Canon SX280 HS

 
Canon PowerShot SX280 HS front
 
  • 12MP - 1/2.3" Sensor
  • 3" Fixed Screen
  • ISO 100 - 6400
  • Optical Image Stabilization
  • 1920 x 1080 video
  • 25-500mm (F3.5-6.8) lens
  • 233g - 106 x 63 x 33mm
  • Revealed March 2013
  • Replaced the Canon SX270 HS
  • Read full specs
  • Alternatives
Portability
91
Imaging
38
Features
43
Overall
40

Canon SX280 HS summary

Canon SX280 HS is Canon's Small Sensor Superzoom digital camera originally launched on March of 2013. It has got a 12 MegaPixel, BSI-CMOS 1/2.3" sized sensor and has a max resolution of 4000 x 3000.

Canon launched this model in order to update the previous Canon SX270 HS (Read Full Comparison)

The SX280 HS places at #139 out of 243 in Small Sensor Superzoom cameras & over-all #683 out of 1422 for digital cameras in our collection. You should try out our Smart camera filter to find camera listings based on your custom requirements.

400 Megapixel mode coming to Fujifilm GFX 100

Below is a chart of specific factors used in the rating system.

Canon SX280 HS history

The Canon SX280 HS is part of a family of digital cameras. You can read the full range below.

