Updated (September, 2011): Compare the Canon Powershot S100 vs Olympus XZ-1

Canon PowerShot S95

Winner
Canon PowerShot S95

50

vs

Olympus XZ-1

45

Olympus XZ-1

Runner-up
     

Reasons to buy the Canon PowerShot S95

24p movies
Supports 24p
For that film look
 

Reasons to buy the Olympus XZ-1

Screen type
OLED Screen
Bright and vivid
Panorama
In-camera panoramas
Stitches together multiple photos into a panorama
Battery life
Great battery life
320 shots
Macro focus
Great macro
1 cm
 

differences

Advantages of the Canon S95

Report a correction
Overall image quality
Significantly better image quality
47.0 vs 34.0
Help
Around 40% better image quality
Supports 24p
Supports 24p
Yes vs No
Help
Get that real film feel
Dynamic range
More dynamic range
11.3 EV vs 10.4 EV
Help
0.9 f-stops more dynamic range
HDR
Has in-camera HDR
Yes vs No
Help
Combines multiple exposures to capture high dynamic range
Image stabilization
Better image stabilization
Lens vs Sensor shift
Help
Less risk of blur
Color depth
Better color depth
20.4 bits vs 18.8 bits
Help
Distinguishes 1.6 more bits of color
Low light performance
Slightly lower noise at high ISO
153 ISO vs 117 ISO
Help
The S95 has a slight edge (0.4 f-stops) in low noise, high ISO performance
Light sensitivity (boost)
Has boost ISO
12,800 ISO vs None
Help
Allows taking photos in darker situations, often at the cost of additional noise in the image
Size
Smaller
99x58x29 mm vs 110x64x42 mm
Help
More than 40% smaller
Weight
Lighter
193 g vs 275 g
Help
Around 30% lighter
Thickness
Thinner
1.2" vs 1.7"
Help
More than 30% thinner
Canon PowerShot S95 Learn more about
the Canon S95

Advantages of the Olympus XZ-1

Report a correction
Screen type
Has an OLED screen
OLED vs LCD
Help
OLED screens are often brighter and more vibrant than typical LCD screens
Panorama
Can create panoramas in-camera
Yes vs No
Help
Stitches together multiple photos for a wide perspective
Macro focus
Significantly better macro capability
1 cm vs 5 cm
Help
Focus on subjects 5x closer to the lens
Sensor size
Larger sensor
1/1.6" 8.3x6.2mm vs 1/1.7" 7.6x5.7mm
Help
Around 20% larger sensor
Aperture
Wider aperture
f/1.8 vs f/2.0
Help
At its widest zoom, the XZ-1's lens captures marginally more light (0.3 f-stops)
Battery life
Significantly longer battery life
320 shots vs 200 shots
Help
60% more shots per battery charge
Screen resolution
Higher resolution screen
614k dots vs 461k dots
Help
More than 30% higher resolution screen
Light sensitivity
Better maximum light sensitivity
6,400 ISO vs 3,200 ISO
Help
The XZ-1's maximum light sensitivity is 1 f-stop better
Continuous shooting
Shoots faster
7 fps vs 1.9 fps
Help
More than 3.5x faster continuous shooting
External flash
Supports an external flash
Yes vs No
Help
An external flash often produces better looking flash images
Lowest price
Significantly cheaper
$298.24 vs $593.00
Help
The best price we've seen is $295 cheaper (around 50% less)
Longest exposure
Longer exposures
60s vs 15s
Help
4x longer exposures
Olympus XZ-1 Learn more about
the Olympus XZ-1
vs

recommendations

Which camera do we recommend? Relative to the best recent pro digicams, and ignoring price

