Canon Powershot G15 Compact Vacation Time-lapse Camera

Long exposure with ND Filters

One common question is 'What's the best pocketable camera to travel with?" Obviously, that will highly vary, but I have my own personal requirements for such a camera. If you're looking for a fun pocketable travel camera, especially one that is capable of quality Time-lapse, this post might be of interest. If it's something you don't need, you can skip this article as it will probably bore you to death.

Time-Lapse Pier

So I recently took a little trip out of town and purposely left all the heavy DSLR cameras and big lenses behind. Instead I packed up the new Canon S110, Sony RX100, GoPro Hero3, and the Canon Powershot G15. If there was any action involved, of course the GoPro is the perfect camera. Outside of that, I kept coming back to the G15. Good for close up macro photography, a stabilized lens, decent zoom, flash hot shoe, and a shutter input for Time-lapse photos. The Sony RX100 takes amazing photos and videos, but if I had to vacation with only a single camera, I personally have found more features in the Powershot G15.

I brought along a very old cheap Aputure Timer Remote that i've had for years for the Time-Lapse photos. You can achieve much better quality from the G15, but I did not have the proper software to edit the new G15 RAW files, so I was stuck with JPEG. It was also bright enough outdoors to use the HDR mode in combination of the Time-Lapse remote.

Time-lapse with MagFilter + Tiffen CPL Polarizer

In HDR mode, the camera will take 3 different exposures and save it to a single JPEG file. With the Carry Speed MagFilter threaded adapter I was able to add ND filters to capture the motion blur of water, or Polarizing filters to correct glare. To keep the gear lightweight, I also traveled with a very small Calumet Tripod and Kamerar Friction arms. Here's a list of the gear:

Canon G15 Camera
find-price-button Canon Powershot G15 Compact Camera

Aputure Timer
find-price-button Aputure Timer Time-Lapse Remote for Canon Rebel

MagFilter Adapter G15
find-price-button Carry Speed MagFilter Threaded Filter Adapters

find-price-button Calumet Mini Table Tripod

Kamerar Friction Arm
find-price-button Kamerar 11" Stainless Steel Friction Arm

15 thoughts on “Canon Powershot G15 Compact Vacation Time-lapse Camera

  1. Bernie

    I can't get the flash trigger to work in manual, AV, TV, or P mode. It works on Auto, SCN, or C1 and C2 modes. I need the flash trigger to work in manual. Any suggestions?

  2. Hey Emm,
    Have you checked out the G16 yet? I just picked it up and love it. Here's some test footage I shot in beautiful Savannah, GA:

  3. Hau

    Dear Expertise,
    I'm a beginner, but I'm interested in making a time-lapse video with Insects such as Larva. Could you please tell me what is a reasonable camera can be used to do the video which can conducted in 2-3 days. Please explain to me which equipment should be there to support the job
    Thank you so much,

  4. Emm

    Post author

    @Elena - If you want to have very long exposures, the camera should have a 'bulb' setting. This camera does not offer Bulb mode.

  5. Elena

    I am really soon to buy the g15, and i want know if with a timer control o a shutter control remote its possible to do long exposition photos (more tha the 15" that the camera let you). Do you know if it possible? and how?

    (sorry, english is not my first language)

  6. Dave

    I just purchased the G 15 and now am going to purchase the Mag Filter CPL and I see that they now offer the CPL filter, do you know what size I will need and is their any issues with seeing the edges of the filter when using wide angle?

  7. that isn't an infinity symbol, it is a time exposure for people with bulb mode, HH:MM:SS, it might work that way on this camera but I use this for long frames on my DSLR all the time.

  8. JohnnyD

    We recently traveled with the RX100 and it's pretty much replaced our 7D and all the lenses and additional gear we needed to bring along with it. While the timelapse feature really should have been included with it, we got a tripod mount for my iPhone and use that for time lapses. It was a pretty great experience.

  9. Emm

    Post author

    @TP - You can attempt to conform your 30p video down to 24, but not the other way around. The average person may not be able to tell, but some people can detect the difference in shutter speed and frame rates very easily.

  10. TP

    So here's a question. Not for professional use as that's why I have my MIII cameras, if I got the G15 for family use, and knowing that video at 1920x1080 is only at 24p, and all other family videos have been recorded at 30p, does this camera make sense in that respect? On the argument of both combining various formats on the same dvd at some point, but also fromt the aesthetic stand point, does 24p's inherent stutter look okay for generally haphazard / fast movement (wife recording and kids running around!)

  11. Emm

    Post author

    @Jan - The G15 is very capable of amazing videos and photos as well. The images in the time lapse came out great with lots of detail and dynamic range from a basic JPEG. This camera is also capable of doing RAW. Not to mention way cheaper than the RX100.

  12. Jan

    "Amazing photos and videos" VS "time-lapse feature" ?

    Well, if i was to buy a pocket shooter for traveling, the former feature would certainly trump the latter.
    Unless of course, i'd already own an arsenal of pocketable cams like you obviously do! 🙂

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