ModelVisualizeLensResolutionSensor SizeReleased
Canon-PowerShot-SX70-HS front thumbnailCanon SX70 HS
SX280 HS vs SX70 HS
21-1365mm
F3.4-6.5
20MP1/2.3"2018
Canon-PowerShot-SX740-HS front thumbnailCanon SX740 HS
SX280 HS vs SX740 HS
24-960mm
F3.3-6.9
21MP1/2.3"2018
Photographer fined '$200,000' for failing to deliver photos
Canon-PowerShot-SX730-HS front thumbnailCanon SX730 HS
SX280 HS vs SX730 HS
24-960mm
F3.3-6.9
20.3MP1/2.3"2017
Canon-PowerShot-SX620-HS front thumbnailCanon SX620 HS
SX280 HS vs SX620 HS
25-625mm
F3.2-6.6
20MP1/2.3"2016
Canon-PowerShot-SX720-HS front thumbnailCanon SX720 HS
SX280 HS vs SX720 HS
24-960mm
F3.3-6.9
20.3MP1/2.3"2016
Canon-PowerShot-SX420-IS front thumbnailCanon SX420 IS
SX280 HS vs SX420 IS
24-1008mm
F3.5-6.6
20MP1/2.3"2016
Google will print your 'Best' photos for $8 a month
Canon-PowerShot-SX540-HS front thumbnailCanon SX540 HS
SX280 HS vs SX540 HS
24-1200mm
F3.4-6.5
20MP1/2.3"2016
Canon-PowerShot-SX410-IS front thumbnailCanon SX410 IS
SX280 HS vs SX410 IS
24-960mm
F3.5-5.6
20MP1/2.3"2015
Canon-PowerShot-SX710-HS front thumbnailCanon SX710 HS
SX280 HS vs SX710 HS
25-750mm
F3.2-6.9
20MP1/2.3"2015
Canon-PowerShot-SX610-HS front thumbnailCanon SX610 HS
SX280 HS vs SX610 HS
25-450mm
F3.8-6.9
20MP1/2.3"2015
Canon-PowerShot-SX530-HS front thumbnailCanon SX530 HS
SX280 HS vs SX530 HS
24-1200mm
F3.4-6.5
16MP1/2.3"2015
Unsplash partners with Institutions to bring historical archive photos
Canon-PowerShot-SX60-HS front thumbnailCanon SX60 HS
SX280 HS vs SX60 HS
21-1365mm
F3.4-6.5
16MP1/2.3"2014
Canon-PowerShot-SX520-HS front thumbnailCanon SX520 HS
SX280 HS vs SX520 HS
24-1008mm
F3.4-6.0
16MP1/2.3"2014
Canon-PowerShot-SX400-IS front thumbnailCanon SX400 IS
SX280 HS vs SX400 IS
24-720mm
F3.4-5.8
16MP1/2.3"2014
Canon-PowerShot-SX700-HS front thumbnailCanon SX700 HS
SX280 HS vs SX700 HS
25-750mm
F3.2-6.9
16MP1/2.3"2014
Canon-PowerShot-SX600-HS front thumbnailCanon SX600 HS
SX280 HS vs SX600 HS
25-450mm
F3.8-6.9
16MP1/2.3"2014
Canon-PowerShot-SX510-HS front thumbnailCanon SX510 HS
SX280 HS vs SX510 HS
24-720mm
F3.4-5.8
12MP1/2.3"2013
Canon-PowerShot-SX170-IS front thumbnailCanon SX170 IS
SX280 HS vs SX170 IS
28-448mm
F3.5-5.9
16MP1/2.3"2013
Canon-PowerShot-SX160-IS front thumbnailCanon SX160 IS
SX280 HS vs SX160 IS
28-448mm
F3.5-5.9
16MP1/2.3"2013
Handle those 8K RED files like a boss
Canon-PowerShot-SX270-HS front thumbnailCanon SX270 HS
SX280 HS vs SX270 HS
25-500mm
F3.5-6.8
12MP1/2.3"2013
Canon-PowerShot-SX280-HS front thumbnailCanon SX280 HS25-500mm
F3.5-6.8
12MP1/2.3"2013
Canon-PowerShot-SX50-HS front thumbnailCanon SX50 HS
SX280 HS vs SX50 HS
24-1200mm
F3.4-6.5
12MP1/2.3"2013
Canon-PowerShot-SX500-IS front thumbnailCanon SX500 IS
SX280 HS vs SX500 IS
24-720mm
F3.4-5.8
16MP1/2.3"2012
Canon-PowerShot-SX260-HS front thumbnailCanon SX260 HS
SX280 HS vs SX260 HS
25-500mm
F3.5-6.8
12MP1/2.3"2012
Canon-PowerShot-SX150-IS front thumbnailCanon SX150 IS
SX280 HS vs SX150 IS
28-336mm
F3.4-5.6
14MP1/2.3"2012
Canon-PowerShot-SX240-HS front thumbnailCanon SX240 HS
SX280 HS vs SX240 HS
25-500mm
F3.5-6.8
12MP1/2.3"2012
Canon-PowerShot-SX40-HS front thumbnailCanon SX40 HS
SX280 HS vs SX40 HS
24-840mm
F2.7-5.8
12MP1/2.3"2011
Canon-PowerShot-SD4500-IS front thumbnailCanon SD4500 IS
SX280 HS vs SD4500 IS
36-360mm
F3.4-5.6
10MP1/2.3"2011
Canon-PowerShot-SX230-HS front thumbnailCanon SX230 HS
SX280 HS vs SX230 HS
28-392mm
F3.1-5.9
12MP1/2.3"2011
Control Profoto B10 & B10 Plus with your Android Phone
Canon-SX220-HS front thumbnailCanon SX220 HS
SX280 HS vs SX220 HS
28-392mm
F3.1-5.9
12MP1/2.3"2011
Canon-PowerShot-SX30-IS front thumbnailCanon SX30 IS
SX280 HS vs SX30 IS
24-840mm
F2.7-5.8
14MP1/2.3"2010
Canon-PowerShot-SX130-IS front thumbnailCanon SX130 IS
SX280 HS vs SX130 IS
28-336mm
F3.4-5.6
12MP1/2.3"2010
Canon-PowerShot-SD4000-IS front thumbnailCanon SD4000 IS
SX280 HS vs SD4000 IS
28-105mm
F2.0-5.3
10MP1/2.3"2010
Canon-PowerShot-SX20-IS front thumbnailCanon SX20 IS
SX280 HS vs SX20 IS
28-560mm
F2.8-5.7
12MP1/2.3"2010
Canon-PowerShot-SX210-IS front thumbnailCanon SX210 IS
SX280 HS vs SX210 IS
28-392mm
F3.1-5.9
14MP1/2.3"2010
Canon-PowerShot-SD3500-IS front thumbnailCanon SD3500 IS
SX280 HS vs SD3500 IS
24-120mm
F2.8-5.9
14MP1/2.3"2010
Canon-PowerShot-SD1300-IS front thumbnailCanon SD1300 IS
SX280 HS vs SD1300 IS
28-112mm
F2.8-5.9
12MP1/2.3"2010
Canon-PowerShot-SD980-IS front thumbnailCanon SD980 IS
SX280 HS vs SD980 IS
24-120mm
F2.8-5.9
12MP1/2.3"2009
Canon-PowerShot-SX200-IS front thumbnailCanon SX200 IS
SX280 HS vs SX200 IS
28-336mm
F3.4-5.3
12MP1/2.3"2009
Canon-PowerShot-SX1-IS front thumbnailCanon SX1 IS
SX280 HS vs SX1 IS
28-560mm
F2.8-5.7
10MP1/2.3"2009
Canon-PowerShot-SD970-IS front thumbnailCanon SD970 IS
SX280 HS vs SD970 IS
37-185mm
F3.2-5.7
12MP1/2.3"2009
Canon-PowerShot-SD960-IS front thumbnailCanon SD960 IS
SX280 HS vs SD960 IS
28-112mm
F2.8-5.8
12MP1/2.3"2009
Canon-PowerShot-SD1200-IS front thumbnailCanon SD1200 IS
SX280 HS vs SD1200 IS
35-105mm
F2.8-4.9
10MP1/2.3"2009
Canon-PowerShot-SX10-IS front thumbnailCanon SX10 IS
SX280 HS vs SX10 IS
28-560mm
F2.8-5.7
10MP1/2.3"2009

