Customer Reviews: HP Photosmart M407 4MP Digital Camera with 3x Optical Zoom
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on December 4, 2004
Here are the great features of this camera:

* Easy for point and shoot.

* Very light and small! It easily fits in your pocket.

* Great full color LCD viewscreen and easy to understand buttons.

* Wonderful shutter button and "video record" buttons (some cameras require you to twist knobs, pull levers and shift gears to go from picture taking to video recording, this camera makes it a snap!)

* Video Recording will fill up all the space you have. With a 1GB SD card, it will record nearly 90 minutes of video. The video is decent quality (the QVGA 30fps mpeg) and has allowed us to stop taking the bulky 8mm video camera along with us. With Windows Movie Maker software, we can easily mix still photos and live videos for sharing with friends on the web or burn to DVD. It is NOT digital video recorder quality (or even an 8mm) but when you are juggling the kids, keys, diaper bags, towels, and everything else, if you can eliminate a camera and still have the functionality, life is good!

Our first digital camera was an HP Photosmart 735. We purchased the M407 as a replacement. The price and features seemed to make it equal with the 735 but with some enhancements. However, that is not entirely true.

* Strange as it may seem, the 4 MB Best selection doesn't seem to produce the same crystal clear vibrant colors that the 3.2 megapixel 735 did. The flash seems to make this even worse.

* The camera does not have a speaker. It has a mic to record video and audio-over, but you can't play it back and listen to it. You must transfer it to your computer. The 735 came with a built in speaker which made it a great way to check audio quality as well as the picture. I am sad that HP didn't continue that with this camera.

* As with the 735, you still can't operate the zoom when you are recording. This is annoying, but you can work around it. Zoom before you start video recording and it will record at that zoom level (just remember that you can't change it until you stop recording).

* The video recording sound is a little soft. The 735 had an aggressive auto level control that often went overboard, but you never missed audio. The M407 gives "cleaner" audio but at the cost of low levels. I don't know what is best.

* HP eliminated the simple LCD screen that was on the top of the 735 camera that would show the number of pictures left (or minutes left for video recording) which was a nice feature but not critical.

* The view finder is very small and you will probably use the LCD screen instead to frame your shots. The screen is a bit slow (as with other HP cameras).

Overall, it is an excellent camera for the money, but don't expect to see it as an upgrade from the older 3.2M 735 model.
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on November 2, 2004
This is my first digital camera and I couldn't be happier. The price is low and it is EXTREMELY user friendly. 5 minutes after taking it out of the box I was taking pictures with ease without even reading the manual. It is also fairly simple to download and send pictures since it is an HP product. I did not even have to install the software onto my PC for it to work. The picture quality is excellent and with the 128MB card I purchased with it, it takes about 100 pictures. I highly recommend this camera to other newbies or people who just want a simple to use product.
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on December 27, 2004
I got this camera as an upgrade to a very low resolution digital camera/VHSC video camera combo. We love it, although I did lose a bunch of pictures from my son's first Christmas. After doing some research, I think that was the fault of the SD card we were using (SanDisk).

There is a slight (a second or less) lag time between the time you click and the time the pic is taken, as is true with most digital cameras in this range. Not a problem at all if you plan for it. I have small children and pets, and I missed as many shots with this camera as I did with my very fast film camera.

It's very compact, and contrary to what others have said, I got it with everything that's "in the box." Maybe because I got it from another retailer. I do wish, however, that the camera came with a bag. I had to buy that separately.

All in all, the camera is a VERY good deal for the price!
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on May 3, 2006
I have just purchased my second M407 Camera, yes that's right I said the second one. I purchased the first about a year ago and have used it in the Wilds of Idaho taking pictures in all kinds of weather at every elevation imaginable. All the pictures have turned out great. I recently had a reason to take more pictures indoors, new grand daughter. Again the pictures have been fantastic, have had several blown to 11X17 for matting and framing, great quality. I would make several suggestion to folks, buy digital camera batteries, every camera I have owned eats batteries, this HP is no different. If you spend the money and get good quality batteries they will last! Second recommendation get a SD Memory card, if you are like me you will not be happy with the interanl memory and want to take lots of pictures. So, this photographer says you can't beat the price, for the quality and service you get from HP. I forgot to mention I had a camera that didn't work, and HP replaced within 2 days with a new one, no questions asked. Good Service goes a long way in my book. Buy one you won't be sorry!
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on July 20, 2005

+ 3x Optical Zoom

+ 1.8" LCD

+ Dock Avaliable

+ Many Manual Features

+ Internal Memory, But Only 16MB So Almost Useless


- Very Poor Photo Quality

- Very Poor Video Quality

- Only Lithium Batteries Included

The image quality isn't as bad as what some people said, but it's still kinda poor. You probably should do some more research unless you don't mind poor photo quality.
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on October 10, 2005
The good part about this cameral.

*Not to much $$$

*Greats on prints that are smaller than 20x30

*The manual book is built-in to the cameral. So no longer do you have to filp through books.

* Tech support was fast.

* supports many different other different languages.

* You can connect drectly to your printer... IF it suppots pictbridge or HP instant share

* very simple to use


The bad part about this cameral.

