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Find out what it takes to be an extreme and action sports photographer and videographer. The ExPix camera crew share their stories, let you in on some trade secrets and give tips on shooting extreme and action sports.

 

 

Canon D20One camera - Endless adventures; or so Canon says, so ExPix thought we’d test it our way!
Being use to pro Canon kit in the form of the EOS D1 series, the ExPix crew have been able to rely on the robust structure and reliability Canon provides with these cameras. Working in the most extreme conditions our kit takes a daily battering from the elements; 50Knt winds that blow sand and rain horizontally into your face, icy cold weather one day followed by extreme heat another, being dunked in water or mud from riders getting too close, and let’s not forget the knocks, bangs and dings as equipment is dragged up mountains, across rivers or plonked on pavements or beaches all over the world. So now you know what we do to our kit …let’s see how the Canon PowerShot D20 coped with the ExPix work out!
First impressions and the packaging is sturdy and substantial. Inside the box there is the camera, power cable, charging unit, battery and a wrist strap, together with the usual manuals, which we didn't open and software disc etc. Rugged in structure, the Canon PowerShot D20 is compact and lightweight but boasts to be BIG on features. Main features include; 12.1 Megapixel, underwater functions, 5 x optical zoom with 28mm wide-angle and full HD – 1080p movies but what interested us the most was that the Canon PowerShot D20 is water, shock, freeze and dustproof, so perfect for the extreme and action lifestyle.

So for the first test we took the Canon PowerShot D20 down to North Wales, the idea being that we’d put the camera through its paces at Porth Neigwl, or to those not in the know, Hells Mouth near Abersoch; a notorious surf beach renowned for its horrendous rips and powerful surf.

Whilst waiting for the conditions at Hell’s Mouth we took a few shots of the surroundings at Abersoch and were very pleased with the results. A quick switch to the macro setting on the camera and popping on the flash produced some amazingly good images with little fuss. The close up function of the macro setting enabled us to clearly capture the detail on the bees and the butterflies. On the beach and we used the wide angle setting to produce a panoramic of the beach huts in the dunes, which when edited to black and white in Photoshop, looks inviting to say the least. And the zoom feature didn’t disappoint either; the wording on the sign on the beach is easily readable.

Heading over to Hell’s Mouth for the surf and we were glad the camera came with a wrist strap. Easily fitted with a lockable bayonet type fitting to the corner of the camera; it was good to have that extra security on a beach where the rips can create underwater drifts and holes that when stepped in throw you off balance.

Once in the water the camera once again surprised with ease of use and clarity of the images. The back screen was easy to see even in the very bright sunlight and modes can be switched using the menu buttons on the back quickly.
But for us the video was the main surprise here; full 1080 HD and using the wide angle lens, the quality was outstanding. Normally we would use a smaller ‘action sports’ camera model but the angle of view can sometimes be too wide. In comparison the Canon PowerShot D20 was perfect for a normal view point. The only thing that could be criticised would be the water droplets on the lens, maybe next time we’ll take our ‘anti fog’ potato skins to help with this!  Check out the video below from the 45 mins water test. {youtube}v7bgawDIaaw{/youtube}

The second test came at the National Watersports Festival in Hayling Island. We put away all the pro kit for an afternoon and concentrated on taking images using only the Canon PowerShot D20; a slightly scary concept considering the scale of the event. But once again it didn’t disappoint; we managed to capture images from around the event site, film from a S.U.P. race and footage of a more promotional nature. Check out our second video below {youtube}crdIBx89qnM{/youtube}

So our official word is:
The Canon PowerShot D20 camera has proved to be an amazing little piece of kit and we’re more than sorry to see it go. It doesn’t compromise on features; the 5 x optical zoom and wide angle features means the camera can arguably hold its own in most situations so is perfect if you don’t want to lug around heavy camera kit. And it's caused quite a stir too amongst the extreme and action sports fans who were impressed with its shockproof and waterproof features and being lightweight and compact, it’s great when space is an issue or for anyone struggling with weight and baggage restrictions; in our opinion it’s the ideal travelling kit.
And retailing at approximately £255 it doesn’t break the bank either!

Check out the full spec below and the gallery to view all the images taken on the Canon PowerShot D20 during the tests. We didn’t get to try out all the features, like snow mode, long exposures or panoramic assist but if the basics are anything to go by we’re sure it will produce fantastic results.

 

Build quality *****

Ease of use ****

Value*****

Features ****

Overall *****


 
Specs
Rugged camera; 12.1 MP HS System
12.1 Megapixel High-Sensitivity CMOS

Water, shock, freeze and dustproof
Underwater functions
Great underwater close-ups – Underwater Macro
Great for the pool and snorkelling – 10m/33ft Waterproof
Withstands knocks and drops – 1.5m/5.0ft Shockproof
Great for skiing - -10°C/14°F Freezeproof

28mm, 5x optical zoom; Intelligent IS
5 x Optical zoom with wide-angle – 28mm
Steady shots in every situation – Intelligent IS
Great low-light shots

GPS
Tag shots and log your journey – GPS

7.5 cm (3.0") PureColor II LCD
Enhanced strength and visibility – 7.5cm/3.0” PureColour II G

Full HD movies
Special movie modes
Full HD – 1080p movies
View stills and videos on TV - HDMI

Smart Auto (32 scenes)
Auto mode with 32-scene detection – Smart Auto 32 Scenes
Powerful DIGIC processing – DIGIC 4
Tap or tilt to scroll images – Active Display

Optional 40m Waterproof Case

 

 



 

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Ellis Brigham
Live. Breathe. Outdoor.

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