Canon SX280 HS Pros and Cons

Below is a list of benefits and drawbacks of the Canon SX280 HS based on criterias that are usually considered necessary in a digital camera.

above average minimum ISO (100)
amazing zoom range (25-500mm 20.0 x zoom)
built in image stabilization (Optical)
flash built-in
focusing manually
great reach (500mm)
has HDMI socket
lighter than others (233 grams)
offers face detection autofocus
offers tracking autofocus
rather wide (25mm)
screen size is decent (3")
video resolution high (1920 x 1080 pxls)
cannot use external flash
does not offer selfie friendly screen
lack of external microphone socket
lack of headphone socket
lack of Timelapse mode
lens is fixed (fixed lens mount)
low MP (12 megapixels)
low resolution screen (461 k dots)
max fps very slow (4.0 frames per second)
max zoom aperture not good (f6.8)
no moving screen
no phase detect autofocus
no RAW support
sensor is tiny (1/2.3")
sluggish maximum aperture (f3.5)
terrible battery pack (210 shots)
World's smallest camera makes it into Guinness Book of Records

Canon SX280 HS Sensor specifications

The Canon SX280 HS houses the Digic 6 chip. The specification of the sensor in the Canon SX280 HS is 6.17mm x 4.55mm (1/2.3"). The 28 mm² sensor has the ability to capture 4000 x 3000 pixels and aspect ratios of 1:1, 4:3, 3:2 and 16:9. The camera comes with Image Stabilization (Optical). Sensor stabilization is preferable than digital stabilization as the latter can produce cropping.

Coronavirus is affecting the sensor business

The BSI-CMOS sensor has 12 megapixels and provides a standard ISO range of 100 - 6400. Sadly, RAW files are not supported therefore you have less room to maneuver in post.

The image below illustrates the SX280 HS's sensor dimensions in comparison to other popular sizes. The SX280 HS sensor has a crop factor of 5.8 and is displayed in green.

Canon PowerShot SX280 HS sensor size Instagram's $20 billion Ad success

To get a sense of different aspect ratios, you can refer to the graphic below.

Camera sensor aspect ratios

Canon SX280 HS dimensions

Canon SX280 HS weighs in at 0.51 pounds (233 grams or 8.22 ounces) & has external size of 106mm x 63mm x 33mm (4.2" x 2.5" x 1.3"). The weight of typical Small Sensor Superzoom camera is 387 grams so the Canon SX280 HS is less heavy in comparison with other rivals.

Last day to get your files as Canon Irisa shuts down

Below is a photo of the Canon SX280 HS next to a soda to help you get a feel for its scale.

Canon PowerShot SX280 HS dimensions scale

The top view here will highlight the button design on the SX280 HS.

Canon PowerShot SX280 HS topview buttons dials

Canon SX280 HS Lens specifications

The SX280 HS provides a fixed lens and it has a focal range of 25-500mm giving it a 20.0 x zoom which is exceptional and does make it easier to zoom right in.

At the widest 25mm, the lens comes with an aperture of f3.5 and that is kind of slow and not the best for low light circumstances and you will likely find it hard to get good bokeh. You will likely also need to up the ISO resulting in noisy shots. With the tele end, 500mm is terrific zoom and comes with f6.8 making it quite sluggish and you might need to set slower shutter speeds.

Coronavirus is affecting the sensor business

Canon SX280 HS Connectivity

The SX280 HS has the following connectivity:

  • USB Yes
  • Wireless Yes
  • HDMI Yes
  • GPS Yes

Digital cameras that contain NFC or Bluetooth compatibility can be used wirelessly via smartphones. You will be able to copy images and at times adjust settings with no need to connect physically to the camera.

