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Showing 1-10 of 40 reviews (3 star)show all reviews
18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
on September 3, 2011
Verified Purchase
This is a great camera for taking photos; I have absolutely no complaints about the photo quality. However, the video function on this particular Canon model has problems with the focus function.

While shooting video the camera periodically refocuses. It does it outdoors, in normal indoor light, while shooting my young kids moving around, while shooting something still like a piece of graph paper taped to the wall or a plant, etc. My earlier Canon cameras did not exhibit this behavior, including the very similar SX110IS (which was replaced by this SX130IS since it met it's demise at the hands of my kids...).

I purchased the camera new from Amazon, sent it to Canon for repair and was sent a refurbished replacement. The refurbished replacement had the same issues and was returned to Canon. Canon sent another refurbished replacement which has the same issues. Three units exhibit the same problem with periodic refocusing while shooting video, so this indicates the SX130IS has a design problem.

If you're interested in taking photos only I recommend this camera. If you want to shoot video, look elsewhere.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
on December 3, 2010
I did a couple months' research on this before ordering it and an accessories pack on Amazon from Cameta Camera. I started with an SLR, but have been using a digital point-and-shoot since 2006 (Panasonic Lumix brand). I travel a lot and take about 3000-5000 photos a year. I should note here that I "baby" my cameras and have never had one malfunction... until my first SX130.

The first SX130 I was sent turned out to be a complete lemon and was totally dead within 9 days. After the first 50 shots, it lost its ability to ever focus again once I had used the zoom. It would grind and grind, trying to find focus... then would stop exactly when nothing at all was in focus. It couldn't even find focus if I retracted the zoom entirely. So using the zoom was out of the question. Within a few more days, the auto-lens-cap broke. A piece of the plastic dangled limply at all times, blocking the lens. I finally tried zooming to "clear" it, but the zoom got stuck and couldn't retract. At that point, the camera started giving error messages and nothing would move. I tried new batteries, pushed all sorts of button combos... but the zoom never again retracted. I had to mail it back to Cameta with the zoom lens fully out.

Cameta originally refused to replace it, as I hadn't sent them the box. But they did eventually send a new one. I've now had that the replacement SX 130 for four days, and it is so far working great. I printed the 180 page manual and am going through step by step trying the features. I'm in love with all the features, and this is really the camera of my dreams...if it keeps working. I'm so gun shy now, I expect the thing to fall apart in my hands at any moment.

Here are the pros so far: great picture quality, good flash power, easy to use, great manual, and lots of fun things like the smile detector and wink self timer.

Cons: TERRIBLE battery life. No exaggeration to say that I've had to replace the NiCad AA's after every ten minutes of use. When going through the manual, I had to turn the camera on and off, trying new features as I came to them. I was having to replace the batteries after every 20 or so photos. Compare this to my Lumix, that takes 700 high-quality still photos on a single battery charge, and one charge lasts through three days of international sight-seeing and constant picture taking. I've just gone out and got 8 NiCad AA's for the SX130, but this isn't even going to be enough power to photograph a dinner party much less a day long sightseeing tour. It also has slow recovery after flashing, but I don't mind this as the flash is much better than the one on my Lumix. Finally, I find it harder to grip than the Lumix, though that's a very minor complaint. But I do make sure to always put the wrist strap on before I take the camera out of the case.

I would give my original SX130 ZERO stars. For features, I'd give the new one FIVE stars (pending its continued good operation) other than the battery life, which is again ZERO stars. So I compromised and gave it three stars.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on March 14, 2011
Verified Purchase
Being long time Canon customers we purchased the SX130IS without much research. The camera performs well for basic still photography, our main purpose for it. It is packed with many useful features and with a short learning curve are easy to find and to use. Pictures are sharp, however the image stabilization is not as effective as we thought it would be, so use a tripod especially when zooming out or in low light situations. The camera is comfortable to use and the ability to use AA batteries is a big plus. And, thus far we have gotten very long life on lithium and particularly on nihds. The LCD size is great, it is very bright and clear and we have had no problem using it in bright sunlight situations. The built in flash is a little harsh but the camera allows you to weaken the flash settings and that worked well for us. The big complaint, and big enough so that we cancelled plans to buy Canon's EOS 60D DSLR, is that it's color reproduction is poor. We have taken pictures of color wheels and other photograghic color images that are designed to test a camera's color reproduction ability. And the comparison is not good. Our understanding is that the EOS line uses the same or similar color sensor devices as the 130IS. Colors are somewhat washed out and some colors, purples and violet hues in particular, come out as bright blue. Not even close to the actual color. We have tried many different settings from varying ISO, white balance, contrast settings etc., but to no effect on the resulting color reproduction. Since my wife uses the camera to capture images that she wants to paint, water color and oils, this becomes a big negative. This is the reason for the 3 rating.
I don't know how competitor cameras fare in this department so before you purchase make sure you check out the color reproduction capability of the 130's competitors.
The camera's startup time and focusing time are good and if not for the color reproduction I would heartily recommend the camera, especially from a cost perspective. Good luck in any purchase you make. And buy the way, AMAZON delivered the camera in just 3 days with the free shipping option. Thanks Amazon.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on March 2, 2011
Verified Purchase
I should start off saying I am a professional and am used to shooting with a 5d and I had the older powershot 600 in my purse forever until my daughter broke the lens. I researched quite a bit as to a new "purse" camera (just shots of my daughter, trips with friends, etc) when I don't want to lug around my pro camera.
I was expecting at the least the images to be in focus. It is IS after all. In "auto" mode is the worst... I am used to shooting manual and I had a little bit better luck but not the best. I have found AV to be the best but the stupid flash is driving me crazy. When it is lifted up (the flash) it should go OFF when not on auto.. nope. It decides when it want's to go off. I would say out of 100 pictures, about 40ish are in focus. I really am disappointed since I was hoping for more with a decent camera like this. It is pretty bulky but that's ok...
The video capability is great... but it does go in and out of focus and that is annoying.
I honestly think that people are so concerned with "high MP" that the camera manufacturers are lacking in so many other things in making these cameras... there needs to be better IS happening along with better quality of these pictures ESP. in AUTO!
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
on December 15, 2010
Verified Purchase
Overall, I enjoyed, and really wanted to like this camera, but I was primarily disappointed.

