The Canon Powershot SD1100 IS (IXUS 80 IS in Europe) is as fresh off the Canon engineers' drawing boards as it can get. It was announced only a few weeks ago for the PMA trade show in Las Vegas and already has made its way into the basement vault which accommodates the dpreview labs.

The camera comes as a replacement for the SD1000 (IXUS 70). The key features of this ultra compact aren't anything to write home about but the SD1100 promises to be another solid point and shoot tool coming out of the Canon stables. It combines an 8MP sensor with a 3x zoom (38-114mm equiv, optically stabilized) and lets you view images and menus on a high resolution 2.5 inch screen.

Although the spec sheet might not look overly impressive we should mention that there are a few new functions which Canon introduced with the latest additions to its line of compact cameras. Face Detection now also optimizes White Balance for the face detection frame and the new AF Point Zoom allows the user to check the focus by magnifying the AF frame when the shutter button is pressed half way.

Are these neat new little features enough to make the SD1100 stand out from the crowd? Let's find out in our review, starting, as ever, with the headline features:

  • 8.0 million effective pixels
  • 3x (38-114mm equiv.) zoom
  • ISO 1600
  • Optical Image Stabilization
  • Canon's DIGIC III image processor, iSAPS, 9-point AiAF
  • Face Detection (including white balance)
  • Wide viewing angle 2.5" LCD screen (230,000 pixels)
  • Canon's new motion detection technology (to avoid image blur)
  • AF point zoom
  • 30fps VGA movies with time lapse mode

SD1100 IS / IXUS 80 IS specifications

Street price • US: $250
• UK: £210

SD 1100 IS Digital ELPH (US)
Digital IXUS 80 IS (EU)


• 1/2.5 " Type CCD
• 8.0 million effective pixels

Image sizes (L) 3264 x 2448, (M1) 2592 x 1944, (M2) 2048 x 1536, (M3, Date Stamp) 1600 x 1200, (S) 640 x 480, (W) 3264 x 1832. Resize in playback (M3, S, 320 x 240)
Movie clips

• (L)640 x 480, 30fps/60fps
• (LP) (M)320 x 240, 30fps
• (S)160 x 120, 15fps
• Time Lapse 640 x 480, 0.5/1fps (Playback 15fps)

File formats • JPEG (EXIF 2.2)
• AVI [Motion JPEG compression + WAVE (monaural)]

• 3x optical zoom
• 6.2 - 18.6 mm (35mm equivalent: 38–114mm)
• F2.8 - 4.9

Image stabilization Yes (lens shift-type)
Conversion lenses No
Digital zoom up to 4x
Focus TTL autofocus
AF area mode • AiAF (Face Detection / 9-point)
• 1-point AF (fixed to center or Face Select and Track)
AF assist lamp Yes
Focus distance • Normal: 12 in./30cm-infinity
• Macro: 1.2 in.-1.6 ft./3-50cm (W), 1.2 in.-1.6 ft./3-50cm (T)
• Digital Macro: 1.2-3.9 in./3-10cm (W)
Metering • Evaluative (linked to Face Detection AF frame)
• Center-weighted average
• Spot (center)
ISO sensitivity

• High ISO Auto (incorporating Motion Detection Technology)
• 80
• 100
• 200
• 400
• 800
• 1600

Exposure compensation +/- 2 EV in 1/3 stop increments
Exposure bracketing No
Shutter speed • 1/60 - 1/1500 sec (factory default)
• 15 - 1/1500 sec (total range - varies by shooting mode)
Aperture F2.8 - 4.9
Modes • Auto
• Manual
• Digital Macro
• Portrait
• Night Snapshot
• Color Accent
• Color Swap
• Stitch Assist
• Movie
Scene modes • Kids & Pets
• Indoor
• Sunset
• Foliage
• Snow
• Beach
• Fireworks
• Aquarium
• Underwater
White balance

• Auto (including Face Detection WB)
• Daylight
• Cloudy
• Tungsten
• Fluorescent
• Fluorescent H
• Custom

Self timer 2 or 10 sec, custom
Continuous shooting Approx. 1.3 fps (Large/Fine)
Image parameters My Colors (My Colors Off, Vivid, Neutral, Sepia, Black & White, Positive Film, Lighter Skin Tone, Darker Skin Tone, Vivid Blue, Vivid Green, Vivid Red, Custom Color)
Flash • Auto, Manual Flash On / Off, Slow sync, Red-Eye Reduction
• Face Detection flash exposure compensation
• Flash exposure lock
• Range: 30cm - 3.5m (w), 2.0m (t)
Viewfinder Real-image zoom optical viewfinder
LCD monitor • 2.5-inch TFT
• 230,000 pixels
Connectivity • USB 2.0 Hi-Speed
• AV out
Print compliance • Pictbridge
• DPOF v.1.1
• EXIF Print
Storage • SD, SDHC, MMC, MMCplus, HC MMCplus.
• 32MB memory card supplied
Power • NB-4L Li-ion battery
• Charger included
• Optional AC adapter
Optional accessories • Waterproof Case WP-DC22
• High-Power Flash HF-DC1
Weight (No batt) 125 g (4.4 oz)
Dimensions 86.8 x 54.8 x 22.0 mm (3.4 x 2.2 x 0.9 in)

If you're new to digital photography you may wish to read the Digital Photography Glossary before diving into this article (it may help you understand some of the terms used).

Conclusion / Recommendation / Ratings are based on the opinion of the reviewer, you should read the ENTIRE review before coming to your own conclusions.

We recommend to make the most of this review you should be able to see the difference (at least) between X, Y, and Z and ideally A, B, and C.

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