Canon Powershot A580 Review

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Canon Powershot A580

Review posted 3/21/2008


Click to take a QuickTime VR tour of the Canon Powershot A580
Click to take a QTVR tour of the A580


Sharing most of the features and visual virtues of its image stabilized sibling, the PowerShot A590 IS, including a fast 4X (35mm-140mm equivalent) optical zoom lens, the PowerShot A580 camera features an 8-megapixel CCD image sensor, the option of fully automatic or semi-automatic settings and 12 easily selectable Scene shooting modes. Incorporating a virtually identical body design as its slightly more feature-rich A-series family member, the PowerShot A580 camera is easily distinguished by its silver durable shell and easy to hold grip.

Canon's innovative and exclusive Motion Detection technology consolidates motion information for both the camera and the photographic subject and determines whether the subject has moved and what if any adjustments to focus or exposure needs to be made. It will even detect and assess subject movement between each frame, making it quicker and easier to capture a series of images.

The "brain" in every new Canon digital camera from the PowerShot A-series to the EOS Pro models is the exclusive DIGIC III imaging processor. This proprietary chip is responsible for the cameras' higher performance levels including faster start up, faster autofocus and quicker shutter response times that leave long lag competitors far behind. What's more, DIGIC III improves both the image quality and the cameras' power consumption, extending the battery life under typical shooting conditions.

The joy of capturing precious memories of family get-togethers - without having to make excuses as to why Uncle Joe is deep in the shadows while Aunt Betty's features are completely washed out - is enhanced with Canon Genuine Face Detection Technology. The feature automatically detects, tracks, focuses and optimizes the exposure on up-to nine forward looking human faces in the frame or can lock onto a specific face in the crowd, ensuring that all (or one) are in focus and properly exposed, with or without flash. While the Face Detection algorithm automatically prioritizes up to nine human faces in a scene, it can also be instructed via the Face Select and Track function to lock on to a single face in the crowd, ensuring that the chosen countenance is finely focused, no matter where it appears in the frame. In addition to focus and exposure control, the new A- series cameras now use Face Detection Technology to improve white balance, providing more consistent color accuracy than earlier models.

Though equipped with Canon's precise nine-point Autofocus system, the PowerShot A580, A590IS and A470 models offer an AF-Point Zoom feature that works together with the cameras' advanced Face Detection Technology to enable users to double check facial expressions before snapping photos. Once it has been enabled in the recording menu, AF-Point Zoom can be engaged when photographing people simply by pressing the shutter button halfway. The cameras also feature Canon's Intelligent Orientation Sensor that determines whether a scene is being shot as a vertical or horizontal image. It then automatically rotates the image for quick and easy review on the cameras' bright, sharp and easy-to-read, 115,000-pixel 2.5 inch LCD monitor.

As one of Microsoft's Premier Launch Partners, Canon is proud to announce that all PowerShot cameras announced in 2008 are Certified for Windows Vista according to Microsoft standards, without any extra downloads or upgrades. Additionally, all current models are fully compatible with other operating systems including Windows XP and Mac OS X (Versions 10.2 - 10.4).


Powershot A580 Features:

  • 8.0-megapixel CCD imager for up to poster size prints
  • 4x optical 35-140mm f/2.6-5.5 zoom
  • 2.5" color LCD with up to 10x playback zoom
  • DIGIC III imaging processor
  • Advanced TTL AiAF 9-point autofocus system
  • Face Detection AF/AE/FE technology
  • Canon's exclusive Motion Detection technology
  • Auto, Easy, Camera M and 12 Pre-programmed creative scene modes for beginners
  • Movie mode w/sound, 640x480/320x240 up to 4GB, 160x120 up to 3 minutes
  • 1.4fps Continuous "Burst" capture of Large/Fine images
  • Evaluative metering on focus point, Center-weighted or Spot options
  • Exposure compensation: ±2EV in 1/3-step increments
  • White Balance: Auto, 5 presets or Custom
  • Orientation sensor that automatically detects vertical or horizontal shooting
  • Low-light focus assist illuminator
  • Light-guide zoom flash, angle changes with focal length
  • Shutter speeds of 15 seconds to 1/2000 second
  • Selectable ISO settings from 80 to 1600
  • Voice memo (up to 60 secs) can be attached to images
  • Built-in microphone and speaker
  • Powered by two standard AA type batteries
  • Direct print and PictBridge Compatible
  • USB 2.0 high speed connectivity for PC and Mac
  • SD/SDHC, MMC/MMC+, and HC MMC+ memory cards, 32MB MMC+ card supplied


The Powershot A580 with ship beginning in March 2008 with an MSRP of US$149.99. The Digital camera kit includes two standard AA alkaline batteries, a 32MB MMC+ Memory card, a USB interface cable, an AV cable, a wrist strap, and Canon's software suite.



Physical Views



Canon Powershot A580

Canon Powershot A580

Canon Powershot A580 Canon Powershot A580

Canon Powershot A580

Canon Powershot A580





Canon Powershot A580

The A580 compared to an average CD disc.





