Noise

The G12's image quality looks great at the lowest ISO sensitivities; you can start to see a slight bit of detail degradation starting at ISO 200 that becomes more overt (along with noisy) at ISO 400. ISO 800 is probably the highest usable setting under the most forgiving circumstances. Picky shooters really won't want to go beyond ISO 200.
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Photo by: Matthew Fitzgerald/CNET / Caption by:

G12 vs. G11

The G12's images are nearly identical to the G11's; the slight differences you see here are more attributable to minor discrepancies in the elevation of the tripod head due to the temporal gap in testing.

(1/250 [G12], 1/320 [G11]; f4, center-weighted metering, ISO 400)
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Photo by: Matthew Fitzgerald/CNET / Caption by:

Raw vs. JPEG, ISO 1600

Processing the G12's files as raw doesn't deliver an unambiguous advantage over the JPEGs. The artifacts and colors are a bit different, and you might be able to gain a little sharpness from the raw, but it doesn't provide any shooting-exposure advantages.
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Photo by: Lori Grunin/CNET / Caption by:

Speed

Especially if you're used to shooting with a dSLR, the G12 doesn't feel very fast. But part of that's perception; it's certainly zippy enough to catch animals (this squirrel did not sit still for long).

(1/60 sec, f4.5, ISO 100, evaluative metering)
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Photo by: Lori Grunin/CNET / Caption by:

Sharpness

The G12's lens is quite sharp.
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Photo by: Lori Grunin/CNET / Caption by:

Distortion

Though it's not terrible, the G12 does display visible barrel distortion at its widest of 28mm.
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Photo by: Lori Grunin/CNET / Caption by:

Fringing

The G12 does exhibit a bit of fringing on high-contrast edges, especially close to the edges of the frame.

(1/60 sec, f2.8, ISO 100, evaluative metering)
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Photo by: Lori Grunin/CNET / Caption by:

Mid-image detail

This 1:1 crop from the previous photo shows that general shots--wide-angle but not macro--lack the ability to really resolve detail, making the textures look a bit crunchy and digital.
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Photo by: Lori Grunin/CNET / Caption by:

Noise and out-of-focus detail, ISO 100

This type of noise/pattern artifact is pretty common with relatively small-sensored models like the G12.

(1/60, f4.5, evaluative metering, ISO 100)
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Photo by: Lori Grunin/CNET / Caption by:
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