Monday, April 27, 2009

Canon SD1200IS testing...

I got my small, lightweight, Canon SD1200 IS dark gray camera the other day. It is slightly thicker than the SD780IS but not much. It's made of some kind of plastic instead of metal, but hey, what is most bike helmets made of? I bet you it will hold up just fine, and maybe even better, in a drop test than it's sibling. But I am not going to test that for you... Anyway, the build quality is solid, just what you expect out of Canon.

I did do some ISO test shots if you are interested. Since it's 2Mpixels less on the sensor than the 780IS, it is possible that it might be just a bit better, but I would not be able to tell. The scene looks like this:

And here are all the shots, first in 10Mpixel resolution:
ISO 80, ISO 100, ISO 200, ISO 400, ISO 800, ISO 1600,
ISO 3200.

And then the same using "M2" resolution, 4Mpixels in camera:
ISO 80, ISO 100, ISO 200, ISO 400, ISO 800, ISO 1600,
ISO 3200.

And last, 10Mpixels, using full zoom:
ISO 80, ISO 100, ISO 200, ISO 400, ISO 800, ISO 1600,
ISO 3200.

Why the 4M samples? Well, to tell you the truth, I usually put the camera on 4M (M2) size when just taking everyday snapshots of the kids and family. I find that 4M is ok for a decent looking 8x10, for personal enjoyment. If you are selling or so, that would not be the best option. But the 4M size gives smaller file sizes and is just right. Anyway, that's me.

How is the video? For the 640x480 30fps size that I will be using, there are two bit rates. One normal (~16min on 2Gbyte) and a long play (~32min on 2Gbyte). Here are two examples from the very windy beach. Standard and Longplay. Directly out of the camera.

I would say that it looks like the SD1200 is going to be my choice. It is lighter than the SD780, a touch thicker, and roughly the same photo quality. And the lens is actually just a tad faster (f/2.8 at wide compared to f/3.2 for the 780). I will post more in a few days. Check out the prices on Amazon below. The SD1200 dropped a little, just like the 780. The dark gray is selling for $200 and some others also (4/27).

SD1200IS at Amazon: Light gray, Dark gray, Pink, Blue, Green, Orange.


sales said...

Can you use the Optical zoom with video on the SD1200is? (I know you can't with the SD780is).



Mats said...

No, unfortunately not. It's "digital" zoom only during video.

Anonymous said...

but, you can at least use digital zoom?
i do believe you are correct about the picture quality. the lens is probably of better quality also. i have an iMac...i think iLife will support the video easily???

Phil said...

Where on the SD1200IS is the "Alt" button? It's usually the "Print" button but this model Elph doesn't have one.