Canon has added a touchscreen and Wi-Fi to the excellent S100 and despite niggles, it remains a top compact
A superb compact that's ready for anything
Tops for picture quality, and as a sturdy all-rounder the AW110 is unbeatable
The Sony RX100 is a superb camera buff's camera that's not too proud to go idiot-proof
With high framerate video and spot-on exposure abilities, the FZ200 zooms ahead of its rivals
Canon has kept the G-series brilliantly pro-friendly while cutting it down in size
Great screen, tons of apps and glitch-free sharing, but images aren’t great
It ain’t perfect – but the Canon IXUS 125 HS is a surprisingly powerful camera given its tiny dimensions
If night-time photography gets you going, the XZ-2 is a fine choice
WHAT TO LOOK FOR
1. Resolution The number of megapixels is rapidly becoming irrelevant. So long as you’re in double figures you’ll be OK, so move on and focus on the things that really matter, such as…
2. Picture quality The only hands-on time you’re likely to get is in an artificially lit shop. This will tell you nothing about picture quality, so read reviews and check out shots taken with your potential snapper on sites such as Flickr.
3. Features Think about how you’re likely to use your camera and prioritise features such as size, style, ruggedness and whether you want in-depth control or an idiot-proof interface.
4. Stepping up? There’s now a middle ground between compacts and pro-style DSLRs. Olympus, Panasonic, Ricoh, Samsung and Sony make ‘compact system’ cameras, or ‘micro-SLRs’, which combine interchangeable lenses with small bodies. Some sneak into our DSLR top ten.