Snapsort Recommends
Canon PowerShot S95 Canon PowerShot S95 50
Retailer
    Style
      Color
        You save

        vs

        45 Olympus XZ-1 Olympus XZ-1
        Retailer
          Style
            Color
              You save

              similarities

              Compared to recent digicams

              Common Strengths
              Aperture Very wide aperture Help
              S95:f/2.0
              XZ-1:f/1.8
              Supports RAW RAW support Help
              Better editing
              Common Weaknesses
              Viewfinder No viewfinders Help
              Can only preview photos on the screen
              Sensor type Lower-end sensor types Help
              CCD
              Dynamic range Poor dynamic range Help
              S95:11.3 EV
              XZ-1:10.4 EV
              Low light performance Above average noise at high ISO Help
              S95:153 ISO
              XZ-1:117 ISO
              Color depth Poor color depth Help
              S95:20.4 bits
              XZ-1:18.8 bits
              Screen flips out No flip-out screens Help
              Less flexible
              Movie format HD (720p) video Help
              S95:720p @ 24fps
              XZ-1:720p @ 30fps
              Overall image quality Low image quality Help
              S95:47.0
              XZ-1:34.0
              Wide angle Poor wide angle Help
              28 mm
              Zoom Poor zoom Help
              S95:3.8x
              XZ-1:4x

              Compared to recent pro digicams

              Common Strengths

              Snapsort is not aware of any interesting strengths shared by these two products.

              Common Weaknesses
              Light sensitivity (boost) One has boost ISO Help
              S95:12,800 ISO
              XZ-1:None
              True resolution Capture low resolution images Help
              10 MP
              Touch screen No touchscreens Help
              More buttons
              Light sensitivity Poor maximum light sensitivity Help
              S95:3,200 ISO
              XZ-1:6,400 ISO
              High-speed framerate No high speed movie support Help
              Not supported
              Autofocus Slower contrast detection autofocus Help
              slower focusing
              Screen resolution Low resolution screens Help
              S95:461k dots
              XZ-1:614k dots
              Continuous shooting Slow continuous shooting Help
              S95:1.9 fps
              XZ-1:7 fps
              Sensor size Very small sensors Help
              S95:1/1.7" 7.6x5.7mm
              XZ-1:1/1.6" 8.3x6.2mm

              dxomark

              DXOMark

              competitors

              Shared Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Canon PowerShot S120

              Canon PowerShot S120

              Pro digicam

              $399

              Low light performance Is slightly less noisy at high ISO
              Overall image quality Has slightly better image quality
              Macro focus Slightly worse macro focusing
              Canon Powershot S100

              Canon Powershot S100

              Pro digicam

              $244

              Movie format Records higher quality movies
              Wide angle Has a slightly wider wide angle lens
              Macro focus Slightly worse macro focusing
              Canon PowerShot S110

              Canon PowerShot S110

              Pro digicam

              $179 - $199

              Movie format Records higher quality movies
              Wide angle Has a slightly wider wide angle lens
              Macro focus Slightly worse macro focusing
              Sony Cybershot DSC-RX100

              Sony Cybershot DSC-RX100

              Pro digicam

              $498 - $798

              Sensor size Has a much larger sensor
              Low light performance Is significantly less noisy at high ISO
              Macro focus Significantly worse macro focusing
              Startup delay Has slightly more startup delay
              Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX5

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX5

              Pro digicam

              $599

              Wide angle Has a slightly wider wide angle lens
              Shutter lag Has much less shutter lag
              Lowest price Is significantly more expensive
              Canon PowerShot G1X

              Canon PowerShot G1X

              Boutique

              $549 - $1,227

              Sensor size Has a much larger sensor
              Low light performance Is much less noisy at high ISO
              Lowest price Is slightly more expensive
              Thickness Is thicker
              Fujifilm Finepix X10

              Fujifilm Finepix X10

              Pro digicam

              $400

              Low light performance Is slightly less noisy at high ISO
              Movie format Records higher quality movies
              Thickness Is thicker
              Weight Is slightly heavier

              Canon PowerShot S95 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Canon PowerShot S200

              Canon PowerShot S200

              Pro digicam

              $70

              Wide angle Better wide angle
              Aperture Wider aperture
              Supports RAW No RAW support
              Nikon Coolpix P300

              Nikon Coolpix P300

              Pro digicam

              $350

              Movie format Higher resolution movies
              Screen resolution Significantly higher resolution screen
              Supports RAW No RAW support
              Supports 24p No 24p support
              Canon PowerShot SX700 HS

              Canon PowerShot SX700 HS

              Travel zoom

              $279 - $383

              Movie format Higher resolution movies
              Screen resolution Significantly higher resolution screen
              Supports RAW No RAW support
              Aperture Much narrower aperture

              Olympus XZ-1 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Olympus XZ-2 iHS

