Canon ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS

Quality

Canon ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS vs ELPH 300 HS / IXUS 220 HS vs ELPH 310 HS / IXUS 230 HS Quality

   
To compare real-life performance when zoomed-out, we shot this scene with the Canon ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS, the ELPH 300 HS / IXUS 220 HS, and the ELPH 310 HS / IXUS 230 HS within a few moments of each other using their best quality JPEG settings.

The lenses on each camera were set to approximately the same field of view and all three cameras were set to Program auto exposure mode.

The ISO sensitivity was manually set to the lowest available 100 ISO setting.

  Canon ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS results
1 ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS Quality
2 ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS Noise
3 ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS Sample images

The image above was taken with the Canon ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS. The lens was set to its 5mm (28mm equivalent) maximum wide angle focal length. In Program auto exposure mode the camera metered an exposure of 1/500 at f2.8 at 100 ISO. The original image size was 2.92MB. The crops are taken from the areas marked with red rectangles and presented here at 100%.

Overall, results from the ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS are pretty good. Image detail is crisp, contrast is good and the colours are natural looking. Every ELPH / IXUS model tested overexposed this scene a little and the ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS was no exception. The overexposure is marginal, but enough to lose a little detail in the sky; a better result with no loss of shadow detail could have been achieved with about a third of a stop less.

All three of these models have the same 12.1 Megapixel CMOS sensor, yet the results are far from identical. The first crop from the ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS looks a little soft and lacks crisply defined edges, though you can make out the door and windows in the chapel reasonably well. The second crop has a slight textured look to it and the detail, particularly in the lighthouse and the foreground roofs, looks a a little smeary. The detail in this crop looks a bit less natural and more processed.

Moving on to the third crop, there’s some purple and green fringing here, though it’s quite weak and diffuse and the edges in this crop – the brickwork and drainpipe – look a lot softer than in the next crop taken from nearer the centre of the frame. In this last crop the straight edges of the window frames are picked out more cleanly, but the detail still isn’t as sharp as it could be.

Compared with the ELPH 300 HS / IXUS 220 HS the crops from the ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS look uniformly softer and more processed. While there’s little to tell them apart in the first crop, take a close look at the boundary between the foreground roofs and the sea in the second crop with the lighthouse. The ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS is a little more contrasty but there’s more detail in the ELPH 300 HS / IXUS 220 HS crop. The third crop from the ELPH 300 HS / IXUS 220 HS is cleaner and sharper with much less evidence of chromatic aberration and likewise in the final crop, though to a lesser degree, the ELPH 300 HS / IXUS 220 HS is crisper with better fine detail resolution.

Compared with the ELPH 310 HS / IXUS 230 HS it’s a different story. The first crop from the ELPH 310 HS / IXUS 230 HS is marred by the quite severe colour fringing along the horizon line. That aside, the ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS crop looks a little punchier and I think there is a little more detail. Despite the smudginess of the second ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS crop I still think it wins out in quality terms over the ELPH 310 HS / IXUS 230 HS. The final crop from the centre of the frame is too close to call, all of which suggests that the sensor and processor in these two models are closely matched, but the 4x optical zoom on the ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS is capable of producing better results than the 8x optical zoom on the ELPH 310 HS / IXUS 230 HS.

It’s worth reiterating our usual caveat that you’re only likely to spot these differences if you’re looking for them at the 100 percent actual pixel view. In a side-by side comparison at, say, 25 percent, you’d be hard pushed to tell these shots apart.

Now let’s see how they compare at higher sensitivities in our High ISO Noise results.

