Canon Digital IXUS 960 IS Review
(also known as the Canon Digital ELPH SD950 IS)

Review Date: October 1st 2007
Author: Mark Goldstein

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Page 1
Introduction / Ease of Use
Page 2
Image Quality
Page 3
Sample Images
Page 4
Design
Page 5
Specifications
Page 6
Conclusion

Conclusion


Ratings (out of 5)
Design
4.5
Features
4
Ease-of-Use
4.5
Image Quality
4
Value for Money
3.5

The new flagship Canon Digital IXUS 960 IS is one of the first Canon compacts to feature a 12 megapixel sensor, helping the company to keep up with the megapixel race. Despite the slightly larger than normal 1/1.7 CCD sensor, this megapixel increase comes at a price, principally in the form of noisy images at the relatively slow ISO speed of 200. The inclusion of an excellent optical image stabilisation system does allow you to use slower ISO speeds than you normally would on a camera without anti-shake, but this doesn't totally compensate for the noise issue, making the Canon Digital IXUS 960 IS poorly suited to low-light shooting conditions. On the other hand, if you routinely make large posters out of your pictures or you like to aggressively crop them, you'll welcome the 4000 pixel wide/high images, but don't expect to see any benefit if you only print up to 8x10 inches in size. Otherwise images are colourful and sharp straight out of the camera, requiring little if any post processing which is a blessing for the point-and-shoot brigade.

Pick the IXUS 960 IS up for the first time and there is an undeniable sense of quality which exceeds most of the competition, but this only partly justifies the seriously high retail price. The LCD screen is clear enough to be able to compose images in sunshine without recourse to the alternative optical viewfinder. Indeed I quickly forgot the viewfinder was even there, so small and murky the view through it. ISO Auto Shift is a useful feature in theory but is seriously let down by the quality available at ISO 800, whilst beginners will love the Face Detection feature which provides well focused and exposed family pictures. For those who don't already own an IXUS but are seduced by its enticingly curvaceous lines, titanium body and sophisticated finish, the IXUS 960 IS is as good a place as any to get introduced to the family. We'd suggest looking beyond the headline-grabbing 12 megapixel resolution and opting for the much cheaper IXUS 860 IS, which has the added benefit of a 28mm wide-angle lens, larger LCD screen and most importantly less noisy images.

Page 1
Introduction / Ease of Use
Page 2
Image Quality
Page 3
Sample Images
Page 4
Design
Page 5
Specifications
Page 6
Conclusion

DIWAPhotographyBLOG is a member of the DIWA organisation. Our test results for the Canon Digital IXUS 960 IS have been submitted to DIWA for comparison with test results for different samples of the same camera model supplied by other DIWA member sites.

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