Canon PowerShot A620 Review
Operation and controls
Canon has found a formula for camera operation and control that works well, and the A620 will be very familiar to anyone who's used a Canon compact in the last few years. The control layout is almost identical to the PowerShot A95 it replaces, although the slightly different body design and larger screen means a few of the buttons have moved, and a couple have new functions. As mentioned earlier I was disappointed to see that the ISO button (seen on the latest Ixus / Elph models) didn't make its way onto the A620. There is also now a dedicated AE compensation button (which also covers AF frame location and switches between apertures and shutter speeds in manual mode).
Despite being a 'budget' model the A620 - like the A95 before it - has a real wealth of photographic features, and though most advanced options are only accessible via menus (rather than via external controls), the interface is well designed and fast to use.
Rear of camera
The rear view of the A620 will find most Canon users in fairly familiar territory - it's very similar to the A95, and offers a similar set of controls to the more expensive G and S series cameras. Although I personally would like to see a couple more external controls (for drive mode, white balance and ISO setting for example), the excellent FUNC menu design means these settings are never more than a couple of button presses away.
Top of camera
|The A620 is marginally deeper than the A95 (due to the slightly deeper - and better - grip). As you can see, the top of the camera is home to the main power switch, mode dial and zoom control / shutter release.|
Display and menus
Canon's menu and on-screen display system has - despite minor appearance tweaks here and there - remained admirably consistent across camera ranges and generations. There's nothing particularly new here - but then why change a system that works?
|Pressing the DISP button cycles between three preview settings; off (use the optical viewfinder), preview image only (no information displayed) and - as shown above - full information. There's plenty of information ranged around the edge of the preview image. Note that the amount of information displayed will depend which mode you are shooting in. In these shots we've also turned on the optional grid, which can help keep things straight.||
Half press the shutter and the camera will set the focus and exposure, indicating the focus point chosen (in AiAF mode), plus the shutter speed and aperture chosen by the AE (auto exposure) system.
In P (Program) mode you can activate a program shift function by pressing the +/- button after the exposure has been calculated, which is a bit fiddly, but useful.
|In shutter and aperture priority modes the setting is changed using the left and right arrow keys.||In manual exposure mode the +/- button toggles the setting changed by the left/right arrow keys between the shutter speed and aperture. Half press the shutter and the display shows how far you are from the metered exposure as an EV value.|
|Novice photographers get a selection of subject-based 'scene' modes (accessed from the SCN position on the mode dial). Changing subject mode is again a simple matter of pressing the left and right arrow keys.||A manual focus option (activated by pressing the Macro/down arrow twice) has the option - not turned on in this shot - to magnify the central portion of the preview for more accurate focus assessment.|
|AE-compensation - available in all auto exposure modes except the 'idiot-proof' AUTO - is a simple case of pressing the +/- button and using the left/right arrow keys to change the value. The screen brightens or darkens to reflect the effect of any AE-compensation in use.||Selecting the 'My Colors' option on the mode dial brings up several extra options, allowing you to boost certain colors, swap colors in the scene (screenshot), remove all but one color (all other colors come out black and white) or set custom colors (screenshot). It's not Photoshop, but it's a nice novelty.|
|Pressing the FUNC menu brings up the usual array of shooting options, covering everything from AE compensation to white balance, sensitivity, picture effects, drive mode, metering and image size/quality. It's fast, and doesn't clutter up the screen. Note that the menu is normally shown overlaid on the preview image - we've used a plain background for clarity.||The record menu is where you find controls you're likely to need much less frequently, including focus mode, red eye reduction, digital zoom and so on.|
Sony's newest G Master telephoto zoom, announced alongside the a9, is the first of the company's FE lenses to reach 400mm natively. We had one in California and photographed horses, portraits, and landscapes - check out how it did. Read more
Garmin has entered the 360-camera market with the VIRB, which captures 5.7K video at 30p as well as 15MP stills. Read more
Join DPReview editors Rishi Sanyal and Carey Rose on Facebook Live as they share their experience and answer your questions about the new Sony a9, Wednesday at 9:30 AM Pacific time. Click here for additional details and time zones
German media reports that the founders of the company behind the Panono 360-degree ball camera have filed for bankruptcy at a court in Berlin. Read more
With a claimed 800 new custom parts, Microsoft's updated Surface Pro comes with the latest Kaby Lake processors, better battery life, a new hinge, plus the Surface Pen is updated as well. Read more
DW Photo is attempting to resurrect the Hy6 medium format camera, though the legal tangles of its development may stop it being branded Rolleiflex.
The Kodak EKTRA, the company's 'camera first' smartphone, is now available to purchase in the United States. Read more
Apple and Nokia have settled their years-old patent dispute. Apple will make an undisclosed payment to Nokia and sign a licensing agreement related to digital health products with the Finnish company.
David Gibson, one of Britain's best known street shooters, shares all.
Photographers from the SKYGLOW project travelled 150k miles and took 3 million photos in increasingly rare locations: those without light pollution.
The world's fastest 200mm was produced for 16 years. In that time, only 8000 were made.
Photokina, the biennial photo industry trade show in Cologne, Germany, has announced that it will become an annual event beginning in 2018, and expand its focus to additional areas of imaging technology. Read more
No mic socket? No problem. In this video, Daniel Peters at Photo Gear News shows you how to make a lapel microphone using just a smartphone and a pair of earbuds.
How does the iPhone 7 Plus stack up against the Arri Alexa cinema camera? Watch this short video to find out.
Canon Australia's video series "The Lab" is designed to make photographers experiment and think outside the box. In the latest video a group of photographers create images based on their sense of taste.
The GH5 is expected to get a firmware update this summer to support 400Mbps internal recording. NewsShooter explores what memory cards you'll need to make it work.
Microsoft's new Surface Pro offers Intel's latest processor generation and improved battery life.
Riding a mountain bike downhill is dangerous enough in daylight, but potentially lethal at night. Which is where drones come in.
Rumors abound that Canon (and maybe Nikon) may produce a mirrorless camera based using their existing DSLR mount. Does this guarantee immediate great lens choice or a perpetually second-rate experience? Read more
According to rumors, the next camera from Nest will be able to capture 4K video, though that resolution will be only used for 'virtual' pan and tilt functions.
Boundary's Prima 'fully modular' backpack is expandable to 30L and has a removable camera case and tablet sleeve. Early Kickstarter backers can get one for $189.
Stanley Greene captured 'brutally honest' photographs in the war zones of the Middle East, Chechnya and Georgia. He was also one of the few African-American photographers working internationally.
Owners of Leica M cameras that suffer from peeling CCDs will be able to claim a free repair in the future so long as the camera was purchased within five years of the fault becoming apparent, the company has announced. Read more
The Carl Zeiss Jena BIOTAR 75mm F1.5 Red T lens is very rare and priced accordingly. It can be yours today for the low, low price of $15,000.
The MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) has developed a drone that does not require any human control for recording tracking shots. Read more
In this terrifying video, Iraqi journalist Ammar Alwaely narrowly misses a sniper's bullet, which takes out his chest-mounted GoPro. Warning: strong language. Watch the video
A new report expects action camera growth to increase about 15% by 2021, with Ultra HD cameras driving demand. Read more
Profiles for Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom have been released for Irix's ultra-wide 11mm and 15mm primes. Like all profiles, these correct for distortion and vignetting.
An upcoming firmware update from DJI will cripple its drones unless they are 'activated' on the company's website. Live streaming will be turned off and flight radius/altitude will be limited.
Brent from ShareGrid rounds up the 10 most common products filmmakers are renting from one another for productions; chances are good you own one or more of them.