Several applications even stream a Liveview and hit the shutter whenever you are not close to the camera. If the camera has a HDMI port, it can be attached to an external monitor. Most cameras will allow you to charge the battery pack with the USB port.

400 Megapixel mode coming to Fujifilm GFX 100

Canon SX280 HS Video specifications

The max video resolution in the Canon SX280 HS is 1920 x 1080 and you can shoot in MPEG-4 and H.264 file format. 1080p resolution gives a great balance in video quality and file sizes but 1080p won't give you any room to downsample. The camera does not have a microphone or headphone port which means that you have little control over the sound. It is probably a better idea to consider an alternative camera in case you need decent sound for your videos.

Photographer fined '$200,000' for failing to deliver photos

Canon SX280 HS Weather Sealing

Canon SX280 HS does not include environment proofing so damp conditions could damage the camera.

Canon SX280 HS Screen and Viewfinder

The Canon SX280 HS has got a 3" fixed display supporting a resolution of 461k dots.

Please note that the display screen has no touch support.

Canon PowerShot SX280 HS screen and viewfinder Google will print your 'Best' photos for $8 a month

The View Finder details for Canon SX280 HS are below:

  • ViewFinder None

For bright outdoor situations which make the camera displays washed out and tough to see, viewfinders are rather helpful.

Canon SX280 HS Shutter specifications

Canon SX280 HS has the ability to shoot continuously at 4.0 frames per second. The highest shutter speed is 1/3200s.

Unsplash partners with Institutions to bring historical archive photos

Canon SX280 HS Flash and Hot shoe specifications

Canon SX280 HS comes with only built in flash lacking external flash support.

Canon SX280 HS Autofocusing specifications

Canon SX280 HS comes with just Contrast Based AF & doesn't have Phase Detect AF. Phase Detection autofocusing is a lot more snappier and accurate in comparison with Contrast Based autofocusing. The camera has got Face detection which can be handy for taking portraits of people.

It also comes with Tracking AF for subjects on the move. Canon SX280 HS features manual focusing when needed in low light occasions or you require more precise focusing control.

Handle those 8K RED files like a boss

Canon SX280 HS Battery life

The battery pack (NB-6L) on the Canon SX280 HS is fashioned to last for 210 photos according to the CIPA standards making it lower compared with it's competition. The usual Small Sensor Superzoom camera battery life is 316. Fujifilm HS35EXR has got the maximum (600) battery life in this group of cameras.

Listed below is a listing of Small Sensor Superzoom cameras that come with the best battery life:

Canon SX280 HS for varying categories of photography

The following graph indicates a summary of the Canon SX280 HS for varying categories of photography. To look at more, scroll to the specific paragraph below.

Canon SX280 HS Portrait photography information

The Canon SX280 HS gets a points tally of 36 which is awful, meaning that it is just not good to use for portrait photography. Taking portrait photos leans heavily to sensor dimension, support for RAW photos along with the flexibility to work with off-camera flash.

World's smallest camera makes it into Guinness Book of Records
has manual focus
features face detection autofocus
can't use external flash
megapixel count low (12MP)
sensor size is tiny (1/2.3")
doesn't have RAW format

Canon SX280 HS Street photography factors

Getting a very good rating of 61, the Canon SX280 HS is a fine choice to use in street photography. A very good street photography camera has a fine balance of picture quality plus portability.

Instagram's $20 billion Ad success
image stabilization (Optical)
lighter than competitors in class (233g)
fixed screen
sensor is very small (1/2.3")
has no RAW files

Canon SX280 HS Sports photography highlights

A awful sports photography score of 37 indicates the Canon SX280 HS is just not good for taking pictures of sports. A camera needs excellent focusing plus fast continuous shooting for sports photography.

Last day to get your files as Canon Irisa shuts down
long zoom range (25-500mm 20.0 x zoom)
has image stabilization (Optical)
features tracking autofocus
max fps low (4.0 frames per second)
resolution not great (12 megapixels)
sensor is tiny (1/2.3")
not so great battery (210 CIPA)
lacks phase detect AF

Canon SX280 HS Travel photography advice

Weight is super important in picking a camera for travel. On the whole, the Canon SX280 HS gets a nice 61 for a travelling camera which makes it a good choice for your journeys.

