Canon IXUS 150 Review

June 3, 2014 | Matt Grayson | Rating star Rating star Rating star Rating star


The Canon IXUS 150 (also known as the PowerShot ELPH 140 IS) is a stylish, svelte digital compact camera that boasts a 16 megapixel sensor, 8x optical zoom, image stabiliser, 2.7-inch LCD screen, 720p movies and Digic 4 processor. Built for the point and shooter thanks to it's impeccable ease of use, the IXUS 150 costs around £95 / $130 and is available in red and silver.

Ease of Use

It could be argued that the Canon IXUS 150 looks better in red than it does in silver. Of course that's a personal choice that you would have to make, but the red unit we tested is a stunning shade. The silver lens is surrounded by a chrome ring that provides an attractive focal point of the camera. The chrome on the front blends with the strip that wraps around the circumference of the entire camera and in a way it looks a little space age.

Thanks to the camera being from the IXUS range, things such as the zoom ring and the tripod bush are a better quality than a Powershot of the same price. A two-tone colour scheme has been used on the camera. The front features a satin red paint finish while the back is glossy. The back formation of buttons is similar to the rest of the current range with a staggered formation to allow them to be slightly larger for easier operation. It also makes them easier to see for those users with problematic eyesight. They sit next to the 2.7 inch TFT LCD screen which has a resolution of 230,000 dots (76,666 pixels).

The main, and indeed only, difference between the IXUS 150 and it's smaller brother, the IXUS 145, is the addition of an image stabiliser. Named the Intelligent stabiliser, it uses eight various modes to ensure a camera-shake free image. Some of these modes will include increasing the aperture size to allow more light to pass through, a lens based optical shift system and increasing the ISO. It's worth noting that while you will get sharp images, the actual quality of them may drop due to some of the modes in use.

Canon IXUS 300 HS Canon IXUS 300 HS
Front Rear

There are two menus on the IXUS 150 and a few sub-menus within. The Function menu is accessed via the centre button on the back of the camera. It allows you to make adjustments to the basic functionality of the camera, such as the mode it's in, the ISO, resolution, white-balance or exposure compensation. That's if you're in Live mode and have selected Program. If not, the sub-menu for the modes will alter what you can access in the rest of the menu. Pressing up on the navigation pad when out of the menu will flick between Intelligent auto and Live modes. There's no Mode menu for choosing landscape or portrait, things like that. Those are found hidden away in the Function menu when in Live mode. P is Program which gives all the aforementioned features and you can scroll down if you wish to use a mode more suited to the scene that faces you, such as portraits, low light or night time.

Tap the menu button on the back of the Canon IXUS 150 and you enter the Main menu. This is more indepth than the Function menu and makes changes that will last or change the way the camera acts. You can select where the camera focuses, whether it's one-shot focusing or continuous. In fact there's a lot of options for focusing the camera. The Main menu is split into two sections and the camera tab is for shooting options. The spanner and hammer icon is the menu for things such as the date & time, volume, LCD brightness or formatting the card. It's heavier stuff that will change the camera until you put it back or select something else.

Canon IXUS 300 HS Canon IXUS 300 HS
Front Top

Start up time from the off position is fast at just under 1.5 sec. That's fast and it's good to see lower end cameras benefiting from new technology. After all, it wasn't that long ago that cameras had a start up and shoot time of around 2-2.5sec. Shaving the extra time off means candid pictures have an increased likelihood of being captured. Continuous shooting is a plodding affair and runs at around 0.8fps (frames per second). That means there's no burst of photographs to capture fast moving objects, but it also means that you don't have huge wait times between download and being ready to shoot again.

You can review pictures you've already taken on the Canon IXUS 150 by simply pressing the button with the blue arrow. This takes you into the Playback area and the photograph that you took last will be displayed first. You can do this regardless of whether the camera is switched on or off. Generally you need to hold the button down for a couple of seconds for the camera to power up the playback when it's in the off position, but not with the IXUS 150. You can tap the button and it will bring your latest picture onto the screen for you to review.

