Canon, which just two months ago took the wraps off a souped-up version of its best-selling Ixus digital camera, has unveiled an improved basic model with some new functions.

The Ixus Digital 200 replaces the original Ixus, which went on sale in June 2000, and will sit alongside the recently launched Ixus Digital 300 at the forefront of Canon's consumer digital still camera line-up.

The new model has much in common with the camera it replaces, including its size - the camera is roughly credit card-sized and about 2.7cm thick. It also has a 2Mp (megapixel) CCD (charge coupled device) pickup and 2x optical zoom.

Among the new features are a primary colour filter, a technology originally from Canon's Powershot G1 camera that also found its way into the Ixus Digital 300 model launched recently. The new filter should provide users with better colour reproduction, said Canon. An improved system for reducing image noise has also been added.

Power consumption has also been reduced - by 40 percent, according to Canon - which means a fully charged battery can capture up to 120 images even with the built-in 3.5cm LCD (liquid crystal display) turned on.

Canon said the camera will go on sale in Japan from 26 May for around £410, making it slightly cheaper than its predecessor.