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Canon IXUS 970 IS / PowerShot SD890 IS / IXY 820 IS

alaTest has collected and analyzed 910 reviews from magazines and websites. People are impressed by the design and image quality. The portability and value for money are also mentioned favorably, whereas there are some mixed comments about the sensor and shutter. Many are critical about the manual image adjustments and memory.

usability, value for money, portability, image quality, design

features, exposure, memory, manual adjust.

We analyzed user and expert ratings, product age and more factors. Compared to other Digital Compact Cameras the Canon IXUS 970 IS / PowerShot SD890 IS / IXY 820 IS is awarded an overall alaScore™ of 87/100 = Very good quality.

See all Canon Digital Compact Cameras

Review analysis

(Based on 910 reviews)

Expert Reviews  

User Reviews  

Showing 184 review(s)

Expert Reviews User Reviews
Showing 1 - 10 of 184 Show Reviews: in English | in other languages (79)

Expert review by:

Canon Powershot SD890 IS


When a series of products is as successful as Canon's PowerShot line, it's almost impossible not to approach each new offering with high expectations. Canon has produced hit after hit, including our Editors' Choice picks, the SD790 IS and SD1000. While...

Vivid color in night shots. Excellent video quality. Can start up in review mode and preview scene modes on LCD. Impressive battery life

Pricey. Awkward Power button. Scroll wheel takes some getting used to

The Canon PowerShot SD890 IS's quirky design can be a bit of a pain, and it's not the cheapest compact camera you can buy, but this fully loaded shooter pumps out high-quality images.

Expert review by:

Canon PowerShot SD890 IS


Whether human or camera, it's always hard following in the footsteps of a popular sibling, and the near-universally well-liked Canon PowerShot SD850 IS is a harder act to follow than most. Rather than simply bump up the resolution and zoom range for...

Optical image stabilization; optical viewfinder; decent photos.

Poor shot-to-shot performance; small LCD; awkward design; no optical zoom in movie capture.

A solid compact snapshooter, the Canon PowerShot SD890 IS nevertheless disappoints when compared with its predecessors and line-mates.

Expert review by:

Canon Powershot SD890 IS


Among the significant technological advances shared on the new PowerShot SD890 IS, SD790 IS and SD770 IS Digital ELPH cameras is Canon's intelligent anti-blur system. Developed by linking four of Canon's most cutting-edge achievements: Optical Image...

All three PowerShot Digital ELPH cameras feature the latest and most advanced generation of Genuine Canon Face Detection Technology, thus ensuring that up-to nine forward-looking faces in the frame - whether posed for a family portrait, candidly...


Expert review by:

Canon PowerShot SD890 IS


If you're looking for a slim design point and shoot camera with a fairly decent zoom range, the SD890 IS definitely deserves a look. It offers one of the longest zooms for a camera in its class, although it sacrifices a bit on the wide angle end. ...

10MP resolution37-185mm f/3.2-5.7 image stabilized lensAutomatic face detection2.5 inch 230,000 dot LCDOptical viewfinder

The Canon PowerShot SD890 IS Digital Camera is the latest in Canon's...

Expert review by:

Canon PowerShot SD890 IS Digital ELPH Digital Camera - Review - The Imaging Resource!


The Canon SD890 IS is a 10 megapixel point-and-shoot camera that features a 5x optical zoom lens equipped with Canon's image stabilizer that actually shifts the lens elements when movement is detected to help avoid blurry images. In addition to the...

Optical Image Stabilization ; 5x optical zoom lens extending to 185mm (35mm-equivalent) ; Face Detection ; Ability to track with Face Detection ; Good image quality, with above average detail capture ; Pleasing color ; Good macro area and quality ;...

Extremely inaccurate optical viewfinder ; Average speed performance ; Slow full-autofocus shutter lag ; Difficult to operate On/Off button ; Awkward Control Dial ; Some adjustment controls buried deep within My Colors mode ; Soft corners at wide angle...

On the technical side, the Canon SD890 IS is equipped with Face Detection that recognizes faces in a scene and automatically adjusts exposure, flash output, and white balance to help ensure that you take the best photo possible. The camera also...

Expert review by:

Canon PowerShot SD890 IS Digital ELPH Review


If you're still confused about Canon's ELPH lineup after both of those then, well, I don't know what to tell you

Very good photo quality (in good light) ; 5X optical zoom in a compact, stylish body ; Optical image stabilization ; Generally snappy performance ; Optical viewfinder, a rarity in this class (even though its tiny) ; Redeye not a problem thanks to...

Images are on the noisy side in low light ; Some corner blurring ; LCD very difficult to see when wearing polarized sunglasses ; Lens is on the slow side (in terms of aperture) ; Sluggish flash recharging ; Difficult to access power button ; More...

Canon is one of the few camera manufacturers who still puts a memory card in the box along with the camera. In the case of the SD890, you'll get a 32MB card, which holds just six photos at the highest quality setting. Thus, you'll want to buy a larger...

Expert review by:

Canon PowerShot SD890 IS Digital Camera


This compact 10-megapixel camera doesn't come up short on zoom range nor image quality.

