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Home arrow Digital Camera Reviews arrow Canon > arrow Canon IXUS 105 and 130 Double Digital Camera Review
Canon IXUS 105 and 130 Double Digital Camera Review

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Digital Camera Review by: Katrina Putker  

 

Canon’s new 105 and 130 models are two of the latest releases in the ever-popular IXUS line up (the third being the touch screen operated 220 - yet to be reviewed at Buy-n-Shoot.com.)

And, as is true for the most part right across the IXUS range, both models are simply but handsomely designed with a smooth metallic finish, rounded edges and a petite body perfect for slipping into a pocket, handbag, briefcase or backpack as desired.

Upon first glance the differences between the 105 and the 130 are slight and yet the marginally thinner (at just 17.8mm at its widest point), more streamlined body and triple tiered lens on the 130 help to peg it slightly higher in the IXUS family than its 105 little brother.

canon20100309b.jpgBoth units have limited manual control only allowing for adjustment of ISO, metering mode and white balance and no control whatsoever over aperture and shutter speed.

“Aperture what?” You say. “Shutter huh?” And that’s exactly the point: the IXUS 105 and 130 really aren’t designed for those with a sound grasp of photography but for the average punter and the happy snap king or queen, either one of these units may well be an ideal choice.

The 130 offers some 14.1 megapixels (compared to 12.1 in the 105) which is a significant amount of resolution for a camera of its stature and intended purpose. Many digital SLRs peak at some 12megapixels to give you an idea.

But is it really necessary for a point-and-shoot unit to host 14.1megapixels or are Canon merely bating consumers who seem to always want to know, before anything else, how many magapixels a camera has? More is always better right?

Well, if you regularly enlarge your images for printing at poster size (e.g. A0 at 90x120cm, A1 at 60x85cm, A2 at 42x60cm etc.) then sure, 14.1 megapixels will ensure a higher level of quality is retained.

If you’re a chronic cropper always cutting into your images because you’re unhappy with the original composition, again 14.1megapixels may be of some relevance.

The likelihood of either of these situations regularly occurring however is slim and as such the two megapixel jump alone is not enough to separate the 105 and 130 clearly – at least not for the savvy consumer who knows the minor significance of the jump in compact point-and-shoot units like these.

Both units host the same lens: a 28mm-112mm equivalent with 4x optical zoom complete with image stabilisation (optical in the 130) that generally produces good, clear results.

Particularly when using the zoom function and/or shooting under low lighting conditions the image stabilisaton is a particularly welcomed feature given its ability to combine forces with motion detection to help deliver sharper images by reducing the effects of blur.

In terms of image quality the 130 does outperform the 105 but no doubt that’s a privilege you’re likely to pay smartly for.

In a nutshell the 105 produces its best results outdoors and in the shade otherwise it tends to struggle with bright sunlight and appears to create a whitewash over images shot in these conditions making them less contrasty and seemingly overexposed.

Indoors and in lower light conditions, the 105 has a tendency to smudge detail in images as a result of heavy in-camera processing. For the most part though, colour rendition seems accurate and flash exposure well balanced.

Images shot on the 130 prove to have greater contrast overall and better control of exposure in bright sunlight. Occasionally though it does have difficulty with loss of information in sky areas. Generally the images are sharper and clearer than the 105 although both units are equally quick to find a point of focus.

The 105 and the 130 offer identical ISO ranges between 80-1600 and while both perform fairly well throughout the range (particularly at ISO 400 and below where they appear to produce results on par), the 130 appears to suffer less severe noise damage at the higher end of the spectrum up near 800 and 1600.

Both units however are guilty of slightly softening images shot at higher ISOs as a likely result of heavy in-camera processing to reduce the effects of noise. Can’t have it all so they say.

Neither unit has an optical viewfinder, which is no surprise given the ultra compact nature of their designs. If you don’t have the space to offer a viewfinder that is big enough to have a practical application, best not to offer one at all.

