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Camera Reviews > Canon PowerShot SD30
Canon PowerShot SD30 Review
Date: Feb 13, 2006
Wednesday, Jan 18, 2006 - Here's what I receive
in the box:
- PowerShot SD30
- Wrist Strap
- Rechargeable Battery, Camera Station and Compact
- Wireless Remote Controller and Lithium Battery
- 16MB MultiMediaCard (MMC)
- Interface Cables: A/V; USB
- Documentation (English and French): User Guide
Basic, User Guide Advanced, System Map, Direct
Print User Guide, Software Starter Guide
- Software CDs: Digital Camera Solution 25.0
The Canon PowerShot SD30 Digital ELPH
is a beautiful ultra compact digital camera that
gives great looking pictures. If you take a lot
of flash pictures, the results come out very good
as long as your subject is portrait distance away
(i.e. waist shot). It looks really good in black
(with silver/chrome accents), but if you fancy
something in another colour, it also comes in
red, gold or violet.
The Canon SD30 is quite small, so I was at first
a bit worried whether it would be arkward to hold
and operate. Well, not to worry, the elongated
design means that you've got space to rest your
thumb (which might also be spending lots of time
resting on the 4 Way Controller) at the back and
enough room for your fingers at the front without
getting in the way of anything. It is well built
and there is an overall feeling of high quality.
The camera comes with a Camera Station: simply
place the camera on the station to recharge the
battery. The station is necessary because you
cannot plug the USB cable (or A/V or DC-in) directly
to the camera; it plugs into the station.
There is no optical viewfinder and the 1.8 in.
LCD monitor looks small these days. I took out
my ruler and measured the LCD diagonally to see
if it would be possible to fit a larger LCD on
the same size body. Well, it looks like it would
not be a problem to fit a 2-in. LCD monitor, and
if you went all the way to the very edges of the
body, you might just be able to squeeze a 2.5-in
LCD monitor on this body. Perhaps slightly bigger
dimensions would accomodate a larger LCD screen.
We'll see what the future holds.
- Larger LCD with more resolution;
- an LCD that gains up well in low light to permit
In the Menu, you can obtain a Framing Guide of
horizontal and vertical lines overlayed on the
screen by setting Grid Lines ON. This is very
helpful if you take lots of pictures of buildings
or with lots of horizontals and/or verticals.
There is a very effective AF Illuminator and
the AF is quite fast and precise at all times.
Even in extreme low-light, at wide-angle focal
length, it locks focus quickly and accurately
In the field, the Canon SD30 performed very
well. There was no fumbling with the controls,
no frustration trying to set the functions you
want, and the camera was point-and-shoot simplicity.
Even though most of the functions are accessed
thru the FUNC. menu, I found it well implemented
There is not much optical zoom, only 2.4x, but
the tele focal length of 90 mm is good for portrait
Transferring images to your PC is simply a matter
of placing the camera on the station and connecting
the USB cable (from PC to station) and either
using the Canon ZoomBrowser EX to index the images
or simply drag-n-drop in Windows Explorer.
The ZoomBrowser EX software is very user-friendly
and complete. Each image's filename is clearly
visible and you do not need to launch another
window to view the EXIF info. You can do basic
image editing, re: Red Eye Correction, Auto Adjustment,
Color/Brightness Adjustment, Sharpness. In the
above image, we selected the Preview Mode. Another
included software that is very useful and easy
to use is PhotoStitch which allows you to stitch
images taken as a Panoramic shot.
There are 2 User Guides: a Basic and an Advaced
one. They are both well illustrated and written,
and the print font is easy to read.
Available in 4 different colours and with a striking
design, it is certain that the ultra-compact Canon
PowerShot SD30 is a fashion item; it also
happens to take great shots, especially flash
portrait shots. Small enough to carry in your
trousers pocket or small purse, it'll go with
you anywhere, ready to record all the important
events of your life. It is point-and-shoot easy
to use, and the more advanced photographer may
even find enough fun settings to play with.