I’ve been without a pocket camera since my Panasonic FX-33 died on holiday in September 2007 … until today 🙂
For my birthday, my wife has bought me a Canon IXUS 200 IS. This 12MP camera features a wider-angled lens than the IXUS 110 and also a longer zoom too, but the main reason I picked this IXUS over its slimmer sibling is the touch screen. In the past, one of the deep frustrations of pocket cameras has been that I couldn’t choose where the camera focused. But, with its 3 inch touch screen, the IXUS 200 allows me to quickly and easily choose where the camera focuses with each and every shot.
And, after an afternoon’s walk around Swansea’s redeveloped waterfront, I think the potential of this camera speaks for itself.
Two shots in particular stood out for me, and they were both looking up at objects that most people probably ignore most days:
Thoughts On The Camera
I’ve read in several reviews that the IXUS 200’s touchscreen seems a bit of a gimmick, and if you’re used to an iPhone and its marvellous touch screen, you’d be forgiven for thinking the same. But I chose this camera specifically because I could use the touchscreen to quickly and accurately pick the focus point for each photo, and for the most part it worked very well indeed.
There are a few shots (including two of the photos I’ve published in this set) where the final image wasn’t sharp. At first, I thought the camera had a softness problem at maximum zoom … but not every soft image was zoomed in to the max. I’m going to have to investigate this a bit more to try and figure it out.
There are also a few shots where the colours came out … not washed out exactly, but certainly looking odd. I’m guessing that this was something to do with the camera’s automatic dynamic contrast feature, and will be trying to figure that one out too to help minimise the number of disappointing photos in the future.
Other than that, the IXUS 200 and I have become firm friends already, and I’m looking forward to getting out with it again soon.
The Canon IXUS 40 was my first pocket digital camera, and it was my faithful companion for several years, taking plenty of interesting photos before it was finally retired. The two Panasonics I’ve had since then were excellent cameras too, with the FX-33 winning in a head-to-head against the IXUS 40. When it died, I replaced it with the LX3, but despite the excellent quality of its images, its limited focal length and non-recessed lens meant that it could never be a go-everywhere pocket camera.
The IXUS 200 IS has none of the limitations of the LX3, and has become my pocket camera of choice for the moment. However, it’s logical to assume that this is at the cost of image quality. I’ll be putting both cameras head to head in February to find out.