Canon PowerShot ELPH 185 Review

The compact and lightweight IXY 200 weighs approximately 126 g and is equipped with an 8x optical zoom lens with a 28–224 mm (35 mm film equivalent) focal length range, the magnification of which can be digitally extended to approximately 16x through ZoomPlus technology, as well as a high-resolution CCD image sensor with approximately 20 million effective pixels.

The IXY 200 now has user-friendly functionality such as a dedicated DATE button, which allows users to quickly and simply apply a date stamp to photographs, which is particularly useful for beginners.

It is possible to check when a photo was shot without having to resort to the image’s Exif data by pushing the button and selecting Date, Date & Time, or OFF by simply hitting the button.

It also has an Easy Auto Mode, which turns off the FUNC.SET, MENU, and INFO. buttons to minimize inadvertent setting changes while shooting. This mode is particularly useful while shooting in low light.

More: Best Canon Point and Shoot Camera | Best Point and Shoot Camera | Best Point and Shoot Camera for Travel | Best Point and Shoot Camera under 300

Body And Operations

After selling digital IXUS cameras for the past 15 years – and at one point selling them in droves – Canon, as a manufacturer, has taken an “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” approach to 2017’s latest iteration of the long-running series. This is because Canon has been selling digital IXUS cameras for the past 15 years.

The incorporation of cameras into mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets is partly responsible for the decline in sales of standalone small point-and-shoot cameras like the IXUS, which many people believe to be obsolete in today’s market.

However, it would appear that this specific very fashionable and slim-line camera family is still going strong, as the IXUS 185 and its similar brother 190 were both unveiled back in February of this year.

The former is the model that is now being evaluated here at our facility; it is painted in a maroon red-ish livery. One of its most notable characteristics is an effective resolution of 20 megapixels, which is achieved with a CCD sensor that is only 1/2.3 inches in size.

In 2017, what are some of the things that would persuade someone to purchase a digital IXUS? In any case, if one is to trust what the maker has to say, the Canon IXUS 185 is not just about looking fashionable (which it does), but also about having ‘fun’ with photography.

When you first turn it on, the camera goes straight into a mode called “easy auto,” which means that there is very little else that can be done with it but pointing and shooting. As a result, this appears to be a model designed specifically for novice photographers.

Therefore, we quickly found our way to the Program mode on our own model’s camera, which allowed us to exert some control over the light sensitivity/ISO settings as well as the integral flashgun. This allowed us to fire the integral flashgun when we wanted to, rather than just when the camera deemed the need for a flash to be present, and we could “compensate” for this by increasing the ISO if necessary.

Even with the Program shooting mode enabled, the functioning of the camera is still essentially a matter of pointing and shooting the entire time… despite the fact that the IXUS conceals certain creative shooting and digital filter capabilities within its menu panels for users who desire a somewhat higher level of control over their photographs.

To put it another way, it’s similar to a smartphone. At the very least, this indicates that operating is a breeze, and anyone who is more accustomed to using a camera phone rather than a specialized camera won’t be confused by it.

Quality of the Image

The SuperFine JPEG setting at 20 megapixels was used to capture each of the sample photographs included in this review. This setting results in an image that is around 7 megabytes in size on average.

Our issue with the Canon IXUS 185 is obviously always the potential for image noise to be introduced into a shot the higher we go up the ISO range. With an image resolution of roughly 20 megapixels and a sensor that is roughly the same size, the Canon IXUS 185 offers a largeish image resolution.

The camera’s maximum selectable ISO setting is a fair bog standard ISO1600, which witnesses the image quality at that setting visibly softened/degraded to limit/disguise noise. This is fortunately for some, but unfortunately for others, the camera’s maximum selectable ISO setting is a fairly bog standard ISO1600.

As a result, it is likely and sensible that you will not want to go any higher than the ISO800 that the camera intentionally caps itself at when it is set to auto mode.

The Canon IXUS 185 does acquit itself more favorably when it comes to more common daylight-lit scenes, with the flash automatically firing (unless the user disables it), if the image might otherwise be a little soft – and even when it appeared to this reviewer that there was light in abundance. Although it may not be ideal for handheld low light shooting – something we wouldn’t expect for its asking price of around £100 in any event – the Canon IXUS 185 does acquit itself

The majority of the photographs that are saved as JPEGs come out vibrant and rich in color, and the user has the option of increasing the level of saturation in-camera if they so want.

OK, so the pictures might not be the sharpest we’ve ever seen because of the smaller sensor and lens, and we do lose some detail into the corners of the frames at times, and we do see some pixel fringing between areas of high contrast, but perfection is not something you can expect to get for this price.

To be honest, the consumers who are going to be interested in purchasing the IXUS 185 are not going to be expecting the same level of definition that they are accustomed to receiving from their mirrorless cameras or DSLRs.

