Canon has recently been increasing its focus on consumer grade
point-and-shoot cameras, with the aim to infuse higher end features into
a slimmer form-factor. Their newest addition to this line-up is the
Canon IXUS1100HS (known as the ELPH 510 in the US).
In the box
Canon IXUS 1100HS camera, SanDisk 4GB SD Card (Class 4), lanyard, user-manual, standard USB cable and a software CD.
in at just .86 inches thick, the IXUS 1100HS houses a 12 megapixel
back-illuminated sensor to give the best image quality possible. The
'HS' in the name stands for 'High Sensitivity' and represents a
combination of a back-illuminated sensor along with Canon's Digic Image
Processor that deliver great image quality even in low light.
camera also packs a modest 12x optical zoom (28mm-336mm equivalent) in a
rather slim package. The camera replaces the tradition stock of buttons
at the back with a 3.2-inch LCD touch screen that can be used to access
various functions and menus.
The IXUS 1100HS is SD, SDHC and SDXC compatible and offers output through a mini-HDMI port.Performance
IXUS 1100HS is a well-crafted point-and-shoot camera, with a solid
metal body. We got our unit in a glossy black finish. The time between
turning the camera on and taking our first shot was just about under 3
seconds, meaning that there is a good chance you won't be missing that
decisive moment with the IXUS 1100HS.
The camera's menu system
can be sorted into three categories; Settings, Functions and Menu. While
in image capture mode, the camera displays a slew of settings
pertaining to the shot such as flash settings, exposure compensation
settings, a button to turn off the on-screen buttons, a button to access
the functions menu and a button to start recording video.
record button is a very handy feature for those who might want to
switch from taking photos to shooting full HD video without wasting even
a second. The 'Function' menu allows you to select various specific
settings for focusing, white balancing, ISO, etc.
The IXUS 1100HS
has a switch next to the power button that allows you to change to an
automatic mode, where the camera automatically detects the environment
and selects a photographic mode accordingly. This feature was rather
effective in our testing, where we shot indoors, at a concert venue, in a
playground and even in the mid-day sun. The camera was able to set the
correct settings most of the times and deliver great images to us. This
is a really helpful feature for those who might not be very familiar
with photography related jargon and settings.
The IXUS 1100HS
features two kinds of burst modes; regular and high speed that can be
accessed through the shooting mode option. In regular burst mode, all
one has to do is hold down the shutter and the camera will shoot up to 3
frames per second. In high-speed burst mode, the camera can shoot up to
7 frames per second, but drops the resolution down to just 3
The 12x optical zoom (with additional 2x digital
zoom) functions exceptionally well, thanks to Canon's Image
Stabilization (IS) system. The macro mode of the lens is something worth
a mention here. When zoomed out all the way, the lens has a minimum
focusing distance of about 0.4 inches However, when we zoomed in all
the way, our minimum focusing distance increased drastically and we were
not able to capture any macro-like (extreme close-up) shots. Despite
this shortcoming, the camera always managed to focus on the right part
of the image, thereby delivering well-exposed and vibrant images.
screen on the IXUS 1100HS is something to talk about. Besides being a
control interface and a digital viewfinder, the screen can also act as a
shutter-button by simply tapping on it to take a photograph. The screen
is very legible even under direct sunlight and shows rich, colorful
previews of the images shot. To jump from one image to the next, you
simply have to tap on the left or right edge of the screen.
thing that we feel must be pointed out is the responsiveness of the
screen. While modern day tablets and cellphones have made us used to
screens that respond at the slightest touch, the screen on the Canon
IXUS 1100HS requires a firmer touch to register commands. Another
concern for us regarding the touchscreen was the fact that it slowed us
down a little when I came to switching between modes and settings as we
had to browse through several menu pages to get the to relevant parts.
This is where the dials and physical buttons come in handy.
battery life of the camera was a big letdown. A few minutes worth of HD
videos and about 70 photos later, we found the camera showing a 'low
battery' symbol flashing. It just so happens that the IXUS 1100HS runs
off a battery that's rated for just 170 shots, under ideal conditions.
However, our real world usage yielded a lower number and thus, we'd
recommend getting a spare battery or two, just to make sure you never
run out of juice.Image Quality
Everything said and
done, at the end of the day, what matters is image quality. We tested
the camera in several shooting conditions and found the results to be a
little mixed. When shooting under the bright mid-day sun, the camera
captured colors fairly accurately with good contrast and detail. Image
quality further improved when shooting in shade (to simulate overcast
sky) as colors became more vibrant and sharper. Normally when you zoom
in to the maximum range of the camera, the image quality takes a hit,
but that wasn't the case with the IXUS 1100HS.
other aspect of image quality comes from using the flash. Flash can be
used either for close-up shots, medium distance shots (5-10 feet from
the camera) or for shots where the subject is far away (10 feet and
beyond). Photos shot using the flash for subjects up to 10 feet away
from the camera came out well balanced, without the ambient light being
over powered by the flash. However, when the subject distance went
beyond 13 feet, the flash wasn't powerful enough to light up the scene
well and caused out images to look slightly under-exposed.
back-illuminated sensor does its job rather well, keeping the noise
levels rather low when shooting. However, there are some visible signs
of the camera applying noise-reduction to the image, so they lose some
sharpness, but nothing that any common image editing software can't fix.
Overall, it felt nice to be able to take shots at night that would have
otherwise been next to impossible by a regular point-and-shoot.
camera also boasts the ability to shoot full HD video. We tested out
the video for quality and found the footage to be smooth and crisp, but
if you were a quality Nazi, you could notice compression artifacts in
the footage. The mono mic lends well to the high quality video for
filming subjects that are close by or loud venues, but fails to record
audio acceptably when the speaker is standing more than 15 feet or so
The Canon IXUS 1100HS is a
definitely a full-bodied camera that lives up to the 'point-and-shoot'
moniker rather well. With a price tag of Rs. 18,995, the IXUS 1100HS
finds itself placed in the mid-level segment for buyers (See: Buyer's guide for point-and-shoot cameras
Higher price than its competitor can be attributed to a
back-illuminated sensor that allows for shots to be taken in very low
light conditions without degrading the image quality.
there are cameras in the same price range with a higher zoom range and
more megapixels, the IXUS 1100HS does claim to be the world's slimmest
with 12x optical zoom. The IXUS 1100HS is aimed at the kind of consumer
who prioritizes compactness over the price, without compromising on the
To see how the Canon IXUS 1100HS
looks and performs, visit our photo gallery.Pros
A slim profile, making it easy to carry around
Back-Illuminated sensor for better low light photography
Long 12x optical zoom with Image Stabilization
Records images in various aspect ratios Cons
Expensive for the feature-set
Back screen prone to smudges
Battery has a meager rating of just 170 shots, which would be further reduced if shooting with flash
The high-speed burst mode shoots 7 frames per second, but reduces the resolution to just 3-megapixels Rating
Ease of use: 4
Wow Factor: 4
Value for Money: 3