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Canon's PowerShot A720 IS digital camera. Courtesy of Canon, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Canon: Two new A-series PowerShots
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(Monday, August 20, 2007 - 00:01 EDT)

The Canon PowerShot A720 IS is based around the previous PowerShot A700 IS model, and a 6x optical zoom lens - an equivalent of 35 to 210mm, making the A720 excellent for all-purpose photography.

It also includes a high resolution eight megapixel sensor, more than enough for tack-sharp 11x14 inch prints with some cropping . Although the resolution has been increased from the prior A700 model, the Canon A720 IS offers an ISO range that's been extended at the top end for an equivalent of ISO 80 to 1600 - plenty for indoor low-light shots.

The Canon A720 sports a large 2.5" rear-panel LCD in addition to its real-image optical viewfinder, and as well as fully automatic shooting it features aperture-priority and shutter-priority exposure modes and even fully manual shooting, welcome options for more sophisticated users. There's also a wide range of twelve scene modes, including an Underwater scene mode that adjusts color balance and exposure for use with an optional underwater housing. The Canon PowerShot A720 also offers a range of metering modes, including evaluative, center-weighted, spot, and face detection-linked metering.

The Canon PowerShot A720 stores its images on SD memory cards, with a not-so-generous 16MB included in the product bundle. A USB 2.0 High-Speed computer connection provides for speedy downloads, fast enough that most users will find no need for a separate card reader. There's also NTSC / PAL video connectivity. Power comes from two AA batteries, with disposable alkalines in the product bundle.

The Canon PowerShot A650 IS meanwhile is also based around a 6x optical zoom with 35 - 210mm focal range equivalent, but the lens is actually rather more telephoto, accounting for the use of a rather larger, higher resolution twelve megapixel CCD image sensor. The Canon A650 also includes a rather higher resolution LCD display of the same 2.5" size used in the A720. ISO sensitivity has the same 80 -1600 range, unless the camera is switched to the special "ISO 3200" scene mode.

With a body that's a little larger than its simultaneously announced sibling, the PowerShot A720 IS fits four AA batteries, with disposables again being the choice for the product bundle. The bundled memory card is a 32MB Secure Digital type.

Both cameras will ship in September, with the higher-resolution A650 IS costing about $400, and the smaller and lighter A720 IS costing about $250.

Canon PowerShot A720 IS
Canon's PowerShot A720 IS digital camera. Courtesy of Canon, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!
General
Camera TypeCompact
ManufacturerCanon
Model NumberA720 IS
Dimensions3.8 x 2.6 x 1.7"
97.0 x 66.0 x 43.0mm
Weight198.0 g
6.9 oz
Planned Price$249.99
Planned Availability 2007
Image Capture
Sensor Type1/2.5" CCD
8.00 megapixels (effective)
Aspect Ratio4:3, 16:9
Image Dimensions3264 x 2448 (8.0 megapixels)
3264 x 1832 (6.0 megapixels)
2592 x 1944 (5.0 megapixels)
2048 x 1536 (3.1 megapixels)
1600 x 1200 (1.9 megapixels)
640 x 480 (0.3 megapixels)
Image Quality3 levels
Image Preview / Review
ViewfinderYes, Real-image optical zoom
LCD2.5", 115,000 pixels
Playback Zoom10.0x max
Lens
Lens TypeCanon Zoom Lens (9 elements in 7 groups)
6x optical zoom
Image StabilizationYes
Focal Length5.8 - 34.8mm (actual)
35 - 210mm (35mm equivalent)
Aperture Rangef/2.8 (W) / f/4.8 (T) - f/8.0
Focusing SystemContrast Detect; 9-point AiAF, Face Detect AF, Single AF point, FlexiZone with AF assist lamp
Manual Focus possible (0) steps
Focusing RangeNormal: 20" - infinity (49 cm - infinity)
Macro: 0.4" - infinity (1.0 cm - infinity)
Exposure
ISO SensitivityAuto, High ISO Auto, 80, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600
Shutter Speed15 - 1/2000 second
Exposure ModesAperture, Shutter, Manual
Metering Modes Evaluative, Center-weighted average, Spot (at center or linked to single AF point), and Face Detect
Exposure Compensation+/- 2.0EV in 1/3EV increments
White BalanceImage Sensor - Auto, Daylight, Cloudy, Tungsten, Fluorescent, Fluorescent H, Underwater, Custom, Manual
Internal FlashModes: Auto, On, Off, Slow-sync (first and second-curtain sync available)
Range: Normal: 1.8-11.0 ft./55cm-3.5m (W), 1.8-8.2 ft./55cm-2.5m (T); Macro: 1-1.8 ft./30-55cm (W-M) (when sensitivity is set to ISO Auto)
Flash Exposure Compensation+/- 2.0EV in 1/3EV increments
Creative
Scene ModesPortrait, Landscape, Night Snapshot, Kids & Pets, Indoor, Stitch Assist, Night Scene, Foliage, Snow, Beach, Fireworks, Aquarium, Underwater
Digital ZoomUp to 4x
Self TimerYes, 2 ,10 seconds
Movie FormatAVI (Motion JPEG) with audio
Max. clip length: 3,600 seconds ()
Storage
Recording MediumSD/MMC
File SystemFAT16, FAT32, complies with Design Rule for Camera File System (DCF)
File FormatJPEG (EXIF 2.2)
Connectivity
VideoYes, NTSC / PAL switchable
ComputerUSB 2.0 High Speed
OtherDC Input
Power
Battery TypeAlkaline disposable or NiMH rechargeable
Battery Form Factor2 x AA
Product Bundle
SoftwareCanon software suite
Battery / Charger2 x AA Alkaline disposable battery
Flash Memory16.0MB Secure Digital card
Other
Digital Print Order Format (DPOF) compliantYes
PictBridge CompliantYes
Internal MicrophoneYes
Internal SpeakerYes
Tripod MountYes
Remote ControlNo
More Photos
Canon's PowerShot A720 IS digital camera. Courtesy of Canon, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!
Canon's PowerShot A720 IS digital camera. Courtesy of Canon, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!
Canon's PowerShot A720 IS digital camera. Courtesy of Canon, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!
 

