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Canon PowerShot A650IS 12.1MP Digital Camera with 6x Optical Image Stabilized Zoom

by Canon
4.3 out of 5 stars 115 customer reviews
| 3 answered questions

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  • 12.1-megapixel CCD captures enough detail for photo-quality poster-size prints
  • 6x image-stabilized optical zoom; 2.5-inch vari-angle LCD display
  • Face Detection technology and in-camera red-eye fix
  • 21 shooting modes, including 9 special scene modes; Print/Share button
  • Powered by 4 AA-size batteries (4 alkaline batteries included); stores images on SD memory cards (32MB memory card included)
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Technical Details

Product Description

Product Description

Canon's extremely popular A Series reaches a milestone with the PowerShot A650 IS, its new top-of-the-line camera. 12.1 megapixels offers unparalleled resolution for a compact camera, while the powerful 6x optical zoom with Optical Image Stabilizer Technology delivers clear, blur-free images in low light and all through the zoom range.

From the Manufacturer

Canon's extremely popular A Series reaches a milestone with PowerShot A650IS, its new top-of-the-line camera. 12.1-megapixel resolution offers unparalleled resolution for a compact camera, while the powerful 6x optical zoom with Optical Image Stabilizer Technology delivers clear, blur-free images in low light and all through the zoom range. Hallmark A-series value includes Canon's latest-generation DIGIC III Image Processor with enhanced Face Detection Technology, ISO 1600, and red-eye correction for sharp, superior-quality images.

More Features for Less
Top-of-the-line A-series model with upgraded features and exceptional value.

The PowerShot A650IS is equipped with many of Canon's latest features, such as DIGIC III Image Processor, Optical Image Stabilizer Technology that automatically detects and corrects camera shake and shooting modes to capture any scene perfectly. In addition, the A650IS is compatible with optional shooting accessories such as wide-angle and telephoto converter lenses.

Top-Level Core Specifications
12.1-megapixel resolution with Canon DIGIC III Image Processor and high-quality 6x optical zoom lens with Optical Image Stabilizer for exceptional image quality.

The PowerShot A650IS is Canon's first A-series camera to feature 12.1 megapixels of resolution. With this easy-to-use, compact camera, you can capture images and blow them up to poster size with no pixilation. Take part of an image and enlarge it for professional creative effects.

DIGIC III Image Processor
With DIGIC III, your images boast superior quality, the camera operates at top efficiency and battery life is enhanced. What's more, DIGIC III enables Canon's Face Detection Technology and Red-eye Correction to give you better, more true-to-life people shots. Simply press the Shutter Button halfway down, and the camera automatically pinpoints the faces in the scene and chooses the ideal focus point. The camera controls exposure settings and flash to keep every face looking bright and natural. Red eyes can be corrected during playback.

iSAPS Technology is an entirely original scene-recognition technology developed for digital cameras by Canon. Using an internal database of thousands of different photos, iSAPS works with the fast DIGIC III Image Processor to improve focus speed and accuracy, as well as exposure and white balance.

6x Optical Zoom Lens with Optical Image Stabilizer
The long, powerful, genuine Canon 6x optical zoom will take you right up close to get just the shot you want. Canon's advanced Optical Image Stabilizer Technology corrects camera shake (common at long focal lengths and in low light) to keep your shots blur-free in any situation. Optical Image Stabilizer uses gyroscopic sensors to detect motion and generate a corrective signal, effectively reducing camera shake.

See the Image Beautifully with a Wide Viewing Angle
Optical viewfinder plus large high-quality 2.5-inch vari-angle LCD screen for flexible viewing at low and high angles.

The camera's 2.5-inch vari-angle LCD screen gives you the big picture, whether you're shooting, reviewing, or showing off your images. This high-resolution screen offers a crisp, clear picture and wide viewing angle to make shooting, playback, and using the camera's menu functions especially convenient. Clear and bright, it also features Night Display for easy viewing in low light. The vari-angle design lets you swivel the LCD screen 180 degrees to the front of the camera and display either a mirror image or a non-reversed image so you can shoot from just about any position.

2.5-Inch Vari-Angle LCD Screen
Canon technology maximizes quality and performance.

Genuine Canon Face Detection Technology sets the focus, exposure, and flash automatically, leaving you free to compose a group, capture an unguarded moment, or coax the perfect smile.

DIGIC III features Face Detection technologies, giving the you best possible results in any shooting situation. Face Detection AF/AE sets the focus point and exposure for the faces of your subjects. Face Detection FE adjusts the flash to correctly illuminate your subject to provide the best balance between your subject and the overall scene, eliminating the common problems of over- and underexposed faces.

Red-eye Correction detects and corrects red-eye during playback. In unusual cases where red-eye is not automatically detected, it can easily be corrected manually during playback mode.

