Canon SD1000 / Ixus70

Digital camera Canon PowerShot SD1000 (USA), Canon PowerShot Ixus70 (Europe)

Features

  • Video timelapse (1s or 2s interval)
  • Macro mode from 3cm
  • Shutter speed down to 15s
  • Optical view-finder which follows zoom (when the screen is not visible enough because of sun, if you want to disable the screen to save the battery, or in case you break your LCD screen :-p)
  • One button video recording (a special button can be mapped to)
  • Stitch assist

Lacking features:

  • Efficient video compression algorithm…
  • Image stabilization

Assessment

  • Pretty good usability
  • Sensibility: fair (a little less good than Casio S600)
  • Distorsion: pretty low (really better than Casio S600)
  • Optics:

With Linux

Canon doesn't implement Mass Storage Protocol in their cameras. So you can't use it like a USB dongle. Yeah it sucks, I know.

However you can still use it with Linux, using the PTP protocol, for example with GPhoto2. Make sure you enable drivers for Canon cameras and PTP2 protocol (with Gentoo, add 'CAMERAS=“canon ptp2”' in /etc/make.conf). Use the front-end GTKam for example, and you can get your photos and remove them.

Unfortunately I didn't manage to upload files with this method (error with gphoto2/gtkam, and Canon software for Windows offers no way to do it). So the only solution is to use a card reader.

CHDK Firmware

I discovered right after buying my camera a WONDERFUL thing: Canon cameras can dynamically load a firmware add-on which is on the SD-card, that can enhance the possibilities of the camera firmware ! And there is of course an open-source one: CHDK. It has a lot of built-in features, such as:

  • Save RAW
  • Grid enhancements
  • Histogram enhancements
  • Zebra mode (draw under and over exposed regions)
  • DOF calculator (Depth Of Field) (to do focus bracketting)
  • Extra shutter speeds (1/10000s to 65s, instead of 1/1500s to 15s)
  • Extra sensitivity values (60 to 6400 instead of 80 to 1600)
  • Motion detection ! (to shot lightning, water drops, …)
  • Tunable video compression rates
  • Optical zoom unlocked during movie shoting
  • Manual focus
  • USB remote control
  • File browser, calendar, text editor, games…

And the most beautiful, script execution ! A lot of them are already available (have look to my scripts too). For example:

Benchmark

With SDCard SanDisk Ultra III (120X, 18MB/s):

  • Write (RAW): 19572 KB/s
  • Write (Mem): 19819 KB/s
  • Write (64k): 10369 KB/s
  • Read (64k): 8110 KB/s

Speed

Continuous mode

  • JPG (~1.8MB): 0.65s
  • JPG+RAW (~1.8MB + 8.8MB): 1.09s

So the overhead due to RAW recording corresponds exactly to the SDCard write speed: 8.8MB / 0.44s = 20MB/s. JPG recording is responsible for 0.09s at that write speed and image quality. Then it is easy to evaluate the consequences of a slower SDCard (9MB/s for a classic fast card such as SanDisk Extreme II, down to 1.5MB/s for the cheapest cards).

RAW shooting would be faster if not processing/recording JPG. As internal memory can be written at 40MB/s, RAW image download from sensor should take ~0.22s, so processing is probably 0.65-0.22-0.09=0.34s, and RAW continuous shooting could take 0.22+0.44=0.66s instead of 1.09s, ie as fast as JPEG. Unfortunately CHDK can't do that.

hardware/canon-sd1000.txt · Last modified: 2013/09/19 16:40 (external edit)
 
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