Canon PowerShot A650 IS
Canon's PowerShot A720 IS digital camera. Courtesy of Canon, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!
General
Camera TypeMid-Sized
ManufacturerCanon
Model NumberA650 IS
Dimensions4.4 x 2.7 x 2.2"
111.8 x 68.6 x 55.9mm
Weight300.0 g
10.5 oz
Planned Price$399.99
Planned Availability 2007
Image Capture
Sensor Type1/1.7" CCD
12.10 megapixels (effective)
Aspect Ratio4:3, 16:9
Image Dimensions4000 x 3000 (12.0 megapixels)
4000 x 2248 (9.0 megapixels)
3264 x 2448 (8.0 megapixels)
2592 x 1944 (5.0 megapixels)
1600 x 1200 (1.9 megapixels)
640 x 480 (0.3 megapixels)
Image Quality3 levels
Image Preview / Review
ViewfinderYes, Real-image optical zoom
LCD2.5", 173,000 pixels
Playback Zoom10.0x max
Lens
Lens TypeCanon Zoom Lens (9 elements in 7 groups)
6x optical zoom
Image StabilizationYes
Focal Length7.4 - 44.4mm (actual)
35 - 210mm (35mm equivalent)
Aperture Rangef/2.8 (W) / f/4.8 (T) - f/8.0
Focusing SystemContrast Detect 9-point AiAF with Face Detect, Single AF, Flexizone with AF assist lamp
Manual Focus possible (0) steps
Focusing RangeNormal: 20" - infinity (50 cm - infinity)
Macro: 0.4" - infinity (1.0 cm - infinity)
Exposure
ISO SensitivityAuto, High ISO Auto, 80, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600. 3200 requires special scene mode
Shutter Speed15 - 1/2000 second
Exposure ModesAperture, Shutter, Manual
Metering Modes Evaluative, Center-weighted, Spot (at center or linked to single AF point) and Face Detect AE
Exposure Compensation+/- 2.0EV in 1/3EV increments
White BalanceImage Sensor - Auto, Daylight, Cloudy, Tungsten, Fluorescent, Fluorescent H, Flash, Custom, Manual
Internal FlashModes: Auto, On, Off, Slow sync (first and second curtain sync available)
Range: 11 ft (W) / 6.6 ft (T); ISO set to Auto
Flash Exposure Compensation+/- 2.0EV in 1/3EV increments
Creative
Scene ModesPortrait, Landscape, Night Snapshot, Kids & Pets, Stitch Assist, Indoor, Night Scene, Foliage, Snow, Beach, Fireworks, Aquarium, Underwater, ISO 3200
Digital ZoomUp to 4x
Self TimerYes, 1 - 30 seconds
Movie FormatAVI (Motion JPEG) with audio
Max. clip length: 3,600 seconds ()
Storage
Recording MediumSD/MMC
File SystemFAT16, FAT32, complies with Design Rule for Camera File System (DCF)
File FormatJPEG (EXIF 2.2)
Connectivity
VideoYes, NTSC / PAL switchable
ComputerUSB 2.0 High Speed
OtherDC Input
Power
Battery TypeAlkaline disposable or NiMH rechargeable
Battery Form Factor4 x AA
Product Bundle
SoftwareCanon software suite
Battery / Charger4 x AA Alkaline disposable battery
Flash Memory32.0MB Secure Digital card
Other
Digital Print Order Format (DPOF) compliantYes
PictBridge CompliantYes
Internal MicrophoneYes
Internal SpeakerYes
Tripod MountYes
Remote ControlNo
More Photos
Canon's PowerShot A720 IS digital camera. Courtesy of Canon, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!
Canon's PowerShot A720 IS digital camera. Courtesy of Canon, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!
Canon's PowerShot A720 IS digital camera. Courtesy of Canon, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!
 

