Externally, the PowerShot SX510 HS looks very similar to its predecessor, though the body has been restyled and looks a little curvier with a more defined flash hump. The grip is the same size and shape but the dimple textured covering now extends around to the side which not only provides a more secure hold, but looks better too. It's a little bigger all round than the COOLPIX L820 which also weighs substantially more, largely on account of its 4 AA batteries.
The Canon PowerShot SX510 HS has a 12.1 megapixel backlit CMOS sensor and 30x optical zoom lens, which is a 35mm equivalent of 24-720mm. The zoom can be extended to 60x with ZoomPlus and there is optical image stabilisation to help keep your images as sharp as possible. With a minimum focusing distance of 0cm you can get really close to your subject when shooting macros.
To make picture taking easy there is Smart Auto mode which automatically adjusts the camera settings for the detected scene. For more control there are full manual controls so you can set the aperture and shutter speed. When zooming in to your subject you can use Zoom Framing Assist to quickly zoom out and back in again to relocate your subject.
The SX510 HS can be connected to smartphones, tablets and your home wireless network via Wi-Fi to allow you to share your images and even geotag them.
Videos are recorded
Videos are recorded in full 1080p HD with stereo sound and optical zoom, with Enhanced Dynamic IS to compensate for any movement. The camera can be connected to a HD TV with a HDMI cable.
Inevitably, a body this small doesn't fit snugly in your palm, but the grip is generous enough to accommodate your second and third fingers and with your index finger on the shutter and thumb on the thumb rest, one-handed operation feels secure and comfortable. Place your left hand under the lens and it feels just like a mini DSLR.
The control layout hasn't changed, so if you plan to upgrade there's little new to learn. The top panel layout, as before includes the on/off button, mode dial and shutter release on the right side of the body. The mode dial looks a little bit more substantial and gains a new position for Movie digest mode in addition to the PASM, Auto, SCN, Creative effects, Discrete, and Movie positions.