UPDATE: Today, 3rd December Canon USA has added the PowerShot S45 to PowerShot.com, further confirming that this model is now official in the USA. This comes after our first news article that Amazon.Com were listing the S45 and that our own affiliate, State Street Direct had been shipping S45's for around a week. Anyone interested in this camera shouldn't miss our review (as it's the only one available at the moment).

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Click here for information on the Canon PowerShot S45 at PowerShot.com

Press Release (Canon USA):

NEW CANON POWERSHOT S45 DIGITAL CAMERA ADVANCES PERFORMANCE AND VERSATILITY FOR GREATER SATISFACTION IN DIGITAL PHOTOGRAPHY

4.0 Megapixels, Exclusive DIGIC Imaging Processor, Enhanced Movie Mode and Direct Print Capabilities with a Variety of Canon Printers Make the PowerShot S45 a Highly Versatile Digital Camera

LAKE SUCCESS, NEW YORK, December 3, 2002 - Canon U.S.A., Inc., a subsidiary of Canon, Inc. (NYSE: CAJ), continues to strengthen its position in the digital camera marketplace with the introduction of the new PowerShot S45. The PowerShot S45 is the successor of the award-winning PowerShot S40 and is aimed at the advanced user who wants full photographic control in a compact digital camera. The new model joins one of the largest branded selections of digital cameras in the industry ranging from the economical PowerShot A200 to the feature-packed PowerShot G3.

The 4.0 megapixel Canon PowerShot S45 features a high-resolution 3X f/2.8 optical zoom lens and a compact, silver-toned aluminum exterior for a rich and elegant appearance. In addition, the S45 includes Canon's exclusive "DIGIC" Imaging Processor to help improve overall image quality, increased processing speed and enhanced camera features including a 9-Point AiAF autofocus system for faster and easier focusing; 9-position White Balance; selectable metering modes for precise exposure in almost any shooting condition; selectable Second-Curtain sync flash; an improved Movie Mode that captures clips up to 3 minutes apiece with sound; and Direct Print capabilities with Canon's CP-100 dye-sublimation printer and several Canon Bubble Jet Printers. The PowerShot S45 will be available in December and have a suggested retail price of $649.

"The new PowerShot S45 is an excellent example of Canon's philosophy of offering unique digital camera features and outstanding performance at every price point," says Yukiaki Hashimoto, vice president and general manager, Photographic Products Group, Canon U.S.A. "Canon will continue to provide consumers with the most attractive selection of digital cameras on the market."

DIGIC Image Processor

Canon has developed a new Image Processor called DIGIC (Digital Imaging Integrated Circuit) which helps achieve higher picture quality by improving the signal processing algorithms of Image Processors found in previous PowerShot models. First incorporated into the new PowerShot S230 and G3 cameras, the new Image Processor also accounts for improved autofocus accuracy, improved processing speed and the camera's ability to record 15 fps digital movies with sound up to 3 minutes per clip at resolutions up to 320 x 240 pixels.

9-Point Autofocus & FlexiZone AF/AE

The same DIGIC Imaging Processor that enables other new features such as extended-duration movie clips has also enabled Canon to improve the S45's autofocus system. In fully automatic modes, the S45 defaults to a 9-point AiAF system that evaluates a much larger percentage of the picture area than the 3-point system used in the S40. This makes it easier and quicker for the camera to detect the main subject, even when it is considerably off-center. In semi-automatic and manual modes, the S45 offers Flexizone AF/AE, which enables the photographer to place a single focusing point almost anywhere in the picture area for maximum creative control.

Selectable Metering

Three light metering modes can be selected on the PowerShot S45 - Evaluative, Center-Weighted Average, and Spot. When Spot metering is selected, the light metering point can be fixed to the center of the picture area or linked to the active AF frame. Using this method, any photographic subject can be focused and metered simultaneously or separately according to the application.