Original Source Press Release:

CANON U.S.A.íS NEW FEATURE-RICH POWERSHOT A-SERIES DIGITAL CAMERAS HELP USERS UNLEASH THE PHOTOGRAPHER WITHIN, WHILE ALSO APPEALING TO SAVVY SHOPPERS

LAKE SUCCESS, N.Y., August 20, 2007 – Canon U.S.A., Inc. today announced two new PowerShot A-Series digital cameras, including one with the highest resolution in the series to-date – the show-stopping 12.1-megapixel PowerShot A650 IS digital camera – and the powerful 8.0-megapixel PowerShot A720 IS digital camera. These new cameras continue the promise of the PowerShot A-Series by delivering superior image quality at a great price.

Both cameras maintain many of the features of this ultra-successful line, with improvements to better meet the needs of users who want a solid and smart point-and-shoot with user-friendly manual capabilities. So, whether it’s an experienced enthusiast looking for a full feature-set and lots of imaging benefits, or a casual, or even first-time user looking for an easy-to-master point-and-shoot, the Canon PowerShot A650 IS and A720 IS digital cameras will more than satisfy. These cameras, with a comfortable shape and design that features a grip for a natural fit and stable handling, are great for outdoor enthusiasts needing to capture that special moment when they reach the top of the mountain or trek through the rainforest.

“By enhancing the PowerShot A650 IS and A720 IS digital cameras with advanced, yet user-friendly feature-sets, at a reduced price point, the A-series will continue to stand-out from the competition,” said Yuichi Ishizuka, senior vice president and general manager, Consumer Imaging Group, Canon U.S.A.

The PowerShot A650 IS digital camera is designed for photo enthusiasts who demand superior image quality, and are looking for a versatile camera with exceptional creative control. The PowerShot A650 IS Digital Camera has breathtaking 12.1-megapixel resolution and a generous 6x optical zoom with optical image stabilization (OIS) that ensures steady shooting every time. A variety of enhanced controls, such as 21 shooting modes including Kids & Pets, Manual, Aperture-Priority and Shutter-Priority, among others, will also give users a lot of freedom to make the camera adapt to their specific needs. All of this power is easily navigated via the intuitive mode dial, easily viewed via the 2.5-inch Vari-Angle LCD and just as easily handled, via the ergonomic grip. With these targeted features, users can spend more time actually taking photos, rather than trying to figure out how to take them.

The PowerShot A720 IS digital camera is designed to make capturing and preserving memories fast, fun and easy for Moms and Dads on-the-go with their busy, growing families. The upgraded 8.0-megapixel resolution and Canon’s Optical Image Stabilization technology ensure that images are sharp and clear in almost every situation – even those prone to image blur caused by camera shake. The PowerShot A720 IS camera is also capable of recording high-quality VGA movies, making it perfect for capturing memories in motion. The new camera has a wide array of creative shooting modes, a simple control layout for super-easy operability and an ergonomically correct grip to ensure a comfortable fit.

Both of the new A-series cameras are also built for fun in the sun and sea. Snap the PowerShot A650 IS into Waterproof Case WP-DC18 or the PowerShot A720 IS into Waterproof Case WP-DC 16 and they become both weatherproof and waterproof at depths up to 130 feet, making them great accessories for the beach, water-park or a scuba trip. Both cameras are part of Canon’s “A-Team” (powered by AA batteries), so powering up will be quick and easy.

