Canon Ixus 850? - Any advice please

Found 19th Sep 2008
Hi people,

I'm after a second digital camera to take on holiday. I already have an Olympus Mju 700 but it's lacking a couple of things which I want the replacement to have...

- Not very good indoors, or in low light conditions (even using night modes).
- Not a great flash - often bleaches out photo (turn it off and it's blurry).
- Because of the curved + top-heavy body shape, you can't balance it on anything to take a photo using timer mode (and i want to avoid carrying a tripod)
- No viewfinder.

The Olympus is going to my OH (as his first camera! - so he'll be wow'ed whatever he gets), and we'd like to buy another camera to compensate for the above. Ultimately we'll have both with us at all times.

Reviews of the Ixus are good, and the 850 I can get for £146 with an SD card (the next model up has no viewfinder)

Has anyone got this camera who can tell me if it will be better in the points above than the one I have, or can anyone recommend alternatives? I've looked at loads of posts about cameras but i'm finding it hard because I want something quite specific (without spending more than £180 ish)
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I bought my other half an Ixus 860 and she loves it!

I have a Nikon D80 currently and still find that I use the 860 quite often. I would have to say that the extra screen size more than makes up for the lack of viewfinder. I would suggest you give it a try as you'll find that most compact digital cameras are going down the route of no viewfinders as the screens are really quite good.

In low light you'll find it won't be anywhere near up to the standard of a digital SLR but I have found it quite good for family parties etc. I think you'll find quite a few reviews state that this is quite possibly the best Ixus to date and from my own experience I would have to agree as I quite often find myself having to give it back to its rightful owner!

Good luck with your search and keep an eye on prices for the 850 and 860 is you choose the latter as the 870 has been announced and prices are sure to go down further.
Thanks for the reply!
I'll keep an eye on the prices for the 860 too. I really do want a viewfinder however, as the two places I'll be using this are Vegas and Egypt, and I don't think any amount of technology is going to compensate for the glare on the screen in that kind of light! I'd love to get an SLR, but I really don't know enough about camera's to make the most of it, and the size of them make it less practical for the holidays I'll be taking it on.

It's so hard trying to choose!
Its very hard trying to choose but I would certainly suggest trying before you buy as you have the chance to perhaps try a few models and see what they are like hands on.

Your certainly right about SLR's although I would say that once you get to grips with one, you'll really like the extra quality it produces over a compact. Not that compacts are bad but there is a gulf between them as one thing you can do is choose a lens for you need as opposed to working from stock. Night/dark shots are much better due to light captured in an SLR etc...

I'm rambling a bit there, I think you'll be surprised at how well the 860 can handle taking photo's in a variety of conditions. The screen really doesn't give off that much glare. You really can't go wrong with the 850 or 860.
Ultimately, I know most decent priced camera's will take good enough quick holiday snaps. What I don't want to get is that horrible feeling when you're on the holiday of a lifetime and you're stuck with a camera that you 'wish could just do that'.. Or in my case, 2 camera's that 'can't do that'!
Right now, as long as I get a small camera that stops trying to use the flash in bright sunshine (what's that! - lol), then I'll be happy. My OH will be thrilled just to not have to keep asking to borrow mine, and between us we'll end up with a nice variety of pics. The positive reviews I've read about all the models in the Ixus range is steering me in the direction of at least one of those camera's. Sadly I don't think i'll be able to stretch to the 860.
Holidays are great and you don't want to spoil it by being overloaded with lenses etc so I know where your coming from. Were due to go to St Lucia with our two boys and the 860 will be on the flight but the D80 will be missing I think! I certainly know what you mean about trigger happy flashes... we haven't had much a problem with the 860 but to be fair it's simple enough to turn off, the menu is very easy to navigate. Your OH will be impressed with the Ixus. If you haven't tried the 850 out yet give it a shot next to the 860 and tell me what you thnk!

I know Jessops do the Ixus 860 for £159.99 at the moment which is with their £10 discount (don't forget 3% Quidco also!) which isn't a bad price as I paid just under £240 for ours, but that was in kit form with case, memory card etc!
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