The IXUS 185 was designed to fill a specific niche in the market and to be sold at a particular price point; it is neither more nor less expensive than that point. Its performance is therefore quite adequate when considered as a whole, even if it is not quite sufficient to get the hearts racing of experienced photographers.

Canon PowerShot ELPH 185 Specifications

Sensor ResolutionActual: 20.5 Megapixel
Effective: 20 Megapixel (5152 x 3864)
Aspect Ratio4:3
Sensor Type1/2.3″ CCD
Image File FormatJPEG
Image StabilizationDigital
Focal Length5 to 40mm (35mm Equivalent Focal Length: 28 to 224mm)
Optical Zoom8x
Digital Zoom4x Maximum (32x Combined Zoom)
Maximum Aperturef/3.2 to 6.9
Focus RangeNormal
1.97″ to Infinity / 5 cm to Infinity (Wide)
4.27′ to Infinity / 1.3 m to Infinity (Telephoto)
Auto
0.39″ to Infinity / 1 cm to Infinity (Wide)
4.3′ to Infinity / 1.3 m to Infinity (Telephoto)
Macro
0.39″ to 1.64′ / 1 cm to 50 cm (Wide)
ISO SensitivityAuto, 100 to 1600
Shutter Speed1/2000 to 1 Second
1 to 15 Seconds in Bulb Mode
Metering MethodCenter-Weighted Average, Evaluative, Spot
Exposure ModesAuto, Program
Exposure Compensation-2 to +2 EV (1/3 EV Steps)
White BalanceAuto, Cloudy, Custom, Daylight, Fluorescent, Fluorescent H, Tungsten
Continuous ShootingUp to 2.2 fps at 20 MP
Self-Timer2/10-Second Delay
Special OptionsFireworks, Fish-Eye Effect, Miniature Effect, Monochrome, Portrait, Toy Camera Effect
Recording ModesMOV/H.264
HD (1280 x 720) at 25p [15 Mb/s]
SD (640 x 480) at 29.97p [3 Mb/s]
Broadcast OutputNTSC/PAL
Audio File FormatLinear PCM (Mono)
Size2.7″
Resolution230,000 Dot
Display TypeFixed LCD
Built-In FlashYes
Flash ModesAuto, Flash On, Off, Slow Sync
External Flash ConnectionNone
Media/Memory Card SlotSingle Slot: SD/SDHC/SDXC
ConnectivityMini-USB (USB 2.0)
WirelessNone
GPSNo
Battery Type1 x NB-11L Rechargeable Lithium-Ion, 3.6 VDC, 680 mAh
Dimensions (W x H x D)3.7 x 2.1 x 0.9″ / 95.2 x 54.3 x 22.1 mm
Weight4.45 oz / 126 g
Package Weight0.585 lb
Box Dimensions (LxWxH)4.45 x 3.15 x 2.45″

Conclusion

The selling point for this camera from Canon is that it is a device that can be easily transported from place to place. Um, just like a smartphone. Aside from that, the selling qualities of the IXUS series haven’t really altered at all over the course of over two decades of manufacturing; specifically, those two points are condensed. The IXUS series is known for being both compact and stylish.

Either its creator hit upon a good formula early on, and it has continued to be successful ever since, or the Canon IXUS 185 is capitalizing on possibly the last of declining returns in a market for tiny cameras that have been mostly cleared of meaningful competitors.

To look at things from a more optimistic and upbeat perspective, the 185 version that we have here is still an admirably slim and minuscule pocket camera that has been elegantly realized and is competitively priced at just one penny short of £120.

It would appear that there is still a place in the market for a point-and-shoot camera that is both attractive and easy to use, despite the fact that some people may have the opinion that the IXUS’ original audience is now being satisfied by the camera that is included in its similarly sleek smartphone.

The Canon IXUS 185 is not a backup camera for any enthusiast because it has few or no real manual features to speak of, except for the ones that are covered in the body of this review. However, it is ideal for the digital beginner, which could mean the extremes of the age ranges – either the younger or older user. The image quality is satisfactory, the operation is uncomplicated, and the price tag is not prohibitive. Simply incorporating a fashionable appearance is sufficient in many cases.

Canon PowerShot ELPH 185 Price

Pros & Cons

Good For
  • Easy to use 
  • Price
  • 8x optical zoom lens 
  • 1cm macro focus
  • Size & Weight 
Need Improvements
  • No FullHD / 4K video
  • Featureless 
  • Photo quality could be better 

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The compact and lightweight IXY 200 weighs approximately 126 g and is equipped with an 8x optical zoom lens with a 28–224 mm (35 mm film equivalent) focal length range, the magnification of which can be digitally extended to approximately 16x through ZoomPlus technology,...Canon PowerShot ELPH 185 Review