Canon IXUS 970IS
5x optical zoom and 10 megapixels in a stylish package
- 5x optical zoom with Optical Image Stabilisation, sharp images, good noise performance up to ISO 800, looks fantastic
- Some chromatic aberration issues, power button poorly designed
With few flaws a lot to like, the IXUS 970IS is another great compact camera from Canon. Its most noteworthy feature is the stabilised 5x optical zoom, but there should be something for most users in this package.
Price$ 549.95 (AUD)
Sitting at the top of the new IXUS units, the Canon IXUS 970IS is another impressive compact camera. While not as petite as the IXUS 80 IS and the Digital IXUS 85IS, it offers a larger, 5x optical zoom as well as the same impressive feature set and image quality of the other models. This makes it another alluring option for users after a stylish, robust and full-featured compact.
One thing that stands out about this unit is its design. Although it is chunkier than the other IXUS models we've looked at recently, it will still fit comfortably in a large pocket or small bag; more importantly, it looks fantastic. The colour scheme is silver with a hint of blue, and it sports a new wedge shaped design that differs a little from past models. Fashion-conscious buyers should be right at home with the IXUS 970IS. We do have one tiny design complaint: the power button. It is recessed above the screen on the back of the unit and can be difficult to press, which may be annoying for users wanting to take spontaneous snaps.
Fortunately this model isn't a case of style over substance; it also captures some impressive images. The 10-megapixel sensor performed excellently across most of our tests. It took some of the crispest, sharpest shots we've seen in recent months. Edges were clean and areas of detail were well-rendered. However, there was a fairly hefty amount of purple fringing in our outdoors shots, and some minor detail loss towards the corners of the frame — this is symptomatic of chromatic aberration issues but is fairly standard on most compact units.
Image noise was relatively well controlled. At ISO 200 everything was clean, while ISO 400 saw some very minor but quite negligible speckling creep in. ISO 800 saw an increase in the noise density, but it was still an extremely fine grain and we'd be happy making small prints on this setting. It wasn't until the maximum sensitivity of ISO 1600 that things became unusable.
Colour balance was fairly good, although possibly a touch behind Canon's usual high standard. Imatest gave the IXUS 970IS a score slightly behind that of some past IXUS models. Nonetheless, the colour reproduction was pleasing — bright, vivid primaries and a very lively overall look. You can tweak the colours using the onboard colour mode, and a manual white balance setting allows for accurate adjustment to lighting conditions.
In our speed tests this unit's results were fairly good. Its shutter lag was an extremely quick 0.05sec; shot-to-shot and start-up times were both an impressive 1.8sec. The burst mode is adequate if not noteworthy, snapping around 2.2 shots per second.
The camera's feature set is fairly comprehensive for a compact. As mentioned earlier, this model packs in a 5x optical zoom, which is a little larger than you'll find on many competing models. This is also backed up by Optical Image Stabilisation, which does a great job of reducing blur. Aside from these there is the usual array of focus modes with face detect, colour options, white balance presets and ISO sensitivities. In-camera red-eye correction also makes an appearance, and it does a decent job.
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Gadgets & Things
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Star Wars Death Star Bluetooth levitating rotating speaker review
- 2 Finally! LG OLED TV 2016 range review
- 3 Fetch TV Mighty review: Better than Foxtel
- 4 Fetch TV Mini review: Make your TV a smart TV
- 5 Panasonic Viera DX900U UHD 4K smart TV review
Latest News Articles
- Boom: SanDisk just dropped the world's largest SD card
- Camera app makers tap into RAW power with iOS, and look forward to dual lenses
- Google Camera 3.2 lets you snap pictures while recording video
- CES 2016: Top 10 trends
- Sony α7S II aimed film-makers and low light photographers
GGG Evaluation Team
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.
The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.
My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.
- The top 10 best and worst tech gadgets and products of 2016
- Best phone of the year 2016
- TV of the year award 2016
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- FTBrand Marketing Manager - Premium Entertainment BrandNSW
- FTTechnical Support RepresentativeNSW
- CCProject Coordinator - TelcoVIC
- FTMedia Architect/LeadNSW
- FTJunior-Mid Level Implementation CoordinatorQLD
- CCSenior Business AnalystNSW
- FTSystems Engineer - SCCM & Lync/Skype for BusinessQLD
- TPProject Services OpportunitiesSA
- FTITCM EngineerNSW
- FTCheckpoint Firewall and VPNNSW
- FTRegional Sales Manager - Telco/ICT - Employer of choiceQLD
- FTBI Tech Lead l SQL/RDMS/ DB2/ ETL/ UML/ XML/ Big Data technologiesNSW
- FTSystems Engineer l Citrix NetScalerNSW
- CCDevops EngineerVIC
- FTBack End DeveloperNSW
- CCSenior Support EngineerQLD
- CCSenior C++ Software EngineerSA
- TPChange ManagerNSW
- CCSenior Murex DeveloperVIC
- CCBiztalk DeveloperVIC
- CCFront End DeveloperNSW
- CCLead DevOps Architect l AWS- Cloud- Linux- Puppet Ansible- JIRA-DatadogNSW
- FTLinux EngineerNSW
- FTMS Exchange System Engineer l PowerShell l Message LabsNSW
- TPInfrastructure ArchitectVIC