Four years since the last S-series model, Canon revives the line with the PowerShot S90

Product Overview

Overall rating:


Canon PowerShot S90

Overall score:90%
Image Quality:95%


  • Compact proportions, fast lens, lens control ring, Raw mode, good quality LCD screen, overall image quality, fast start-up


  • Operation hampered by a few design issues, flash sometimes raised when not needed, some WB inaccuracies, mode dial stiff and slightly inaccessible


Canon PowerShot S90 Review


Price as reviewed:


Image Quality

Canon PowerShot S90 review – Image Quality

Image quality, on the whole, is excellent, and I’ve been pleasantly surprised by the results the S90 is capable of producing. At lower sensitivities in good light, images are very clean, detailed and relatively sharp – comparable, in some cases, to the quality of an entry-level DSLR. Shadow areas do exhibit a little texture, though, and although the highest sensitivities exhibit much noise, noise control overall is excellent.

Chromatic aberrations, including slight purple fringing, are visible but controlled, and though there is a slight drop off in sharpness towards the corners and edges of the frame, overall sharpness is impressively maintained. White balance is generally fine, though I found certain scenes lit with tungsten light to be a little too warm.

On occasion it produced noticeably cold images outdoors, even in warm, autumnal sunlight. It did, however, balance images shot under a mixture of daylight and tungsten, with surprisingly accurate results.

My only other reservation is with control over distortions; while the lack of barrelling is satisfactory in JPEGs, examining the camera’s corresponding Raw files shows just how much of this can be attributed to in-camera processing, rather than the design of the lens itself.

Canon Powershot S90 sample image


At lower ISO settings and in good light, images display plenty of detail and sharpness

View more Canon Powershot S90 sample images

  1. 1. Canon PowerShot S90 review
  2. 2. Design
  3. 3. Performance
  4. 4. Image Quality
  5. 5. Verdict
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