Besides, it would seem as the though the traditional viewfinder is slowly being phased out of consumer point-and-shoot units across the board so no harm done there by Canon.

The 105 is capable of recording videos in standard definition at 640x480p whereas the 130 offers high definition (HD) movie recording capability at 1280x720p as well as HDMI compatibility to a HD TV set for overall stunning display.

The supplied Canon software allows users to upload their movie clips (from either model) to popular video sharing website YouTube directly from the camera itself if and when connected to the Internet.

Both units offer a smart auto mode that is activated via a simple switch and is supported by scene detection technology to analyse the content of the given scene and automatically determine the appropriate settings to help achieve the best possible results.

The 105 is capable of recognising up to 18 different scenes (e.g. portrait, landscape, macro, sunset etc.) where the 130 can determine some 22 scenes and automatically adjust settings accordingly.

i-Contrast can be activated on either unit to help retain detail in dark, shadowy areas of a scene that may otherwise block up into solid black chunks.

While users may not initially be able to recognise i-Contrast’s affect, upon taking a shot of the same scene with it first switched off and then again when it is activated, the positive difference and extra ‘lift’ created in dark areas becomes quite obvious to the eye.

The 130 asserts itself again with a 2.7-inch reinforced glass LCD equipped with a polarising plate to help minimise reflections while the 105 hosts a 2.7-inch standard screen but does so without said additional features.

As expected these two new IXUS models are equipped with face detection technology, which in the current market is essentially a standard feature rather than an added bonus.

Word is the 130 can detect up to 35 faces in a single scene although in reality, this proved a difficult claim to ether confirm or deny!

Both units offer automated shooting modes although the 105 has a limited selection of just six: program, portrait, night snapshot, kids & pets, indoor and face self-timer, the latter proving a bonus for those who love to set up the camera for group shots but still be included themselves.

Cleverly, it detects when a new face/person enters the scene (unless you’re face number 36 of course!) and fires the shutter some two seconds later. No more mad dash into the scene in an attempt to beat the automatic self-timer.

The 130 has a vast selection of 19 shooting modes to choose from including those six available in the 105 as well as: low light, colour accent, colour swap, beach, foliage, underwater (usable only with a waterproof housing sold separately), snow, fireworks, long shutter and two forms of stitch assist (left-to-right and right-to-left.)

As well as these, quirky additions of ‘miniature’ and ‘fisheye’ effect are also included and make for some fun and creative image taking.

As the name suggests, fish eye mode shoots with the effect of a fish eye lens creating bulbous and centrally distorted images, where miniature effect blurs both the top and bottom sections of the image so as to replicate the effect of a tilt shift lens thus making scenes appear to be in miniature model scale.

The 105 is available in Australia in green, silver, chocolate brown or pink where the 130 comes in sliver, pink or black.

Both units are extremely easy to use making them perfect for first-time or amateur compact camera users and not so perfect for those who want greater control and more sophisticated image quality from their compact.

On the other hand if you’re looking for a sexy point-and-shooter to throw around at parties and social events and to keep with you at all times just in case of a photo opportunity, if you just want a camera that takes photos when you turn it on and impresses your friends with its modern, sleek appearance then the IXUS 105 or 130 will be right up your alley.medal-gold-r.jpg

If you want greater creative control over your images, consistent results in image quality and aren’t looking to break the budget, then the 105 or 130 possibly aren’t for you. That’s not to say however that they aren’t well-made cameras that the right buyers won’t absolutely love.


As at publishing, no Australian recommended retail price has been assigned to either of these new IXUS models although given current international RRPs of 189 pounds (AU$315) and  219 pounds (AU$328) for the 105 and 279 Pounds (AU$465) and  309 pounds (AU$463) for the 130, it’s fair to suggest perhaps Canon are asking quite a lot of buck for what is ultimately good - but certainly not exceptional - bang.

