Canon Digital IXUS 850 IS
- Nice colour in shots, great design, fast
- High chromatic aberration, some sharpness issues, noisy at high ISOs
The IXUS 850 IS is a very speedy camera that sports a stylish design and offers good colour representation. Image quality problems including chromatic aberation and noise at higher ISO levels do however impact on it's performance.
Price$ 749.00 (AUD)
Following the now familiar design of Canon's IXUS series of compact cameras, the IXUS 850 IS is a decent, but not outstanding device. While it does offer good colour representation, it suffers from high chromatic aberration, soft pictures and a few image noise issues.
The sharpness score of 1312 in Imatest is a little below what we expect from a high end, 7.1 megapixel sensor, particularly one from Canon. Our pictures showed some signs of softness and some minor fringing. While this isn't an issue at smaller magnifications, if you're looking to make sizeable enlargements, it may become more visible.
This was exacerbated by the IXUS 850 IS's very high chromatic aberration, for which Imatest awarded it a score of .157%. This is a poor result, with most compacts scoring between .09% and .11%. The effects were clearly visible in our shots in the form of blue and red fringing and prominent haloing. It is most noticeable in area of high contrast, but has an effect across most of the shot, and really detracts from the overall clarity of the pictures.
In our noise test, the results were reasonable. With a score of .88% at ISO 100 in Imatest's noise test, it performed a little worse than some recent models we've seen, but the noise wasn't prolific enough to cause problems. Unless you are looking to make enlargements above 8in x 10in size, then the fine, white noise produced by the IXUS 850 IS won't be an issue.
At higher ISO sensitivities however that isn't the case. Up to ISO 400 the shots remain useable, however at ISO 800 the noise ramps up considerably, and at the highest sensitivity of ISO 1600 it basically blankets the shot. Even at the smallest magnifications, the noise at this level is too much, so we'd recommend staying at lower levels when using the IXUS 850 IS.
Fortunately the IXUS 850 IS's colour performance was considerably better, as it scored just 6.13 in Imatest's colour checker test. Anything below seven is a great result, and our test shots confirmed this. They did show a slight tendency to understaturate reds a little, but this aside, everything was fairly well balanced. Imatest confirmed this, showing minor inaccuracies in the red, and to a lesser extent blue spectrum.
Another area the IXUS 850 IS really impressed was in our speed tests. It has some of the fastest auto-focusing we've ever seen on a compact. From the time you depress the shutter button halfway to the time the photo is ready is often less than a third of a second. It doesn't sound like a huge difference, but you'll quickly notice it when using the camera. Other speed results were equally impressive, with the camera exhibiting a quick .07 seconds of shutter lag, 1.5 seconds between shots and a very impressive 1.1 second power up time. All of these combine to create one of the fastest compacts on the market, and the make the IXUS 850 IS a great choice if you often find yourself caught unaware.
The camera's feature set is fairly standard. It comes equipped with Canon's new face recognition focus technology, which tracks the location of faces in a picture and makes them the focus points. It operates quite well, and should be useful for novice users who regularly take portrait shots.
Focus modes aside, there are the standard white balance presets, along with a custom mode, ten scene modes and ISO sensitivities up to 1600. There is also a standard video recording mode, which captures 640 x 480 movies at up to 30 FPS, and long shutter mode, for low light situations. Also take note of Canon's image stabilisation technology, which helps keep pictures free from handshake, and is particularly useful at the maximum range of the camera's 3x optical zoom. Overall the feature set is more than enough to satisfy the average user and exactly what we expect of a compact camera.
Aesthetically, the IXUS 850 IS is a very sleek device. It follows the standard IXUS design, with a slim, metal exterior that feels solid and rests nicely in the hand. Weighing in at 150g, it is a little heavier than most compact cameras. The controls are well laid out and intuitive to use, with a standard function wheel and directional pad combination bearing the brunt of the work.
Join the newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Hisense takes the fight to home entertainment heavyweights with flagship Series 8 and 9 ULED TVs
- 2 Sony's latest Ultra HD OLED debuts in Australia
- 3 Panasonic Ultra HD OLED TV Review
- 4 D-Link Omna 180 Cam HD DSH-C310 review
- 5 Oppo A77 smartphone: Full in-depth review
Latest News Articles
- Panasonic Announces Compact, Lightweight ultra-telephoto LEICA Lens
- Panasonic announce still-shooter flagship G9
- Sony Announces Development of New G Master Super-Telephoto Full-Frame E-Mount Lens
- Sony Expands Full-frame E-mount lens lineup
- Sony’s New Full-Frame α7R III Interchangeable Lens Camera promises to delivers both resolution and speed
PCW Evaluation Team
Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.
The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.
The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.
The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic
I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.
It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.
- Huawei Mate 10 Pro Review
- Apple TV 4K review
- Legion Y520 Gaming Laptop review
- 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
- FTHR Business PartnerOther
- FTJunior-Mid Level Java DeveloperQLD
- FTSenior Network Designer - Australian Citizenship RequiredOther
- FTInsights AnalystOther
- FTInformation Security ConsultantQLD
- FTSecurity Solution ArchitectOther
- FTTest AnalystOther
- FTPL/SQL DeveloperOther
- FTBusiness Analyst | Gold CoastQLD
- FTSenior Business AnalystOther
- CCSenior Systems EngineerWA
- FTApplication Packaging EngineerOther
- CCChange ManagerNSW
- CCProcess Improvement Manager (Black Belt)NSW
- FTIT Service Delivery ManagerOther
- FTTechnical Lead / Senior Systems EngineerOther
- FTJava DeveloperOther
- CCManager-Process Tranformation (Black Belt)NSW
- CCCloud Orchestration and Automation SpecialistNSW
- TPProject Manager - MortgagesNSW
- TPIT Technical WriterNSW
- FTSenior .Net DeveloperOther
- FTBusiness Analyst - PEGAOther
- FTBusiness AnalystOther
- FTETL DeveloperOther