While most compact point-and-shoot cameras are aimed at the budget-conscious end of the market, Canon has higher aspirations for the new flagship of its PowerShot G-series. With a 1.5-inch, 14.3-megapixel High-Sensitivity Canon CMOS sensor that is just 20 percent smaller than the APS-C sensors used in Canon's EOS line of DSLRs and over six times bigger than those in previous G-series models, Canon says its new G1 X delivers the highest image quality available in a compact point-and-shoot.

"One big feature of this model is the sensor size," Shunsuke Abe, a rep from Canon Marketing, Japan told DigInfo. "Previous models used a 1/1.7 inch sensor, so this one has 6.3 times the area. The result is impressive pictures, with a great feeling of definition, and depth of focus on a par with an SLR."

Canon says the bigger sensor delivers shallow depth of field, wide dynamic range and improved low-light shooting performance with the ability to shoot at ISOs of up to 12,800. Throw in 14-bit RAW +JPEG shooting, Full HD 1080p video capture, a quality 28mm f/2.8 - f/16 lens with 4X optical zoom and you have a spiffy little camera that might be capable of giving many DSLRs a run for their money. The G1 X includes Canon's HS System incorporating the DIGIC 5 image processor, as well as a 3-inch variable-angle 922,000 dot LCD and optical viewfinder.

Although it takes the mantle of G-series flagship from the G12, both models will continue to be sold alongside each other. The G1 X is due to hit shelves later this month and will retail for the princely sum of US$799.

The video below from DigInfo highlights some of the G1 X's features.

Source: Canon