Coronavirus is affecting the sensor business
lighter than others in class (233 grams)
built-in flash
reasonably wide (25mm)
long reach (500mm)
no Timelapse recording
not so great battery (210 per charge)
sensor resolution low (12 megapixels)
doesn't feature selfie friendly screen
sluggish maximum aperture (f3.5)

Canon SX280 HS Landscape photography factors

For anyone who is looking to buy a camera for landscape pictures, the biggest aspect will be image quality. The Canon SX280 HS and it's awful rating of 42 for a landscape camera is just not good amongst its competition.

400 Megapixel mode coming to Fujifilm GFX 100
focusing manually
quite wide (25mm)
nice screen size (3 inch)
image stabilization (Optical)
can't switch lens (fixed lens mount)
sluggish max aperture (f3.5)
megapixel count low (12 megapixels)
small sensor size (1/2.3")
doesn't have RAW format
bad battery life (210 CIPA)
doesn't have Time Lapse recording

Canon SX280 HS Vlogging info

A vlogging camera preferably should have a moving display, microphone port and preferably IBIS. Considering all things, the Canon SX280 HS is just not good as a vlog camera as it receives a awful rating of 34.

Photographer fined '$200,000' for failing to deliver photos
pretty wide (25mm)
has image stabilization (Optical)
includes face detection focusing
video resolution high (1920 x 1080 pxls)
lighter than competitors (233g)
sluggish maximum aperture (f3.5)
screen isn't selfie friendly
no external mic port

Canon SX280 HS Alternatives

If you need replacements to the SX280 HS, here is a collection of the highest scored cameras which fall into the class of Small Sensor Superzoom.

The chart down below shows you a summary of the SX280 HS compared to it's top scoring rivals shown earlier.

There are a bunch of cameras you might consider as alternative options. To browse through a detailed comparison, simply click on the "compare" link.

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Specifications

General Information
Make
Canon
Model type
Canon PowerShot SX280 HS
Class
Small Sensor Superzoom
Revealed
2013-03-21
Physical type
Compact
Sensor Information
Sensor type
BSI-CMOS
Powered by
Digic 6
Sensor size
1/2.3"
Sensor measurements
6.17 x 4.55mm
Sensor surface area
28.1mm²
Sensor resolution
12MP
Anti alias filter
Aspect ratio
1:1, 4:3, 3:2 and 16:9
Peak resolution
4000 x 3000
RAW support
Highest native ISO
6400
Lowest native ISO
100
Autofocusing
Focus manually
Touch focus
Autofocus continuous
Single autofocus
Autofocus tracking
Autofocus selectice
Autofocus center weighted
Multi area autofocus
Live view autofocus
Face detection focus
Contract detection focus
Phase detection focus
Cross type focus points
0
Lens
Lens mount type
fixed lens
Lens zoom range
25-500mm (20.0x)
Largest aperture
f/3.5-6.8
Macro focusing range
5cm
Crop factor
5.8
Screen
Screen type
Fixed Type
Screen diagonal
3"
Resolution of screen
461k dots
Selfie friendly
Liveview
Touch friendly
Viewfinder Information
Viewfinder
None
DXO scores
DXO Overall rating
not tested
DXO Color Depth rating
not tested
DXO Dynamic range rating
not tested
DXO Low light rating
not tested
Features
Min shutter speed
15 secs
Max shutter speed
1/3200 secs
Continuous shutter rate
4.0 frames per second
Shutter priority
Aperture priority
Manually set exposure
Exposure compensation
Yes
Custom white balance
Image stabilization
Inbuilt flash
Flash distance
3.50 m
Flash options
Auto, On, Off, Red-Eye, Slow Sync
External flash
AE bracketing
WB bracketing
Exposure
Multisegment
Average
Spot
Partial
AF area
Center weighted
Video features
Video resolutions
1920 x 1080 (60, 30 fps), 1280 x 720 (30 fps) 640 x 480 (30, 120 fps), 320 x 240 (240 fps)
Highest video resolution
1920x1080
Video format
MPEG-4, H.264
Microphone port
Headphone port
Connectivity
Wireless
Built-In
Bluetooth
NFC
HDMI
USB
USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
GPS
BuiltIn
Physical
Environment sealing
Water proofing
Dust proofing
Shock proofing
Crush proofing
Freeze proofing
Weight
233 gr (0.51 lbs)
Physical dimensions
106 x 63 x 33mm (4.2" x 2.5" x 1.3")
Other
Battery life
210 photos
Battery type
Battery Pack
Battery ID
NB-6L
Self timer
Yes (2 or 10 sec, Custom)
Time lapse shooting
Type of storage
SD/SDHC/SDXC
Card slots
1
Launch pricing
$325