Canon IXUS 300 HS Canon IXUS 300 HS
Memory Card Slot Battery Compartment

With that picture, you'll see some basic shooting information. You can tap the DISP button to scroll through viewing options such as no information, basic information – the default setting – and lots of information. With the latter setting, the review image becomes a thumbnail with all the shooting information surrounding it such as shutter speed, ISO, resolution, file number and white-balance setting.
The Playback menu has three tabs, although the third one is the Set-up tab from the Main menu that we saw before. The Playback tab is designated an arrow – the universal icon for playback ever since VHS. You can perform basic adjustments to your photos here such as erase, protect and rotate them. You can also adjust i-Contrast and correct red-eye.

Canon have simplified the accessories that are in the boxes of their digital compact cameras. With the camera you get a lithium ion battery, charger & cable and wrist strap. There's also a Quick Start guide wrapped up with a European warranty and some promotional material. Most noticeable is the lack of CD. The CD that would normally hold the full Manual and some basic editing software is now gone and those items have to be downloaded from the Canon website. It's a move that Canon aren't alone in, a few other manufacturers are doing the same thing to save resources.

Image Quality

All of the sample images in this review were taken using the 16 megapixel Superfine JPEG setting, which gives an average image size of around 5Mb.


There are 5 ISO settings available on the Canon IXUS 150. Here are some 100% crops which show the noise levels for each ISO setting.

The IXUS name is synonymous with good quality in all aspects. Therefore when we perform the tests, we expect to see a good performance. Still, it has to be remembered that this is a camera at around £100 so it's not going to be a top dog. However, we were still disappointed to see some speckles of noise showing at ISO 100. It needs bearing in mind that we're being hyper critical because we're noticing this only when viewed at full magnification. In fact, if you were to view the pictures at normal size on your computer, noise doesn't really show up until around ISO 800. Even then it's tolerable. The range of the IXUS 150 is ISO 100-1600 which is limited by today's standards.

Colour noise doesn't affect the image at full magnification until ISO 400 where some blobs of green are noticeable in the darker areas. At ISO 800, the colour noise increases as noise reduction fails to cope with the barrage and salt and pepper starts to make things awkward too. Sharp lines begin to break up and look fuzzy while details are smudging out.

ISO 100 (100% Crop)

ISO 200 (100% Crop)

iso100.jpg iso200.jpg

ISO 400 (100% Crop)

ISO 800 (100% Crop)

iso400.jpg iso800.jpg

ISO 1600 (100% Crop)



It can be said that adding sharpening to the pictures taken on this camera is noticeable, but it's not necessarily the best course of action. We noticed that if you shoot over ISO 100 and there's any noise showing through, it simply gets made worse with sharpening. However, low ISO images certainly do benefit from a boost in sharpening.

Original (100% Crop)

Sharpened (100% Crop)

sharpen1.jpg sharpen1a.jpg
sharpen2.jpg sharpen2a.jpg

Focal Range

The Canon IXUS 150's 8x zoom lens provides a focal length of 28-224mm in 35mm terms, as demonstrated below.



focal_range1.jpg focal_range2.jpg

Chromatic Aberrations

One of the areas we're most disappointed in is the quality of the lens. We found chromatic aberration all over the place.

Chromatic Aberrations 1 (100% Crop)

Chromatic Aberrations 2 (100% Crop)

chromatic1.jpg chromatic2.jpg

Chromatic Aberrations 3 (100% Crop)

Chromatic Aberrations 4 (100% Crop)

chromatic3.jpg chromatic4.jpg


The close focusing of the IXUS 150 is 1cm. It can certainly come in very useful, although we found that image drop off comes in very early. There's only a small sweet spot in the centre of the frame. Focusing on small items is also quite difficult.


Macro (100% Crop)

macro1.jpg macro1a.jpg


Adding flash to a picture will stabilise available light and because it's an intelligent flash, won't bleach out subjects unless they're far too close. There's some harsh vignetting at the wide-angle setting but this does dissipate as you move out to full zoom.

Flash Off - Wide Angle (28mm)

Flash On - Wide Angle (28mm)

ISO 64 ISO 64

Flash Off - Telephoto (224mm)

Flash On - Telephoto (224mm)

ISO 64 ISO 64

We did get some red-eye when taking portraits. Using the red-eye correction function does reduce it, but a correction system suggests it removes it. However, it does this digitally, so will be programmed to look for certain colours and it's quite possible that this was outside of the gamut.

