I want to be able to take handheld shots at night. Often these shots involve high-contrast scenes, where a sign or something will be lit much more brightly than the surrounding environment. I want to capture the image as it appears to the eye, rather than having either a completely dark background or a completely blown-out subject (the brightly-lit sign). My research has led me to conclude that this effect must be achieved in post-processing with image stacking or similar techniques.
The Powershot G16 has exposure bracketing settings, but it takes a decent amount of time between exposures. This may be because it's defaulting to a longer shutter speed. The camera has an HDR feature that does well in some low-light settings and takes three exposures in very rapid succession, making handheld HDR shots possible. Is there a way to get that rapid exposure speed to occur automatically when the button is fully depressed in a bracketing context and not an HDR context? Is there a way to program AEB to use specific shutter speeds and aperture values? I want to be able to take these shots handheld and getting an image that has as little handheld shake as possible is paramount, which means exposures taken as closely together as possible.