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Compared to... Canon PowerShot G7

Although we've published these comparisons previously (in the G7 review) I think it's worth looking at them again as I'm sure many potential purchasers will have both cameras in their shortlists. Although they share the same sensor - and the PowerShot A640 offers a significant subset of the G7's feature set - there are some important differences, the main one being the lens, with the G7 sporting a longer (6x) zoom and offering the added benefit of image stabilization.

In this section we have included comparisons at ISO 80, 400 and 800 (the A640's top setting).

Studio scene comparison (@ ISO 80)

  • Canon PowerShot A640 : Aperture Priority mode, ISO 80, Default Image Parameters,
    Manual white balance, +0.33 EV compensation

  • Canon PowerShot G7: Aperture Priority mode, ISO 80, Default Image Parameters,
    Manual white balance, +0.67 EV compensation
  • Lighting: Daylight simulation, >98% CRI
Canon PowerShot A640
Canon PowerShot G7
ISO 80, 1/50 sec, F5.0
ISO 80, 1/60 sec, F5
3,936 KB JPEG
3,883 KB JPEG

We've come to expect solid image quality from Canon's A series compacts, and the A640 is no disappointment, offering output that puts it near the top of the 10MP tree, and not producing results significantly different to the considerably more expensive PowerShot G7. The G7 is, marginally, better (certainly as you move away from the center of the frame) - but not so much so that you'd notice in a print. Both images are a touch on the soft side, but they sharpen up nicely in post-processing and it's better to have clean output than over-sharpened - especially if you like to post-process. Impressive stuff.

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