Top positive review
21 of 22 people found this helpful
For the price - excellent
on July 18, 2006
I bought this camera for my parents - who are not tech / gadget lovers, to put it mildly.
It is very easy to use, the automatic mode is fine most of the time, the power and zoom buttons is a little fiddly, not something I noticed until I was giving the parents the "how to use it" lesson! This is not to say that they are difficult, just that some people might find them hard to use. It does what it is designed to do.
The photos are clear and sharp, colour reproduction is Ok - sometimes colours are more vibrant than in real life, but mostly this is subtle enough to just make the photos more intersting and visually appealing. (People's skin looks better - so it can be quite flattering!!!!) 5MP is easily enough for good quality prints and enlargements. With a 1/2 Gb card, you can just set the default to the highest quality and forget about it. It will store 100's of photos in that format.
The body feels a little plastic - I have a Canon Power shot SD500 which feels a lot more solid, (but cost about $200 more) and the time lag between taking shots is a little longer with the HP (with flash - can be 2 - 3 seconds), but I think that it is a great buy for the price.
AA batteries are great - especially for people who might be prone to forgetting to charge a battery for that special event.
The main reason why I didn't give it 5 stars was that I did not like the software that came with it. Editing the photos an rotating photos to display appropriately was not intuitive. Certainly not when compared to the software that came with the Canon. Admittedly, I did not spend a lot of time with the software, so maybe I just didn't see the obvious..........
I got a Kingston 512 MB Secure Digital Card (SD/512)for about $14 - and I am delighted with it. I can't believe the price of SD memory in the US. (I'm from Europe - I would expect to pay easily 3 - 4 times that in Europe). It works, there's not a lot else to say about it. It's not a high speed card, but with this camera, a high speed card would be a waste (I put a high speed card into it from my Canon and it didn't make a noticeable difference to the time lag between shots, so I assume it is the processor that is the main cause of the delay).
If you buy it, get rechargable batteries, also - the bag they suggest is expensive... I got a Targus bag (Targus DLUC02 Universal Camera Leather Case - Black ) which does the job - it does make it too big to fit in your pocket - but you will want space to carry round the extra batteries!!!!
In conclusion, this is a very very good first time digital camera. The downsides are the feel of the camera (plastic) and the lag required between shots. It is heavy on batteries, but given that there are rechargable batteries on the market - that doesn't matter so much. I didn't think the software supplied was good, but I note that others think it is, so maybe I didn't give it enough time.
Would I buy it for my parents again? Yes.