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Size matters with Canon's latest Elphs

Though they aren't for "enthusiasts," Canon's ultracompact Elph additions deserve some attention.

LAS VEGAS--Sure, the Canon PowerShot G1 X is eminently more interesting as CES announcements go, but it's also not for your average snapshooter. For those people, there's the Elph 520 HS and Elph 110 HS.


Something you're probably going to see a lot of in 2012 is the battle for getting the widest, longest lens into the smallest camera body. Canon's entry is the PowerShot Elph 520 HS, a 10-megapixel ultracompact with a 28mm wide-angle lens and a 12x zoom (Canon claims that it's "the world's thinnest" with those lens specs).

All of the Elphs use high-sensitivity CMOS sensors (hence the HS in the name) for better low-light and shooting performance. It'll capture movie clips at full HD and you'll get a high-res 3-inch LCD for your framing and viewing pleasure.

The Canon PowerShot ELPH 520 HS camera will be available in black, silver, red, and blue in March for $299.99. By the way, this does not replace the 510 HS, but the 500 HS, which is/was a very different camera, particularly in the lens department with its 4.4x ultrawide-angle f2.0 lens. From that aspect, this is kind of a disappointing announcement. Here's hoping Canon hasn't killed off having an f2.0 lens in its Elph line altogether.


Now, if you care less about length and more about width, there's the PowerShot Elph 110. Its lens starts at an ultrawide-angle 24mm and goes out to 120mm, a 5x zoom range. Oddly, its HS CMOS sensor is 16 megapixels. I say that 'cause this is the lower-end camera of the two getting the higher resolution, which might confuse consumers who've been trained to believe more megapixels equals better photos; it does not. Regardless, this model, like the 510 HS, features a 3-inch LCD and captures full HD movies.

Look for the Canon PowerShot Elph 110 HS in February for $249.99 in black, silver, red, blue, green, and pink versions.