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Canon PowerShot A710IS

By dpreview staff on Aug 24, 2006 at 10:10 GMT

Pre-Photokina 2006: Canon has expanded its PowerShot A range with the first A series to feature Optical Image Stabilization, the A710 IS. The A710 IS builds on the successful formula established in the A700 it replaces, with an extra million pixels (now 7.1MP), new photo effects and a new wide viewing angle LCD screen. Like the A700 the new camera has a 6x optical zoom.

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Press Release:

Canon launches first PowerShot A-Series camera with Optical Image Stabilization

Amstelveen, The Netherlands, 24 August 2006: Canon today brings Optical Image Stabilization (IS) technology to the PowerShot A Series with the launch of the PowerShot A710 IS. Along with a 6x optical image stabilized zoom, the compact PowerShot A710 IS is packed with features that make it a worthy successor to the popular PowerShot A700 it replaces. Improvements include a 7.1 Megapixel sensor and new photo effects that add to the already extensive creative possibilities.

The PowerShot A710 IS maintains many of the features that made its predecessor so successful, including an extensive range of shooting modes, full manual control, VGA quality movie recording, ISO 800 shooting and a 2.5” LCD screen.

The PowerShot A710 IS features:

  • 7.1 Mega Pixels
  • 6x optical zoom with optical Image Stabilizer
  • DIGIC II, iSAPS, 9-Point AiAF, FlexiZone AF/AE
  • Digital Tele-Converter and Safety Zoom1
  • 2.5” LCD with wide viewing angle and real-image optical viewfinder
  • 20 shooting modes

“By enhancing the popular PowerShot A700 with advanced features such as Optical Image Stabilization, Canon confirms its position at the forefront of developments that really matter to the market,” said Mogens Jensen, Head of Canon Consumer Imaging Europe. “The PowerShot A710 IS answers the call from consumers who want high image quality combined with professional capabilities at an accessible price.”

Image quality

The 6x optical zoom lens achieves a focal length range of 35-210mm (35mm equivalent) while allowing the camera to maintain a small form factor. A real-image optical viewfinder enables framing without the LCD through the full focal range, significantly extending battery life.

The PowerShot A710 IS's optical IS has been specifically engineered for this compact format using the expertise Canon has gained since introducing the technology to its professional range of EF lenses. IS counteracts camera shake to reduce blur, enabling photographers to shoot at shutter speeds up to 3 stops slower. It also allows for steadier shots at full zoom and when using the camera's 1cm Macro mode. The digital IS control chip processes up to 4000 signals per second, driving precise shifts of the lens element to compensate for any unwanted hand movements. The PowerShot A710 IS's ISO 800 and High ISO Auto mode complement the optical IS by enabling high standards of flash-free shooting in low light or indoor environments.

Photographic flexibility

A new Safety Zoom takes advantage of the camera's large resolution to offer extra zoom magnification without affecting image quality. Users can capture images at up to 12x zoom with enough resolution for lab-quality postcard (10 x 15cm) prints. Users can also select a new Digital Tele-Converter3 to add extra telephoto reach on every shot – similar to adding a tele-converter lens to the camera.

The 20 shooting modes include Special Scene modes for help with tricky shooting environments, while Manual modes give the more experienced user complete control over exposure settings. Artistic photo effects can be applied in-camera during and after shooting with My Colors. The PowerShot A710 IS also offers a choice of five movie mode settings including VGA quality movies at 30fps and QVGA at 60fps.

LCD enhancements

The 2.5" LCD retains a selectable Grid Line display for help with framing and levelling. Further assistance is provided by a useful 3:2 ratio guide, which displays an overlay of the print area for standard photo prints. A new overexposure warning feature indicates areas of overexposure in captured images.

Full range of accessories

A complete range of optional lenses includes Wide (0.7x) and Tele (1.75x) converter lenses as well as a Close-Up lens for macro photography. The High Power Flash extends the camera's range on night shots and expands the possibilities for creative flash work.
Constructed with anti-fog double glass and flash light diffusion plate, the optional waterproof case allows full control at depths down to 40 metres.

Accessories

  • Conversion Lens Adapter (LA-DC58G)
  • Wide-Converter 0.7x lens (WC-DC58N)
  • Tele-Converter 1.75x lens (TC-DC58N)
  • Close-Up Lens 250D (58mm)
  • Battery and Charger Kit (CBK4-300)
  • High Power Flash (HF-DC1)
  • AC Power Adapter Kit (ACK800)
  • Waterproof Case WP-DC6
  • Waterproof Case weights WW-DC1
  • Soft Case DCC-80

Technologies Explained

DIGIC II

Canon's purpose-built DIGIC II (DIGital Imaging Core) image processor links all primary camera functions for maximum efficiency. DIGIC II processes signals at high speeds, resulting in outstanding responsiveness, rapid auto focus and extended continuous shooting ability. Advanced image processing algorithms deliver superb image detail and colour reproduction with accurate white balance and minimal noise. DIGIC II operates efficiently to extend battery life, for longer shooting on a single charge.

iSAPS

iSAPS (Intelligent Scene Analysis based on Photographic Space) automatically optimises key camera settings before every shot. Each scene is analysed and cross-referenced against Photographic Space – a vast in-camera library of photographic data. This enables the camera to make optimal adjustments to auto exposure, auto focus and auto white balance before image capture occurs.

