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The problem in reviewing any digital camcorder/camera is that it has to compete with the prevalence of smartphones . In the same way that portable music players are a victim of the success of integrated mobile phones. So for product in this market to really stand out it has to be something special. Canon generally has a reputation for being amongst the most trusted brands and for good reason.
This particular model has all the standards that you would expect including a SD card slot. Notably though it doesn't feature any other sort of output, such as a direct connection to a television or monitor. The overall image and video quality is good at eight megapixels with a 3.8 times zoom. On the other hand if you try to zoom while recording there will be significant loss of quality as opposed to changing the zoom prior to recording.
In conclusion, it is a more than capable device and will be great as a first time by for someone wanting to experiment but there are just too numerous other products to be able to wholeheartedly recommend it.
When I bought this camera it was a brand new model and had impressive specs. However as cameras have improved in the past 2 years it is not the most advanced camera.
With 8MP's it takes rather good photos, not 'professional' worthy but brill for just an everyday camera to capture those moments that you don't want to forgot.
I comes with three modes. Photo, Portrait and Film. Photo is fab for just normal pictures whereas portrait is made especially for pictures of people as the face recognition is better with portrait. Film gives you the option to record certain moments. It has a decent running time so you can take longish videos.
It has an image stabilizer which I thought was great because I often move the camera by accident when attempting to take a picture which means a blurry photo. The image stabilizer manages to reduct the chances of this.
I was really impressed with the software that came with the camera. There is a programme to help you upload your photos to your computer, a brill editing programme for simple edits and photostich so you can take several photos to get the full image then 'stich' them together.
Having used film and digital SLRs for years, I purchased the Canon digital Ixus 860IS as a carry anywhere camera. It is truly pocketable and can be carried at all times. It feels solidly constructed - of metal and dense plastic - and has a built in lens cover and fully retracting lens. After one year of being carried without a case, there have been no problems with dust on the sensor.
The Ixus powers up quickly and is ready for use in about a second - one could hardly point a camera quicker than this, so you should never miss a shot. Focusing however is less speedy, and relies, as do almost all compacts, on contrast detection, so struggles with low light / low contrast situations. Frustratingly, for a camera with so great a depth of field, if is still possible to get out of focus pictures due to shooting before the camera has found focus. A hyperfocal focus mode (as implemented in Ricoh compacts) would solve the problem.
As with all compacts, the Ixus performs best at low ISO: keep at ISO 80 or 100 if possible; anything over ISO 200 is a waste of time. Noise reduction is quite aggressive and will smooth away the fine detail in pet fur or foliage. Like most users, I hardly ever turn image stabilization off, though it does not seem to make much difference.
At low ISOs, images are impressively sharp at the centre of the frame. The Achilles' heel of the camera is - surprisingly for a Canon - the lens, which is very soft at the corners at wide angle. Very soft indeed. Even at small print sizes there is no fine detail in the corners, making the Ixus useless for landscapes, which is a pity as that is the primary use for a 28mm equivalent lens. Zoom in to 35mm equivalent (the zoom steps are 28mm, 35mm, 50mm, 80mm and 105mm) and the problem all but disappears.
Dynamic range is small (though no more limited than most similar compacts), leading to frequent and frustrating highlight clipping. Considering the number of bells and whistles available in the menus (aquarium mode, slideshows) the lack of a live histogram is to be deplored. The direct print button (does anyone print directly so often that a dedicated button is required?) can be customized to exposure compensation, but metering is erratic: a live histogram would have solved the problem.
The tiny built-in flash works well in social situations, and in contrast to outdoor performance, metering is excellent in flash situations: it almost never overexposes. Battery life is good enough to last all day. The electronics occasionally "freeze", which can be cured by removing the battery and replacing it.
Overall a good pocket camera, but don't expect too much. Wide-angle users / landscape photographers should look elsewhere.
I own and have owned a number of cameras, mainly Canon, both DSLRs and compacts. My latest being this Canon IXUS 860 IS Digital Camera. I didn't buy it new, which explains why I have so many cameras - camera manufacturers are constantly bringing out new models and to be frank the choices out there are so huge, that unless you spend a LOT of money, you will NEVER get a camera with all that you need on it.
Always best I find to wait until a camera goes down in price, of you want additional cameras, unless there is a particular quirk of a particular camera you want.
The particular quirk I love about this camera is that I will get an excellent image in most 'normal' circumstances and in many abnormal circumstances, I have managed to get an image from it, which at its worst has been a record of an event. I kid you not when I say that I have taken pictures with this camera outside at night with no flash or street lighting and got an image - the image did look as though it had been taken through a night vision camera, but it was an accidental and unexpected quirk that I found by accident.
I am torn whether to write a long technical review of this camera, or whether to just tell you it is an extremely usable, versatile and easy to use camera which will consistently give you excellent images in normal circumstances and some sort of record in other circumstances.
The colours are true, and bright where this is the case in real life, and admittedly, the output gives a slight punch to images that are maybe a little muted in real life, though this isn't overly so. The pay-off normally for a bright punchy coloured image can sometimes result in a noisier image (unavoidable for any camera under a grand). but lets face it for standard print outs, or for viewing on-screen you are never going to see this noise.
This is an 8 mega pixel camera with Wide-angle (28mm) 3.8x optical zoom. There is an optical Image Stabilizer, ISO up to 1600, DIGIC III software drives this and is responsible for the stunning image quality and noise reduction. There is Face Detection autofocus and Red-Eye Correction. The viewing screen is 3 inches which is nice and big. You can use digital zoom as well as the normal zoom, but I avoid that, it is just the same as cropping the image in an editing programme (some might disagree). Make sure you use the movie mode as well, but get a nice big memory card.
This has become my 'carry around' camera. I love the wide angle lens - this is something I don't normally use, tending to prefer a longer lens with the SLR. I can't recommend this camera to anyone enough. It is nice for those who don't need the flexibility of the Canon G range, but still require a compact that will deliver and is slimline for a jacket pocket.
Turn it on set it to fully auto and press the shutter. You should not get a bad image with this machine
The Canon Ixus 860 IS's is immediately distinguishable, with its sleek and smooth styling and classy colour. There is a slight contrasts created by the colour tones of the camera.
The quality of the photos take are reasonable and decent, however you might notice that the colour is not rich as possible, and they seem a bit inaccurate, which is true because the camera's colour accuracy is not fantastic. However, it is possible to change the white balance settings in order to minimise the effects.
The lens has a zoom range of 28mm to 105mm which is quite good for typical photography that does not require long range zoom. Its ISO can be set to 1600 which means it can be used in low light conditions, although there are times when noise will appear.
The camera's image stabilisation feature, allows you to capture images whilst moving within a reasonable speed, which does happen especially whilst on holiday or travelling.
There is a quick start up time, only taking 1 and a half seconds to power up from being off. Furthermore, the delay between separate shots when bursting is low. There is a quick delay for its shutter, which basically means that the after you press the shuttle button, the photo will be taken within 0.25 of a second, which is fast, especially for a compact camera.
However, it is no possible to manually change the aperture or shutter speed. The camera also lacks a viewfinder. Despite this, the LCD display screen is quite good and produces high quality images, it is also easy to understand and read.
There is no build in memory with the camera, however a 32 megabyte Secure Digital (SD) Card is supplied. When recording videos, the quality is decent with a good frame rate that produces a reasonably smooth video.