Canon Powershot A640 Review
Features & Controls
The A640 features a 4X optical (35-140mm in the 35mm format) f/2.8-4.1 all-glass aspherical zoom lens. When powered down the lens is retracted inside of the body and a built-in shutter closes to completely protect the lens.
An advanced TTL AiAF 9-point autofocus system permits the camera to automatically select the primary subject even when off-center. The focusing range is:
In low light conditions the focus-assist lamp
helps to illuminate the subject for accurate focusing.
To attach auxiliary Canon lenses just press the button and remove the dress ring, attach the optional LA-DC58F Conversion Lens Adapter and then the Canon WC-DC58N 0.7x Wide Converter lens, TC-DC58N 1.75x Tele-converter lens, or 250D 58mm Close-up Lens.
The LA-DC58F adapter also allows the use of 58mm filters or lenses.
The built in flash offers Auto, Auto w/ Red-Eye Reduction, Auto w/ Slow Synchro, Flash On, Flash On w/ Red-Eye Reduction, Flash On w/ Slow Synchro, Flash Off. Flash range at ISO Auto is 1.5 ft. (45cm) - 14 ft. (4.2m) in wide angle, 1.5 ft. - 9.8 ft. (45cm - 3.0m) in telephoto or 9.8 in. (25cm) - 1.5 (45cm) ft. in macro mode.
This is a Light-guide zoom flash that changes its angle according to the lens' focal length. The
AF-assist lamp also serves as a red-eye reduction lamp.
Compact and elegantly designed, the optional High-Power Flash HF-DC1 complements your
PowerShot perfectly and requires no accessory shoe. With a strong light output (guide
number 59 ft.) and wide angular field (28mm), it delivers proper illumination up to
approximately 30 feet and in all zoom positions. The flash fires in synchronization with
the main flash, and output is adjusted accurately and automatically. A "Manual" mode
prevents others from firing your flash.
You can frame your pictures with the color LCD or to save precious battery
power you can use the optical finder. This is a coupled viewfinder with
approx. 80% to 85% coverage. It has no dioptric adjustment. Next to the
finder are two LEDs that indicate the flash and focus status.
On the back is a 115,000 pixel 2.5-inch color TFT LCD monitor that can be put in
just about any position you need to frame your shot. It can even be turned to
face forward for self-portraits and closed with the face inward to protect the screen
when it's not being used.
Controls on top: the On/Off power button, the shutter release with the zoom lens control mounted around it. In playback mode the zoom lever functions as the index and magnified image control. The Mode Dial with positions for: Custom, Manual, Aperture priority, Shutter-speed priority, Program AE, Auto, Portrait, Landscape, Night Scene, Special Scene, MyColors, Stitch Assist and Movie. Next to the mode dial is the speaker.
See the next page for more information about the
various Record modes.
Controls on the back: in the upper left is the Play / Record switch. The Exposure Compensation
button (Delete image in playback). The Print/Share button speeds and simplifies printing to
Direct Print and PictBridge compliant printers, as well as transferring images. The 4-way
controller lets you navigate menus and select images during playback, the SET button accepts
menu selections, In record mode you press "Up" to change flash modes and press "Down" to change
the focus mode. The FUNCtion/SET button gives you access to the Function shortcut menu, which
has many settings (white balance, ISO, Color effects, image quality and image size), it's also
used to accept menu settings.
The DISPlay button turns the
color LCD on/off and controls the amount of data displayed on it.
The MENU button calls up and dismisses the menu screens.
The DIGITAL port connects USB 2.0 (high-speed) to the computer for download and camera control with the RemoteCapture software. It also allows for Direct printing to any PictBridge compatible printer, Canon Card Photo Printer or Bubblejet Direct photo printers.
AV Out handles monaural audio and video to connect to a TV set with
the supplied cable.
The Powershot A640 is equipped with a Secure Digital / MultiMediaCard slot and comes with a Canon 16MB MMC card. It can handle any capacity SD or SDHC card up to 4GB.
16MB Storage Capacity Approximate
The A640 is powered by four standard AA-type batteries, alkaline, NiMH (nickel metal hydride), or lithium cells. Canon claims with AA Alkaline batteries you can capture approx. 280 shots, or approx. 500 shots with NiMH cells (using CIPA standards.) They claim 1,200 minutes of continuous playback time with both types of cells.
Check out our NiMH rechargeable battery page for more info on NiMH battery types.
Canon offers an optional NiMH Battery & Charger Kit CBK4-300 that includes a charger and four rechargeable AA-size NiMH batteries. The A640 can also be powered by the AC Adapter Kit ACK800 for unlimited runtime from your wall outlet.
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