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"Picky Details" for the Canon PowerShot SD450 Digital Camera
(Timing, Power, and Storage Info)



When you press the shutter release on a camera, there's usually a lag time or delay before the shutter actually fires. This corresponds to the time required for the autofocus and autoexposure mechanisms time to do their work, and can amount to a fairly long delay in some situations. Since this number is rarely reported on (and even more rarely reported accurately), and can significantly affect the picture taking experience, I routinely measure both shutter delay and shot to shot cycle times for all cameras I test, using a test system I designed and built for the purpose. (Crystal-controlled, with a resolution of 0.001 second.) Here are the numbers I collected for the Canon PowerShot SD450:


Canon PowerShot SD450 Timings
Power On -> First shot
LCD turns on and lens extends forward.
1.8 - 3
First time is time to retract lens, second time is worst-case buffer-clearing time.
Play to Record, first shot
Time until first shot is captured.
Record to play
1.7 / 1.5
First time is that required to display a large/fine file immediately after capture, second time is that needed to display a large/fine file that has already been processed and stored on the memory card.
Shutter lag, full autofocus
0.50 / 0.90
First time is at full wide-angle, second is full telephoto.
Shutter lag, prefocus
Time to capture, after half-pressing shutter button.
Shutter lag, flash, wide angle
Flash usage generally increases shutter delay due to the initial metering pulse the flash emits before the shot itself
Cycle Time, max/min resolution

1.38 /

First number is for large/fine files, second number is time for "TV" mode (640x480) images. Times are averages. In both modes, shoots this fast continuously, clearing the buffer after each shot.
Cycle Time, Flash exposures 6 Flash at maximum power output
Cycle Time, continuous mode, max/min resolution 0.48
(2.09 fps)
Times are averages. Shoots continuously at this rate, regardless of resolution. Buffer clears almost immediately.



The Canon SD450 uses a custom rechargeable LiIon battery for power.

Operating Mode
Battery Life
Still-image capture mode
backlight on
150 images
Still-image capture mode
no backlight
500 images
Image playback
backlight on
3 hours

The PowerShot SD550 uses a custom rechargeable 790mAh Lithium Ion battery for power, so we weren't able to conduct our usual direct measurements of power consumption. The table above shows maximum number of photos and playback time, based on the CIPA standard. Battery life is quite good with the LCD turned off, but given the poor accuracy of the optical viewfinder, you'll probably find yourself using the LCD most of the time. In light of this, our usual recommendation to purchase a second battery at the same time as the camera applies doubly.


Storage Capacity

The Canon PowerShot SD450 stores its photos on SD / MMC memory cards, and a 16 MB card is included with the camera. (I strongly recommend buying at least a 64 MB card, preferably a 128 MB one, to give yourself extra space for extended outings.) The chart below shows how many images can be stored on the included 16 MB card at each size/quality setting.

Image Capacity vs
16 MB Memory Card
Fine Normal
2592 x 1944 Images
(Avg size)
2.6 MB
1.5 MB
744 KB
6:1 10:1 20:1
2048 x 1536 Images
(Avg size)
1.7 MB
943 KB
479 KB
6:1 10:1 20:1
1600 x 1200 Images
(Avg size)
1.1 MB
595 KB
314 KB
5:1 10:1
640 x 480
(Avg size)
281 KB
182 KB
116 KB
3:1 5:1


Download Speed

The Canon PowerShot SD450 connects to a host computer via a USB interface. Downloading files to my Sony desktop running Windows XP (Pentium IV, 2.4 GHz), I clocked it at 1859 KBytes/second. (Cameras with slow USB interfaces run as low as 300 KB/s, cameras with fast v1.1 interfaces run as high as 600 KB/s. Cameras with USB v2.0 interfaces run as fast as several megabytes/second.)

SD450 Review
SD450 Test Images
SD450 Specifications
SD450 "Picky Details"
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