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Canon PowerShot A2000IS Gordon Laing, November 2008

Canon PowerShot A2000 IS results : Outdoor resolution / High ISO Noise

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Canon A2000 IS
Outdoor resolution - Canon A2000 IS vs IXUS 870IS / SD 880IS vs Fujifilm F60fd


To compare real-life performance we shot this scene with the Canon PowerShot A2000 IS, IXUS 870IS / SD 880IS, and Fujifilm FinePix F60fd within a few moments of each other using their best quality JPEG settings, lowest sensitivities and default processing options.

The lenses on each camera were adjusted to deliver the same field of view. Each camera was set to Program, or Auto with Manual ISO override. As mostly automatic cameras, there's no control over the aperture selected.


The image above was taken with the Canon PowerShot A2000 IS at a sensitivity of 80 ISO, and the lens set to 7mm (39mm equivalent), f9; the original Large Super-Fine JPEG file measured 5.21MB. The crops are taken from the upper left, centre, lower right and left of centre, and are presented here at 100%.

As far as we understand, the PowerShot A2000 IS and IXUS 870IS / SD 880IS share the same 1 /2.3in 10 Megapixel CCD sensor, so the differences you see below are down to their respective optics and image processing. Note the A2000 IS uses the older DIGIC III processor, while the IXUS 870IS / SD 880IS uses the newer DIGIC 4.

Unsurprisingly given the same sensor, the amount of recorded detail is pretty much the same, but both cameras have adopted quite different approaches to processing the data. The A2000 IS crops look much punchier than the relatively laid-back appearance of those from the pricier model, mostly due to higher in-camera sharpening and contrast; interestingly saturation levels are roughly the same though.

Many will prefer the look of the cheaper model's crops, although a similar effect can be achieved by boosting the sharpness and contrast on IXUS 870IS / SD 880IS images in software later; sadly there's no way to adjust them in-camera though. Optically, both cameras perform similarly at this focal length, although the A2000 IS is suffering from fractionally more coloured fringing in the first crop of the mountain ridge from the upper left corner - nothing to be worried about though.

Fujifilm's FinePix F60fd represents an interesting alternative costing roughly halfway between the two Canons compared here, but sporting 12 Megapixels to their 10. The higher resolution means the Fuji crops show a slightly smaller area, but there's little or no difference in real-life detail recorded. The F60fd's lens is also visibly softer in the corners as seen in the first and third row of crops.

So with the PowerShot A2000 IS, Canon's gone for a punchy approach which will appeal to its target consumer audience who want vibrant JPEGs right out the camera. Interestingly the two Canon compacts we've tested with the newer DIGIC 4 processor have both gone for a more refrained approach to processing, although this could be due to their higher-end status in the range. It will be revealing to compare the output from future entry-level models with the same processor to see if it's tweaked to give punchier output.

In the meantime, a good result for the A2000 IS here which delivers quality as good as - or for some people actually preferable to - the higher-end IXUS 870IS / SD 880IS. Now let's see how the three cameras here measure-up across their sensitivity range in our Canon PowerShot A2000 IS High ISO Noise results.

Canon PowerShot A2000 IS
Canon IXUS 870IS / SD 880IS
Fujifilm FinePix F60fd
f9, 80 ISO
f6.3, 80 ISO
f5.6, 100 ISO
f9, 80 ISO
f6.3, 80 ISO
f5.6, 100 ISO
f9, 80 ISO
f6.3, 80 ISO
f5.6, 100 ISO
f9, 80 ISO
f6.3, 80 ISO
f5.6, 100 ISO

Canon PowerShot A2000 IS results : Outdoor resolution / High ISO Noise

All words, images, videos and layout, copyright 2005-2017 Gordon Laing. May not be used without permission.

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