Monday, July 20, 2009

Canon SD1100 vs SD1200



I had a bit of luck today. I found a SD1100IS on Craigslist that was listed as damaged and possibly not working. I emailed the guy and long story short, I gave him a used ink jet that I was getting rid of anyway, and I got a new camera. After a little fiddling, it seems to be fully functional again. Yeah... :) Only "problem" seems to be some dust creating a blob on the right side sometimes (like dust in a DSLR).

So, I thought why not do some testing to compare it with the new sibling, the SD1200IS. And that's what I did. I will in the next few posts do some more testing, outdoors, but right now it will be a side by side, indoors.

First a few more product shots (nice, don't you think):




What I did was to do a silly, but for some very interesting, ISO series using a tripod, 2 second delay, IS off, Standard colors for both cameras at the highest quality setting. The camera were at the widest setting (not zoomed in). This is how the scene looks like:


And here are links to the full size, directly out of the camera shots:

SD1100IS: ISO 80, ISO 100, ISO 200, ISO 400, ISO 800, ISO 1600.
SD1200IS: ISO 80, ISO 100, ISO 200, ISO 400, ISO 800, ISO 1600.

Now, if you do not have the energy to look download and look at all of them, well, here is one sample comparison for you. It is a 200x400 pixel area of the ISO400 shot. In my opinion, ISO 400 is where I would stop with both cameras, although ISO800 with the SD1200 could be acceptable also. SD1100IS on the left.


Then I zoomed in as much as possible, and redid the test. This is what the scene looked like:


And here are links to the full size, directly out of the camera shots:

SD1100IS: ISO 80, ISO 100, ISO 200, ISO 400, ISO 800, ISO 1600.
SD1200IS: ISO 80, ISO 100, ISO 200, ISO 400, ISO 800, ISO 1600.

Again, if you do not have the energy or will to download all, here is a sample of ISO800 for you. SD1200IS to the right.


As you can see, the SD1200IS has a little bit better noise reduction, I think. I would not want to use the SD1100IS on the ISO800 setting, if one can avoid it.

The last thing I had energy for was to shoot a short video, side by side, and since it was late, I figured a low light one was best. In the next few days I can try an outdoor one, maybe. The SD1100IS comes first and the SD1200IS after. Sorry for the bad music selection, it was old files on my old Xbox...



The raw video files from both camera can be downloaded here for the SD1100IS and here for the SD1200IS.

I guess I do not need to tell you, that if you found this useful, and want to buy one of these cameras, please click through the links to Amazon for either camera :) Thanx!

7 comments:

Goat said...

I found your blog from the user photos section on amazon.com and am really pleased to have done so. I appreciate your thorough use of the cameras you have and your willingness to share your experience with them.

I am torn between the 780 and the 1200. I think video is a "neat option," but I am mostly concerned with stills. From what I can tell, it's almost a coin flip between the two on the still image front. The shots from both the 780 and the 1200 look impeccable!

If the video matter is taken out of the equation, would you be able to choose one over the other?

Mats said...

Hi,

well, there is no real reason in my view to pay more for the 780 for pure image quality. The 1200 lens is a little faster (lets more light in), and to tell the truth the thicker 1200 is easier to hold with one hand. But, there is one annoying thing with my sd1200 (could be just mine) and it is that after a day or so in my pant pocket, there is some lint on the lens where the lens cover meets. This did not happen on the 780. But a quick blow, or keeping it in a case takes care of that.

For the future, the video could be a benefit... But I chose the sd1200. A little cheaper and good for now.

Goat said...

Thank you very much for the info. Always nice to hear from someone with first-hand experience of a new gadget that has an even keel.

Laura and Drew said...

Thank you for your reviews. I am trying to decide between the Canon 1200 and the Panasonic ZS1 which I thought I saw you also reviewed. I know they are pretty different. I don't use the video. I prefer the Panasonic for the zoom lens and the Canon for it's small size. How would you weigh those two? Thanks! Eleanor

Mats said...

Eleanor,

that's a tough call. I would favor the SD1200 from image quality, but both the wide angle and zoom reach of ZS1 is attractive.

SD1200 - size and image quality
ZS1 - zoom range

Laura and Drew said...

Thanks. Are the 1200 and zs1 equal from a use perspective for both handling and ease of changing modes etc. I wonder if the placement of the mode dial on the zx1 would get in the way. Do you use the viewfinder on the 1200 or do you prefer the larger screen of the zs1? I like a viewfinder in bright light, but is the tiny one on the 1200 hard to use? Do you think that cropping later on 1200 would accomplish what the zoom does on zs1? Thanks again! Eleanor

Mats said...

No, they are not equal for user interface. If you are used to canon, or panasonic, go with that.

I never use the optical viewfinder, I find it too small.

If you need the reach of the ZS1, then that's better than cropping on the SD1200. But I found my copy of the ZS1 to be soft at full zoom.