Travel camera – Canon G7X MK II

Canon point & shoots have been our go-to’s for capturing all our family moments. When I was in high school, I remember us going through model after model. Once one of our Canon’s lives came to an end, we were out getting the next model.

I’ve spent a great number of years going through multiple cameras. I went from a Canon G9 way back when the G series were a larger bodied point and shoot. It was my first point & shoot that had Manual settings.

For a while there I was in an exploration phase. I tried a smaller DSLR, the Canon SL1 – it wasn’t small enough like a lot of the other M43 cameras out there but I could use any of my Canon lenses. I sold it…

Next, I tried the Panasonic Lumix series. I had the GX7 which had a flip screen and flippy viewfinder. I got it as I went through a phase where I wanted to start shooting more video. I didn’t like the photos that came out of the camera. I sold it…

I got the Panasonic GH4 as the beginning of 4K had arrived. Did I end up editing any of the footage? Nope… I sold it…

Then arrived, Fuji. I had my eye on Fuji for a while but prices of bodies and lenses was a touch higher than it’s other fellow brands of the same caliber. I got my first Fuji, an X10. It was super fast, the photos were crisp and I loved the colours. To turn it on, all you had to do was twist the lens barrel – super unique feature that no other camera has. Something about it though just wasn’t quite enough. While autofocus was very quick, I felt like at times, it would shift focus to items in the background rather than foreground, often resulting in blurry faces.

My quest continued. I upgrade Go Pros to try and fill in the gaps where video quality was lacking but if you shoot with a Go Pro, you’ll know that while an extremely versatile camera, it’s still not quite a high-quality video camera.

Over the last few months, I’ve started to film a lot of our travels and have struggled to find the perfect camera great for both stills and video. Only up until recently, the video quality on Fuji cameras just doesn’t compete with some other brands out there.

This brings me to this little guy, the Canon G7X MKII. Lots of vloggers use it and after watching some sample footage on Youtube, I decided it was the one.

I brought this little guy with me on our trip to Belize and it has wow-ed me. Here are my thoughts:

First impressions

Good size. Small enough to fit in my hoody pocket or attach a camera strap to hang around your neck. The touchscreen is accurate and not annoying like a lot of them can be. Turns on quickly. Well built – doesn’t feel cheap. I am a bit biased towards Canon since that is what I started my career with. But to be fair, Canon’s interface is very easy to learn to use.

Pros

  • Well built but not overly heavy
  • Has 2 rings so you can attach a neck strap or just a wrist strap
  • Touch screen is easy to use
  • Screen flips all the way up so you can see yourself – we set up a lot of our photos on self-timer now. It’s super helpful when it comes to framing our images
  • Ring around the lens can be customised to adjust a variety of settings. I like it for aperture or zoom
  • Variety of settings like all the usual Canon presets (fish eye, toy camera, lomo, etc)
  • Takes time lapses!!
  • High-quality video – the video is crisp and with an aperture of 1.8, you have the ability to get some pretty wicked images
  • Photo quality is awesome! I shot with both my Fuji XT1 and Canon, after editing, both were on par quality wise
  • The fact that the camera was so small and easy to use made me pick it up more so than my Fuji on our trip. Because I trusted that the image quality was going to be great, I had no hesitation when a moment came up to grab this rather than the Fuji

Cons

  • Battery life sucks – I had read that this was an issue but usually have at least a couple batteries anyway. Didn’t think it was that bad but after shooting in Belize, I’m glad I had a 3rd battery. I’d say I went through at least 1.5 to 2 batteries a day shooting on and off. It’s not terrible but when you’re used to a DSLR lasting pretty much all day and not depleting an entire battery, it’s pretty poopy
  • I kinda wish that the rings for a strap were slightly larger. Only because I use Peak Design’s camera straps. I like the ability to attach and remove the strap often. The Peak Design quick connects don’t fit in these.
  • If you are a vlogger, an easy to find and press record button is important. I felt like once I had the camera faced towards me, it was a bit tough to find and press record
  • Autofocus is decent – at times I wished that switching between items to focus on was a tad bit quicker

Photos below were taken with a Fuji XT1 and XT2. Sample photos further down.

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Jamie is a Photographer & Local Artisan in Burnaby, BC

Got a question? Want to chat? I’d love to hear your travel stories!

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