Canon Digital IXUS 200 IS review
We love
Spacious LCD screen, swooping through galleries
We hate
Touch controls only work for some things
Canon’s on to something with touchscreen controls, but for the price, this may be first-gen tech best left alone
Launch Price

The Canon Digital IXUS 200 IS is your run of the mill compact in many ways: a 12.1MP sensor and 5x optical zoom are all par for the photo course, but it does one thing different. It packs a whopping 3.5-inch touchscreen LCD to help take shots. Gimmick or gravy? Read our full Canon Digital IXUS 200 IS review for the verdict.

Considering just how spacious the touchscreen around yonder is on the Canon Digital IXUS 200 IS, it’s one surprisingly svelte snapper. A curving, pebble shaped little box, it’s got a lot of things right with the build and grip, although the power button is far too little to press with non-Liliputian hands.

You can use the touch display to choose settings and focus, but the touchscreen comes into its own when you want to show your photos to others. You can zip across reels of pics with a swipe of your finger, seeing what you’ve taken and then zooming in with a tap. It’s a shame that pictures take a while to load, so show up blocky first, but it’s still by far our favourite feature on the Canon Digital IXUS 200 IS, and one we hope becomes as standard as a flash over time.

Picture quality is pretty much ordinary for a compact, mind. The touchscreen autofocus certainly makes it easier to lock on to who you want, but beyond that you can expect the same quality as any premium compact: fine for Facebook group shots, but poor in low light conditions. The 720p video recording  on the Canon Digital IXUS 200 IS however is ace, and it does make you wonder why Flip and its like continue to put smaller screens in bigger boxes.

Read our Sony Cyber–shot DSC-T900 review now

The problem though is that Canon’s touchscreen tech on the Digital IXUS 200 IS feels a little half baked. For one thing, the controls are split –  there’s your regular buttons on the right hand side too, and it’s not always clear when you can press an icon on screen and when you can’t. And even when you can, it’s not always quickest too: it’s far faster to alter the flash settings with the physical button than by mucking around on the touchscreen. If you’re going to go touch, go all the way we say.

With the price of touchscreen panels falling all the time, Canon’s rightly realised that finger gestures can make compact camera fun to use, and in time it’ll no doubt make it mainstream. But until the price reflects that (Canon’s charging £329 for the IXUS 200 IS), your doe is better dealt out elsewhere.

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