Canon Powershot A470 Review

Canon Powershot A470

Review posted 2/29/2008

Click to take a QTVR tour of the A470

The successor to last year's successful entry-level PowerShot A460, the new 7.1 megapixel A470 model has undergone a striking external makeover, matched dramatically by a number of key internal enhancements. The PowerShot A470 is a stylish and compact model, that is available in four different color accents - blue, red, orange and gray - over a contoured metallic finish body that highlights the camera's new design and reflects the camera user's individuality, personality and taste.

Ideal for first time camera-users, the PowerShot A470 features a 3.4X (38mm - 132mm equivalent) optical zoom lens, 2.5-inch LCD, and various user-friendly exposure modes. Despite being an entry-level camera, the A470 offers more creative control with manual overrides for ISO speed, exposure compensation and white balance.

Canon's Genuine Face Detection Technology 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 subject is finely focused, no matter where it appears in the frame.

Canon's innovative 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. Additionally, when paired with Canon's Optical Image Stabilization system - offered on the PowerShot A590 IS camera among other PowerShot models - the motion detection system's onboard vibration-detecting gyro senses and compensates for movement due to camera shake, even if the subject remains still.

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.

Powershot A470 Features:

  • 7-Megapixel CCD imager and 3.4x optical zoom lens
  • Widescreen still photo option, create images that are ideal for 16:9 viewing
  • 2.5" color LCD display with 100% frame coverage
  • Advanced TTL AiAF 9-point autofocus system with focus-assist lamp
  • Canon's Genuine Face Detection Technology
  • Auto, 10 Scenes and a Manual exposure mode
  • Movie mode w/sound 640x480/320x240 (Max clip size up to 4GB or 60 minutes)
  • Continuous shooting at 1.9fps to the capacity of the memory card
  • Evaluative, Center-weighted average or Spot metering
  • Exposure compensation: +/-2EV in 1/3-step increments
  • White Balance: Auto, 5 presets or Custom
  • My Colors: Vivid Color, Neutral, Sepia, B&W, and Custom color
  • Shutter speeds of 15 to 1/2000 second
  • Selectable ISO settings from 80 to 1600
  • Runs on two standard AA type batteries
  • Direct print and PictBridge Compliant
  • USB 2.0 connectivity for PC and Mac
  • Secure Digital/MMC card storage, 32MB MMC supplied

The PowerShot A470 digital camera will be available in March and will carry and estimated selling price of US$129.99. The digital camera kit includes the PowerShot A470 Body, AA-size Alkaline Battery (x2), SD Memory Card SDC-32M, Wrist Strap WS-800, Digital Camera Solution CD-ROM, USB Interface Cable IFC-400PCU, AV Cable AVC-DC300.

Physical Views

Canon Powershot A470

Canon Powershot A470

Canon Powershot A470Canon Powershot A470

Canon Powershot A470

Canon Powershot A470

Canon Powershot A470

The A470 compared to a standard CD disc.

Powershot A470 Specifications
Type of Camera
Compact digital still camera with built-in flash, 3.4x Optical / 4x Digital / 14x Combined Zoom
Image Capture Device
7.1 Megapixel, 1/2.5 inch type Charge Coupled Device (CCD)
Total Pixels
Approx. 7.4 Megapixels
Effective Pixels
Approx. 7.1 Megapixels
Focal Length
6.3-21.6mm f/3.0-5.8 (35mm film equivalent: 38-132mm)
Digital Zoom
Focusing Range
Normal: 1.5 ft./47cm-infinity
Macro: 2.0 in.-1.5 ft./5-47cm (W), 9.8 in. - 1.5 ft./25-47cm (T)
Super Macro: 0.39-3.9 in./1-10cm
Autofocus System
TTL Autofocus
Optical Viewfinder
LCD Monitor
2.5-inch low-temperature polycrystalline silicon TFT color LCD
LCD Pixels
Approx. 115,000 pixels
LCD Coverage
Aperture and Shutter
Maximum Aperture
f/3.0 (W) - f/5.8 (T)
Shutter Speed
15-1/2000 sec.; Long Shutter operates with noise reduction when manually set at 1.3-15 sec.
Exposure Control
ISO Sensitivity
Auto, High ISO Auto, ISO 80/100/200/400/800/1600 equivalent (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
Exposure Compensation
+/-2 stops in 1/3-stop increments
White Balance
White Balance Control
Auto, Preset (Daylight, Cloudy, Tungsten, Fluorescent, Fluorescent H), Custom
Built-in Flash
Auto, Red-eye Reduction, Auto w/ Red-eye Reduction, Flash On, Flash Off, Slow Synchro
Flash Range
1.0-9.8 ft./30cm-3.0m (W), 1.0-6.6 ft./50cm-2.0m (T) (when sensitivity is set to ISO Auto)
Recycling Time
10 sec. or less (battery voltage=3.0V)
Flash Exposure Compensation
Shooting Specifications
Shooting Modes
Auto, Camera M, Special Scene (Portrait, Foliage, Snow, Beach, Sunset, Fireworks, Aquarium, Indoor, Kids & Pets, Night Snapshot), Super Macro, Movie
Photo Effects
My Colors
Vivid, Neutral, Sepia, Black & White, Custom
Activates shutter after an approx. 2-sec./10-sec. delay, Custom
Wireless Control
Not available
Continuous Shooting
Approx. 1.9 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: 3,072 x 2,304 (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), 3,072 x 1,728 (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 (up to 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
Movie: Normal Playback, Special Playback, Auto Rotate, Resume
Erasing Specifications
Erase Modes
Still Image: single image, select all images
Movie: part of movie, all of movie
Computer Interface
USB 2.0 Hi-Speed (mini-B jack)
Video Out
Audio Out
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. 150 shots (AA-size Alkaline Battery), approx. 400 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. 360 min. (AA-size Alkaline Battery), approx. 480 min. (AA-size Ni-MH Battery)
Physical Specifications
Operating Temperature
Operating Humidity
Dimensions (W x H x D)
4.13 x 2.17 x 1.60 in. / 104.8 x 55.1 x 40.7mm
Approx. 5.82 oz. / 165g (camera body only)
(Specifications as represented by the manufacturer)

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