              Olympus XZ-2 iHS

              Pro digicam

              $372

              Overall image quality Significantly better image quality
              Movie format Higher resolution movies
              Screen type Doesn't have an OLED screen
              Sensor size Smaller sensor
              Olympus Stylus XZ-10

              Olympus Stylus XZ-10

              Pro digicam

              $148

              Movie format Higher resolution movies
              Touch screen Has a touch screen
              Screen type Doesn't have an OLED screen
              Sensor size Smaller sensor
              Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX7

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX7

              Pro digicam

              $345 - $348

              Overall image quality Significantly better image quality
              Dynamic range More dynamic range
              Screen type Doesn't have an OLED screen
              Sensor size Smaller sensor

              appearance

              Canon PowerShot S95 Olympus XZ-1
              Canon PowerShot S95 Olympus XZ-1
              Canon PowerShot S95 Olympus XZ-1

              discussion

              Canon PowerShot S95
              PowerShot S95
              Canon

              Report a correction
              Olympus XZ-1
              XZ-1
              Olympus

              Report a correction

              Showing 9 comments

              Mike (6:51 PM, March 06, 2012)
              I own and use both cameras. This is very odd advice. To address the low light issue first: The Olympus has a lens which is much faster, so the fact that the Canon has a sensor/processing engine about 1/3 stop less noisy is in no way going to lead to it having better low light ability (although the Olympus has a badly-designed exposure meter and requires between 1 and 2 stops of exposure compensation to be dialled in in low light). The Olympus lens is also optically slightly better than the Canon's in terms of corner sharpness, so if you know how to use it, is capable of slightly better image quality than the Canon. 
               
              felipe (1:39 AM, February 14, 2012)
              The canon feels like a toy camera, I had it for 2 weeks and took hundreds of pic. the image quality is very good but the olympus pic are great! I willl keep the olympus because is a lot more camera in any subject, the lens are incredible fast, 1.8f and 2.5f at max zoom, as far a low light situations the olympus is the king the canon shows more noise. 
               
              Niunalias (9:00 AM, January 11, 2012)
              I will pot to you whatewer you want that I will take better photos in low light with my xz-1 than you with your S95. (I have both cameras) and I can say to you that now I can shoot at 100-200 iso in practically all situations, raising to 400 in a candel situations, with the S95 I must raise till 800 to 1600. Iso 400 is fairy better than canon iso 800 not to mention iso 200 at xz-1.
              This page is Canon powered ?
               
              Guest (6:25 PM, December 04, 2011)
              The Test is not fair at all.
              For example: "At its widest zoom, the XZ-1's lens captures marginally more light (0,3 f-stops)"... noone is bothering about the wide end... as soon as u zoom in a bit, u got far smaller aperture at s95. You could write, that XZ-1 is only 0.5 f-stops slower at tele then Canon at the wide end. Sounds different, doesn't it?
              And by the way: If snapsort cites dpreview.com, so please don't forget to mention, that S95 reached a score of 72% there (really good result, Silver Award) but the XZ-1 was even better with 74% (Gold Award)
              The only real advantage of the canon is its smaller size.
               
              Dexterus (7:16 PM, August 29, 2011)
              yeah.. "should" Especially with it's dark F4.9 at longer end.
               
              Charlie (2:10 PM, August 17, 2011)
              I have had both and I sold the S95 because I like the colors that come out of the XZ-1 better. There's not much difference when it comes to handling the two - it's just a matter of getting used to your tool. I hate Photoshop so therefor the XZ-1 was the perfect choice for me. I just open the RAW file in Olympus Viewer 2 and save them as jpg's. Sometimes - if I've made a blunder - I change the white balance before I convert the file - thats all :) With the S95 there was always something I did not like and had to adjust :( You should try them both to see for yourself....
               
              Avatar for Snapsort Snapsort (1:42 PM, May 06, 2011)
              Snapsort recommends the Canon S95 because it has better image quality, it should take better photos in low light situations, it's smaller, lighter and cheaper.
              Good luck in your search.
               
              Nishith (1:22 PM, May 06, 2011)
              i am considering Cannon S95 or Olympus xz-1. Can anyone advise which is better?
               
              Eliedata (0:12 PM, February 05, 2011)
              The XZ-1 sensor is 1/1.63" (not 1/1.7").