Canon Digital IXUS 800 IS - Stunning camera design
Although we could unleash an avalanche of praise onto this camera, the picture should be more than clear by now: the Canon Digital IXUS 800 IS features a truly stunning design. It has been beautifully finished, and the housing instantly gives off an air of sheer quality. The attractive black frame surrounding the LCD monitor is a small, yet striking detail, and really does make this camera stand out from the competition. Besides the actual design, the camera is pleasant to hold, although I do find the material slightly too slippery. Nevertheless, the combination of design and user convenience remains of an undeniably high quality.
Canon IXUS 800 camera - User friendly operation
Working with the Canon IXUS 800 IS proves exceptionally enjoyable. The camera's operation is pleasantly straightforward, and the user manual will thus not require much attention; you are almost immediately able to start working with the camera. The handy pre-programmed scenes make sure the inexperienced digital photographer receives sufficient support to capture his favourite moments in many different situations. In addition, the My Color mode offers a fun option to work with a variety of digital effects in a very direct and friendly manner. There is no need whatsoever for any form of photographic know-how. Besides this, the "manual" setting enables the user to set the light metering, ISO value, exposure compensation, etc. to his own liking, which means you still have a certain degree of influence on the exposure.
Canon IXUS 800 IS - Digital camera housing
Personally, I find very little fault with the Canon IXUS 800 IS camera. The design is remarkably solid and durable, and the structure of the menu is clear and can be easily navigated. However, there are several small comments to be made about the actual housing, such as its slippery surface, as well as the small mode dial on the side of the camera, which turns out slightly uncomfortable to touch. Overall however, the Canon IXUS 800 IS simply is a very pleasant camera to work with. The images are of excellent quality, the colour rendition is more than sufficient, and the superb white balance ensures hardly any false cast can be detected. The fast DIGIC II processor has already proven itself more than once, and does not let the Canon IXUS 800 IS down. The camera is pleasantly fast, processes the 6 Megapixels at full speed, and is equipped with additional power economical features and a swift reaction time.
Canon Digital IXUS 800 IS - Optical viewfinder
I must say at first I found the presence of an optical viewfinder rather unnecessary, especially in view of the combination with the large format screen and its sharp rendition. However, considering power management -in particular the fact that the camera becomes 3x more economical when using the viewfinder- I realise it offers benefits that should not be overlooked. Especially in situations where you have no option to re-charge the battery, a 3x more economical way of dealing with the battery capacity could prove to be particularly advantageous.
Canon IXUS 800 IS - Optical image stabiliser & ISO values
The optical image stabilizer found on the Canon IXUS 800 IS meets our expectations. The camera is able to stabilize images perfectly, which ensures blur caused by movement of the photographer's hand is successfully prevented. Working with or without it really does make a difference, and one could even go as far as saying it is in fact the very thing that separates an image from being deleted instead of stored and printed. The higher ISO value of 800 ISO is an extra back-up, but you are not likely to have to resort to it often. It should be said the quality of the 800 ISO image turned out considerably better than expected, and features a very decent noise/signal ratio.
Canon Digital IXUS 800 IS - Outstanding performance!
To sum things up, we have nothing but praise for the top model from the Digital IXUS series: the Canon Digital IXUS 800 IS. The camera features a user-friendly operation, and produces first-rate image quality. It is not a camera for the photographer with high demands looking for something compact, whilst also wanting to make choices in aperture and shutter speeds, but then again, the Canon IXUS 800 IS does not claim to be this type of camera in the first place. It is an attractive design camera, attaching particular value to quality and ease. And once you have worked with an optical image stabilizer and have experienced the advantages of care-free photography in every imaginable situation, you are not likely to return to a camera that is not equipped with an image stabilization system. We can conclude the Canon Digital IXUS 800 IS is a champion among compact cameras, a camera that truly deserves to be a style icon! An outstanding performance!
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SanDisk Ultra II Plus Secure Digital card
Considering the fact that the user generally isn't keen on losing out on resolution, and prefers to stick to the best compression, I would recommend purchasing a 256MB or a 512MB Secure Digital memory card with the camera. During our tests, I decided to equip the Canon Digital IXUS 800 IS with a SanDisk Ultra II Plus Secure Digital card. This small card deviates considerably from the standard memory cards. The SanDisk Ultra II Plus SD card features, for instance, a USB interface, which allows the card to be inserted into a free USB port directly from the camera. This enables you to use the card as a universal medium with a large exchangeability. Although you can equip the Canon IXUS 800 IS with a standard speed card, the camera certainly does benefit from a slightly faster memory card. This simply forms a better combination, as it takes a faster card considerably less effort to keep up with the camera where image processing is concerned.
Considering 512MB of storage capacity:
Resolution 2816 x 2112 pixels, Super Fine, 176 pictures, 2720kB
Resolution 2816 x 2112 pixels, Fine, 292 pictures, 1620kB
Resolution 2816 x 2112 pixels, Normal, 603 pictures, 780kB
Resolution 2816 x 1584 pixels, Super Fine, 235 pictures, 2026kB
Resolution 2816 x 1584 pixels, Fine, 392 pictures, 1210kB
Resolution 2816 x 1584 pixels, Normal, 794 pictures, 585kB
Resolution 2272 x 1704 pixels, Super Fine, 237 pictures, 2002kB
Resolution 2272 x 1704 pixels, Fine, 425 pictures, 1116kB
Resolution 2272 x 1704 pixels, Normal, 839 pictures, 556kB
Resolution 1600 x 1200 pixels, Super Fine, 471 pictures, 1002kB
Resolution 1600 x1200 pixels, Fine, 839 pictures, 558kB
Resolution 1600 x 1200 pixels, Normal, 1590 pictures, 278kB
Resolution 640 x 480 pixels, Super Fine, 1777 pictures, 249kB
Resolution 640 x 480 pixels, Fine, 2747 pictures, 150kB
Resolution 640 x 480 pixels, Normal, 4317 pictures, 84kB
Video resolution 640 x 480 pixels, 30 fps, 4 min. 9sec. 1920kB/sec
Video resolution 640 x 480 pixels, 15 fps, 8 min. 14 sec. 960kB/sec
Video resolution 320 x 240 pixels, 30 fps, 11 min. 42 sec. 660kB/sec
Video resolution 320 x 240 pixels, 15 fps, 22 min. 53 sec. 330kB/sec
Video resolution 320 x 240 pixels, 60 fps, 5 min. 59 sec. 1320kB/sec
Video resolution 160 x 120 pixels, 15 fps, 55 min. 57 sec. 120kB/sec