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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.
11 comment21 of 22 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on May 13, 2006
This is an excellent camera. Its auto focus and exposures are perfect. It appears well-made and durable, as these things go. The HP Photosmart software is also very good. This camera does everything it's supposed to do. I think the price is reasonable. I have no idea how good HP support for this camera is because, so far, setup, function, and photo transfers have been flawless.
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on September 28, 2006
I bought this camera 4 months ago. The on/off switch no longer works and the camera is a piece a trash now. I contacted HP support. Unfortunitely, it only came with 90-day warrenty. So I was offered to pay $115 to exchange for a used one, imagine that!. That ends my desire of buying any product from HP.

So make sure purchase entended warrenty!!!
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on August 25, 2007
I purchased this camera in 2006 and the warranty is no longer good so guess what broke. The lens won't come out even though the camera is on so I can't take pictures. HP online help desk simply said "I'm sorry, your warranty is no longer good but for x amount of dollars, you can trade it in.
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on April 30, 2007
I bought this camera, HP M425v for my daughter in December of 2006. The camera worked great up until about a week ago. She had it in her purse and noticed it was extremely hot to the touch. She took it to an adult to look at it and they removed the batteries and allowed it to cool. When we got it home, we put new batteries in it and tried to turn it on. It would not come on so we sat it down to see if it would heat up again. Within seconds it began to get hotter and hotter so we took the batteries out and noticed that the batteries were not hot.

I contact HP to see about getting it replaced. Of course they refuse to replace it because i am passed my 90 day warranty period. I for one could not believe they only have a 90 warranty but I was even more shocked they were not concerned about it heating up.

I would be interested to know how many others have or will experience this problem as it may help my case. We have only had this camera for 4 mos. and it is disappointing because it was a Christmas gift.

Good luck with this product. Hopefully no one out there will get hurt.
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on July 16, 2007
I bought this camera less than a year ago. I went to use it recently and it was locked up like it was docked. HP said it sounded like an internal hardware failure and my camera was out of warranty. All HP would do was sell me another camera for $100. I don't think this is good customer service.
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on December 27, 2006
This camera was a big disappointment to me, I thought they'd gotten better over the past several years since my first digital camera.

Worst problems:

1) It takes several seconds to power up, and then another second or so to actually take a picture. I have lots of pictures of blank walls, etc., as my subject took off while the camera was getting ready. Forget candid shots, you can only do posed shots and pretty sunsets.

2) It eats batteries, figure a pair of AAs per "roll of film"

3) I found the power switch awkward to turn on, and eventually it broke internally. I took the camera apart and drilled a hole in the case so I could turn it on. (Nicely made inside, apart from the stupid plastic switch lever).

4) I hate the software, both the hard-to-use menu system on the camera and hp's special bloatware that comes with it for the PC. Luckily they don't force you to use it, you can still transfer photos from the camera as a USB drive.

The good stuff (why it isn't a one-star)

--Very pretty pictures, if you succeed in getting your shot

--The video feature is great, easy to use, and partially makes up for the overall slowness of the camera.
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on July 3, 2006
This camera is very user-friendly for people who are the average amount of tech-savvy. It's my first digital camera, and the quality and clarity of images is perfect for my needs. I'm not nor do I aspire to be a professional photographer, so something like this camera - which is affordable and of decent quality - is perfect for taking photos when out with friends, etc.

Only thing negative I'd have to say about it is that the batteries run out quickly. But, it takes AA, so they're not hard to find if you're out somewhere and the batteries run out.

If you're looking for a good camera that's easy to use and takes great photos for your non-professional photography needs, this is the camera for you.
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on June 1, 2006
It's a pretty good camera, I haven't had it for more then a month now so I can't tell you if it breaks easily. I kind of regret buying it only because I feel I should've spent the extra and got a cannon power shot. Honestly though this is not a bad camera, you get what you paid for. WARNING: The one thing I HATE about it is that there is no audio (sound) when you play back a video on the camera. There is only sound when you put it on a computer. Besides this, it does what it is suppose to do.
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on August 13, 2006
We wanted a simple, easy to use digital camera and the guy at Circuit City recommended this one. We just took it on our trip and while it worked ok, I wish we would've shelled out a little more and gotten a better camera.

My major complaint is that the shutter lag is awful. Scenic shots came out great, but almost anything with people came out fuzzy. Also, we had to replace the batteries twice in five days which was a hassle. I think we're going to return it and get something else.
0Comment7 of 8 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse

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