Canon PowerShot SX420 IS Detailed Review

Canon PowerShot SX420 IS

See all images of the Canon PowerShot SX420 IS

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The PowerShot SX420 IS was presented by Canon in January 2016. It is a Superzoom Digital Camera.
Brand Canon
Category Superzoom
Date 01/2016
Sensor Properties

In additional PowerShot SX420 IS has a Compact CMOS sensor with size of 6 x 5 mm² (0.24″ x 0.18″).

Also PowerShot SX420 IS’s image sensor has an effective resolution of around 20 megapixel. That’s roughly average and will be sufficient for most purposes. Photos with this resolution can easily be printed to A3 or A2 size.

The Canon does not support recording RAW images. RAW images are stored as they come from the sensor, without any in-camera processing or sharpening. Converting to JPEG or other formats takes place on the computeand involves one extra processing step but will almost always result in superior image quality.

Format Compact
Sensor area 6.17 x 4.55mm²
(0.24″ x 0.18″)
Resolution (physical) 20.50 megapixel
Resolution (effective) 20.00 megapixel
Pixel size 1.42 µm²
Sensor cleaning
RAW support
Continuous 2 frames/second
Focal length (min) 24mm
Focal length (max) 1008mm
Aperture (max) 3.5
Aperture (min) 6.6
Viewfinder Properties

The PowerShot SX420 IS does not come with a built-in viewfinder. The camera’s display is used to compose the photo. That can be cumbersome in broad daylight.


The PowerShot SX420 IS’s shutter speed varies from 1/4000s to 15s.

Max. shutter speed 1/4000s
Min. shutter speed 15s
Sensitivity Properties

The PowerShot SX420 IS’s sensitivity goes from 100 ISO und 3200 ISO, a very useful and practical range.

Min. sensitivity 100 ISO
Max. sensitivity 3200 ISO
Exposure Modes

The PowerShot SX420 IS supports all general exposure modes.

The Canon allows spot exposure for the difficult occasion.

Center weight
Auto Focus Properties

The PowerShot SX420 IS’s auto focus processor uses 9 AF points (or sensors). A basic rule of thumb says that the more AF points you have, the better. More AF points mean a better chance to have a point at the location of interest in a scene, a big plus in challenging situations (e.g. in low light).

The Canon doesn’t support manual focussing. That can be an issue if the auto focus has problems with your subject or lighting.

Type TTL
AF points 9
Manual focusing
Flash Specs

The PowerShot SX420 IS features a built-in flash with a range of up to 5m (17 ft.). That range will work for most situations.

A hotshoe is missing from the Canon.

Range 5.00m
(17 ft.)
Hot shoe
Display Specs
PowerShot SX420 IS display

The PowerShot SX420 IS features a monitor with a diagonal of 75.00mm (3.0 in.) and a resolution of c. 0.23 megapixel. That rather low resolution is no longer state of the art and will make it difficult to evaluate images on the display.

Unfortunately, the PowerShot SX420 IS’s monitor is not articulated. That can make it tricky to frame your subject in some situations, e.g. when taking selfies.

The PowerShot SX420 IS does not feature a touch screen.

Display characteristics at a glance:

Type LCD
Size 75.00mm (diagonal)
(3.0 in.)
Resolution 0.23 megapixel
Touch screen
Video Specs

PowerShot SX420 IS video supported the resolution with 1280 x 720 pixel.

ACamera is not equipped with an external microphone.

Canon PowerShot SX420 IS Video parameters:

Max. resolution 1280 x 720 pixel
…with frame rates 25 frames/second
External microphone
Connectivity & Wireless Specs

The PowerShot SX420 IS has Wifi connectivity already built-in. Use Wifi to transfer images to a smartphone or computer and to remote control the camera. With NFC, camera and smartphone can be paired without the need for passwords.

The Canon supports USB 2.0.

Connection parameters:

Remote (wired)
Remote (infrared)
HDMI (standard)
HDMI (mini)
HDMI (micro)
USB 2.0
USB 3.0
USB Micro
USB Mini

The camera supports SD HC and SD XC cards.

Memory cards characteristics:

Slots 1
Memory cards SD

The Canon PowerShot SX420 IS works with a NB-11L LiIon battery. The battery lifetime is only 195 shots. We strongly recommend a spare battery for the PowerShot SX420 IS.

The PowerShot SX420 IS’s battery battery parameters:

Type NB-11L LiIon
In-camera charging
Battery life 195 photos

The Canon PowerShot SX420 IS’s dimensions are 104.4 x 69.1 x 85.1mm³. (4.1″ x 2.7″ x 3.4″). This includes the lens. The camera’s weight is a reasonable 442 grams (14.3 oz.), lens included.

Here is front and top view of the PowerShot SX420 IS:

Canon PowerShot SX420 IS Dimensions (Width / Height)
Canon PowerShot SX420 IS Dimensions (Width / Depth)
Dimensions Comparison

To put the size of the camera in context, here it is next to a typical ID card (c. 86mm x 55mm, about the size of a credit card).

The PowerShot SX420 IS is not much bigger:

Canon PowerShot SX420 IS size comparison

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