The Canon G5 X is essential the G7 X repackaged in a new body. Where the older G7 X was built for selfie-lovers, the G5 X brings a welcome change with a body that caters more towards enthusiast shooters. (As if camera names already were not confusing enough, the G5 is newer than the G7 and G3.)
The highlighting feature of the Canon G5 X is the large 1” sensor paired with a bright f/1.8-2.8 4.2x optical zoom lens. While not the 1.5” sensor of Canon's G1X Mark II, that's quite a bit of imaging power, enough to compete with the popular Sony RX100 line. Speedwise, the G5 X falls a bit short of the competition, however, since the latest Sony RX 100 IV hits 16 fps and earlier models 10 fps. The G5X gets just 4.4 fps.
While the sensor, lens and speed doesn't get an upgrade, the body of the G5 X looks quite different from the G7 X. That's because Canon has added an electronic viewfinder. Where the last model was directed more towards selfie-lovers, the viewfinder puts the camera back into enthusiast hands. There's still a tilting LCD screen, only it now flips out to the side instead of the top (and yes, you could still use it to take selfies). There's also a new grip, and a completely different control scheme. In short, while the inside remains largely unchanged, the exterior of this camera is quite different from the previous version, with the best change being the addition of the electronic viewfinder.
The Canon G5 X has made a nice improvement with the addition of the electronic viewfinder. However, we would have liked to see a jump in speed, since it gets less than half of the speed on the Sony RX100 IV and even the older versions of that same camera. The G5 X list price does sit about $200 cheaper, however. Potential buyers should compare carefully with the Canon G3 X too, which boasts a big 25x zoom with the same 1” sensor.
Canon is certainly headed in the right direction with the G5 X, though the speed still has a little room for improvement.