Hewlett Packard PW550 Review

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Basic Specifications
Full model name: Hewlett Packard PW550
Resolution: 12.20 Megapixels
Sensor size: 1/2.3 inch
(6.2mm x 4.6mm)
Lens: 5.00x zoom
(28-140mm eq.)
Viewfinder: LCD
Extended ISO: 50 - 6400
Max Aperture: 3.3
Dimensions: 3.6 x 2.3 x 0.9 in.
(91 x 58 x 23 mm)
Weight: 4.2 oz (120 g)
MSRP: $149
Availability: TBD
Manufacturer: Hewlett Packard
Full specs: Hewlett Packard PW550 specifications

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5.00x zoom 1/2.3 inch
size sensor
image of Hewlett Packard PW550
Front side of Hewlett Packard PW550 digital camera        

HP PW550 Overview

Posted: 02/19/2010

Hewlett Packard's PW550 digital camera is based around the combination of a 1/2.3"-type CCD image sensor with 12.2 effective megapixel resolution, and a 5x optical zoom lens. The HP PW550's lens has actual focal lengths ranging from 5.0 to 25mm, which translates to a range of 28 to 140mm in 35mm-equivalents - a useful wide angle to a moderate telephoto. Maximum aperture varies from f/3.3 to f/5.9 across the zoom range.

Images are framed and reviewed solely on a 2.7" LCD panel, with the HP PW550 forgoing any form of optical or electronic viewfinder. ISO sensitivity ranges from 50 to 1,600 equivalents ordinarily. At a reduced resolution of three megapixels or below, the upper limit increases to ISO 3,200. Dropping the resolution to just 1.2 megapixels unlocks the maximum sensitivity of ISO 6,400 equivalent. A generous twenty five scene modes are available, including portrait, snow, and sunset, allowing a modicum of control over the look of images. Both Smile Shutter and Blink Detection features are available to help ensure portraits look their best.

As well as EXIF 2.2-compliant JPEG still images, the HP PW550 can capture video in AVI (Motion JPEG) format, although the resolution and frame rate is unspecified in the product spec sheet. Data is stored on Secure Digital or SDHC cards, but not the newer SDXC types. Power comes from a lithium ion rechargeable battery, and a charger is also included in the product bundle. Connectivity includes USB, with the speed / type being unspecified.

The Hewlett Packard PW550 is priced at about $150, and available in both black and plum body colors. A one year limited hardware warranty is included.

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