Canon PowerShot A700 Review
Conclusion - Pros
- Good resolution, clean and detailed results
- Natural, accurate color
- Good edge-to-edge sharpness
- Useful 35-210mm equiv. 6x zoom lens
- Fast, reliable focus
- Reliable exposure and white balance
- Sophisticated and comprehensive range of features and controls
- Excellent build quality for a budget camera
- Very little purple fringing
- Compact and lightweight
- Big bright screen
- Excellent battery life from 2x NiMH batteries
- Low noise at ISO 50-200
- Good balance of noise reduction and detail retention at ISO 400
- Excellent macro mode
- Optional add-on lenses, filters and slave flash
- Good value for money
Conclusion - Cons
- Clipped highlights and occasional exposure problems in bright, contrasty conditions
- Occasional clipping of very bright reds and yellows in bright conditions
- Zoom is a bit jumpy (not enough steps between 35 and 210mm)
- No ISO button
- Slow flash recycling (and fairly slow shot-to-shot times in general)
- Low screen resolution
- No image stabilization means 210mm end of zoom needs bright light
- ISO 800 setting of limited use due to high noise levels
Canon's A series PowerShots have proved very popular with photographers, thanks to the winning combination of keen pricing, a full and comprehensive feature set and solid build quality. The A700 is no exception, and will no doubt prove just as popular. Image quality leaves little room for complaint, aside from the highlight clipping in contrasty situations, and the lens seems to be surprisingly good considering its wide 35-210mm range and small size. Of course the usefulness of such a long telephoto is reduced slightly by the lack of image stabilization - the ISO 800 setting is too noisy to be an alternative to optical blur reduction - but for occasional use, especially in good light, it's nice to have the option to 'zoom in' properly every now and again.
Like every A series PowerShot I've ever tried, the A700 offers an awful lot of bang for your buck, and more importantly, is a frill-free but very reliable photographic tool with remarkably reliable focus, exposure and color in a wide variety of shooting situations. If you're looking for a compact camera with full photographic control and like the idea of a bit extra at the long end of the zoom then the A700 is a fairly easy choice (mainly due to the lack of direct competition).
So would I buy one? That's a more difficult question. At the moment the A700 sits pretty much in a class of its own; there are equally compact, similarly-priced cameras with big zooms on the market, some (such as the Panasonic LZ5) with the added benefit of image stabilization. But none offers the level of photographic control or the added versatility of add-on lenses (and flash), and my experiences with the A700 would indicate that you can get away without image stabilization at focal lengths of up to 210mm equiv. in most daytime shooting situations. Because of this (and if you can live without the tilting screen) I'd certainly choose the A700 over the A610 or A620.
But the question must be who is this camera aimed at? The added zoom range is a bonus, but the lack of image stabilization means there are better cameras out there for anyone who is likely to be shooting at the long end of the zoom on a regular basis. More casual users looking for a quick and easy snapshot camera would be better looking at something like the Ixus / Elph range, which don't suffer from the long flash recycle times and are more pocketable. More serious users wanting a big zoom might be better sacrificing the pocketability and going for something like the Panasonic FZ7, which doesn't cost a great deal more. If you sit in the middle then the A700 is probably perfect.
In conclusion the A700 is, like the other cameras at the top of the A series range, ideal for anyone looking for a camera that offers real photographic control in a compact and affordable package. If you were considering a 3X or 4X zoom compact camera and don't have a huge budget then the A700 is - though far from perfect - a nice alternative that has much to offer.
|Waffles with fruits by Coolinarka|
from Food photography (desserts)
|Vestrahorn Frozen Reflection by Will B Milner|
from Ice cold
Google has updated its Photos mobile apps to support the recently announced service for creating and printing physical photo books.
Europeana Photography is a new online image archive that includes more than 2 million historical photographs from European collections in 34 countries, covering the first 100 years of photography. Read more
Manufacturers love to state CRI (color rendering index) numbers to prove that their LED lights will provide great color, but a single CRI score doesn't tell the whole story.
NASA's Juno spacecraft is sending back its first images from Jovean orbit, and they're beautiful. Read more
We got our hands on the first zoom lens available for Fujifim's new digital medium format system. Check out the samples
As summer really gets going over here in the Northern hemisphere, the team at Imaging Resource has put together a list of the best cameras for backpacking.
The Ukrainian Parliament banned statues of Lenin in 2015. Two years later, the monuments no longer adorn public buildings or stand watch over town squares, but they're still there.
If you had to choose one camera to bring along for the ultimate West coast road trip, what would it be? DPR's Sam Spencer choose the X100F. Read more
The a9 boasts impressive capability. As more examples of it in practice pour in, Sony's claims hold up. Watch the a9 track and maintain focus on a rapidly approaching basketball.
Last week, more than a million tonnes of Californian coastline slid into the ocean, taking part of Highway 1 with it. Check out the remodeling in photos taken before and after the landslide.
Even after eighteen months of reviewing the latest, greatest, shiniest and must-buy-me-est new gear, DPReview staffer Carey Rose has continued to use older DSLR cameras for his freelance work. But now, that might be changing. Read more
Sony is the world's leading mirrorless camera brand but remains third for ILCs overall, it's said in a presentation to investors. A focus on high value cameras and lenses should boost operating income, it says. Read more
It's nicknamed the 'Cycloptic Mustard Monster,' and is a 3D printed medium format camera. Read more
The new NanGuang LED lights are battery powered and come with accessories including filters and diffusers.
Have you been telling yourself, "Hey, I really need one of those 8K displays?" A video about Dell's new 8K monitor shows you what to expect. Is it really that much better?
Tamara Lackey, a Nikon ambassador USA and pro shooter, discusses embracing self-consciousness as a means of connecting with subjects.
There's a new Spiderman movie coming out and the poster been generating a lot of online chatter. Mostly about how it looks like the creation of a fevered teenager that just discovered Photoshop.
An honest defense of the system's merits, with photos as proof.
Copyright disputes are no fun at all. 'Binded' is a new startup that aims to simplify the process of registering - and enforcing - copyright for photographers. Read more
Not everyone wants to pay a premium for a long zoom camera. Thankfully, there are many reasonably priced cameras available, though they won't offer the same image quality as enthusiast models. In this updated roundup we look at big zoom cameras with more consumer-friendly price tags. Read more
Think Tank Photo has updated two of its popular bag lines with improvements to functionality. Read more
We’ve all seen Bob Jackson’s Pulitzer Prize winning photo, but there's another.
The sample footage looks good.
It will automatically pick the best camera settings depending on shooting conditions. It even promises enhanced functionality for your camera, like exposure and focus stacking. It already supports many cameras from Canon, Fuji, Nikon and Sony. Read more
As if $13,950 wasn’t enough to pay for a special edition lens, the Leica Store in San Francisco is offering a prototype of said lens for $24,995. Read more
Make those old photos disappear without deleting them forever.
Firmware updates enable 10 fps shooting with adapted A-mount lenses, and faster startup times and better compatibility for 20 fps shooting when using native lenses on the a9.
Fujifilm has released firmware updates for its camera models X-T2, X-Pro2, GFX 50s, X-T20, X100F and X-T1 and updates to three of its software products.
A 22 year-old Romanian photographer uses his DJI Phantom 4 drone to capture unique perspectives of the city where he now lives.
What's it like to ride the waves with champion surfer Kelly Slater? This VR video from Teton Gravity Research gives you a taste.