Review: Canon Ixus 125 HS PDF Print E-mail

I'm a firm believer in using the right tool for the right job. Sure, we now get devices that try to be everything to everyone. However, sometimes, trying to be a jack of all trades makes you a master of none.

This became apparent to me again a few days ago when I tried to take a photo of my daughter.

By the time the camera on my phone had made up its mind about what it is that it had focused on and, after deciding that it needed a helping hand by firing its flash, the bundle of energy that is my three-and-a-half year old daughter had moved, and all I managed to snap was a blurred image of something vaguely resembling a child.

What I needed at that moment was something like the Canon Ixus 125 HS. Unlike my phone - which has so many features, it can almost launch a space ship – the Canon does only two things.

Firstly, it is a still camera that uses a 16.1-megapixel CMOS sensor, controlled by Canons DIGIC 5 processor. It has essentially two shooting modes: an auto mode where it does virtually all the thinking for you, and a second mode where you can control a few aspects which will let you believe that you’re being all creative (but in reality, the camera still does almost all the thinking for you).

The second thing the Ixus 125HS does is shoot full HD video at 24 frames per second.

It's worth noting here that, while everyone gushes over the picture quality of Full HD, this is only around two megapixels. This means that the stills part of the Ixus 125 HS delivers around eight times more detail than its video resolution.

Other notable aspects of the Ixus 125 HS that are worth mentioning include – but aren't limited to – a large 7.5cm screen; a five times optical zoom; Intelligent IS optical Image Stabilizer; Face ID that lets you register up to twelve faces and then ensures that these are in focus in every image; High-speed Burst; and Super Slow Motion Movie.

Importantly, the Ixus 125 HS is small enough to carry around – it is about the same size as my BlackBerry handset – and this means that it should be close by when you need it.

The Ixus 125HS is also a speedy camera. I was able to turn it on and take a picture in less time than it took me to push the one button that switches my phone to camera mode and take a similar shot.

Apart from being much faster to focus and shoot – this time I was actually able to catch my little one before she moved – the Ixus 125 HS also performed much better in low light, meaning I could shoot without flash most of the time. I was also able to adjust exposure up or down by up to two stops. This enhanced its low light capability even more. The Ixus 125's flash also worked better than the one on my phone.

Add to these the better wide angle and optical zoom (although I would have liked a little more zoom), the ability to film real quality video (although doing so eats a lot of the device’s memory) and the much better image quality, and you can see why I really liked the Canon Ixus 125HS.

I even liked the capability to set a subject and let the camera automatically track it while it moved. Sometimes I felt that the auto fuction took a little too much control away from me, so I ultimately used the camera mostly in its semi-auto mode.

In closing, the Canon Ixus 125 HS proved yet again that if you're after quality, then it is better to select the correct tool for the job.


Good: The Canon Ixus 125 HS is easy to use, packed with features, focuses and shoots quickly. Being a HS model it captures images in low light better than a small camera has a right to.
Bad: It may, on occasion, be a little too clever for its own good, and isn't the cheapest around.
Rating: 8.5/10
Price: Approximately R 2 400.00

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