The Product

Compact Digital Camera

If you are looking for a compact digital camera, you want to make sure you have at least a 3X optical zoom. Anything less than that will really limit your picture taking options. Also make sure that the lens is not too small. Digital cameras struggle in low light situations and a tiny lens can only let in so much light. Don’t fall for form over function or else you will be very unhappy with your indoor and nighttime shots. Also, don’t get caught up in the pixel wars, lens quality is equally important if not more important than the amount of pixels now that most cameras have at least 7mp, which is more than most users will ever need.

Recommended
Canon PowerShot SD850 Review
Canon  PowerShot SD850 Review
Pros
  • Very lightweight
  • DIGIC II chip improves quality, response time and battery life
Cons
  • The included 16MB SD card does not hold very many pictures

The Powershot “SD” carries on Canon’s great tradition of the original Elph cameras. These cameras are extremely small and lightweight yet they take great pictures with enough detail for large format prints. When you hold it in your hands for the first time, you will really be surprised how small it is. One of the great things about the SD models is that they are small enough to fit in your purse or computer bag so you can have your camera with you for impromptu shots.

Despite its size, the Canon Powershot SD850 has 8 Megapixels, a 4x image-stabilized optical zoom for improved indoor shooting and a large 2.5” LCD screen with a scratch resistant coating. This camera also includes the new DIGIC III chip which improves image quality, response time and battery life pretty dramatically over previous models. DIGIC III also incorporates Canon’s newly improved Face Detection Technology. When you press the shutter button halfway down, the PowerShot SD850 IS Digital Elph automatically pinpoints the faces in the scene and chooses the ideal focus point. To keep every face looking bright and natural without red eye, the camera controls exposure settings and flash.

The Canon Powershot SD850 also has five video modes so that you can choose the quality of video that you shoot based on your card’s capacity. Connections include USB 2.0 Hi-Speed (mini-B jack); Video Out and Audio Out, so that you can connect the camera directly to your computer or television.

This is by far the best point and shoot digital camera I have owned to date.

Devil's Advocate:

Some Canon users have experienced cracked LCD screens with smaller SD models. The best way to prevent this is to remember not to put the camera in your pocket and to keep it in a case when it’s not being used. Also, the cameras ships with a 16MB SD card, which will hold about two pictures. Plan on buying a card with at least 2GB of memory.

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