Canon Unveils the G1X: A Large Sensor Compact Answer to the Mirrorless Craze

Unlike Nikon, which jumped headfirst into the interchangeable lens mirrorless game last year, Canon appears to be content with simply upping the sensor size in its existing compact cameras. Today the company announces the G1X, a new camera into the G-series line that offers a sensor large enough to compete with existing mirrorless camera systems.

If you thought the image quality offered by Canon G cameras was good, get this: the G1X has a 1.5-inch sensor that’s 6 times larger than the one in the G12:

The 14.3 megapixel (CMOS) camera features a 28mm lens (4x optical zoom) that opens up to f/2.8, manual controls, 6fps, ISO 12800, RAW capture, a 3-inch swiveling LCD screen, and 1080p HD video recording. Here’s a quick video intro:

The G1X will hit store shelves in February for $800.

(via Canon)

  • Anonymous

    I think this is like Fuji’s X100, a low-risk test to see if their idea is right and if this is a hit then they’ll release the same thing but with interchangeable lenses.

    Other than that, this is ideal for the traveling photographer if the lens is any good.

  • JM

    My only question is build quality.  The G10 was a tank and the G11 and G12 were built too withstand less abuse.  I am looking forward to getting one of the GXs into my hands.

  • Asdflkj

    24fps 1080p, nooooiiiiiicccceeee!

  • Alopias

    I wonder how close to reality it is when they try to suggest this performs near what a professional would use. I heard all the hype about some of the 4/3 mirrorless cameras and finally had a chance to have a look at some of the files from the Olympus EPL-1. Really bad. High noise at low ISO, poor detail, lots of fringing. My 6yr old 10mp slr destroys the 12mp files of the mirrorless from Oly on every level. The point being, are these new high-end compacts really as good as advertised?.

  • Daniel Yu Suzuki

    Interesting. My G12 was always my scouting and traveling camera. With all these controls, this could replace my studio camera. At least I can highspeed sync with BDL with this.

  • Dennis Marciniak

    Does this still have the 1cm focusing? The smaller sensor was able to do that and was a big draw to me in terms of picking compact camera – even if it couldn’t fit completely in my pocket.

    I think I’ll grab something much smaller now or wait to see the specs of the next iPhone because I have a feeling that will blow people away and go after the ultra compact camera market.

  • mythbuster

    no manual zoom, small viewfinder, no fast lens… IQ can be very good but it´s not my cup of tea

  • Travis

    Canon screwed the pooch here in my experiences, I waited many years for a company to come out with a high quality compact camera with a large sensor, and for years I waited and watched the G series.  I watched them go from G6 all the way up the horrible G10 then back to the slightly better G11 and clone G12 all with a small inferior sensor that was plagued with noise issues.  Then Fuji came out with the X100 and blew everything out of the water and I snatched one up quickly and it holds up as a beautiful sidearm to my 5DmkII. 

    Lens quality doesn’t seem amazing here either, when cameras like the X10, X100, XZ1, LX5 exist in the same range.  (I didn’t mention the s100 since that lens is no larger than my cheapest cameras at the store.)

  • pvd

    Not good.

    I’ve been waiting for the Canon EVIL to release. I need a small camera to replace my dying ‘point and shoot’, but I want to use lenses from my DSLR as well. Simple enough. Everyone else is doing it but Canon. G12 is fine for what it is, but I want to use my real lenses too. It would have been so easy to just put a ring on this thing and be done with it. WTF?

  • Hgfhg

    4:3? WTF?

  • Manga

    I never got the point of EVIL cameras. They’re supposed to be smaller by ditching the mirror, but what difference does a few millimeters make when you’re carrying around a non-pancake lens? Personally, this camera may be a dream come true for me.

  • Anthony Burokas

    A larger sensor can certainly deliver impressive results. The Lumix GH2 does an amazing job with a sensor smaller than this. Nikon’s 1 line looks good too. If I wanted an APS-C sensor, I’d buy a DSLR. 

    I think Canon overcompensated here and put too big of a sensor in a compact camera. Did it need to be 6x as big as the sensor in the G12 to produce better images? No. 4x would have been plenty. Keep the pixel count reasonable to let it gather gobs of light. 

    Plus, with a more reasonably sized chip, they could have given this camera “compact travel zoom” like reach, as opposed to a not really useful 4x. I never thought 4x was useful when it was on an Elph. Now with controls and a sensor that could really be useful, the handcuffs of a 4x lens really chaff. 

    Just because you _could_ cram in such a big sensor, doesn’t mean you should. 

    I mean, it’s bigger than a Micro 4/3 sensor.
    Canon could have just as well joined that group, used that size, and taken Panasonic and Olympus to school.

  • Steve

    I like that the sensor is slightly bigger than the Micro 4/3 format.  This is all going to be down to the lens.  If it’s good, I will want this camera, if it isn’t good enough for the sensor, there’s no point in having it.

  • Pcuenin

    Price??? any guesses.

  • A2

    all these features =great
    no zoom=horrible
    price tag=horrible

    sorry id prefer buy one of the other advanced point and shoots for half the price with great image quality, lots of zoom and good video also

  • Zoom

    it has zoom though but yes i agree with you. price tag is horrible. 

  • Anonymous

    I want one. The quality of the original G series was very good, but this will put it on par with APS-C sensor Canons but with a built in lens. I don’t really get the EVIL cameras that have small bodies but take full size lenses. Unless the lenses are small you might as well have a DSLR IMO. 

  • Raphael Lessinger

    I love it. Will buy one although its sensor review is a bit of a shame for canon R&D :

  • Daniel

    I have an E-PL1, and I love it. Is it a professional camera? No. Is it light years ahead of point-and-shoot “bridge” cameras? Absolutely.

    The E-PL1 is an older camera…the micro 4/3 system has made great leaps forward since then. Check on the image quality from a Panasonic Lumix GX7 or an Olympus Pen E-P5.

    I’m not a pixel peeper, but I do notice a dramatic improvement in the aesthetics of my photos compared with my old point-and-shoot camera — especially with my Panasonic Leica 25mm f1.4 prime lens. It’s just an incredible difference, and for most hobbyists like me, that’s good enough.

  • Kaltstrom

    My poor lil G12 awww…