Flash On

Flash On (100% Crop)
flash_on.jpg flash_on1.jpg

Red-eye Correction

Red-eye Correction (100% Crop)

flash_redeye.jpg flash_redeye1.jpg


There are two modes that you can take pictures in low light. Program mode will allow exposures of up to 1sec, but if it can't cope with the amount of available light, then you can choose the Long exposure mode.

In Long exposure, you can select various shutter speeds up to 15sec. The great news is that the camera will select a low ISO of around 100 to increase image quality.

Night Program

Night Program (100% Crop)

night_program.jpg night_program1.jpg

Night Scene

Night Scene (100% Crop)

night_scene.jpg night_scene1.jpg

Sample Images

This is a selection of sample images from the Canon IXUS 150 camera, which were all taken using the 16 megapixel Superfine JPEG setting. The thumbnails below link to the full-sized versions, which have not been altered in any way.

Sample Movie & Video

This is a sample movie at the highest quality setting of 1280x720 pixels at 25 frames per second. Please note that this 31 second movie is 54.7Mb in size.

Product Images

Canon IXUS 150

Front of the Canon IXUS 150

Canon IXUS 150

Front of the Canon IXUS 150 / Turned On

Canon IXUS 150

Side of the Canon IXUS 150

Canon IXUS 150

Side of the Canon IXUS 150

Canon IXUS 150

Rear of the Canon IXUS 150

Canon IXUS 150

Rear of the Canon IXUS 150 / Image Displayed

Canon IXUS 150

Rear of the Canon IXUS 150 / Turned On

Canon IXUS 150

Rear of the Canon IXUS 150 / Function Menu

Canon IXUS 150

Rear of the Canon IXUS 150 / Canon IXUS 150 Menu


Canon IXUS 150

Rear of the Canon IXUS 150 / Settings Menu

Canon IXUS 150

Rear of the Canon IXUS 150 / Playback Menu

Canon IXUS 150

Rear of the Canon IXUS 150 / Print Menu

Canon IXUS 150

Top of the Canon IXUS 150

Canon IXUS 150

Bottom of the Canon IXUS 150

Canon IXUS 150

Side of the Canon IXUS 150

Canon IXUS 150

Side of the Canon IXUS 150

Canon IXUS 150

Front of the Canon IXUS 150

Canon IXUS 150

Memory Card Slot

Canon IXUS 150

Battery Compartment


If you want a camera that will do everything for you with the scope for taking some control over pictures if you decide you want to, then the Canon IXUS 150 has those options once you place it into Program mode.

It's still a very easy to use camera although if you have no previous experience with Canon compacts it's likely that you may struggle to initially discover the other modes as they're snuggled away in the Function menu once in Live mode. Aside from that everything is very straightforward.

Image quality is surprisingly good for such an inexpensive camera, although it's not without its flaws. Chroma is quite bad even towards the centre of the frame. Also, when taking pictures close up, despite the 1cm close focusing ability, there's only a small sweet-spot of focus in the centre of the frame.

For around the £100 / $125 mark, the Canon IXUS 150 is a nice little camera. It looks good thanks to the two tone red and chrome effect (although that will be lost on the silver version) and being the typical IXUS, it has slight upgrades that help it look good or appear more prestigious. These upgrades are only small, in fact bordering on subliminal, such as the small, tight fitting zoom switch and metal tripod screw. Neither are normally seen on a camera at this price point. But that's IXUS for you.

If you're looking for a camera to take on nights or days out and on holiday, then the Canon IXUS 150 is ideal. The zoom, resolution and availability of the image stabiliser mean that those especially treasured pictures will be sharper at lower light. Apart from the aforementioned image quality issues, the camera will not only cope with most situations that you can throw at it, but also take a pretty good picture of it as well.

4 stars

Ratings (out of 5)
Design 4
Features 4
Ease-of-use 4
Image quality 4
Value for money 4.5

Main Rivals

Listed below are some of the rivals of the Canon IXUS 150.

