Canon PowerShot SX530 Review: A Great, Compact Camera for Any Beginner
By Yvonne

Canon PowerShot SX530 review: An excellent, compact camera for beginners. We tested the Canon PowerShot SX530. It was great for hobbyists as well as novices. The camera is easy to use and produces great images.

Canon PowerShot SX530 HS Bundle

We like this
  • Canon EOS Rebel DSLR camera is similar in shape

  • Portable and light weight

  • Powerful 50x zoom lens

  • Built-in Wi-Fi

The Things We Hate
  • Feel cheap in plastic body

  • Not great for low-light shooting

  • No articulating/touchscreen display

  • Battery life of 210 shots is low

Canon PowerShot SX530 has a 50x zoom lens and a compact design. It also delivers superior image quality, particularly in low light. The camera is easy to use, has good handling, and takes solid images.

The Canon PowerShot SX530 was purchased by us so that our expert reviewer could fully test it and evaluate it. Continue reading to see our complete product review.

Canon PowerShot SX530 digital camera is small and compact, with 16-megapixel resolution. It also features a powerful zoom lens. The compact, light-weight body is DSLR-like and makes it ideal for travel, hiking, vacations, etc. We explored the camera's similar resolution with many other mobile phones to determine if it is worth having in our travel bags.

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Design: Looks like a mini DSLR

The Canon PowerShot SX530 is just 15.59 ounces and weighs in at 4.7x3.2x3.6 inches. It is surprisingly light for a DSLR-like model in its class. Although the SX530 doesn't actually have a DSLR, it borrows elements from Canon's DSLR cameras. The SX530's design and layout look very much like Canon's EOS Rebel Series.

Canon's mode selection dial is located on the top of this camera, but it offers fewer options than DSLRs like the EOS Rebel T7. You can choose from Auto, Scene and Shutter Priority modes. The SX530 also has manual, program, and fish-eye options. The mode dial now has a power button instead of the traditional power switch.

Two framing help buttons are located on the left. They can be used to activate the lock and seek functions. These buttons allow you to quickly reacquire subjects or compose photos after manual zooming.

The camera's 3-inch LCD screen is also located right behind the function buttons. These buttons are large enough for easy use, but the SX530 does not have an EOS Rebel camera. Instead, it has a central function and set button that is surrounded by four circular buttons. We accidentally hit multiple buttons simultaneously without the distance between the centre button and outer controls.

It's comparable to the flagship phones such as the Samsung Note10 with 16 MP.

Its DSLR-like design is great because of its extremely comfy grip. Because the camera is so small, it's easy to access controls on either side with just one hand. Although the plastic camera's lightweight is not very strong, it feels great in the hands. It would also be great for longer trips when there's no need to carry too much weight around.

We loved how the camera felt and the ease of use. We found the grip to be even better than that of the Canon EOS Rebel T7. The zoom lens was also very powerful and allowed us to take pictures we could not with other lenses. Canon has done a great job creating a lightweight, compact camera that appears more expensive than its actual cost.

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Installation: It couldn't be simpler

The setup of the Canon PowerShot SX530 was very simple and intuitive. It was easy to plug the battery, power it up and set the time and date. We were on our way in no more than a few minutes. It is easy to use for novices and beginners. The SX530 is a camera that makes a wonderful gift for dad or mom.

The mode selection dial has many options, and we found that all of them worked as expected. Because this camera has not been designed for professionals, who want to dig into image manipulation and settings, auto mode is likely to be the default mode. However there's a manual mode. It is a simple point-and-shoot camera that does an excellent job of making it as easy as possible to use for casual or new photographers.

Canon's manual is excellent. We found it easy to understand and had lots of illustrations so we could identify the functions. To make it easier to compose photos, the camera comes with some useful settings. We added a grid layout on the LCD screen. The LCD's default brightness was too dark for us so we increased it a little and were pleased with the result.

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Image Quality - Decent with great zoom

Canon PowerShot SX530 does not have an extremely powerful sensor and image processor. It has 16 MP and is comparable to the flagship smartphones like Samsung Note10. Although the SX530 was not as good in image quality, it is better than the Note10's.

Full HD 1080p video can be shot at 30 frames per seconds by the SX530, which is slower than its rivals that can shoot up to 60 frames per second. While we noticed some stuttering when panning through a scene, the images were smooth and vibrant once we stopped.

The 24-1200mm zoom equivalent range is where the camera shines, placing it in the "superzoom" category. It's very versatile, so it can take large landscape photos and is powerful enough to record detail even from faraway. It was very good at stabilizing the image, making it possible to take super close shots. To get consistent quality at the highest zoom level, however, a tripod is essential.

Although the aperture is limited, it's comparable to many superzoom cameras. It ranges between f/3.4 and f/6.5. It is difficult to achieve a shallow depth-of-field and it can limit low light situations. The flash built in was not too strong and did not overpower our photos. Indoor photos of family and friends turned out great.

