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Canon IXUS 310 HS Digital Camera Review

canon20120510aa.jpgDigital Camera Review by: Ashley Akers


As my 100th match fizzled out without taking light, in my desperate attempts to light a romantic fire, I couldn’t help taking another look over the pile of broken, unlit, unburnt, useless pile of ‘no name’ brand matches. It’s always been difficult for me to pass up the bargain and justify paying a few extra dollars for the branded matches. Until now I’ve often wondered how a brand can survive in such a specific niche market. It’s only now that I finally know. The answer is simple: Pure Quality. I would pass up 100 brand-less, useless, excuses for matches for a single solid brand name match. In the case of digital cameras, it’s no different, the quality lies with Canon and the Canon IXUS 310 HS is no exception. With excellent image quality and excellent low light capabilities, you can’t go wrong. 


Appearance & Functionality

canon20120510ab.jpgThe solid, metallic IXUS 310 is visually defined by it’s minimalistic approach to design and massive LCD screen. You can’t help but notice the lack of buttons, three in total and a single, lone, toggle switch. Why so few buttons? The answer is simple and magnificent: touchscreen controls. All the main menus and functions on the IXUS 310 are accessed conveniently via the touchscreen LCD.

While the LCD touch controls are a handy and stylish addition to the IXUS 310, they appear to use a different technology to the other big touchscreen products on the market, namely smart phones and tablets. This creates only a slight difficulty when navigating and learning your way around the menus as the IXUS 310 appears to require actual pressure rather than the mere presence of a finger that’ll satisfy other products. However you can’t help be comforted by the endless opportunities a touchscreen presents and after significant use I became lost within it. I searched near and far for the image playback touch icon but could not find it, only to finally realize that this is one of the few real physical buttons in the 310 and is located mere millimeters to the right of the screen. The sign technology is doing it’s job properly is when it becomes unnoticeable and when the user becomes lost within it. The touch controls in the 310 are no exception to this.

A notable feature that only a touchscreen could provide is the ability to lock on a focus point and no matter the movement of the camera this object remains highlighted. By simply pressing the screen on the object or person the focus will become locked to them and the software will do the rest to track that object with a little box. The ease of use and possibilities this feature presents cannot be ignored.


Image Quality / Lens Quality

canon20120510ac.jpgWhere the Canon IXUS 310 HS shines the most is it’s extraordinary image and lens quality. While the lens only has a zoom range of 4.4x which is considerably smaller than other brands on the market within the same price categories, this Canon blows the competitors away with image quality. Colours appear vivid, skin tones are clear and natural and photos are as sharp as your mothers new set of knives.

On top of the previous, there’s no denying the intense low light capabilities. The fact that the lens opens up to an incredible wide aperture of f.2 when at the nice wide of 24mm, its the ISO handling that helps the image quality along.

ISO sensitivity values of ISO100 to ISO800 show no to an only very slight inkling of grain at the higher end. ISO1600 shows low levels of grain and ISO3200 shows more grain but images are still clear and usable, unlike other brands where they can become blurry and considerably lower quality. 


LCD Screen / Viewfinder

canon20120510ad.jpgWhile the widescreen shape and large, over 8cm size of the LCD screen on the IXUS 310 is impressive within itself, it is not what makes the screen one of the major drawing points to this camera. That little title get’s awarded to the camera’s useful touchscreen controls.

The screen displays all the most useful information with easy access to stylish menus and functions with the push of a finger. Playback mode provides useful onscreen information such as resolution, size, exposure information and histograms. 



A widescreen LCD is a feature that makes the Full HD movie capabilities on this camera shine. While recording in video mode on the Canon IXUS 310 HS, the lens tends to zoom quite slowly however the inclusion of image stabilization allows the video to remain steady during this process. IS adds a sleek, professional feel to your videos by stabilizing and smoothing and thus creating never ending re-watchability.