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Features & Controls



Powershot A580 Specifications
Type of Camera
Compact digital still camera with built-in flash, 4x Optical/4x Digital/16x Combined Zoom
Image Capture Device
Type
8.0 Megapixel, 1/2.5 inch type Charge Coupled Device (CCD)
Total Pixels
Approx. 8.3 Megapixels
Effective Pixels
Approx. 8.0 Megapixels
Lens
Focal Length
5.8-23.2mm f/2.6-5.5 (35mm film equivalent: 35-140mm)
Digital Zoom
4x
Focusing Range
Normal: 1.5 ft./45cm-infinity
Macro: 2.0 in.-1.5 ft./5-45cm (W), 12 in.-1.5 ft./30-45cm (T)
Autofocus System
TTL Autofocus
Viewfinders
Optical Viewfinder
Real-image optical zoom viewfinder
LCD Monitor
2.5-inch amorphous silicon TFT color LCD
LCD Pixels
Approx. 115,000 pixels
LCD Coverage
100%
Aperture and Shutter
Maximum Aperture
f/2.6 (W) - f/5.5 (T)
Shutter Speed
1/60-1/2000 sec., 15-1/2000 sec.
Exposure Control
ISO Sensitivity
Auto, High ISO Auto, ISO 80/100/200/400/800/1600 equivalent (Standard output sensitivity. Recommended exposure index) (Standard output sensitivity. Recommended exposure index)
Light Metering Method
Evaluative*, Center-weighted average, Spot**
* Control to incorporate facial brightness in Face Detection AF
** Metering frame is fixed to the center
Exposure Control Method
Program AE; AE Lock
Exposure Compensation
±2 stops in 1/3-stop increments
White Balance
White Balance Control
Auto, Preset (Daylight, Cloudy, Tungsten, Fluorescent, Fluorescent H), Custom
Flash
Built-in Flash
Auto, Red-eye Reduction, Auto Red-eye Correction, Flash On, Flash Off; FE lock, Slow Synchro
Flash Range
12 in.-11 ft./30cm-3.5m (W), 12 in.-7.2 ft./30cm-2.2m (T) (when sensitivity is set to ISO Auto)
Recycling Time
10 sec. or less (battery voltage=3.0V)
Flash Exposure Compensation
N/A
Shooting Specifications
Shooting Modes
Auto, Easy, Camera M, Portrait, Landscape, Special Scene (Foliage, Snow, Beach, Sunset, Fireworks, Night Scene, Aquarium), Indoor, Kids & Pets, Night Snapshot, Movie
Photo Effects
My Colors
Vivid, Neutral, Sepia, Black & White, Custom
Self-Timer
Activates shutter after an approx. 2-sec./10-sec. delay, Custom
Wireless Control
Not available
Continuous Shooting
Normal: approx. 1.4 fps (Large/Fine)
Image Storage
Storage Media
SD/SDHC Memory Card, MultiMediaCard, MMC Plus Card, HC MMC Plus Card
File Format
Design rule for camera file system, DPOF Version 1.1
Image Compression
Normal, Fine, SuperFine
JPEG Compression Mode
Still Image: Exif 2.2 (JPEG)
Movie: AVI (Image: Motion JPEG; Audio: WAVE (Monaural))
Number of Recording Pixels
Still Image: 3,264 x 2,448 (Large), 2,592 x 1,944 (Medium 1), 2,048 x 1,536 (Medium 2), 1,600 x 1,200 (Medium 3/Date Stamp), 640 x 480 (Small), 3,264 x 1,832 (Widescreen)
Movie: 640 x 480 (20 fps/20 fps LP), 320 x 240 (30 fps) available up to 4GB or 60 minutes, 160 x 120 (3 minutes at 15 fps)
Playback Specifications
Playback Modes File
Still Image: Single, Magnification (approx. 2x-10x), Jump, Auto Rotate, Rotate, Resume, My Category, Transition Effects, Histogram, Overexposure Warning, Index (9 thumbnails), Sound Memos, Slide Show, Red-eye Correction, RAW, Resize, Image Inspection Tool
Movie: Normal Playback, Special Playback, Auto Rotate, Resume
Erasing Specifications
Erase Modes
Still Image: single image, all images
Movie: part of movie, all of movie
Interfaces
Computer Interface
USB 2.0 Hi-Speed (mini-B jack)
Video Out
NTSC/PAL
Audio Out
Monaural
Other
Memory card slot; direct connection to Canon SELPHY Compact Photo Printers, PIXMA Photo Printers and PictBridge-compatible printers via camera's USB 2.0 Hi-Speed cable
Power Supply
Power Source
1. AA-size Alkaline Battery (x2)
2. Rechargeable AA-size Ni-MH Battery (x2)
3. AC Adapter Kit ACK800 (optional)
Shooting Capacity
Still Image: approx. 220 shots (AA-size Alkaline Battery), approx. 500 shots (AA-size Ni-MH Battery)
* LCD screen on. The above figures comply with CIPA testing standards and apply when fully-charged batteries are used.
Playback Time
Approx. 540 min. (AA-size Alkaline batteries), approx. 660 min. (AA-size NiMH batteries)
Physical Specifications
Operating Temperature
32-104°F/0-40°C
Operating Humidity
10-90%
Dimensions (W x H x D)
3.71 x 2.55 x 1.61 in./94.3 x 64.7 x 40.8mm
Weight
Approx. 6.17 oz. / 175g (camera body only)
Specifications as represented by the Manufacture



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