Hiding Machiavelli

A blog about everything – well, almost everything

MY GADGETS: Powershot SD780 IS vs. Powershot SD880 IS

Posted by Eric the Fruit Bat on April 17, 2009

…Or the IXUS 100 IS (SD780 IS) vs the IXUS 870 IS (SD880 IS)

There’s only one phrase to describe these two cameras: I AM TORN BETWEEN THEM!!

Now that I am done paying for Cecilia, its time I look for Eric-the-Camera – hehe. I have spent weeks and weeks looking for the perfect camera that’ll fit my needs. My initial goal was to get a DSLR, but I figured I should get a compact camera first.

So there, I am now looking for a great ultracompact camera. I have narrowed it down to two cameras: the SD780 IS (IXUS 100IS) and the SD880 IS (IXUS 870IS). The cameras are maketed under the SD line in North America and IXUS in Asia.

The names are a bit confusing right? Hehe – why can’t canon name their cameras the same way that Christian Louboutin names his shoes? To avoid confusion (mostly my own) let’s call the SD 780 IS ‘Biggles’ and the SD 880 IS ‘Lumberjack’.

Why Biggles and Lumberjack?

Well, BIGGLES because the Red SD780 reminds of the color of Terry Jone’s clothes when he played Cardinal Biggles :D.

LUMBERJACK because the chunkier build and the dark shade of the SD 880 reminds me of the Python’s Lumberjack.

Biggles (SD780 IS) and his Friends: 

I prefer the red one because I love red. Red is my life. My life is Red. Other colors include Gold, Silver and Black. The gold is apparently gorgeous and I have a friend who has already decided that she’s going to buy the gold one come the June IT Fair in Singapore.

The Lumberjack (SD880 IS): 

The one on the right is colored gold, although it’s hard to appreciate it here. If I’m going to purchase this camera, I am going for the silver one – I’ll tell you why later.

The difference between them, you ask? Not much, they are both great canon cams and are in the same price range. The two cameras are from the same SD (IXUS) line from Canon. Biggles (780IS) was released in March 2009 and the Lumberjack was released around the same time in 2008.

Camera Specs

I’m not going into nitty-gritty comparison of both cameras. I’m afraid I wont be able to do it justice.

So for the specs junkies out there, here – http://www.dcresource.com/reviews/compare.php – is a comparison table courtesy of www.dcresource.com 

Megapixel Count Isn’t Everything

Biggles (SD780 IS) trumps Lumberjack (SD880 IS), with more than 2 Megapixels. However, as I have learned (the hard way), pixel count isn’t everything. I used to have a 3.2 Megapixel Camera that performed better than a 7.2 Megapixel one – also from Canon.

Here are some image samples from both cameras courtesy of http://www.imaging-resource.com

Click on the images to see a bigger picture

Picture taken with Lumberjack (SD 880 IS):



Picture Taken With Biggles (SD880 IS): 

Do you notice the blooming on the picture taken from Biggles (SD 780)? Blooming is when the image softens, especially around white objects. Notice the white thread and the disk on the end as well as the white patches on the blue cloth.

The white is much sharper when taken by the Lumberjack (SD 880 IS).

It’s hardly noticeable, but its there. It’s apparently, more noticeable in some modes.The images taken by the Lumberjack (SD880 IS) are sharper and have more detail compared to the one taken by Biggles (SD780 IS).

The thing is, it shouldn’t be, because with the higher pixel count of Biggles (SD780 IS), one would expect that its images would fare better.

That’s the main issue I have with Biggles (SD780 IS) and the main win point for the Lumberjack (SD880 IS).

So, at this point, it should be safe to say that I should just go with the better performer, but I like to complicate things. 😀

Beauty is Skin Deep

The other reason why I’m so torn is appearances. Both have their own aesthetic appeal, but in my opinion, the Lumberjack is left wanting. Biggles (SD780 IS) is much sleeker and plus its RED. Did I mention that Red is my life and my life is red – haha.

Here are some photos of both cameras.

The Lumberjack (SD880 IS):



I was attracted to the Gold camera until I saw the backside. It’s a bronzy type of color and I’m just not that into it – that’s why if I ever choose The Lumberjack, I’d go for the silver one coz the back is black.

Biggles (SD780IS)


I apologize for bombarding you with images of Red Biggles (SD780 IS). It’s just that I like red or have I said mentioned that already. LOL.

FOR MORE PICTURES OF BOTH CAMERAS Visti my other post  or click here

Great Camera Reviews:

Most gadget websites only give you a sugar-coated review. They give you the high points and mention the low points in passing, I don’t like that. I want it given to me straight. I found two websites that answer to those qualifications.

Those websites are www.cameralabs.com and www.imaging-resource.com

Here are their reviews for both Biggles (780IS) and the Lumberjack (880IS)

Biggles (780 IS):


The Lumberjack (880 IS):


Both websites list the Lumberjack (880 IS) on their Editor’s Picks list and both are cautious to recommend Biggles (780 IS).

So, there you have it. If it were you? Would you go for form over function? Biggles over the Lumberjack? I personally would love to have Biggles’ looks over the Lumberjack’s Capabilities, but no. That camera may be available some day, but not right now.

I’m buying a camera by the end of the month, before my goddaughter’s first birthday (May 8), hopefully.

I’ll update you guys on who ultimately becomes Eric-the-Camera.