Setting them apart from competitive models, the PowerShot A650 IS digital camera and the PowerShot A720 IS digital camera give consumers interested in the ease of a point-and-shoot camera many of the technological advancements that are the result of Canon’s 70-year heritage as an imaging innovator.

New Canon PowerShot Digital Camera Lines’ Shared Technological Advancements

DIGIC III
The "brain" of these new PowerShot cameras is DIGIC III, the gold standard on all new Canon digital cameras. The DIGIC III image processor accounts for the camera's higher performance levels, including faster start-up, faster autofocus and quicker shutter response times that leave long-lag competitors in the dust. The DIGIC III chip design improves image quality and offers more efficient power consumption, resulting in extended battery life under typical shooting conditions.

ADVANCED FACE DETECTION
With Canon’s new Genuine Face Detection technology, the camera can detect up to nine forward-looking human faces in a scene. The Face Detection algorithm automatically prioritizes and selects faces and not simply the closet object (based on Canon’s Intelligent Scene Analysis/iSAPS technology). It will then optimize the focus, exposure and flash to ensure the best possible results. Using Canon’s Face Detection, photographers can keep up to nine faces in focus at any one time no matter where they are within the image. Working in concert with Face Detection, the “Red-Eye Correction” feature helps to detect and correct red-eye during playback mode. Images can be corrected automatically or manually while viewing photos on the LCD screen. Canon’s new Face Detection Technology makes for even easier picture-taking moments, helping users ensure in-focus smiles, and assist in the elimination of over-exposed faces.

OPTICAL IMAGE STABILIZATION
The extended zoom range of these cameras makes optical image stabilization (OIS) essential. Canon's lens shift OIS provides an effective antidote to camera shake, particularly at longer zoom lengths or during long exposures when even the slightest hand-held shake is magnified to picture-blurring proportions. Superior to electronic image stabilization systems that simply use software to mask movement, OIS actually shifts the lens proportionately to compensate for unwanted motion, making it easier to snap great images. The OIS found in Canon PowerShot digital cameras is based on technology developed for Canon’s renowned high-end professional EOS SLR cameras.

The steady effectiveness is further enhanced when paired with the new "Auto ISO Shift" feature which, at the touch of a button, can automatically increase the ISO speed setting as required to maintain fast shutter speeds when shooting in low-light conditions without a flash.

PRINTING MADE EASY
All Canon PowerShot digital cameras work seamlessly with Canon’s compact photo printers to deliver stunning high-quality borderless prints. Consumers simply connect their PowerShot digital camera to a Canon compact photo printer, press the Print/Share button, and moments later a brilliant, borderless 4” x 6” print begins to emerge; it’s that simple. Canon’s compact photo printers are PictBridge compatible, so they work with PictBridge enabled digital cameras to provide users with excellent image quality and ease-of-use, especially when paired with a Canon digital camera.

HIGH-CAPACITY MEMORY CARD CAPABILITY
As an added convenience, Canon PowerShot digital cameras also accommodate MultiMedia MMC memory cards, as well as standard SD memory cards and the new, high-capacity SDHC memory cards. This way, consumers do not have to carry around multiple memory cards in order to be able to continue to save those special moments during extended vacations or high-photo-taking adventures. Canon PowerShot owners can travel in sleek style.

The estimated selling prices of the PowerShot A650 IS digital camera and the PowerShot A720 IS digital camera models are $399.99* and $249.99*, respectively. Both models are scheduled to be available in stores in September. The Canon PowerShot A650 IS camera kit includes four AA batteries, 32MB SD memory card, USB interface cable, AV cable, wrist strap and Canon’s software suite. The Canon PowerShot A720 IS camera kit includes two AA batteries, 16MB SD memory card, USB interface cable, AV cable, wrist strap and Canon’s software suite.

About Canon U.S.A., Inc.
Canon U.S.A., Inc. delivers consumer, business-to-business, and industrial imaging solutions. The Company is listed as one of Fortune's Most Admired Companies in America and is on the 2006 BusinessWeek list of "Top 100 Brands.” Its parent company, Canon Inc. (NYSE:CAJ), is a top patent holder of technology, ranking third overall in the U.S. in 2006†, with global revenues of $34.9 billion. To keep apprised of the latest news from Canon U.S.A., sign up for the Company’s RSS news feed by visiting www.usa.canon.com/pressroom.

# # #

All referenced product names, and other marks, are trademarks of their respective owners.
Specifications and availability are subject to change without notice.
*Pricing subject to change at any time. Actual prices are determined by individual dealers and may vary.
† IFI Patent Intelligence

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