 
ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS
 
ELPH 300 HS / IXUS 220 HS
 
ELPH 310 HS / IXUS 230 HS
f2.8, 100 ISO
f3.2, 100 ISO
f3, 100 ISO
f2.8, 100 ISO
f3.2, 100 ISO
f3, 100 ISO
f2.8, 100 ISO
f3.2, 100 ISO
f3, 100 ISO
f2.8, 100 ISO
f3.2, 100 ISO
f3, 100 ISO


Canon ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS results : Real-life resolution / High ISO Noise

Canon ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS vs ELPH 300 HS / IXUS 220 HS vs ELPH 310 HS / IXUS 230 HS Noise

 
  Canon ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS results
1 ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS Quality
2 ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS Noise
3 ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS Sample images

To compare noise levels under real-life conditions we shot this scene with the Canon ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS, the Canon ELPH 300 HS / IXUS 220 HS, and the Canon ELPH 310 HS / IXUS 230 HS within a few moments of each other at each of their ISO sensitivity settings.

All three cameras were set to Program auto exposure mode and the lenses were set to the same field of view. The ISO sensitivity was set manually.

The above shot was taken with the the Canon ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS in Program auto mode. The lens was set to its widest angle 5mm (28mm equivalent) focal length, the sensitivity was set to 100 ISO and the exposure was one second at f2.8. The crops are taken from the area marked with the red square and presented below at 100%.

The first crop from the ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS, taken at 100 ISO isn’t noise free, but is nonetheless a perfectly respectable result. There’s good detail in both the column on the left and the wood panelling on the right. There is an overall graininess which you see most clearly in the wood panelling, but it’s not unpleasant in quality and in fact resembles film grain more than digital noise. Making noise look more acceptable rather than trying to eliminate it altogether is an approach that seems to work

At 200 ISO the grain takes on a slightly bitty texture, but you can see almost as much detail in this crop as the previous one. The quality drop from 100 to 200 ISO is fairly marginal and certainly worth the extra stop of exposure it provides. Moving to 400 ISO its a similar story – a slight increase in the noise and another slight loss of detail as a result. The same thing happens at 800 ISO and although the cumulative result is a crop with considerably more noise than at 100 ISO, I’d feel comfortable about using any of these sensitivity settings for photos that were going to be viewed on screen. If I was making full sized prints I might be a bit more circumspect but, even then, the noise at 800 ISO, while abundant, isn’t particularly offensive. From 1600 ISO on, as you’d expect, the noise gains the upper hand, obscuring ever coarser detail, but it’s good to have a 3200 ISO option for those shots that you’ve absolutlely got to have, regardless of the quality.

Not surprisingly, given that they share the same sensor, the crops from the ELPH 300 HS / IXUS 220 HS and the ELPH 310 HS / IXUS 230 HS bear more than a passing resemblance to those from the ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS. They’re not identical, but in the context of quality – how much noise is present at each ISO sensitivity setting and how much image detail suffers as a result – there’s little if anything to choose between them.

All three models offer Handheld Night Scene mode which takes a sequence of shots in low light and produces a single composite image. The ISO is set automatically in this scene mode so it’s difficult to make comparisons, but the results are a definite improvement on what you’d get from a single high ISO shot under the same conditions.

All three models offer a 3 Megapixel low light mode. As you can see from the crops, as well as higher resolution it provides much better detail with significantly less noise. They also offer a Best Image Selection mode which shoots five shots and chooses the best one.

Now head over to our Canon ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS sample images to see some more real-life shots in a variety of conditions.

ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS
 
ELPH 300 HS / IXUS 220 HS
 
ELPH 310 HS / IXUS 230 HS
100 ISO
100 ISO
100 ISO
200 ISO
200 ISO
200 ISO
400 ISO
400 ISO
400 ISO
800 ISO
800 ISO
800 ISO
1600 ISO
1600 ISO
1600 ISO
3200 ISO
3200 ISO
3200 ISO
Hand-held Night Scene 800 ISO
Hand-held Night Scene 1250 ISO
Hand-held Night Scene 1600 ISO
Low Light 2000 ISO
Low Light 2000 ISO
Low Light 2000 ISO
Best Image Selection 2000 ISO
Best Image Selection 2000 ISO
Best Image Selection 2000 ISO

Canon ELPH 100 HS / IXUS 115 HS results : Real-life resolution / High ISO Noise

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