5x optical zoom range; includes optical viewfinder; optical image stabilization

Menus are not as easy to navigate as some other Canon models; no manual exposure controls

Double your display real estate by adding a second monitor. It's a snap: Here's how

Expert review by:

Canon PowerShot SD890 IS


The SD890 IS is the latest addition to a very successful line of highly functional and affordable cameras from Canon. This newest camera brings back many of the power-packed features of the SD line and adds a few new ones to offer an even more...

Despite these setbacks, the SD890 does offer a great value in and of itself, if not in comparison to all of its predecessors. The developments in this latest model combine to offer a unique device which blows away its competition in many regards but...

Expert review by:

Canon SD890 IS Review at Steve's Digicams


The camera is still incredibly easy to operate, and the quality is what you would expect from a high-end consumer model. The 5x optical zoom and the 10-megapixel imaging sensor are the largest you will find so far on an ELPH.

Expert review by:

Canon PowerShot SD890 IS Review at Cnet


A solid compact snapshooter, the Canon PowerShot SD890 IS nevertheless disappoints when compared with its predecessors and line-mates.

Product Specifications

You've never been closer to your subjects than when you're holding the ES970. It features the world's longest optical zoom lens - 22X - and it's exclusively available from Canon. You'll transform distant subjects into dramatic close-ups in as little as 3 seconds; especially subjects too far away to be seen by the bare eye. Canon's Optical Image Stabilization System is the perfect match for this ultra-powerful zoom. You'll record smooth, steady images while in full stride or shooting from a moving vehicle, which will enhance your enjoyment during playback on TV. Other features designed to increase your video making and viewing pleasure include Canon's exclusive Flexizone and Auto Editing Functions. Using FlexiZone you'll easily achieve focusing and exposure results that will surprise your audience. And the built-in Auto Editor helps you create a personal masterpiece by discarding any bloopers or blunders that occur while recording. The ES970 contains other features intended to keep you involved in the action including Programmed Auto Exposure and a high resolution Color Viewfinder. Specific Programmed AE modes adjust the picture brightness level when recording in video sensitive surroundings such as fast action sports, stage plays or concerts or days at sea side or ski slope. And the color viewfinder makes it easy to compose a shot and distinguish your subject by color. Outstanding clarity is achieved in this 8mm model whether recording mountaintops or a jewelry collection thanks to the Digital Signal Processing Circuit. It delivers distinct detail throughout a wide dynamic range and even handles quick changes in shooting conditions including temperature. The ES970 combines features you'll use and appreciate in a compact package that's lightweight for easy carrying, compact for efficient packing and manufactured by a company whose name is trusted to capture images around the world everyday...

Audio Input

Microphone Operation Mode:Mono/Stereo
Microphone Technology:Electret condenser


Battery Form Factor:Manufacturer specific
Manufacturer Battery Name:Canon NB-5L

Camcorder Features

Low Lux / Night Mode: Yes

Camera Flash

Red Eye Reduction: Yes
Type:Built-in flash/None

Digital Camera

Digital Camera Type:Compact
Supported Flash Memory:MultiMediaCard / MultiMediaCardplus / SD Memory Card / SDHC Memory Card

Dimensions & Weight


Display (Projector)

Diagonal Size:2.5in
Diagonal Size (metric):6.4cm
Display Form Factor:Built-in
Technology:TFT active matrix
Type:LCD display/None.

Exposure Parameters

Shooting Programs:Aquarium / Beach / Digital macro / Fireworks / Foliage / High sensitivity / Indoor / Kids & pets / Night snapshot / Portrait mode / Snow / Stitch assist / Sunset

Flash Memory

Form Factor:SD Memory Card
Storage Capacity:32MB


Model:970/SD890 IS Digital ELPH
Packaged Quantity:1
Product Line:Canon ES/Canon PowerShot

Lens System

Lens Aperture:F/1.6-3.6/F/3.2-5.7
Max Focal Length:33mm/85.8mm
Min Focal Length:3.9mm/6.6mm
Optical Zoom:22/5
Type:Zoom lens


Color:Dark gray / Metallic silver
Microsoft Certification:Certified for Windows Vista
Vista Certification:Certified for Windows Vista

Optical Sensor

Camcorder Sensor Resolution:270Kpix
Optical Sensor Size:1/2.3"/1/4"
Optical Sensor Size (metric):11 mm ( 1/2.3 ) / 11 mm ( 1/2.3" )/6.4 mm ( 1/4 ) / 6.4 mm ( 1/4" )
Optical Sensor Type:CCD
Sensor Qty:1CCD
Sensor Resolution:10Megapixel

Optical System

Built-in Optical Image Stabilizer: Yes
Image Stabilizer:Optical

Optical Viewfinder

Type:Real-image zoom

Service & Support

Type:1 year warranty

Storage Floppy Drive

Type: None

Video Input

Analog Video Format:NTSC
Digital Video Format:AVI / MJPEG
Digital Zoom:4
Face Detection: Yes
ISO (Max):3200
Light Sensitivity:ISO 100 / ISO 1600 / ISO 200 / ISO 3200 (2Mpix) / ISO 400 / ISO 80 / ISO 800 / ISO auto
Media Type:Video8
Shooting Modes:Frame movie mode/Normal movie mode
Special Effects:Color Accent / Color Swap
Still Image Format:JPEG
Type:Camcorder/Digital camera


Viewfinder Color Support:Color
Viewfinder Type:LCD/Optical