|Canon PowerShot A710 IS digital camera review : When Canon launches new products, you almost always get a flood of them all at once. They often replace much of the line up in one go. Sometimes the improvements are only marginal, but sometimes they can be really worthwhile. Just before the Photokina 2006, the world's largest digital imaging event, the Canon PowerShot A710 IS was launched as a successor to the A700 op. The Canon A710 IS camera gained an extra one million pixels, an improved LCD monitor and image stabilisation. The last feature in particular is a real and very welcome improvement.
Canon A710 IS - Optical image stabiliser
The Canon PowerShot A710 IS is the first digital compact camera in Canon's A-series to be fitted with optical image stabilisation. Unlike Pentax, for example, the sensor remains still, but removes moving elements in the lens and vibration blur. A gyroscope measures the movements and the information is sent to a special processor with 4000 signals per second. Once there, a distinction is made between undesired vibrations caused by hand movement and desired camera movements. The processor then guides an element in the lens to correct the movement. Image stabilisation only works to correct movement by the photographer, not that of their subjects. To freeze that movement, you must use a fast shutter speed and to achieve this you must raise the ISO to 800.
Canon PowerShot A710IS - 6x Optical zoom
The Canon PowerShot A710 IS has 6x optical zoom, just like the A700. The range reaches from 35-210 mm (equivalent to 35mm). This is a superb range, but image stabilisation is absolutely necessary at the furthest tele setting. Converters can be placed on the lens for more wide angle or even more tele. Canon's A-series is always well equipped with accessories and offers beginning photographers an affordable, all-round camera and a possible steeping stone to more complicated work; a (EOS) digital SLR camera.
Canon PowerShot A710 IS - 2.5 inch LCD monitor
Another significant improvement is the new LCD monitor at the back of the camera. Monitors just keep on improving and the LCD on the Canon A710 IS has an even larger viewing angle and a diameter of 2.5-inches. The differences don't look so big on paper, but if you place an older model next to the A710 IS you see at once what an enormous leap forwards the displays have taken. You can now take photographs in practically all light conditions. The larger viewing angle more or less cancels out the disadvantages of a non-tilting display. More or less, I say, because you are still left with limited flexibility.
Canon A710 IS - CCD image sensor & DIGIC II processor
The resolution of the image sensor has been raised a bit. Instead of 6 million, there are now 7 million pixels on the CCD. The difference is minimal and not really interesting. The information from the sensor is transferred to the photos with a DIGIC II processor. This processor has become a familiar friend and still produces surprising results. Any successor to the Canon PowerShot A710 IS will undoubtedly possess the new DIGIC III that was first used in the latest Canon G7.
Canon PowerShot A710 IS camera review
Canon's A series is an amazing range of digital cameras. They are somewhere between a real compact camera for the average consumer and a compact camera for experienced users, like the G series. The Canon PowerShot A710 IS also contains necessary elements from the top series. You can adjust a lot yourself and there is even an optical viewfinder. This makes the camera suitable for a wide range of users. We tried out the Canon PowerShot A710 IS camera, the top model from the A-series, for a while. You can read our findings in the following Canon PowerShot A710 IS digital camera review.