 

 IXUS 105
 
Appearance rating 3.5 stars
Functionality rating 4 stars
Image quality
3 stars
Lens quality
3.5 stars
View finder / LCD screen 3 stars
Value for money 3 stars
RRP (AUD) $315 (price not yet avail in AU - based on intl conversion)
 IXUS 130
 
Appearance rating 4 stars
Functionality rating 3.5 stars
Image quality
3.5 stars
Lens quality
3.5 stars
View finder / LCD screen 3 stars
Value for money 3 stars
RRP (AUD) $463 (price not yet avail in AU - based on intl conversion)
SPACER.GIF  
 IXUS 105
 
Effective Pixels 12.1 Million mega pixels
Image Sizes 7 Sizes
Lens - zoom wide [mm] 28mm (35mm equivalent )
Lens -zoom tele [mm] 112mm (35mm equivalent )
Lens - Optical Zoom Yes, 4x
Resolution Settings From 640 x 480 to 4000 ×3000
Shooting Modes 13 Scene options
Face Detection Yes, up to 36 faces
Manual Focus No
Auto Focus Yes
Focus Range [cm] 50cm - infinity
Aperture Range f/2.8 - 5.9
Aperture Priority No
Macro No
Macro Range [cm] -
Shutter Speeds 15s - 1/1500s
Shutter Priority No
ISO Auto, 80, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600
LCD Monitor Yes
LCD Size 2.6 inch LCD monitor
Viewfinder No
Flash Auto, fill-in, flash off, red-eye reduction, slow sync
Hot Shoe No
White balance Automatic, presets, manual
Self Timer Yes, 10 sec or 2 sec delay, custom, FaceSelf-Timer
Movie Options Yes. Limited only by memory card size.
Video Out Yes, PAL or NTSC selectable
Storage Type SD/SDHC/SDXC memory card
Storage Included [Mb] -
Image / Audio Formats JPEG still and AVI movie
Connectivity USB, AV
Power Source Optional, AC adapter kit ACK-DC10
Battery Options Rechargeable Li-Ion
Dimensions (W) 91 x (H) 56 x (D) 21 mm
Weight 140g
   
 IXUS 130
 
Effective Pixels 12.1 Million mega pixels
Image Sizes 7 Sizes
Lens - zoom wide [mm] 28mm (35mm equivalent )
Lens -zoom tele [mm] 112mm (35mm equivalent )
Lens - Optical Zoom Yes, 4x
Resolution Settings From 640 x 480 to 4000 ×3000
Shooting Modes 22 Scene options
Face Detection Yes, up to 36 faces
Manual Focus No
Auto Focus Yes
Focus Range [cm] 50cm - infinity
Aperture Range f/2.8 - 5.9
Aperture Priority No
Macro Yes
Macro Range [cm] 3cm
Shutter Speeds 15s - 1/1500s
Shutter Priority No
ISO Auto, 80, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600
LCD Monitor Yes
LCD Size 2.7 inch PureColor II G LCD
Viewfinder No
Flash Auto, Manual Flash On / Off, Slow Synchro
Hot Shoe No
White balance Auto (including Face Detection WB), Daylight, Cloudy, Tungsten, Fluorescent, Fluorescent H, Custom
Self Timer Yes, 10 sec or 2 sec
Movie Options Yes. Limited only by memory card size.
Video Out Yes, PAL or NTSC selectable
Storage Type SD, SDHC, SDXC, MMC, MMCplus, HC MMCplus
Storage Included [Mb] -
Image / Audio Formats JPEG still and MOV [H.264 + Linear PCM (monaural)] movie
Connectivity USB, AV
Power Source AC adapter kit ACK-DC10, AC Adapter Kit ACK-DC60
Battery Options Li-ion Battery NB-4L
Dimensions (W) 92.2 x (H) 56.1x (D) 17.8 mm
Weight 133g
 
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