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Old Aug 2, 2006, 11:52 AM   #1
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I have been asked to buy a new camera for my Dad for his birthday for around the £150 mark. He is a novice who is wanting to start to get into photography more in his retirement but would like the convenience of a small, compact camera.

I have done some research & am undecided between the Canon powershots (either A620 or A700) & the Fuji Finepix E550. All can be picked up for around the same price & seem to have similar features - obviously the A700 has the bigger optical zoom, the A620 has more megapixels, while the E550 can shoot in RAW (which I think is a real bonus)!

Does anybody have any 1st hand experience of these cameras who would be willing to help me with this decision?

Thanks in advance
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Old Aug 2, 2006, 8:15 PM   #2
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Yes, I have experience with these cameras. If your Dad is not shaky, the most camera for your money will be the A-620.

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Old Aug 2, 2006, 9:43 PM   #3
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Hey Pete,

First off, I agree with MT - the Canon A620 is a heckuva deal.

If your dad is a novice photographer, then I'm not sure RAW is such a good thing. RAW will add at least one more step when it comes to editing or sharing photos, as special software (usually provided by the camera manufacturer) is required to process RAW. Also, RAW tends to take much longer to write to the camera's memory card than jpeg, and also uses more space.

The difference between 6 and 7 megapixels is virtually meaningless. More megapixels does not equal a better picture. In fact, sometimes a 5mp and a 7mp camera in the same line of cameras will use the exact same imager.

The main distinctions between the A620 (which I have) and the A700 are thus: the A700, as you pointed out, has the 6x zoom (which at full 6x extension is very difficult to keep steady), whereas the A620 has 4x; the A620 has a swivel LCD (surprisingly useful on occasion) while the A700 does not, though it's LCD is .5" larger; the A700's imager does a little bit better than the A620 in higher ISO noise reduction; and finally the A700 uses 2 AA batteries and the A620 uses 4, and so the A700 is a tad smaller. I have also read complaints about the A700's shot-to-shot recycle time being rather slow.

Anyway, I think both Canons are winners, and I'm sure your dad would be quite pleased with either one.
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