The Canon Hacker’s Development Kit – Supercharge Your Ixus!

An example of high-speed photography with CHDK

Canon consumer cameras are superb photographic tools, but a few gearheads surely would buy Canon just for the sole purpose of hacking it. There’s a method out there to add more functionalities to these compact cameras.

The Canon Hacker’s Development Kit (CHDK), an open-source software project, can supercharge any Canon camera based on the DIGIC II or DIGIC III platform. These include A-series models from the A460 to A720 IS, S2 IS and S3 IS, the G7, and the newer models in the SD or Ixus series.

The workaround is a supplementary firmware version to add features like support for the RAW file format, live histogram display, an always-on battery readout and the ability to run scripted actions.

Does it void your warranty? It should not, say proponents because the CHDK software does not make any actual changes to the camera. But some Canon people might frown on this.

The ability to shoot an amazing high speed capture at up 1/60,000th of a second with an ordinary camera like the one above, however, may just be too hard to pass up. Go, boy!

Photo: Keoeeit from the CHDK Wiki

Published by Chris Malinao

Chris teaches Lightroom as workflow software to photography students at the FPPF, Federation of Philippine Photographers Foundation. He also teaches smartphone photography.