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Canon PowerShot S110 Digital Camera Review$449.00
Speed and Timing
Like most point-and-shoot cameras, the Canon S110 isn't what you'd call particularly speedy. As withe earlier S-series cameras, the S110 isn't the best option for action shooters. Still, the camera does offer some speed when called upon, and a host of self-timer modes give it some flexibility when taking snapshots and group portraits.
Like other Canon point-and-shoots on the market, the S110 features two separate kinds of speed modes. The first are its drive settings, which operate in just about every shooting mode. The other is a special high-speed burst most, which Canon lists as being capable of capturing up to 10 frames in a single second. The special high-speed burst mode is nice, but having that speed limited to one select mode—instead of say, manual or aperture-priority modes—makes it less useful than it could've been.
Canon were right on the money with their 10 frames per second claim, as the high-speed burst mode captures exactly that in one burst. It won't go beyond ten frames, though, and it takes a few seconds for the camera to catch up and write those shots to the memory card.
When you're shooting in other modes using the continuous shooting drive mode the S110 will capture two frames in about half a second, before slowing down to around half that speed from there on out. That's also with exposure and autofocus locked on the first frame, which really limits the camera's ability to capture action, as your moment can easily pass by without getting a proper shot. The S110 does offer a continuous shooting mode that maintains continuous autofocus, but it only fires about one shot per second.
The S110 comes with the standard two- or ten-second self-timer mode, along with a customizable mode that is great if you want a batch of shots (or if you test cameras for a living). The custom mode lets you capture up to 10 shots after a user-specified delay of up to 30 seconds.
The S110 uses contrast-detection autofocus in order to lock onto subjects, with options for normal autofocus, macro focus, or manual focus. The manual focus can use the front control ring, but it works mostly as a step focus and isn't terribly responsive.
When using the normal autofocus you are given a point in the center for the frame which will turn green when focus is locked on or yellow when it isn't. In our focus test we found that it did great locking on in bright light, with some struggles at the lower 10 lux level.
There isn't much in the way of fine focus control with the S110, beyond switching between normal and macro modes. The normal mode will allow you to focus as close as two inches, while the macro mode shrinks that range to 1.2 inches. It's useful if you want to use the S110 for macro shots of jewelry or small details, but otherwise you can just stick to the normal AF.