

                By RICARDO

                from SALVADOR, BRAZIL

                About Me Casual Photographer

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                • Easy To Use
                • Fast/accurate auto-focus
                • Good Image Quality
                • Good Image Stabilization
                • Great Zoom
                • Nice Body Color
                • Small / Compact

                Cons

                  Best Uses

                  • Family Photos
                  • Landscape/Scenery
                  • Sports/Action
                  • Travel

                  Comments about Canon PowerShot SX20 IS Digital Camera:

                  Great to bring along to places with unexpected shooting situations. Good to carry anywhere. Easy to find batteries.

                  • Ease of Operation:
                  • 8
                  • Was this a gift?:
                  • No

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                  5.0

                  Very nice, very happy!!!!!

                  By Manuel

                  from Bonaire Netherland Antilles

                  About Me Semi-pro Photographer

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Easy To Use
                  • Good Image Quality
                  • Good Image Stabilization
                  • Good in Low Light
                  • Great Zoom
                  • Large Clear LCD
                  • Nice Body Color

                  Cons

                  • Short Battery Life

                  Best Uses

                  • Family Photos
                  • Indoors/Low Light
                  • Landscape/Scenery
                  • Sports/Action
                  • Travel
                  • Video
                  • Weddings/Events
                  • Wildlife photos

                  Comments about Canon PowerShot SX20 IS Digital Camera:

                  The camera is great, I use it for macro and normal photography, very nice pictures!!Every day I discover something new about this camera, and the price was also very nice.[...]

                  • Ease of Operation:
                  • 9
                  • Was this a gift?:
                  • No

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                  5.0

                  The best purchase I have ever made!

                  By Krysten

                  from Plain City, Ohio

                  About Me Photo Enthusiast

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Easy To Use
                  • Fast/accurate auto-focus
                  • Good Image Quality
                  • Good Image Stabilization
                  • Great Zoom
                  • Large Clear LCD
                  • Nice Body Color

                  Cons

                    Best Uses

                    • Landscape/Scenery
                    • Sports/Action
                    • Travel
                    • Video
                    • Wildlife photos

                    Comments about Canon PowerShot SX20 IS Digital Camera:

                    I am thrilled with the Canon PowerShot SX20 IS. I began taking photos with an old school film AE-1 about a year ago. My current boss is a photographer and let me play around with his cameras. I came across his point and shoot with an amazing zoom and high quality macro. I had originally intended on buying an SLR but this camera fit my budget and then some. I bought it used from B and H and saved quite a bit of money for this brilliant camera. I use this camera any time I go on a photoshoot with my boss, or even on a walk. I want to travel and am sure this camera will exceed my expectations. It has a great zoom (20X) and the ISO is incredible. The LCD screem moves and is easily visible even in bright conditions. My new found favorite is the macro function, which takes killer pictures. This camera is an A+ for quality of pictures, quality of make, and the best price for both. My only complaint is the lens cap is a little tricky to put on (which is totally overlooked in the big picture). Thank you B and H for this awesome experience. I love my new SX20 IS!

                    • Ease of Operation:
                    • 9
                    • Was this a gift?:
                    • No

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                    5.0

                    Love this camera

                    By BThomas

                    from Lawrenceville, GA

                    About Me Casual Photographer

                    Verified Buyer

                    Pros

                    • Easy To Use
                    • Fast/accurate auto-focus
                    • Good Image Quality
                    • Good Image Stabilization
                    • Good in Low Light
                    • Great Zoom
                    • Large Clear LCD

                    Cons

                    • Lag / Shutter Delay

                    Best Uses

                    • Family Photos
                    • Indoors/Low Light
                    • Landscape/Scenery
                    • Sports/Action
                    • Travel
                    • Video
                    • Wildlife photos

                    Comments about Canon PowerShot SX20 IS Digital Camera:

                    I got this camera a couple of weeks ago I'm still learning it, and there is a lot to learn. But it is a good camera for novices and the more experienced. You can get some great dof in automatic mode (I'm still learning how to use it in custom mode). The zoom on this camera also is unreal, get some rechargable batteries though the ones that came with it were not usable after a couple of days when I put them in one of my remotes they were still 75% full, but getting some good rechargable batteries I've been good for 3 days. I still want a dslr but this is a great start.

                    • Was this a gift?:
                    • No

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                    4.0

                    I would buy this product again

                    By Hermo

                    from Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil

                    About Me Casual Photographer

                    Verified Buyer

                    Pros

                    • Easy To Use
                    • Fast/accurate auto-focus
                    • Good Image Quality
                    • Good Image Stabilization
                    • Great Zoom
                    • Large Clear LCD
                    • Nice Body Color

                    Cons

                    • No raw mode

                    Best Uses

                    • Family Photos
                    • Landscape/Scenery
                    • Sports/Action
                    • Travel
                    • Video
                    • Weddings/Events
                    • Wildlife photos

                    Comments about Canon PowerShot SX20 IS Digital Camera:

                    Pros: Long battery life; Great zoom; Good Image Quality.
                    Cons: No RAW mode.

