Canon has unveiled three new compact digital cameras in its PowerShot and Ixus lines. Topping the bill is the new Canon Ixus 1000 HS compact camera.
Canon Ixus 1000 HS
Launched to mark the 10th anniversary of Canon’s Ixus line, the Ixus 1000 HS is one of the most advanced Ixus models to date, according to Canon.
Featuring the same HS system camera technology as this year’s earlier Ixus 300 HS model, the Ixus 1000 HS is designed to take superior shots even in challenging low light conditions.
To achieve this, Canon has restrained the megapixel count to a relatively modest 10Mp. In our expert tests of the best digital cameras, we’ve often found that excessively high resolutions tend to produce grainy shots in low light, so we’ll look forward to testing the Ixus 1000 HS as soon as it’s available.
At the time of writing we don’t have complete test results on the earlier Canon Ixus 300 HS model, but our initial findings suggest that the HS System helps it deliver terrific picture quality.
Read our Canon Ixus 300 HS review
Canon claims that the Ixus 1000 HS will be able to shoot more than three shots-per-second at full 10Mp resolution while you keep the shutter button held down, and this can be increased to over eight shots-per-second by reducing the resolution.
The camera also features a generous 10x optical zoom, helping you get closer to more distant subjects.
Full 1080p HD video with the Canon Ixus 1000 HS
The Canon Ixus 1000 HS is the first compact camera we’ve seen to offer full HD 1080p recording – the same high-resolution recording that you can get with a digital SLR or digital camera.
Which? digital camera expert Richard Parris says, ‘To date we still haven’t seen a compact camera that can match the video quality of a proper camcorder, but the Ixus 1000 HS’s specs are compelling. We look forward putting this model through our full lab testing to see what it’s really capable of.’
The Canon Ixus 1000 HS will be available from September 2010, with a launch price of £349.
Canon PowerShot S95
Canon has also boosted its line-up with the new Canon PowerShot S95, an update to the successful PowerShot S90.
Read our full Which? review of the Canon Powershot S90
Like its predecessor, the PowerShot S95 boasts a unique control ring around the lens. This ring allows you to control various functions on the camera, such as the ISO level, shutter speed, aperture, exposure and even manual focusing.
The PowerShot S95 also boasts what Canon describes as a ‘Hybrid IS’ image stabilisation system, which, according to the manufacturer, helps reduce blur and lets you shoot with slower shutter speeds.
To date, we haven’t been overwhelmed by the image stabilisers we’ve seen in compact cameras, which tend not to perform as well as those in larger DSLR lenses, but we’ll reserve judgment until we’ve fully tested the PowerShot S95.
Low light shooting with the Canon PowerShot S95
The PowerShot S95 boasts a large maximum aperture of f2.0, which allows more light to reach the lens. This should help you achieve better low light shots without needing the flash.
The camera also uses the new HS System to boost its low-light performance, according to Canon. The normal resolution is 10Mp, but by reducing this to 2.5Mp you can push the ISO setting as high as 12,800, making the camera extra sensitive in low light.
The S95 boasts a 3.8x optical zoom lens, and the camera can take 720p HD videos. It will be available from August 2010, with a launch price of £399.
Canon PowerShot SX130 IS
Canon has also unveiled the new Canon PowerShot SX130 IS, an affordable model that allows users to exploit a full range of manual controls.
The Canon Powershot SX130 IS is an update of the older PowerShot SX110 IS and SX120 IS models, both of which performed well in the Which? test labs.
The new SX130 IS model boasts a 12.1Mp resolution, and it can also capture 720p HD videos. It’s a relatively chunky camera, but it makes room for a 3-inch LCD screen and a 12x optical zoom lens, which has a built-in image stabiliser.
If you’re looking to try out advanced camera controls, such as shutter speed or aperture priority modes, or full manual mode, then the SX130 IS has all of these on offer. It’s a cheaper model than most compact bridge cameras, offering a high degree of creative manual control on a modest budget.
The Canon PowerShot SX130 IS will be available from August 2010, with a launch price of £199.
For help finding the best digital cameras, be sure to read our independent, expert Which? reviews of the best digital cameras.
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