9-Position White Balance

In Auto White Balance mode, the PowerShot S45 divides the image into thousands of individual blocks and compiles color balance data from each to achieve maximum accuracy in a variety of lighting conditions. Eight other white balance settings are available, including a custom white balance function that allows users to simply point the camera at a neutral object, such as a white piece of paper, to obtain proper white balance and store it in the camera. The custom white balance function stores data for up to two different shooting environments or lighting conditions.

First / Second Curtain Flash Sync

The flash exposure timing can be set to either First Curtain or Second Curtain on the PowerShot S45. With First Curtain sync, the flash is emitted immediately after the shutter opens. With Second Curtain sync, the flash is exposed immediately before the shutter closes. Second Curtain sync is ideal for emphasizing a sense of motion with moving subjects in low light.

Flexible Flash Options

When using the camera's built-in flash, the camera controls the strength of the flash for optimal exposure. However, depending on shooting conditions, it may be desirable to intentionally change the strength of the flash output. To provide this option, the camera's flash unit can be manually set for any one of three settings - weak, medium and strong (full power).

In addition, the camera's flash may also serve as a slave unit to additional flash units strategically placed around a subject to improve the lighting. A "pre-flash" used by most cameras with built-in flash would normally set-off remote flash units prematurely, preventing the use of external flashes. The PowerShot S45, however, is equipped with an Auto Flash Compensation Off mode that prevents the camera's pre-flash from firing, and allowing the use of external fill flash.

RAW Settings After Exposure

Even when the camera is set to record images in one of the JPEG settings, the PowerShot S45 allows the captured image to be saved as a RAW file after it is recorded. This feature can be accessed at any time during the Review period immediately after the image is captured, and is particularly useful when the white balance or other planned effects were not obtained, or when resolution, contrast, saturation or sharpening needs to be modified in the execution of the final image. RAW images can be processed after storage by means of the bundled software.

Direct Print Capabilities

The S45 provides users with a simple and effective way of creating very high-quality prints without the need for a computer. The camera can be directly connected to the optional Card Photo Printer CP-100 as well as several Bubble Jet Direct Photo Printers including the S830D and S530D.

Image Management Software

The Canon PowerShot S45 is fully compatible with Windows XP and Mac OS X as well as earlier versions of each operating system. It comes with ZoomBrowser EX 4.0 (for Windows) and ImageBrowser 2.7 (for Mac); PhotoRecord 1.6 (Windows only); PhotoStitch 3.1, Apple QuickTime 5.0, CP-100 Print Driver 2.1, Acrobat Reader 4.0, File Viewer Utility 1.0, and RemoteCapture 2.6 (for Windows and Mac). RemoteCapture enables a USB-connected Canon S45 camera to be controlled by a compatible personal computer.

Many camera settings such as focal length, resolution, compression, flash mode, etc., can be adjusted and the images can be recorded directly to the PC. In addition to all of these software applications, the S45 is supplied with a TWAIN driver for Windows 98SE/2000 as well as a WIA driver for Windows XP/Me and a Plug-in Module as well as a USB Mounter for Mac OS 9.x. The WIA driver and USB mounter allow a compatible PC to mount the camera as a hard drive on the desktop and display thumbnails to facilitate simplified image data transfers.

Kit Components and Dedicated Accessories

The PowerShot S45 will be supplied in a standard kit containing the following items:

  • PowerShot S45 Camera Body
  • 32MB CompactFlash Card
  • Lithium-Ion Battery Pack NB-2L
  • Battery Charger CB-2LT
  • Interface Cable IFC-300PCU
  • AV Cable AVC-DC100
  • Wrist Strap WS-300
  • User's Guide, Software Starter Guide & System Map
  • Canon U.S.A., Inc. Limited Warranty
  • Canon Digital Camera Solution Disk (for Mac & PC)
  • ArcSoft Camera Suite Software Disk (for Mac & PC)

Optional dedicated accessories include the WP-DC300 Waterproof Case with a depth rating of 30 m/100 ft., AC Adapter Kit ACK700, Car Battery Charger CBC-NB2, Battery Charger CB-2LT, Batter Pack NB-2L, Soft leather Case PSC30, and Card Photo Printer CP-100.