Features: Powerful image stabilization

The Canon PowerShot SX530 features Intelligent IS optical image stability technology. It has a powerful 50x zoom lens. Camera analyzes image movement, then selects the most appropriate correction for what you're shooting. The camera has four modes for stabilizing still images: Normal, Panning and Macro (Hybrid). The Dynamic, Powered and Macro (Hyrbid) modes are helpful in stabilizing video.

NFC and Wi-Fi sharing are also available on the SX530. Canon's Camera Connect mobile app allows you to transfer your photos from the camera onto an Android or iOS smartphone using Wi-Fi. Your mobile phone can be used as a remote controller for your camera. It is possible to change the settings, trigger video recording and even take photos. Android users can quickly connect to their camera using NFC radio by simply tapping both devices. We found this to be an excellent feature. The dedicated button on the camera allows you to quickly connect to compatible devices using just one touch.

Software: Auto modes done right

Canon PowerShot SX530 uses Canon's software. Although it isn't very feature-rich, the program is easy to use and contains everything that a casual user might need. To get to know all of the options and modes available, it's worthwhile reading the manual. The manual is essential for understanding the functions of each option. We couldn't just look at the options.

Canon offers many alternatives to the SX530 at a similar price point, some even better than it.

Hybrid Auto Capture is a feature of the software that allows you to capture up to 4 seconds of video each time you take a photograph. Smart Auto automatically determines what type of photograph you are taking, analyzes both the subject and background and then chooses the most suitable settings. You can also use Smart Auto to create more artistic effects such as fisheye and toy cameras, or monochrome effects. You can even shoot fireworks and snow scenes.

Prices: There are more options

Canon PowerShot SX530 retails for $300 MSRP and is available on the street at around $250. It is priced lower than other compact DSLR-like options. Canon offers other options in the same price range, some with similar specifications and some even better than the SX530.

Although the SX530 is an excellent value, the technology in it was outdated. The current price of Canon's PowerShot SX70, Canon's latest model, is $550. This is quite a steep increase in cost. The modern superzoom cameras, like the Panasonic Lumix FZ80 and the SX530, have significantly higher specs for a similar price. Both Sony and Nikon offer many options that are worth considering. The SX530 is an excellent camera for a reasonable price, but its age shows and it is definitely behind other current models.

Canon PowerShot SX530 vs. Panasonic Lumix FZ80

The Panasonic Lumix FZ80's MSRP is $400. However, its average price is $300. This compares to the Canon PowerShot SX530 MSRP and costs only $50 less than the street value.

Lumix FZ80, a 18.1-megapixel camera with 4K photo capability and a 60x optical zoom, is a compact digital camera. It has an aperture range of f/2.8 to f/5.9, touch-enable LCD and Wi-Fi. The camera can also shoot 4K video. The DC VARIO 20-1220mm lens, which is stronger than the SX530, has superior low-light performance. It all fits into an identical compact DSLR-like camera body.

This is the clear winner, the Lumix Fz80 wins. It's a fantastic value and a step above the Canon PowerShot SX530.

Final Verdict

An old but great camera.

Although the Canon PowerShot SX530 was an excellent little camera, it isn't the most affordable option in today's market. We believe the Panasonic Lumix FZ80 offers a better choice and there are plenty of alternatives. You can get the SX530 for an amazing price if you're lucky. You can get something more powerful and newer at the current street price, however.


  • PowerShot SX530 HS Bundle Product Name
  • Canon Product Brand
  • SKU SX530 HS
  • Prices from $300.00
  • Weight 15.6 oz.
  • Product dimensions 4.7x3.2x3.6in
  • Color Black
  • 1-year warranty
  • Sensor type CMOS
  • Megapixels 16.0 Megapixel
  • Sensor Size 28.0735mm2 (6.17mm x 4.55mm)
  • Aspect Ratio 4:3
  • Image Resolution 4608x3456 (14.9 MP) 4608x3072 (14.9% MP), 4608x2592 (16:9), 3608x3456 (11.9MP, 16/9), 3456x3456 (11.9MP, 1:9) 3264x2448 (7.1 MP), 4:3) 3264x2176 (6.0 MP), 16:9) 2448x2448 (6.0MP, 4:1), 2448x1368 (3.1 MP), 4:3) 3264x1832 (6.0MP, 2:9), 8:8), 4 480 (0.2MP, 1:2), 480 (2304x1728, 4 4.0 MP),
  • Video Resolution 1920x1080 (30p),1280x720 (30p), 640x480 (30p)
  • Media Format JPEG, EXIF 2.3; MP4 (Image MPEG-4/H.264
  • Memory Types: SDHC/SDXC
  • Lens Type Canon Zoom Lens
  • Focal Length (35mm equivalent), 24 - 1200mm
  • Get Digital Zoom up to 4x
  • Auto Focus: Contrast detection Face Detect AiAF. Single AF Point (center, face select or track).
  • Flash Modes: Flash Modes Manual, Flash On/Off, Flash Auto; Slow Synchro. Red-Eye Reduction Available
  • Rechargeable Lithium-ion battery NB-6LH

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