Top positive review
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Canon gets it right with this mid-range SD series camera. Small and versatile!
on October 20, 2008
Last year, Canon SD870IS camera was a winner in the SD series and the SD880IS manages to offer even more at a lower starting price (than that of SD870IS last year).
--New DIGIC 4 technology, up from DIGIC 3 which tries to improve the camera performance in low light and at higher ISO - is it successful? I noted a slight improvement in some shots.
- Updated face detection technology. It helps the camera create better contrast for faces and does not bleach out all color from the faces in a shot. The Face Detection Self Timer is new, so if you want to take a group shot including yourself all you have to do is focus the camera on the group and then walk into the group. The camera will detect a new face and click the shot.
- A BIGGER CCD - 1/2.3" up from the previous 1/2.5" in the SD870 which allows for increase in MPs to 10MP (up from 8MP of SD870)
- 4X Zoom (up from 3.8X on SD870) and a wide angle which really helps with shots at close quarters (in a car/bus, of a large group etc.)
- Motion Detection is also new. On this mode the camera allows you to focus on a moving object or person by pressing the shutter half-way and then click the shot even though the object/person continued to move across the frame. Earlier, you would have got a motion blur if you tried to take the same picture
- The huge 3 inch LCD screen is the same as the SD870 but slightly improved technology gives you brighter playback in low-light which makes it easier to see the shots in replay. It does not have a viewfinder but I have never missed the viewfinder on my SD870 since Canon made the screen anti-glare. I'd take a bigger screen any day over a 2.5 inch screen with a viewfinder, but if you like to use the viewfinder to compose your shots you might need to look at the SD990 IS and drop another 100 bucks.
- Updated Scene Modes. It gives you the standard Canon modes like before: Auto, Manual, Digital, Color Accent (you can pick a color to retain in the shot and the rest of the picture will be black and white), Color Swap (swap a color in the pic for another) and Stitch Assist (take a panoramic pic by stitching together many shots).
The SD880 IS makes some additions to the special scene modes like Sunset and ISO 3200. The rest remain the same: Portrait, Foliage, Snow, Beach, Fireworks, Aquarium, Underwater, Indoor, Kids & Pets, Night Snapshot. I really like the special scene modes and use them extensively. According to Canon they are based on their library of shots and I agree that they really work very well to give me great pictures.
>>>The other Canon features are the same as before on this camera. Some that I find useful are as follows:
-Image stabilization, this is particularly helpful at higher zoom
- Single Shot and Continuous mode
- Colors you can set in the manual mode - Vivid, Vivid Blue, Vivid Green, Vivid Red, Neutral, Sepia, Black & White, Positive Film, Lighter Skin Tone, Darker Skin Tone, Custom color (RGB adjustment)
- Movie mode - regular and also slow synchro (allows you to create interesting videos by shooting at timed intervals)
- On camera editing and Pictbridge (print directly from camera)
- Red eye reduction - the face detection technology minimizes red eye more accurately than before. If you still get red eye, especially when you're shooting indoors, I've found that this camera can take care of it automatically. You can select "red eye correction" option in the menu while in replay mode, the camera automatically searches for faces in the pic and removes the red eye and also allows you to do it manually if you want.
- Connect to TV with included cord and run slideshow with transition effects of your choice to view pics. Very useful while on vacation or at a friend's place.
- Allows you to erase pics by number of pics, or by date taken, or even by people vs. scenery/objects, a very useful feature in this age of high capacity cards
- You can record sound bites on pics to remember locations etc.
If you can take the time to read the manual, you will discover more features which allow for more creativity with this camera.
- No viewfinder, I prefer the bigger screen but it may be critical for you
- Some chromatic aberration, common to most point and shoot cameras not just this Canon model
- If you're shooting at night in low light with full zoom the wide angle causes the camera to sometimes focus on the dust particles in between resulting in white orbs in the picture. I've taken care of most issues by setting the focus correctly by half pressing the shutter and using night mode but some orbs still show up in some pics especially if there is moisture in the air and I am using the zoom.
UPDATE 11/21/2008: Downgrading rating to 4 stars, this camera does have more "noise" than my earlier Canons.
This camera is very well priced for the features it offers. If you are looking for a reasonably priced compact P&S that is still pocketable but gives you superior shots and more flexibility in composing shots (read wide angle), look no further. If you're looking for a smaller camera than SD880 that gives you superior performance, I recommend the SD790 although it does not have wide angle.