Pre-PMA 2003, 14:00 GMT: Canon has today announced the new PowerShot A300. This new three megapixel fixed lens digital camera is the sucessor to Canon's current entry level A100. The A300 introduces several new features including five point AiAF, image voice memos, movie clips of up to 3 minutes (including sound), an orientation sensor, the new DiGiC processor and an expanded sensitivity range of ISO 50 to 400. An impressive specification for Canon's entry level digital camera.

Press Release (Canon Europe):

Canon PowerShot A300 - Combines high quality and simple operation essential to the first time buyer

Canon PowerShot A300

Amstelveen, The Netherlands, 2003 - Canon, a leader in photographic and imaging technology, launches an entry-level digital compact camera that offers exceptionally high resolution and advanced photographic features for the first time digital camera buyer.

The new Canon PowerShot A300 brings very high image quality, impressive specification, 3.2Megapixel still images and movie clips of up to 3 minutes to Canons entry level.

The PowerShot A300 is equipped with a 33mm f/3.6 (35mm equivalent) moderate wide angle lens, suitable for scenic views and group portraits, as well as general photography. A built-in 5.1x digital zoom facility enhances reach, creating an effective maximum zoom length of 168mm(35mm equivalent).

Stylishly designed with a silver body finish, the PowerShot A300 has a sliding lens cover and sleek rounded corners, creating an extremely attractive and modern looking camera.

The PowerShot A300 delivers high resolution images, measuring 2048x1536 pixels which are suitable for printing up to A4 size prints and the cameras 5-point AiAF (Artificial intelligence Auto Focus) system ensures that the subject is perfectly focused even when not in the center of the frame.

A 60 second voice memo can accompany each image captured, while in movie mode, clips of up to 3 minutes may be recorded with sound. A special high resolution movie-mode is capable of recording 30 seconds of moving images in VGA resolution.

"The PowerShot A300 brings unrivalled picture quality, user satisfaction and ease of use to the first time digital buyer." says Hiroshi Komatsuzaki, Head of Canon Consumer Imaging Europe. "We have packed 60 years of photo know-how into the PowerShot A300, making it the perfect entry model to Canon's digital line up."

Canon has used its unique DIGIC (DIGital Imaging Core) processor in the PowerShot A300 to ensure excellent colour reproduction and clear subject detail. Using the DIGIC processor the camera is able to combine light metering and focusing information, as well as area brightness data, to determine what sort of subject is being photographed. With this information the PowerShot A300 is better able to provide the best exposure, colour balance and autofocus performance. In addition, the PowerShot A300 is able to determine which way up the camera is being used so that portraits and upright shots can be automatically rotated in-camera for on-screen viewing.

An easy to navigate menu allows fast access to the PowerShot A300's wide range of shooting modes, which includes sepia effect, black and white and extra vivid colours. A shutter speed range of 1-1/2000 sec and ISO ratings of 50-400 complete a feature set designed to deal with a vast array of shooting situations.

Users who own a Canon Bubble Jet Direct Printer or a Canon CP-series portable Card Photo Printer will be able to print directly from the camera without the need for a computer. A camera menu page takes orders for quantity, size and even allows in-camera image trimming before the data is transferred directly to the printer. Further options will be found on the Internet, as PowerShot A300 users will be given access to the CANON iMAGE GATEWAY for album building, image storage and camera customisation.

The camera is supplied with a 16MB CF card, a USB cable and includes Canon's ZoomBrowser EX (Windows), ImageBrowser (Mac), PhotoRecord, PhotoStitch and RemoteCapture software. As the camera is PTP compatible no additional drivers are needed in Windows XP or MAC OS X environments.

Canon PowerShot A300 Specifications

Canon PowerShot A300

List price • US: $299
• EU: €279
• UK: £199
Sensor • 1/2.7" CCD
• RGB Color Filter Array
• 3.34 million pixels total
Effective pixel count 3.2 million
Image sizes • 2048 x 1536
• 1600 x 1200
• 1024 x 768
• 640 x 480
Movie clips * • 320 x 240, 15 fps, up to 3 mins
• 160 x 120, 15 fps, up to 3 mins
File formats • Still: JPEG EXIF 2.2 (Super-Fine, Fine, Normal)
• Movie: AVI (Motion JPEG + Wave audio)
Lens • Fixed, 33 mm equiv.
• F3.6
Digital zoom Up to 5.1x
Focus • 5-point AiAF
• 1-point AF
• AF assist beam (on/off)
Focus range • Normal: 20 cm - Infinity (7.9 in - Infinity)
• Macro: 5 - 20 cm (2.0 - 7.9 in)
Metering • Evaluative
• Center weighted average
• Spot
Exposure compen. +/-2.0 EV in 0.3 EV steps
Sensitivity • Auto
• ISO 50
• ISO 100
• ISO 200
• ISO 400
Shutter • 1 - 1/2000 sec
• Auto noise reduction slower than 1/6 sec
White balance • Auto
• Daylight
• Cloudy
• Tungsten
• Fluorescent
• Fluorescent H
• Custom
Viewfinder Optical
LCD monitor 1.5" TFT LCD
Flash • Built-In
• Modes: Auto, Flash On, Flash Off, Manual
• Red-Eye Reduction: On, Off
• Range (Auto ISO): 0.2 - 2.0 m (0.7 - 6.6 ft)
Shooting modes • Auto
• Manual
• Stitch Assist
• Movie (with sound)
• Photo Effects: Vivid / Neutral / Low Sharpening / Sepia / Black&White
Drive modes • Single
• Continuous (2.2 fps, up to 12 frames)
Direct printing • Canon Card Photo Printers
• Canon Bubble Jet Printers with direct print function
Other features • My Camera
• iSAPS technology
• Movie editting
• Sound memo (up to 60 secs)
• Magnify Zoom (2 - 10x)
• Auto play
• DPOF / Transfer Order
Self Timer Yes
Connectivity USB 1.1 (inc PTP)
Storage • Compact Flash Type I
• 16 MB CF card supplied
Power 2 x AA batteries (NiMH rechargable recommended)
Dimensions 111 x 58 x 37 mm (4.4 x 2.3 x 1.5 in)
Weight (no batt) 175 g (6.2 oz)
External links Canon A300 information
Canon A300 sample images

* Three minute video clips require a high speed Compact Flash card