Completely Stupid Menu Design On Canon IXUS 700

I bought Tamzin a new camera (IXUS 700) because her Sureshot S45 was a bit too large to carry around. The Canon digitals' have a neat feature called "StitchAssist". This makes creating a multi-shot panorama easier by presenting a portion of the previous image in the viewfinder to simplify alignment.

However, in a stunningly stupid piece of user interface design, the IXUS 700 buries it where nobody would expect it. No wonder the guy in the camera shop said it didn't have the feature. Despite having easy access to any number of "Scenic" modes on the "function menu", which would seem to be an ideal and obvious place to put it, on the IXUS 700 you have to:

  1. Engage Manual mode (a mode many point-shoot users will never reach)
  2. Press Menu to enter the setup menu (not the function menu where all other shooting functions are found)
  3. Select Rec menu
  4. Scroll to the bottom and press "Func/Set" to select Stitch Assist
  5. Use arrow button to determine sequence direction
  6. Shoot the sequence of images
  7. Press the menu button to end the sequence
The net result is that we wasted half an hour searching the menus for the function and never found it !

Let's compare this piece of genius to other Canon cameras I am familiar with:

  • Canon G3: select "Stitch Assist" mode from scenic modes on top control knob
  • Canon S45: select "Stitch Assist" mode from scenic modes on top control knob.
  • So I think we can agree that grouping the Stitch Assist mode with other scenic modes is a reasonable thing to expect, and obviously was not an impossible thing to do. OK, the IXUS 700 doesn't have the space for a large control knob to iterate all the scenic modes, instead it has a single control knob to select Playback, Auto, Manual, Scenic and Movie. The function control is then used to select the particular Scenic mode, a set of modes that has been expanded compared to the Scenic modes available on the G3 and S45. Why one more entry could not be added to the list is completely beyond me.

    The only good thing is that having had this rant, hopefully I will remember next time Tamzin wants to do a pano, if she doesn't herself.

    About this Entry

    This page contains a single entry by David published on August 10, 2005 10:23 PM.

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