Pros:Easy to use. Pictures/video. Capture on smile detect. Uses 2AA Batteries!
Cons:Very Grainy/Choppy live display between shots in average to low light.
The Bottom Line: I would wait to see if they fix this in the near future before buying. Most will not refund your money if you are only dissatisfied with the product.
At first I had my heart set on the Nikon - Coolpix L110. Then right next to it was the Canon PowerShot SX120 IS. As I played with the menus and took different pictures I quickly fell in love with the SX120's easy to use buttons, especially the dial on the back used for scrolling through pictures and adjusting settings like the manual focus range. I also liked the top mode dial that is reminiscent of old film cameras. The body was much smaller and would fit into my shirt pocket. It took similar quality photos and video to the L110.
Recommend this product?
Having already owned another Canon camera combined with the easy to use buttons and other features the Nikon lacked, I was sold. Unfortunately the only SX120 left was the floor model and the (store) was not willing to give anything more than 5% discount off the new-in-box-price, which is bogus because a similar camera had a 15% "open-box" discount.
Long story short they just happened to have a few of the new model in the series, the PowerShot SX130 IS. So we bought it!
Looking back the Nikon did have one advantage, the LCD display looked crisper especially between shots. This also happens to be my only complaint about the SX130. In brightly lit areas such as the showroom of (store) the SX130's live LCD display looks wonderful. There is only a problem when you look at it in an average lighting situation such as inside a building. This is a HUGE problem because 90% of the pictures I like to take are indoors.
The problem is this:
Looking at the live LCD Display before you take a picture or even half-way press the shutter button in average/low lighting situations you get a very GRAINY and CHOPPY display. This does not seem to effect pictures that are recorded, just the display BEFORE you take a picture. No matter what mode I am in or what settings I modify(including the ISO speed) I get the same grainy display.
I called Canon customer service to see if this was normal. Surprisingly I was greeted buy an unscripted and accent-free support agent who was very kind. He said that it could be something to do with the way the live display adjusts for lighting conditions. He also informed me that no one else had complained about this issue and since this camera has only been out for about a month it would be at least another month before a new firmware revision could potentially be released. This is very disappointing.
What bothers be the most is that our other digital camera(Samsung Digimax s500) which cost half as much as the SX130 and is 3 to 4 years older, has nearly no grainy static in the same conditions that cause the SX130 so much trouble.
Overall I am pleased to have a Canon again. But to those of you considering a point and shoot for a little less that 300$ compare the display quality while pointing the cameras towards average/low lit subjects away from the showroom flood lights.