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Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 Review: A Slim, Compact Workhorse

If you’re looking for an affordable point-and-shoot camera that doesn’t skimp on features, the Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 IS may be just what you need. This slim and compact camera is perfect for novices and journeyman photographers alike, with a powerful 20 Megapixel sensor and 10x optical zoom lens. While it may not have all of the bells and whistles of a full-size DSLR digital camera, the Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 is still a reliable workhorse that can take great photos and videos. 

In addition to details from the Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 IS manual, like the capacity and type of the Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 IS charger, you will also find Amazon affiliate links in this article (like all of our product reviews). We include these links to make it easier for our readers to find and purchase the products we review, as well as to give you a chance to support our site at no extra cost or effort. It’s a win-win.

Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 Review

The Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 IS 20-Megapixel Digital Camera blue body version is a popular choice for amateur and budding professional photographers. It has a great deal to offer at such a low price point, and we want to show you how it stacks up against other popular PowerShot models. First, though, let’s clear up a misconception about the name of this camera.

Many digital cameras have multiple model names, depending on the market (e.g. European, Japanese, or North American). For a prime example of this, see our review of the ELPH 180, which is also known as the IXUS 185. However, there seems to have been some confusion about this particular camera, which some people refer to as the ELPH 19015. To be clear, the Canon PowerShot ELPH 19015 does not exist. While this fictitious model name does show up in the search bar suggestions of your favorite search engine, it is due to a widespread misunderstanding of the “190 IS” part of this camera’s model identifier.

Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 vs 360

These two cameras, the ELPH 190 IS and the ELPH 360 HS, were released within the same month: January of 2016. As such, they share a considerable number of features, like a 1/2.3″ 20MP sensor (CCD for the 190 and BSI-CMOS for the 360), optical image stabilization, built-in wireless connection, 1/2000 sec max shutter speed, and seven autofocus modes.

The 360 is more expensive than the 190, with a few minor advantages in terms of things like screen size, image resolution, and FPS, but the 180 has a better battery life, wider coverage, a faster lens at wide and telephoto, and an overall smaller, lighter body which is important for those who value compact size and portability.

Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 vs 180

The Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 IS also was released in the same month as the ELPH 180 and shares many of the same model-year type features. These include identical 1/2.3″ 20-MP CCD sensors (with the same dimensions, area, and ISO), shutter speed, FPS, autofocus, stabilization, facial detection, screen size, and more. The 180 only has three advantages over the 190 that make any significant impact: it’s slightly lighter, slightly cheaper, and it has a longer battery life by 30 shots per charge.

Here, the ELPH 190 IS is the more expensive model, with significant advantages in a built-in wireless connection (which the 180 does not have), wider coverage, telephoto reach, optical zoom, lens speed, flash coverage, and more. The 190 is also controllable via smartphone and connects easily to compatible devices, making photo editing, file migration, printing, and image storage a much more streamlined process.

Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 IS Digital Camera Design

Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 IS Digital Camera DesignThe Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 blue body version seems to be, by far, the most popular model. There are other color options, such as the classic black that many people associate with Canon DSLR cameras, but the bright and beautiful Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 IS Digital Camera (Blue) seems to far outpace the more classic version in terms of popularity. For that reason, the affiliate links in this article lead to a blue ELPH 190 bundle that includes a 64GB SD card for spacious digital photo storage.

Compact Slim Build for Pocketable Photography

The Canon ELPH 190 IS was built for portability and power with busy and travel-oriented photographers in mind. It only weighs 4.87 ounces (about a third of a pound) and its external dimensions are 3.74×2.24×0.94 inches–perfect for slipping into a backpack, purse, or pocket for photography on the go. To put those dimensions in perspective, it’s slightly wider and taller than a credit card and about as thick as a C-cell battery.

When you consider that the average compact camera weight is 6.63 ounces, it becomes apparent that the Canon ELPH 190 IS earns the ultracompact designator as an incredibly light camera for its class. furthermore, and even more important for fans of the ultracompact camera build, this tiny workhorse has a thickness of less than an inch–4mm thinner than most compact point-and-shoot cameras are built.

Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 IS Battery & Power

The Canon ELPH 190 IS features an NB-11LH battery, which has a CIPA rating of 190 shots. Given the average battery life for Compact cameras is 256 shots, Canon ELPH 190 IS has a short battery life for its class, therefore we strongly advise 190 IS owners to invest in some extra batteries. It’s worth noting, however, that there are other cameras in its class with much shorter battery lives (by up to 30 shots) and that the difference in battery life likely has to do with the very small, very light, ultra-compact build of this camera. Those with longer battery life tend to lose the edge in size.