If you guys are looking to buy the camera yourself, you can try Amazon.com or visit http://www.Cameralabs.com or http://www.Imaging-resources.com for info on where to purchase. If you are from the Philippines, contact me and I’ll give you websites of online retailers that offer good prices for both cameras.

Oh, BTW I love how the drag and drop feature of Google Chrome works with Microsoft Word. 😀 Makes blogging easier. 😀


14 Responses to “MY GADGETS: Powershot SD780 IS vs. Powershot SD880 IS”

  1. aisai said

    photo is good
    red color sd780 is beautiful

  2. John said

    I’m so glad you did this post. I am also looking for a camera specifically for my wordpress blog. i’m about to move to Istanbul, Turkey and I’ll be blogging on that. The thing that is tearing me in addition to the looks is the better video recording capabilities of “biggles”. Which one did you go for? If you were reading a blog, would you prefer slightly more distorted images but a high definition video here and there? Thanks for your advice!

    • Cecily AKA 'Eric the Fruit Bat' said

      Hey. 😀 Thanks for your comment. I have not yet chosen a camera, but a friend of mine has gone for the gold version of ‘Biggles (IXUS100is/SD780IS)’ and she is pretty happy with it.

      I got the chance to look at both silver versions of each camera side by side and surprisingly, there isn’t too much of a difference. So, if you are concerned about looks alone and are bias to the silver versions of the cameras, I’d go for the Lumberjack (SD880IS). 😀

      Image-wise, I think that both cameras, when it comes to shooting both have their flaws, nothing really beats a good (even an entry level) DSLR when it comes to ISO noise reduction. The ‘Lumberjack’ SD880IS just takes better images than ‘Biggles’ especially considering that there’s a 2mp difference between the two.

      If video, however, is what you are really after, then you should go for ‘Biggles’ (SD780is). 😀 I think you just have to let go of the fact that ‘Biggles’ (SD780is) is a 12MP camera because the advertised pixel count just doesnt seem to reflect in the image quality. Nonetheless, It’s a great camera and looks great as well too. 😀

      Hope I helped. 😀

      • John said

        yeah, i’ve decided to go with biggles. if you blow up the image, it’s not as good as lumberjack, but who really blows up their photos to the maximum size anywys. The videos are a lot better. You can see hd videos made with biggles on vimeo and it’s really awesome. Thanks for the post!

  3. Shap said

    Thanks for such a lively wrtie-up on the two cameras. I am also choosing between the two of them. I read the reviews in cameralabs.co [so comprehensive!] wrote down the pros and cons of each camera before I stumbled upon to your writeup. Your comments are definitely helpful. I have decided to go for Lumberkack as I won’t be using my camera for video.

    • Cecily AKA 'Eric the Fruit Bat' said

      Hey Shap! Glad I could help. 😀 I havent bought a camera myself yet. I’m giving myself more time, but I am leaning towards buying the Lumberjack (SD880IS). I don’t take a lot of videos myself so I really want good images. Hope you enjoy your new camera. 😀

  4. John said

    Have you decided what to get yet? I’ve actually been leaning towards a third camera, the panasonic tz7. It’s like the lumberjack, but the video is much, much better. I’m still torn between the panasonic and “biggles” though, for the form factor.

    • Cecily AKA 'Eric the Fruit Bat' said

      Hey John! Yeah, I have considered to Panasonic TZ7, I was about to do a post on that. 😀 I think that the TZ7 is great coz’ its got HD video capacity, but it doesn’t look near as pretty as ‘Biggles’ 780IS.

      If the choice is between Biggles and the Lumberjack. I choose the Lumberjack just coz’ it takes better pictures. the TZ7 is another thing I have to consider.:D

  5. Sophia said

    OMG!! I can’t believe this blog. I have been torn between these 2 camera for 2 months now. It is driving me crazy!! I still can’t decide. I love Biggles b/c it is so small. I want small. But I want a camera with great pics too ergo Lumberjack. WHICH did you end up getting??

    • Cecily AKA 'Eric the Fruit Bat' said

      Hey Sophia! 🙂 Thanks for the comment. I haven’t bought a camera yet, but I am going to buy SD880/ Lumberjack. If you’re not going for a red or a black one of Biggles, try looking at the gold or silver one of Lumberjack, it still looks rather decent. 🙂

      • Sophia said

        I ordered the 880 today! Silver. I love black Biggles but – If I am getting a camera w/ less photo quality b/c it is small then that is a whole new search process. Is 780 better or worse than Nikon or Sony..? etc. 880 won. It isn’t so big.

      • Cecily AKA 'Eric the Fruit Bat' said

        I’m glad you’ve chosen already Sophia. Yeah I saw it in person and the SD880 isnt so big, the size difference between the two is not that great. 🙂 I hope you enjoy your camera. 🙂

  6. Dave Gaskell said

    Thanks for this blog, I’d narrowed it down to these two and I think you’ve helped me decide which to go for! 🙂

    I think that they both look equally great so the fact the lumberjack seems to take the clearest pictures has swung it for me… Yep, I’m definitely going for the silver lumberjack!

    (I’m only buying it next week though so I’ve got time to change my mind about a hundred times!)

    Thanks again 🙂


  7. Shap said

    Hi, Cecelia,

    I bought a gold Lumberjack last sunday. The 1st impression was, “gosh it’s heavy!” But it’s beautiful. I have not used it yet, as I’m still trying to get familiarised with the so-many functions. This is my 1st Canon, so it will take a while to get used to.

    Thanks again for this blog.

    Bye, I’m going to play with my new toy now!

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