                    • Was this a gift?:
                    • No

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                    5.0

                    Great Camera for Beginners!

                    By Happy

                    from Sharon, TN

                    About Me Photo Enthusiast

                    Verified Reviewer

                    Pros

                    • Easy To Use
                    • Fast/accurate auto-focus
                    • Good Image Quality
                    • Good Image Stabilization
                    • Good in Low Light
                    • Great Zoom
                    • Large Clear LCD
                    • Nice Body Color
                    • Short Lag Time
                    • Small / Compact

                    Cons

                    • Does not shoot in RAW
                    • Poor Flash

                    Best Uses

                    • Family Photos
                    • Landscape/Scenery
                    • Video
                    • Weddings/Events
                    • Wildlife photos

                    Comments about Canon PowerShot SX20 IS Digital Camera:

                    I got this camera back in April, and it's still going strong. A very tough camera, but not too heavy, I love this one. It's surprisingly easy to use, and a lot of fun. Sure, maybe I'll get a nicer one sometime, but for now, this one is great.

                    • Ease of Operation:
                    • 10
                    • Was this a gift?:
                    • No

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                    4.0

                    Very good product

                    By mashkonet

                    from Haifa, Israel

                    About Me Casual Photographer

                    Verified Buyer

                    Pros

                    • Easy To Use
                    • Good Image Quality

                    Cons

                    • Short Battery Life

                    Best Uses

                    • Family Photos
                    • Landscape/Scenery
                    • Travel

                    Comments about Canon PowerShot SX20 IS Digital Camera:

                    I bought this camera before a trip to Alaska, since I wanted to take good pictures of the scenery. Never regretted it! The pictures turned out to be amazing and I got lots of complements for them. And this is all about the camera, because I am really not good at taking pictures and don't really have any knowledge how to do it correctly. Basically, I just point and shot.

                    • Ease of Operation:
                    • 8
                    • Was this a gift?:
                    • No

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                    (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                     
                    5.0

                    This camera is not for beginners!

                    By Larryc206

                    from Santa Cruz, CA2

                    About Me Casual Photographer

                    Verified Buyer

                    Pros

                    • Fast/accurate auto-focus
                    • Good Image Quality
                    • Good Image Stabilization
                    • Great Zoom
                    • Nice Body Color
                    • Small / Compact

                    Cons

                      Best Uses

                      • Family Photos
                      • Landscape/Scenery
                      • Travel

                      Comments about Canon PowerShot SX20 IS Digital Camera:

                      I thought the package would include a memory card, but that was not the case. So some time was lost in acquiring that. Today is my first day with the camera, fully outfitted with its memory card. While I have not yet fully gotten the details, in the two hours I've spent on it so far, it's clear that the camera is very special. I'll not try to list all the features, but just comment on some of the things I've run into. The book (a small pamphlet) uses black triangles to represent arrows, but often I don't find arrows. Then I discover a dial can be turned to make up for that deficiency, and the dial can also be pressed on its right and its left to do what the arrows were supposed to do.

                      I am still highly impressed with this camera, and if I had it to do over, I would be sure to get a memory card along with the camera.

                      • Was this a gift?:
                      • No

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                      4.0

                      looks to be a great camera

                      By Terry

                      from Norwalk, CT

                      About Me Photo Enthusiast

                      Verified Buyer

                      Pros

                      • Easy To Use
                      • Fast/accurate auto-focus
                      • Small / Compact

                      Cons

                        Best Uses

                        • Family Photos
                        • Landscape/Scenery
                        • Travel

                        Comments about Canon PowerShot SX20 IS Digital Camera:

                        Cant wait to work it out, has some great features. I am a SLR user but needed a P&S

                        • Was this a gift?:
                        • No

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                        4.0

                        Great Camera

                        By photo 27

                        from New York

                        About Me Photo Enthusiast

                        Verified Buyer

                        Pros

                        • Easy To Use
                        • Good Image Quality
                        • Good Image Stabilization
                        • Great Zoom
                        • Large Clear LCD
                        • Nice Body Color
                        • Short Lag Time
                        • Small / Compact

                        Cons

                        • Lag / Shutter Delay

                        Best Uses

                        • Landscape/Scenery

                        Comments about Canon PowerShot SX20 IS Digital Camera:

                        I bought this camera for recreational use. I have been VERY impressed with it. It picks up great color, distance, and is easy to use. It is a little slow between shots though.

                        • Was this a gift?:
                        • No

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