Canon Ixus 50 Digital Camera [5MP, 3x Optical Zoom]
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Power and style
Key to the cutting edge miniaturisation of the Digital IXUS 50 is the ultra-high refractive index aspherical (UA) 3x optical zoom lens, which delivers outstanding optical performance and corner-to-corner clarity in an exceptionally compact form. It combines with the 5.0 Megapixel sensor to deliver superb images suited for photo quality prints to A3 size.
Big screen movies
Review and share images and movie clips on the large high-definition 2.0" LCD. Night Display mode automatically improves visibility when it is dark, while the user-controlled Quick-bright function lets you frame/review comfortably in low-light conditions. Record and playback extended 30 fps VGA movie clips with sound (up to 1GB files possible¹). Analyse fast action sequences by recording QVGA quality at 60 fps and watching in slow motion.
Integrating a Canon DIGIC II processor, the Digital IXUS 50 has power to burn. DIGIC II links all key camera functions, driving fast auto-focus, outstanding camera performance, quick start-up times and first-class image quality.Like a hidden photographer's assistant, iSAPS uses DIGIC II's power to analyse the scene and optimise key camera settings even before the shutter release is pressed. 10 shooting modes including 6 scene modes combine with 9-point auto-focus system (AiAF) to deliver consistently brilliant results in every situation.
Create exciting visual effects with My Colors by making favourite colours more vivid, swapping one colour with another, or making all but one area of an image monochrome.
Capture snorkelling, skiing and surfing action with the optional 3m depth All Weather Case, and extend lighting options with the optional High Power Flash.
For full colour prints within seconds, simply connect the camera to any PictBridge compatible photo printer and push the Print/Share button. It's that easy. With a Canon SELPHY CP series printer, you can even print handy ID photo prints and Movie prints.
Editing and sharing
Canon's ZoomBrowser EX (for Windows) and ImageBrowser (for Macintosh) help you arrange albums, crop photographs and adjust image contrast and brightness. Access to CANON iMAGE GATEWAY² gives you 100MB online space for your own personal gallery, for sharing with family and friends.
Top customer reviews
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I got this over the ixus 700 since this was smaller and I thought the 5mp quality would be enough, but I admit wondering whether it was a compromise of image quality and battery life for size at the time. Even when it arrived I was surprised with just how small it was. It is amazing in this respect, especially if style is important to you.
Image quality: I find 5mp more than enough in terms of pixels. Image quality is good, and given the size of the camera is impressive. Red eye is evident occasionally, but this may be an issue for many ultra compact digital cameras. Supplied software allows photo editing of this if desired. The flash seems fine. As a snapshot camera I am extremely pleased.
Battery life is possibly the weakest aspect of the camera I can find, although not bad. I bought an extra battery with mine, which I would still recommend. I like the fact this ultra compact camera still has a view finder, so the LCD display can be used sparingly if battery life must be preserved. In this case the manual claims approx 400 photos can be taken on one battery. Unfortunately a low battery life indicator is only displayed a few minutes before the battery runs out.
Menus are very easy to use. I purchased a high speed memory card, and whether this makes a difference when saving photos/viewing I am not sure. Start up time is very quick, and when taking photos I have not noticed shutter lag at all. Quick easy operation is a great part of this camera.
Other points? No case included. Software is included, as are cables to link the camera directly to pc or tv to view photos, and a battery charger. Would recommend getting a high speed high capacity memory card, as even with a 1Gb memory card video at full quality (640x480 30fps) can be recorded for just 8 minutes - although granted it is a camera not video camera. Sound recordings can be attached to each photo using the inbuilt microphone. The 2" LCD is great.
An excellent camera, that is perfect if looking for a very small camera that looks great and has good image quality. An extra battery, memory card and case are definitely worth considering.
I was very pleased with the quality of the shots, and the ability of the auto functions. Sometimes the camera disagreed about what I wanted to focus on, but by taking a few shots, or choosing the best focus mode can solve this! Actually the flexible range of choices in modes, photo size and image quality are really good.
Overall, the Canon ixus 50 is responsive and feels good to use. After each shot, the high clarity of the screen on the back really helps to assess if you have the photo you want.
As a 'semi-pro' photographer this camera fits into my collection as a convenient-to-carry compact, and a great MACRO. I've captured some seriously impressive close-up shots with the digital macro mode. Have also taken very pleasing photos of sunset, portraits and organic farm pigs!
The ixus 50 has a nice extra called 'high speed movie' which takes 60 frames per second, to avoid blur.
The only thing letting down the Canon ixus 50 is the battery. I've run the camera flat after only a couple of hours work. At only 760mAh the battery is poor compared to some others - look at the Casio Exilim's Z55 camera's battery providing 1230mAh in comparison.
Looks like I'll have to fork out for a spare! Oh well, it's smaller and lighter than a pair of AA bateries, it's not so bad to carry one about! Another MUST is an extra (larger) memory card - but that is always the case with digital cameras.
The camera itself is fantastic. Hence the 5 stars.
All 3 are good compacts but why did i go for the Canon?
1) Picture Quality - i used these cameras each for 2 days so i had to squeeze in a lot of pics and printing with each one. all 3 showed purple fringing on high contrast pics but the worst was the S2 in my opinion. This seems to be a problem with all compacts but you want it to be as little a problem as possible nonetheless. The Nikon also seemed the most prone to camera shake and was the most awkward to hold comfortably. The Nikon was rapidly losing my affection. Macro shooting is not something everyone wants but if you do then go for the IXUS 50 - wow, absolutely excellent compared to the other 2 cameras which i didnt feel came close to matching the Canon's performance. Mode choices are something i feel should be useable and not gimicky - all 3 cameras had good mode slection but i felt again the Canon got the balance best. Scene selections were concise and appropriate and worked well and the extra gimicky options available through My Colours were fun and allowed some degree of freedom with image trickery pre-editing with PC software. My particular favourite was holding one colour while making the rest of the picture black and white! so overall picture quality was good and i felt there wasnt much between the Fujifilm and the Canon except for the macro mode.
2)Ease of Use - all 3 had good menu systems with the Nikon being the most difficult to operate purely due to the cramped back of the camera. Canon's menu system was maybe more intuitive than Fuji in my opinion but not such that it made a big difference. The Canon had the best start-up time at about 1 second which meant that capturing that instant pic was easier. All 3 had very little shutter lag and the LCDs were bright and clear. Now comes an area i feel is often overlooked in compacts - the viewfinder. In low light or bright outdoors the LCD screens can become difficult to see and occassionally you find yourself almost shooting blind. I found myself using the viewfinder on my old 4300 more than i thought i would and once you become used to the differences between it and the actual photo then it is a VERY useful addition to the camera i think. The IXUS 50 was the only camera here with a viewfinder.
The only other thing worth mentioning in my view is the movie modes. Granted you shouldnt buy a camera if you want a camcorder but the movie modes on the Canon and the Fujifilm did stand out as better than the Nikon. The Canon can even manage 60fps on its fast frame rate mode - but be careful, this gobbles up memory FAST!!!!!
All in all 3 great compacts but the Canon won because of its macro mode, viewfinder and in my opinion marginally better picture quality and printing results (on A3, A4 and postcard sizes). With all 3 you should look to invest in a good case, bigger memory cards and a spare battery. Well done Canon!!
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