The sx130is does a great job compared to its competitors in low light conditions. It seems like it is programmed to make the pictures too bright though. More times than not, normal light conditions would be slightly washed out. It wasn't terrible, but noticeable.

I don't care for the menus on newer canon cameras, they seem dumbed down too much to me.

The videos do a great job for a camera, I was very pleased with it.

I often had issues with this camera using up the batteries quickly, and often without warning. The indication that the batteries are low come up way too late, often when it can only take a few more pictures. Then, when testing the batteries after the sx130 will not turn on, they often would have enough juice left for other electronics to use them for many hours more. If you get this camera, make sure you have spare batteries at all times, it is often a surprise when it needs new ones.

I would have given the camera a 4 star rating based on the above, but couldn't primarily because of the flash. First, I find it amazing that the flash does not raise or come on automatically. I can't count how many pictures I've missed because I forgot to flip the flash up. Isn't this 2010 canon? There is a reminder on the screen, but it is brief, and often you are not reading the screen, but rather looking at the picture instead: especially when trying to take a quick shot of the kids.

The other part I couldn't get past is the wait time to take another picture after using the flash. I have an 8 year old digital canon that charges the flash several times faster than the the sx130is does. I tried a number of different types and brands of AA batteries, and although some were better than others, none of them were acceptable. Expect several seconds in between pictures minimum.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on March 2, 2011
Verified Purchase
At first, liked this camera a lot. Has good heft, but not heavy. Love the buttons. Liked the color of pics at first, but began to get slightly annoyed by the continuously saturated results....pretty, but not reality.

PROS: Good feel and not too heavy or light.
Good included software.
Good but not great low-light no-flash performance.
Good flash reach for most shots.
Nice stabilization, in that I never really noticed it.

CONS: Soft focus in the zoom the farther you go out.
Panning during indoor videos too often produces a wave/ripple effect.
Cannot open batt door w/o losing power (no hot-swapping SDHC cards...)
Eats alkalines like candy (but Sanyo Eneloops solve that)

I wound up preferring the Lumix ZS5 for if looking for a compact, and Lumix FZ35 if looking for more features and more zoom.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on March 11, 2013
We have owned this camera for over a year.

Pros:
Takes great outdoor photos. You can often times get a nice blurry background.
gets rid of red-eye

Cons:
Takes poor indoor/low-light photos. Often blurry.
Way too long flash re-set.
Battery drainer.
When recording video in low-light, its goes in and out of focusing.
Sometimes the auto-flash does not go off when it definitely should and and 'auto' setting there is no way to force the flash on
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on December 21, 2011
I've had this unit for about 1 year, and have noticed that this unit will also start flashing low battery seemingly after only been in use for about 30 minutes, mostly idle, maybe after 100 shots and 10 minutes of video.

I make sure to fully discharge and then charge my AA Sanyo NIMH 2700mah batteries using my Lacross charger. It takes longer to do this but it's worth it.

Cannon does not have a firmeare fix for this issue, but I agree something needs to be reviewed. Google this issue and it will pop up in mutliple places.

Luckly I carry many NIMH batteries to shows so I have plenty of juice. I just haute it when the camera shuts off in the middle of a 5 minute interview with seemly fresh batteries.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on January 5, 2011
I bought this camera 3 weeks ago to upgrade from my 6 year old Kodak Easyshare. My Kodak still takes great pictures but I wanted a camera that does great video as well. My Canon Powershot SX130IS takes awesome pictures but the video capability is CRAP! I have been to Bestbuy twice and they couldn't get the problem fixed so I turned to the Canon reps. The problem that I'm having is that when viewing the video, it's constantly trying to focus even though it's on a tripod. It goes back and forth from blurry to clear then blurry to clear in a matter of seconds. The Canon rep had me to disable the IS which didn't fix it. Then I was told to tap the shutter to focus prior to recording. It failed again. The third rep said the camera was defective. I'll be returning the camera to Bestbuy but I will be getting another one. Hopefully that one will be ok. If someone has a suggestion please let me know. I would really like to keep the camera b/c it takes great photos and I got a really good sale price.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on April 13, 2012
Verified Purchase
nice camera for its price, but once it stops working, say goodbye to the unit. i had mine for now over 15 months everything was ok, but suddenly it stopped working, with no apparent reason. tried to call CANON, their suggestion to me was to send the unit to their repair center in the East and for about 135$ plus 2 way shipping with insurance of course, they told me they will try to fix the problem. the new one on AMAZON costs about 145$. what a great idea from CANON.
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