9-Point AiAF

Canon's 9-point AiAF (Artificial Intelligence Auto Focus) automatically scans and selects subjects from a set of nine focusing areas across the scene. This ensures accurately focused images even when subjects are not in the centre of the frame.

FlexiZone AF/AE

FlexiZone AF/AE lets users manually select the focus point from almost any point in the frame by moving the auto focus window in the viewfinder. Exposure can be linked to the focus point to ensure that the chosen subject is both accurately focused and exposed.

Optical Image Stabilizer

The PowerShot A710 IS uses a lens shift-type Image Stabilizer (IS) system to detect and correct slight camera shakes that can cause image blur. Minute vibration gyros detect lens tilting caused by hand shake. These signals – up to 4,000 per second – are processed by a single-chip IS controller, which discriminates between hand shake and intentional camera movements. Shake signals are sent to the IS unit, which moves one of the lens elements accordingly to deflect the light rays and cancel out the effects of shake. For improved accuracy and responsiveness, the moving lens element is supported on tiny ceramic spheres. In addition to minimising friction, ceramic spheres avoid some of the problems that can affect metal spheres, such as thermal expansion and magnetism. The PowerShot A710 IS's optical IS allows photographers to shoot at shutter speeds up to 3 stops slower with no perceptible increase in image blur.

Digital Tele-Converter and Safety Zoom

Similar to placing an accessory lens on the front of the camera, Canon’s Digital Tele-Converter adds a constant zoom to every shot – 1.5x or 1.9x, depending on the image size selected. While optical converter lenses cause a reduction in aperture and consequently require a slower shutter speed, the Digital Tele-Converter maintains aperture size, reducing the risk of image blur.
Safety Zoom protects the image from interpolation at high levels of digital zoom, allowing users to extend zoom magnification without sacrificing image quality.

Level of Safety Zoom possible with selectable image sizes:

Large Medium 1 Medium 2 Medium 3, Postcard Date Imprint Small
6.0x 7.1x 9.0x 12x 24x

Canon PowerShot A710IS specifications

Sensor

• 1/2.5 " Type CCD
• 7.1 million effective pixels

Image sizes • 3072 x 2304
• 2592 x 1944
• 2048 x 1536
• 1600 x 1200
• 640 x 480
• 3072 x 1728
Movie clips • 640 x 480 @ 15/30fps
• 320 x 240 @ 15/30/60fps
• 160 x 120 @ 15fps
File formats • JPEG (Exif v2.2)
• DPOF
• AVI Motion JPEG
Lens • 35-210mm (35mm equiv)
• 6x optical zoom
• F2.8-4.8
Image stabilization Yes (shift-type)
Conversion lenses Yes
Digital zoom up to 4x
Focus TTL
AF area modes • 9-point AiAF
• 1-point AF
AF assist lamp Yes
Focus distance Closest focus distance from 1cm
Metering • Evaluative
• Center-weighted average
• Spot
ISO sensitivity • Auto
• ISO 80
• ISO 100
• ISO 200
• ISO 400
• ISO 800
Exposure compensation +/- 2EV in 1/3 stop increments
Shuttter speed 15-1/2000 sec
Aperture F2.8-4.8
Modes • Auto
• Program AE
• Shutter Priority AE
• Aperture Priority AE
• Manual
• Portrait
• Landscape
• Night Scene
• Stitch Assist
• Movie
• Special Scene
• Single
• Continuous
Scene modes • Night Snapshot
• Kids & Pets
• Indoor
• Foliage
• Snow
• Beach
• Fireworks
• Underwater
• Color Accent
• Color Swap
White balance • Auto
• Daylight
• Cloudy
• Tungsten
• Fluorescent
• Fluorescent H
• Underwater
• Custom
Self timer 2 or 10 sec, custom
Continuous shooting Approx 1.7fps
Image parameters My Colors (My Colors Off, Vivid, Neutral, Sepia, B&W, Lighter Skin Tone, Darker Skin Tone, Positive Film, Vivid Blue, Vivid Red, Vivid Green, Custom Color)
Flash • Auto, Flash On, Flash Off, SLow Sync, Red-eye reduction
• Flash compensation: +/- 2EV in 1/3 stop increments
• Second curtain
• Range: 55cm - 3.5m (wide) / 2.5m (tele)
Viewfinder Real-image zoom, optical viewfinder
LCD monitor • 2.5-inch Vari-angle P-Si TFT
• 115,000 pixels
Connectivity • USB 2.0 Hi-Speed
• AV out
Print compliance PictBridge
Storage • SD, SDHC, MMC compatible
• 16 MB card supplied
Power • 2x AA Alkaline or NiMH batteries
• Optional AC adapter
Weight (no batt) 210 g
Dimensions 97.5 x 66.5 x 41.2 mm

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