The PowerShot A650IS features ISO 1600 and High ISO Auto settings that reduce the effects of camera shake and sharpen subjects in low-light situations, giving you greater shooting flexibility.

Easy to Operate for Beautiful Photos
Easy-to-use Mode Dial with a wide range of shooting modes from fully manual to fully automatic; including night snapshot mode, which reduces image blur in low-light shooting.

This is the digital camera that takes care of you, so you never have to worry about anything. Just turn the simple Mode Dial and instantly you can handle any shooting condition. Choose from Auto for most situations, Manual when you're feeling creative, Movie, or Special Scene for superb shots in Night, Snow, Indoor, or Beach settings, among others.

21 Shooting Modes, Including 9 Special Scene Modes

Shooting Modes
Advanced presets for the best possible photos under certain conditions.

The camera chooses all the settings so you can concentrate on your subject.

P Program
Access advanced exposure compensation features while shooting mostly automatically.

Av Aperture-priority
You define the aperture to either isolate your subject or have clarity throughout the entire picture, and the camera will choose the corresponding shutter speed.

Tv Shutter-priority
You select the shutter speed to stop or blur action, and the camera finds the appropriate aperture. With slow exposure times, Canon's noise reduction system activates to ensure low image noise.

The ultimate in creative control, you set both aperture and shutter speed manually.

C Custom
Define and store your own settings to achieve the effects you prefer.

The camera sets a large aperture, focusing the subject and artistically blurring the background to make your subject "pop."

For front to back sharpness, the camera sets a small aperture.

Kids and Pets
Reduced focusing time freezes fast-moving subjects, so you won't miss those special shots.

Night Snapshot
Get natural-looking pictures with brighter backgrounds and subjects lit by flash.

Stitch Assist
Build awe-inspiring panoramas by neatly aligning sequential images.

Shoot in VGA (640 x 480 at 30 frames per second [fps]/30 fps LP), QVGA (320 x 240 at 30 fps) for up to 1 hour or 4GB), or QQVGA (160 x 120 at 15 fps) for up to 3 minutes.

Special Scene Modes

Capture brilliant shots of autumn foliage, greenery and blossoms.

Shoot clear snow scenes without darkened subjects or an unnatural bluish tint.

Get clear shots of people at a sunny beach without darkened faces.

Grab brilliant images of skyrocketing fireworks.

Night Scene
For impressive sunset or nightlife shots, the camera properly exposes the background and uses slow-sync flash for the subject.

Achieve proper flash-free exposure and natural hues at indoor aquariums.

Capture underwater images with reduced backscatter effect. (Note: Optional waterproof case WP-DC18 required for shooting any underwater images. Case not included--must be purchased separately.)

Reduce blur and improve color accuracy when shooting handheld indoors.

ISO 3200
Expands the user's ability to shoot in dark settings without using the flash.

The Complete Print Solution
Print/Share Button for easy direct printing and downloading, plus ID Photo Print and Movie Print with select PIXMA Photo Printers, CP and SELPHY Compact Photo Printers.

The PowerShot A650IS's Print/Share button makes direct printing easier than ever. Simply connect the A650IS to a Canon CP, SELPHY, or PIXMA Photo Printer or any PictBridge compatible photo printer, press the lighted Print/Share button, and print! Also use the Print/Share button to transfer images to a computer (Windows and Macintosh).

Print your own ID photos in 28 different sizes or use the Movie Print function to output multiple stills from a recorded movie on a single sheet with a Canon SELPHY Compact Photo Printer.

What's in the box:
Canon PowerShot A650IS digital camera, AA-size alkaline battery (x 4), 32MB SD memory card SDC-32M, wrist strap WS-DC4, Digital Camera Solution CD-ROM, USB interface cable IFC-400PCU, AV cable AVC-DC300

Product Information

Product Dimensions 4.4 x 2.2 x 2.7 inches
Item Weight 10.6 ounces
Shipping Weight 2.6 pounds
ASIN B000V20R28
Item model number A650IS
Batteries 1 Lithium ion batteries required.
Customer Reviews
4.3 out of 5 stars 115 customer reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
Best Sellers Rank #18,685 in Camera & Photo
#2,109 in Camera & Photo > Point & Shoot Digital Cameras
Date first available at Amazon.com October 2, 2001

Warranty & Support

Product Warranty: For warranty information about this product, please click here


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Customer Questions & Answers

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

I'm a long-standing fan of A-series Canons. I started with the A40, went A80, A95, A620, A640, and now this A650 - yes, it's out there, earlier than expected. They all have excelled in picture quality, but each has brought something new to the game. Most improvements between top end models were notable but fairly marginal (ISO increase, bigger screen or MP). My most recent move from the A620 to A640 was one of the smallest. The A640 had higher megapixels than the A620 and a bigger LCD but offered little else besides a black case. Then they went and stuck the SD card in behind the battery door -- a real bummer continued into the A650.