On top of the inclusion of an iframe video format which helps with increasing upload, editing and importing speeds, the IXUS 310 gives you the ability to cut video tracks within the camera. You can set start and end times with a few simple taps of the touchscreen, adding to the time you’ll save when you finally get around to importing your family holiday videos!



Canon Germany - No English Option Available 




What you sacrifice in high levels of zoom with the IXUS 310 you gain considerably more in image and lens quality. There tends to be a notion for developers to pack in features and increase numbers just to make the camera appeal to a wider market, however when it comes down to the most important aspects, you deserve quality images. With the Canon IXUS 310 HS, the price tag is small but you get more than you deserve. Excellent sharpness of images, natural colours and great low light capabilities and to top it all off, you also receive a fancy touchscreen that’s full of features. What more could you need?



Accessories Used During Testing:

SanDisk Extreme 30MB/s SD Card 

Tamrac Pro Compact Digital / 5689 Camera Bag 


Recommended Retailer:

View / Buy The Canon IXUS 310 HS 



Appearance rating 3 stars
Functionality rating 4 stars
Image quality
4.5 stars
Video quality
3 stars
Lens quality
4.5 stars
LCD screen (Rear)
4 stars
Value for money 4 star
Street Price
Effective Pixels 12.1 Mega pixels
Sensor Type
Image Sizes 4 sizes / 4 formats
Lens 24 (W) - 105 (T) mm, 4.3 (W) - 18.8 (T) mm
Lens Mount
Resolution Settings: Stills 16:9 Large: 4000 x 2248,
Medium 1: 2816 x 1584,
Medium 2: 1920 x 1080,
Small: 640 x 360

3:2 Large: 4000 x 2664,
Medium 1: 2816 x 1880,
Medium 2: 1600 x 1064,
Small: 640 x 424

4:3 Large: 4000 x 3000,
Medium 1: 2816 x 2112,
Medium 2: 1600 x 1200,
Small: 640 x 480

1:1 Large: 2992 x 2992,
Medium 1: 2112 x 2112,
Medium 2: 1200 x 1200,
Small: 480 x 480
Resolution Settings: Video 1920x1080 @ 24fps; 1280x720 @ 30fps; 640x480 @ 30fps; 320x240 @ 30fps; Super Slow Motion Movie: 640x480 @ 120fps / 320x240 @ 240fps; Miniature Effect: 1280x720 / 640x480; iFrame Movie: 1280x720 @ 30fps
Face Detection Yes
Manual Focus No
Auto Focus Yes
Aperture Priority No
Shutter Priority
Shutter Speeds 1 - 1/1600sec.
15 - 1/1600sec. (Total shutter speed range)
ISO Auto6, ISO 125/200/400/800/1600/3200
LCD Monitor Wide 3.2 inch LCD Touch screen (approx 461,000 dots) 16:9 aspect ratio. Touch panel with brightness adjustment (5 levels)
Viewfinder -
Flash Auto, on, off, Auto Red Eye Correction, Red Eye Reduction, Face Detect, Slow Synchro, FE Lock, Intelligent FE
Hot Shoe No
White Balance Auto , Daylight , Cloudy , Tungsten , Fluorescent , Fluorescent H , Custom
Self Timer Approx. 10 sec or 2 sec delay, Custom, Wink self-Timer, FaceSelf-Timer
Stills Format/s
JPEG Compression (EXIF 2.3 Compliant)
Video Format/s MOV (Image Data: H.264; Audio Data: Linear PCM monaural)
Video Recording Time/s -
Storage Type - External SD memory card, SDHC memory card, SDXC memory card, MultiMediaCard, MMCplus card, HC MMCplus card
Storage Type - Internal
Connectivity Hi-Speed USB, HDMI output, Analog audio output (stereo)
Analog video output (NTSC / PAL)
Power Source Compact Power Adapter CA-DC10 (when used with DC Coupler DR10)
Battery Options Rechargeable Lithium-ion Battery NB-6L
Battery Life Approx. 180 shots
Dimensions 100.6 mm (W) x 55.4mm (H) x 25.0mm (D)
Weight 165g (body only)



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