Fujifilm FinePix T400

The Fujifilm FinePix T400 compact camera offers a 10x zoom, 16 megapixel sensor, 3 inch LCD screen and 720p movies, all for a street price of just £70 / $90. Read our Fujifilm FinePix T400 review to find out if it's a genuine bargain or one to avoid...

Nikon Coolpix S5200

The Nikon Coolpix S5200 is a stylish and fully-featured new point-and-shoot camera. The S5200 offers a compact body, 16 megapixels, a 6x zoom with 28mm wide-angle setting, built-in wi-fi connectivity, 1080p HD movies and a 3 inch LCD screen. Read our expert review of the Nikon Coolpix S5200 to find out if it's a bargain or not...

Olympus VH-410

The Olympus VH-410 is an affordable compact camera with a lot of premium features. You get a very capable camera for just £120 - 16 megapixels, 5x wide-angle zoom, 3 inch LCD touchscreen, 720p movies, all housed in a metal body. Read our Olympus VH-410 review to find out if it's a bargain or not...

Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZX3

The new Panasonic Lumix ZX3 / ZR3 is a tiny camera that packs a big punch, with an 8x, 25-300mm wide-angle zoom lens and 14 megapixel sensor. Capable of recording 720p HD movies in the AVCHD Lite or Motion JPEG formats, the ZX3 (called the ZR3 in North America) features Panasonic's newly introduced Intelligent Resolution function which can boost the zoom to 10x with minimal loss of image quality. Mark Goldstein takes an in-depth look at the new Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZX3.

Samsung ST200F

The Samsung ST200F is an affordable travel-zoom camera with a 10x zoom, 16 megapixels, 3 inch screen and built-in wi-fi. Read our in-depth Samsung ST200F review to find out if it's worth the modest outlay...

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-WX200

The Sony Cyber-shot DSC-WX200 is a slim and stylish compact camera with built-in wi-fi. The WX200 also features a 10x zoom lens, 18 megapixel Exmor R CMOS sensor, 10fps continuous shooting and Full HD movie recording. Priced at around £199, read our Sony Cyber-shot DSC-WX200 review to find out if it's worth checking out...



Type 1/2.3 type CCD
Effective Pixels Approx. 16.0M
Colour Filter Type Primary Colour


Type DIGIC 4+ with iSAPS technology


Focal Length 5.0 – 40.0 mm (35 mm equivalent: 28 – 224 mm)
Zoom Optical 8x
ZoomPlus 16x
Digital Approx. 4x
Combined Approx. 32x¹
Maximum f/number f/3.2 – f/6.9
Construction 8 elements in 7 groups
(1 double-sided aspherical lens)
Image Stabilisation Yes (lens shift-type), approx. 2.5-stop¹. Intelligent IS plus Enhanced Dynamic IS


Type TTL
AF System/ Points AiAF (Face Detection / 9-point), 1-point AF (fixed to centre)
AF Modes Single, Continuous (Auto mode only), Servo AF/AE, Tracking AF¹
AF Lock Yes
AF Assist Beam Yes
Closest Focusing Distance 1 cm (W) from front of lens in macro


Metering modes Evaluative (linked to Face Detection AF frame), Centre-weighted average, Spot (centre)
AE Lock Yes
Exposure Compensation +/- 2 EV in 1/3 stop increments.
Enhanced i-Contrast for automatic dynamic range correction
ISO sensitivity AUTO, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600


Speed 1 – 1/2000 sec. (factory default)
15 – 1/2000 sec. (total range – varies by shooting mode)


Type TTL
Settings Auto (including Face Detection WB), Daylight, Cloudy, Tungsten, Fluorescent, Fluorescent H, Custom


Type sRGB


Monitor 6.8 cm (2.7") LCD (TFT), Approx. 230,000 dots
Coverage Approx. 100%
Brightness Adjustable to one of five levels. Quick-bright LCD


Modes Auto, Manual Flash On / Off, Slow Synchro
Slow Sync Speed Yes. Fastest speed 1/2000 sec.
Red-Eye Reduction Yes
Flash Exposure Compensation Face Detection FE, Smart Flash Exposure
Flash Exposure Lock Yes
Built-in Flash Range 50cm – 3.0 m (W) / 1.3 – 1.5 m (T)
External Flash Canon High Power Flash HF-DC1
Canon High Power Flash HF-DC2


