Disappointed But Has Potential
I'm a long time Canon camera enthusiast and enjoy both their DSLR cameras and their digital ELPH series for the most part. This camera looks great on paper and has some very impressive specs. However in practice this camera suffers from some bad firmware compared to other cameras I've used. I use this camera a lot at concerts and vacations and the "auto" mode seems to have a difficult time focusing and determining whether to shoot in macro mode or standard. This can become quite annoying when you're trying to take a picture of a mountain and it can't focus because it thinks the mountain is .4 inches away. I've had even worse luck when trying to zoom in and then auto-focus. Sometimes the camera just "gives up" and can't focus on the subject.
The same thing happens in movie mode where the camera can lose focus so easily and then the only way to regain focus is to zoom all the way out again and then slowly zoom back in.
I believe the hardware is actually really good in this camera because when you get a clear shot the quality is superb (and moderately superb in a concert setting) and I'm pretty sure that the issues could be fixed with a software/firmware update. However unfortunately it doesn't look like Canon will update the firmware any time soon as it's been over a year since we've seen any update.
I'd recommend skipping this camera until they've been able to correct for these issues. It's frustrating when the guy taking a picture with his iPhone can get clearer/better pictures than you with a dedicated piece of camera hardware.
April 13, 2013
A great camera in a small package
This is a great camera in a very small package. I purchased it because of its size and portability. I use it in the intelligent auto mode most of the time and I have been pleased with the results. It has a sophisticated operating system which takes a little study at first. I like the menus as they are similar to other Canon cameras that I own. I have the instruction book on my smart phone and on my tablet for ease of reference. It is a good camera for social and family events. I use the tracking auto focus. The switch buttons are small for large fingers.
December 18, 2012
Excellent Pocket Camera
After my wife lost our SD1200, I purchased this ELPH 520 for both of us. She uses it on auto because of the simplicity. I use it on program for the features, including selecting spot focus, fill flash, telephoto stabilization, and "tricking it" to use a wide aperture for narrow depth of field. My wife expected a "touch screen," which it does NOT have.. We are both pleased with the quality of photos. However, there are two things I do not like. The battery is more bulky and takes fewer shots than the NB-6L in the SD1200. And my SDHC memory cards to not fit this camera. There is no viewfinder when bright sunlight obscures the LCD. Altho functions are similar to the SD1200, instructions for more advanced features and for decreasing battery drain could be more clear.
October 9, 2012
Great Camera for the money. It doesn't have a touch screen as someone else said. The controls are intuitive and the instruction manual's overview is quite adequate to get you going. This is not meant to replace your Rebel. Its a shirt pocket camera with great Macro picture capabilities and very good standard or Hi-Res pictures. This camera runs circles around my other waterproof camera and is now my primary carry. Yes you can see fingerprint smudges on the main screen but that doesn't impact taking a picture. IMO overall I don't think you can go wrong and I have had no issues with this model.
September 2, 2012