The A650, though, is a major reboot for the series. Improvements from the A640: 12MP; image stabilization; a 6x lens that's much improved from any previous A series glass; a higher resolution LCD that's the same size as the old A640 but produces much better quality images; a distance sensing flash that won't blow out subjects close to the camera. This works better than manual flash level method when out of Auto in old A640; there are the DIGIC III improvements: red eye removal tool, face sensor, better shot-to-shot speed, longer battery life; a higher ISO 1600 is there and a 3200 (in lower resolution) plus, in my experience, less noise in the lower ISOs when comparing it to the A640 ISO to ISO; a better viewfinder; a new interface for picture playback shows the grid images but slightly enlarges the chosen picture over the tic-tac-toe -- a nice improvement. Finally, there's a focus check that pulls in the focal box image for quick perusal (still love to have a live histogram), and an "auto" ISO that'll bump up the ISO to prevent blurring -- this works, but I prefer to choose (it's selectable off/on).
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The first reviewer did such a fantastic job reviewing this camera there is little more I can add.

As a professional photographer, I've owned a lot of cameras. I still have and shoot medium and large format film but in the smaller 35mm size, I now shoot nearly 100% digital. For my small digitals, I own several of the G-series and a couple of the A-Series PowerShot cameras, including the A710IS. It's a very, very good camera but I did not like the flash, battery life, or the non-flip LCD viewer.

Canon fixed the flash, doubled the batteries, and put the flip-LCD in! Also, the new SD-SDHC cards are supported. The San Disc 4GB Extreme III with the card reader is the perfect flash memory card for it too.

This is, by a wide margin, the best "pocketable" camera available on the market today at any price. The words "Landmark Product" come to mind.

If the nearly $400 takes your breath away, save up for it and wait until the price drops a bit.

For those like me on the perpetual upgrade treadmill spending $400-$700 every year for the incremental features we need and want, we've finally reached that illusive destination!
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I wanted the tilt/swivel LCD of the A640 but knew that model must soon be upgraded. I waited, and as soon as this A650 came out, I bought it. My recent experience is mostly with a Nikon D50 SLR (and before that, many generations of film SLRs). This purchase is our "small" camera, less obtrusive than the big black Nikon, easier to tote on a casual walk, less obvious in a social occasion, easier to smuggle into places where photography is "not permitted."

The A650 has exceeded my expectations in many ways. Looking at their images at full resolution on a calibrated monitor, there are only slight differences between the Nikon and the A650: mainly, the A650 betrays a slight blue fringing of high-contrast details in the extreme edges of the frame. This most likely betrays the smaller, cheaper lens design (the lens on the Nikon cost more than the A60 camera!). Aside from this flaw, only noticeable under extreme enlargement, I don't see any difference in sharpness, saturation, or accuracy of color.

Although it is small alongside an SLR with zoom lens, the A650 is a chunky handful compared to tiny point-and-shooters from, e.g., Panasonic. It won't fit in a shirt pocket unless you wear a lumberjack's shirt, but it is small enough to get into the hip pocket of my Levi 501's, or into the slash pocket of a windbreaker. Part of the bulk is because it uses 4xAA batteries instead of some small, proprietary battery. This is a huge plus in my view: batteries are available everywhere, and I already have a charger and a box of rechargeable AAs.

The menus are clear. The controls are like other Canon Powershot models, so would be familiar to Canon owners.
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After several weeks and 500 photos this seems a fine technically advanced replacement for a trusty A80 which finally died. With four batteries and a flip out higher-resolution screen I much prefer it to the somewhat similar A710 (now A720) that is in my family.

While generally agreeing with all the positive things and extensive details in the reviews written before Thanksgiving, one can wish for what Canon chose not to do.

A smaller lens is not the big reason that the A650 images are not up to the quality of a big digital SLR. Camera people know one problem is the race to have very high pixel counts on the image sensor that has replaced the film. The prominent 12.1MP in the advertising.

The same sized sensor with only 6 MP instead of 12 would result in better pictures. With fewer pixels you get a bigger cell size for each pixel. A bigger cell will collect more dim light. That means a stronger signal, less noise, when you are shooting in moderate light. Less need for the camera to fuzz the lens's sharp details to conceal the speckles of noise.

If you are comfortable with the bulk of this camera that barely fits into a pants pocket, as I am, then this is a very good choice. However I bought it with a tinge of regret at what might have been. I could have had better pictures from a camera with less flashy specs. If more of us feel regret your next camera may have fewer pixels and take better pictures.
Update August 2008, eight months and 8,000 pictures later: This is a very good camera.
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