* You have to use lithium or NiMH batterys. Alkaline batterys only gives you 4 shots.

* some pictures are a bit darker than usuall.

* Not a great idea to bring to the beach or almost any were. My cameral got sand into the lens and the moving parts inside. So when I ever turn it on, you will hear a cracking nosies. Also, after a few hits on the ground the screws starts to comeout. HP said that they can't replace the screws because they said they don't make the screws.

*Not compatiable with other HP hardware like my HP scanjet 4600,and HP Laserjet 3015. But they did reless updates for that problems.

* There is no battery indicator. They only show when the battery is very low.

* They install too many differnt othere HP software that I dont need.

* No speakers for you to listen back your viedos.

* The resolution of the viedos are horriable.

* We don't need 3 flash in one picture, do we?

* A bit more thick than you expected from the pictures.

* This a big battery sucker even if you use rechargeable or lithium batterys.

* you have to buy there HP dock to watch your viedos on the tv (which will cost you about $50) note: the dock charges the battery very slowly, so go to radio shack and buy your self a fast charger.

* the mic. hardly picks up anything

* no steady shot if your hands are shacking so much from you freazing.

* i dont really use instant share because ink is just too expensive. Thats why I have a laser printer. But my pictures are only black and white. So thats why I send them to Snapfish and tell them to print them. Only 12 cents per print, can't beat that.

Overall I give this a 4 because HP tech support does help in a language that you ACTUALLY understand. The cameral is very simple for anyone to use even if you don't speak engulish. A lot of your problems can be soved by just going to hp support web site.
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on May 28, 2006
Normally I wouldnt write a review, but I have had numerous experiences with this camera that I thought I would share.

My sister first bought the camera, and I was amazed with how user friendly it was and I thought the pictures turned out pretty well. Shortly afterward, her screen blacked out, without any great impact or weather damage.

Naturally, I assumed it mustve gotten bumped in the wrong way, tough luck. I then proceeded to buy one for myself, and a couple of months after I had it, my screen also inexplicably failed to work.

And then for Christmas, my sister received a replacement camera for her broken one, and yet again, shortly after purchase, the screen was broken.

I do accept some responsibility for the damage, I imagine that if it was in a purse in a bookbag, perhaps it got rattled around a bit. But three times? I dont find this to be a coincidence, and I do not reccomend that you risk your money, because you too may have to replace it after 3 months.
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on April 3, 2006
Use digital camera batteries or the rechargeable camera batteries and quit whining that digital cameras eat batteries! Standard batteries are not meant for digital cameras. Left on, the LCD will also lesson battery life.

My family gets decent, clear pictures with good color from this camera -- that I bought for for one of my kids for $80. My son has taken many pictures of his friends -- many indoors at his school and none of those pics are blurred or out of focus. The prints are very nice as well.

I bought the camera on a whim because of the price. I'm glad I did not read the reviews before purchase or I might not have taken that chance even for $80! We were pleasantly surprised with our results and decided to keep the camera.

The menu is intuitive and fun. This camera has a small internal memory. I have never had an internal memory in a digital camera before as my other cameras only have a removable memory card option. The internal memory was kind of sweet!

Also, I like that we can use regular batteries because we can pop in the regular ones if in a pinch (although it is obvious those will not last long in any digital camera).

Movies are okay to good if your lighting is good - or if you are outdoors - but this camera had not faired as well with night shots.

This is an entry level camera and it can provide decent pictures but may not be for everyone. The picture quality seems to falter when using the digital zoom so we use this camera mainly for point and shoot pictures. I have had a few decent pics with zoom but not many, it is hard. It was inexpensive enough that I don't worry about my kids taking it everywhere and reliable enough that everyone is happy with their results. We made a few 8x10 prints that were very nice so I know this camera can do that.

I recently used this camera at a party because I forgot my camera and my son had his...this one! ALL of my shots were very good. Normally, I use an 8MP digital SLR which is not a comparable camera by any means and I was still happy with the HP results. As a point and shoot, it is fine but I wouldn't want to pay more than $80 for this camera.
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on November 5, 2006
I bought this camera in about February 2005 but didn't know enought about digital to know what I can actually get. Goes through batteries pretty fast. The recharge time between pictures sometimes causes me to miss another good shot. Takes way too much time between pressing shutter button and taking the picture. I just thought this was normal for digital cameras till I began reading later reviews. Then I accidentally dropped the camera onto a soft surface (loose dirt and sawdust)and now the lens is stuck most of the way out and will not retract and camera will not come on. Contacted HP to get it fix but will cost close to $100 and they will just send a reconditioned one. So I am in the market for another digital camera-maybe a Canon or Sony or something besides an HP.
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on September 24, 2006
I lost my HP R607 while on vacation and needed to replace it quickly. I couldn't fine another R607 (which I really liked), so I purchased the HP M407. I thought it would be the next best thing to my misplaced camera...NOT!! I don't like anything about this camera...It's terrible! You can take about 4 pictures with regular batteries, about 10 with rechargeable ones (even with screen off). It says "auto focus", but I don't think it has any focus at all....not far away, not close up, nothing! It takes a really looooooooong time to actually Take the picture after you press the button. I really hate it! Keep Looking...Don't buy this camera!
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