Camera Connectivity

The Canon ELPH 190 IS has built-in Wi-Fi connectivity (802.11/b/g/n with Near Field Communication) that allows you to send your photographs directly to compatible devices without the need for a physical (read: wired) connection. The ELPH 190 IS Near Field Communication (NFC) feature allows it to communicate with devices, including smartphones and tablets, that are also equipped with this technology by simply touching them together.

The ability to remotely control the Canon ELPH 190 IS via smartphone application is also incredibly useful (and, of course, fun). You have the ability to adjust your camera’s settings, take a photo, view the LCD screen, and send image files using an Android or iOS app. The Canon ELPH 190 IS also has USB 2.0 ports (480 Mbit/sec) for connecting the camera to other devices not compatible with Wi-Fi or NFC connectivity.

Hardware Features

The screen on the Canon ELPH 190 IS is a bit small at just two inches. This can be frustrating when you’re trying to take a picture of something far away and have to scroll through menus on the camera’s tiny display. The Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 IS also only has twenty megapixels, which is fairly low by today’s standards. That said, the Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 IS still takes great pictures and is more than adequate for most people’s needs.

The Canon ELPH 190 IS offers both Wi-Fi connectivity and disk-based storage for SD cards up to 128 GB. The Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 IS manual also mentions that the Canon ELPH 190 IS supports SDHC and SDXC cards, which is a nice touch. In terms of video, the Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 IS can shoot 1080p Full HD video at 30 frames per second. The Canon ELPH 190 IS also has a built-in microphone and speaker for recording audio with your videos, which is especially handy when using another device to remotely control your camera.

Image Quality and Best Use Cases

Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 IS Digital CameraThe Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 IS is a great little camera that ticks a lot of boxes for amateur photographers. With 20 megapixels, a slim and lightweight design, good low-light performance, 1080p video capabilities, built-in Wi-Fi and NFC support, and Canon’s excellent DIGIC image processor, the Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 IS is a great choice for anyone looking for an affordable point-and-shoot digital camera.

One of the most frustrating things about the Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 IS is its lack of an optical viewfinder. This means that you have to rely on the camera’s small LCD screen to compose your shots, which can be tricky in bright sunlight. The other potential drawback of the Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 IS is its lack of advanced features found on more expensive cameras. If you’re looking for a camera with manual controls, RAW image support, or an optical viewfinder, you’ll need to look elsewhere.

However, the autofocus, image stabilization, and zoom features are on par for the ultra-compact camera category in which the ELPH 190 falls. Scene modes and smart IS and focal settings make it easy to capture stunning shots with a fraction of the equipment. With these, your best use cases for this camera are street, everyday, and landscape photography. Sports and portrait photography benefit more from the features seen in higher-end (higher-priced, professional-grade) cameras, but it’s important to note that if you are constricted by your budget or your travel needs, the ELPH 190 IS does an adequate job in these two categories as well.

If you search for Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 sample photos, you’ll find that most of what Canon’s marketing team has chosen to share are landscapes and cityscapes. Sports and portrait photography also make an appearance in that search, but most of the images you will find will fall under the best use cases, with a heavy emphasis on still-life and nature photographs.

Canon PowerShot ELPH Accessories

You can’t review Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 IS details without getting into the accessories available to enhance your experience with the Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 IS Wi-Fi Digital Camera. There are apps and software suites like Canon iMAGE GATEWAY and the Canon Camera Connect App that enhance and expand the features available on the ELPH 190, as well as a host of physical accessories that amateur and professional photographers alike can use to make their experience even better.

From Canon lens kits to carrying cases, straps to spare batteries, Canon and others offer many additional bells and whistles that boost the ELPH in areas where it falters. For example, Canon sells an external flash that improves low-light and night-time shots that could be indiscernible without the additional light. Additional batteries and chargers make a shorter battery life extend as long as you need. Overall, the ELPH 190 IS camera along with its accessories is more than worth the purchase price.

The Verdict

As an entry-level camera, the Canon PowerShot ELPH190 IS has a lot to offer users looking for a simple way to improve their photography skills. Its easy-to-use interface makes it a great choice for beginners. We hope you enjoyed our Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 review. This slim and compact camera is a great addition to any photographer’s toolkit, whether novice or professional. With its easy-to-use interface and variety of features, the Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 IS is perfect for anyone looking to up their photography game without breaking the bank. And with Amazon affiliate links included in this article, finding the right Canon PowerShot ELPH 190 IS accessories to fit your needs is easier than ever. Thanks for reading, and be sure to check out our other camera reviews!

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