Modes Smart Auto (32 scenes detected), P, Portrait, Live View Control, FaceSelf-Timer, Low Light (4.0 MP), Fish-eye Effect, Miniature Effect, Toy Camera Effect, Monochrome, Super Vivid, Poster Effect, Snow, Fireworks, Long Shutter
Modes in Movie Smart Auto (21 scenes detected), P, Portrait, Miniature Effect, Monochrome, Super Vivid, Poster Effect, Snow, Fireworks
Drive modes Single, Continuous, Self-Timer
Continuous Shooting Approx. 0.8 shots/sec.¹ (until memory card becomes full)²


Image Size 4:3 - (L) 4608 x 3456, (M1) 3264 x 2448, (M2) 2048 x 1536, (S) 640 x 480, (W) 4608 x 2592
Resize in playback (M2, S)
Compression Fine
Movies (HD) 1280 x 720, 25 fps, (L) 640 x 480, 30 fps
Miniature Effect (HD) 5fps, 2.5fps, 1.25 fps
Miniature Effect (L) 6fps, 3fps, 1.5 fps
Movie Length (HD) Up to 4 GB or 29 min. 59 sec.¹
(L) up to 4 GB or 1 hour²


Still Image Type JPEG compression, (Exif 2.3 [Exif Print] compliant) / Design rule for Camera File system, Digital Print Order Format [DPOF] Version 1.1 compliant
Movies MOV [H.264 + Linear PCM (monaural) ]


Canon Printers Canon SELPHY Compact Photo Printers and Canon Inkjet Printers supporting PictBridge
PictBridge Yes


Red-Eye Correction Yes, during shooting and playback
Histogram Yes
Playback zoom Approx. 2x – 10x
Self Timer Approx. 2 or 10 sec. or Custom
Menu Languages English, German, French, Dutch, Danish, Finnish, Italian, Norwegian, Swedish, Spanish, Simplified Chinese, Chinese (traditional), Japanese, Russian, Portuguese, Korean, Greek, Polish, Czech, Hungarian, Turkish, Thai, Arabic, Ukrainian, Romanian, Farsi, Malaysian, Hindi, Indonesian, Vietnamese, Hebrew


Computer Hi-Speed USB (MTP, PTP) dedicated connector (Mini-B compatible)
Other A/V output, dedicated connector (PAL/NTSC)




PC & Macintosh Windows 8, 8.1 / 7 SP1 / Vista SP2 / XP SP3
Mac OS X 10.7, 10.8, 10.9


Browsing & Printing ImageBrowser EX
Other Camera Window


Batteries Rechargeable Li-ion Battery NB-11L (battery and charger supplied)
Battery life Approx. 210 shots
Eco Mode: Approx. 280 shots
Approx. 240min. playback
A/C Power Supply Optional, AC Adapter Kit ACK-DC90


Cases / Straps Soft Case DCC-1370
Soft Case DCC-1350
Soft Case DCC-1320
Flash Canon High Power Flash HF-DC1
Canon High Power Flash HF-DC2
Power Supply & Battery Chargers AC Adapter Kit ACK-DC90
Other Canon AV Cable AVC-DC400


Operating Environment 0 – 40 °C, 10 – 90% humidity
Dimensions (WxHxD) 95.2 x 54.3 x 22.1 mm
Weight Approx. 130 g (including battery/batteries and memory card)
Zoom ¹ Depending on the image size selected.
Image Stabilisation ¹ Values at maximum optical focal length. Cameras whose focal length exceeds 350mm (35mm equivalent) are measured at 350mm.
AF Modes ¹ Some settings limit availability.
Continuous Shooting ¹ Under conditions where the flash does not fire.
² Depending on memory card speed / capacity / compression setting.
Movie Length ¹ The following Speed Class memory cards are required for maximum record time: (HD) 1280 x 720 Speed Class 4 or above. (Full HD) 1920 x 1080 Speed Class 6 or above. (iFrame) 1280 x 720 Speed Class 6 or above.
² Depending on memory card speed / capacity / compression setting.

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