Canon Powershot A640 Review

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Canon Powershot A640




Record Modes & Menus



Canon Powershot A640

The screen display for Auto mode. Icons indicate single frame drive mode, Auto with red- eye reduction flash, Auto exposure mode, Evaluative metering, image size is Large Superfine and there's space left on our SD card to take 62 more pictures.



Canon Powershot A640

When you half-press the shutter release, you will see which of the nine AF points (green rectangles) has achieved a focus lock. The red "glow" is from the Focus assist lamp.



Canon Powershot A640

Program AE mode is like Auto in that the camera selects both the shutter speed and aperture values for correct exposure, but you now have access to a multitude of camera settings like ISO speed, White balance, metering, etc.



Canon Powershot A640

In Tv (Shutter-speed priority) mode you select the shutter speed (from 1/2500 to 15 seconds) and the camera automatically selects the proper aperture value. Faster shutter speeds will "freeze" fast-moving subjects, slower speeds will let you pan with a fast-moving object and blur the background, or hold the camera steady and give moving objects that "motion blur" look.



Canon Powershot A640

In Av (Aperture priority AE) mode you select the aperture value (from F2.8 to F8.0) and the camera will automatically select the proper shutter speed. Selecting the aperture allows you to control depth of field (focus range), smaller numbers yield less depth of field, larger numbers yield more.



Canon Powershot A640

Program AE, Tv, Av and Manual mode Function options:


    ISO Sensitivity Auto, HI, 80, 100, 200, 400, 800
    White Balance - Auto, Sunny, Cloudy, Incandescent, Fluorescent, Fluorescent H, Underwater (when used with the optional housing) and Custom one-push WB set
    Drive Mode - Single, Continuous, 2 or 10 sec selftimer, or Custom timer (set delay 0 - 10 secs., number of shots 1 - 10)
    My Colors - Off, Vivid, Neutral, Sepia, B&W, Positive Film, Lighter Skin Tone, Darker Skin Tone, Vivid Blue, Vivid Green, Vivid Red, Custom Color
    Flash intensity - Adjusts flash power ±2 EV in 1/3 EV steps
    Metering - Evaluative, Center weighted Avg., Spot
    Image Compression Superfine, Fine, Normal
    Image Resolution 3648x2736, 2816x2112, 2272x1704, 1600x1200, 640x480, Postcard(1600x1200), Wide-screen (3648x2048)




Canon Powershot A640

In Manual mode you have complete control, selecting both the shutter speed and the aperture values. All Menu options and camera settings are the same as Program AE, Tv, Av, etc.


Canon Powershot A640

When you half-press the shutter to lock auto focus, the exposure value will be calculated from the current shutter speed and aperture settings, the EV is displayed to the left of the aperture value (the -2 in our sample.)



Canon Powershot A640

Program AE, Tv, Av and Manual mode MENU options:

    AF Frame - AiAF, Center, FlexiZone
    Digital Zoom - On or Off
    Flash Sync - 1st-curtain or 2nd-curtain
    Slow Synchro - On or Off
    Red-eye - Red-eye reduction flash: On or Off
    Spot AE Point - Center or AF point
    MF-Point Zoom - On = Enlarge focus point during manual focus
    AF Assist Beam - On or Off
    Review - Off, Hold or 2 - 10 secs
    Reverse Disp. - On or Off
    Disp. Overlay - Off, Grid lines, 3:2 guide, Both
    Date Stamp - Off, date, or date&time (only works in 3:2 Postcard mode)
    Save Settings - Saves current settings




Canon Powershot A640

When in manual focus mode you'll see this onscreen distance gauge and if selected in the menu, the active focus point is enlarged for critical focusing.



Canon Powershot A640

The camera has a very respectable macro focusing mode with coverage from 0.4 - 18 in. (1 - 45cm) in wide angle and 9.8 - 18 in. (25 - 45cm) in telephoto.



Canon Powershot A540

On the Mode Dial are positions for Portrait, Landscape, Night Scene, and Stitch Assist (panorama.) Options for the SCN (Special Scene) mode are: Night Snapshot, Kids&Pets, Indoor, Foliage, Snow, Beach, Fireworks, Underwater (when used with the optional underwater case), Color Accent and Color Swap. These modes are pre- programmed to give you the best possible pictures for particular shooting situations.



Canon Powershot A640

The StitchAssist Panorama mode aids you via on-screen prompts to achieve the proper overlap of sequential photos for later "stitching" with the PhotoStitch program. You can capture up to 26 images in either left-to-right or right-to-left orientation. After the first picture is taken the white balance and exposure is locked until you exit the StitchAssist mode.   Use of a tripod is required.



Canon Powershot A540

When using the Standard Movie mode, you can capture video clips at either 640x480 or 320x240. Audio is recorded and you may choose a frame rate of either 15 or 30fps. File sizes can not exceed 1GB. There's also Compact (160x120), Color Accent and Color swap modes. These are great when wanting to be a bit more creative and the Compact mode is perfect for sending clips via email. When using the 160x120 mode you can record up to 3 minutes. Movie clips are recorded in Motion JPEG format and saved as AVI files.

Both the video and audio portion of movies can be replayed on the camera thanks to the built-in speaker. Full audio-video playback is also possible when connected to a TV monitor or a compatible PC after downloading.



Canon Powershot A640

Movie mode recording options:

    White Balance - Auto, Sunny, Cloudy, Incandescent, Fluorescent, Fluorescent H, Underwater (when used with the optional housing) Custom one-push WB set
    Drive Mode - Self-timer 2 or 10 sec.
    My Colors - Off, Vivid, Neutral, Sepia, B&W, Positive Film, Lighter Skin Tone, Darker Skin Tone, Vivid Blue, Vivid Green, Vivid Red, Custom Color
    Frame Rate - 30 or 15 frames per second
    Movie Size: 640x480 or 320x240




Canon Powershot A640

Movie mode Menu options:

    Digital Zoom - Standard or Off
    AF Assist Beam - On or Off
    Reverse Disp. - On or Off
    Disp. Overlay - Grid lines or Off


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