Canon IXUS 300 HS hands-on

Hands on pictures: Canon's high sensitivity snapper

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Hands-on pictures: Canon add high sensitivity to IXUS 300 HS

Canon’s IXUS range of compact cameras have always had a sense of style, standing out as fashion accessories as well as a series of top-class snappers. The latest of the big C’s IXUS beauties doesn’t disappoint either as T3.com found out following a little hands-on action with the Canon IXUS 300 HSas wetested its performance in low-light conditions, an areain whichit is designed to excel.

Holding theblack IXUS with its matt finish and sturdy metal body,we couldn't help but notice that the Canon crew have done it againand designed what is undoubtedly a beautiful looking little compact.Reassuring in the hand, thanks to its metal shell, the IXUS is not uncomfortably heavy nor so light that you question its build quality.

Check out our hands-on gallery of the Canon IXUS 300 HS here.

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As much substance as style, the IXUS packs a f/2.0, 28mm, 3.8x wide-angle lens and a high speed 10-megapixel CMOS in its sleek, rounded body and thanks to a 3.8x optical zoom and the camera’s auto-switch to macro mode, shooting with theIXUS is of the highest quality from the personal-space-invading close to off-in-yonder-distance far.Image playback is also a treatthanks to a 3.0-inch PureColour II LCD monitor.

Canon IXUS 300 HS hands-on: High sensitivity performance

The Canon IXUS 300 HS comes into its own when the lights are dropped and it can truly demonstrate its high sensitivity party piece. The first camera to sport Canon’s new HS system, the IXUS 300 HS combines a high sensitivity sensor and high-performance DIGIC 4 picture processor to give excellent image quality in low light conditions.

During our hands-on, the auto focus became somewhat sluggish in the reduced light situations, a problem if trying to capture moving objects, the IXUS 300 HS still managed to produce images of a brightness and quality usually reserved for well lit surroundings.

The IXUS' screen is also well suited to reduced light situations with a range of brightness settings it is easy on the eyes and a joy to navigate through the well laid out and classily designed menus. Thanks to thefive level adjustable quick-bright LCD displaycomfortable playback viewing is possible even whenventuring out into direct sunlight.

Canon IXUS 300 HS hands-on: Range of functions

In terms of performance, the IXUS 300 HS is anything but a one-trick-pony reliant upon its skills as a low-light snapper. Offering the now compulsory 1280 x 720p HDvideo recordingwith stereo sound, the IXUS packs a HDMI mini connection port allowing for movie and picture viewing directon your HDTV.

Stepping out of HD recording and the IXUS can capture super-slow motion video recordings, shooting footage at 240fps before slowing them right back down for playback at 30 fps. It is an interesting and fun addition, although a feature you probably wouldn't use very often.

Away from the video capabilities and the IXUS is one of the smartest compact cameras on the market offering smart flash to remove unwanted shadows, smart timer, face detection and the somewhat eerie smart shutter which will automatically take pics when it senses and genuine smile.

Weenjoyed our hands-on experiencewith the IXUS, andwith its sleak design and high-end functionality combined with its low-light capabilities, we think it is a perfect companion on a night out. A full review will follow shortly.

The Canon IXUS 300 HS is available in four colours, high gloss red (exclusive to John Lewis), glossy white (exclusive to Jessops), blasted steel silver and matt black, priced at £379 each.