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I have had this camera for about five years now and it is still working just as well as it was when I bought it. However whilst it was a good camera when I bought it, there are now so many better cameras available that I would advise against buying it unless you just want a cheap basic camera. This camera is not fantastic at taking photos in darker conditions, and the optical zoom is only 4x. It is a 4.0 mega pixel camera, which is less than many modern camera phones; you can take perfectly good photos, but where the conditions are less than optimum, the picture quality can suffer quite a lot. However it does take decent videos (again in optimum light conditions) with clear sound. The screen is quite big allowing you to see the photos clearly before you print or transfer them to a computer. However the whole camera is a bit bulky by modern standards, so if you want to take a small bag on a night out you won't have room for much else!
This is by no means a bad camera but as technology has advanced so much you might be better buying a more recent camera for more features and better picture quality!
The Canon Powershot A430 is quite a good camera if you are a beginner, it has 4x optical zoom and is 4mp which isn't that great as nowadays you get a better quality picture on mobile phone cameras. The camera is quite slow from when you press the button to when it actually takes the picture. The menus on the camera are fairly easy to use and work out without reading the manual. The camera it'self is quite chunky so not good for a ladies handbag, it is also quite heavy compared to some other cameras I have come across.
However, even though it is quite a low quality camera, when the pictures are transferred onto a computer they do look good quality. The camera has done me over two years, however I am not about to upgrade to a Sony as the waiting for pictures to be taken is annoying me a bit too much now.
I won this in a competition a few years ago. I've been using it quite a lot lately so I thought I'd write a review about it before I pass it on to one of the godchildren.
Canon Powershot A430 is a 4 megapixel digital camera with a four times optical zoom lens. When it came out, it was an entry level digital camera, this meant that it has less features and functions but as a rule made it easier for children and older people to use. This camera takes still pictures but it also does VGA quality extra long movie clips with full sound.
...The camera itself...
Canon PowerShot A430 is compact and very light. I take it out with me on girls night's out and it has always fitted quite easily into my handbag, even some my jeans pockets but I only do that when my handbag becomes full of other people's rubbish as the night goes on. It came with a nifty black cover to protect it, which I lost on a night out. It was good but the camera is robust and shockproof enough without it. It comes in 4 different colours. Mine is silver and gold. The other colours are silver & dark silver, silver & red and silver & blue.
At the front of the camera, you will find the zoom lens (4x optical), self timer lamp and the flash. When the camera is off, the lens is protected by an automatic shutter.
At the back of the camera, you will find the LCD monitor, that's 1.8" big. It has 77000 pixels. An eye-viewfinder. You won't find many digital cameras having the old-fashioned viewfinder that you can look through. The viewfinder is very useful when it's sunny as the LCD screen is quite hard to see. Also all your menu and function buttons are on the back. I'll go into more detail about them in a bit.
On the left side of the camera, you will find your AV out so you can hook it up to the TV. On the right side of the camera, you will find DC in port, USB cable port, memory card slot and the batteries. The batteries that this camera uses are two AAs. I find that Duracell batteries lasts the longest. You should be able to take about 80-100 pictures with the battery life. Also on the right side, you will find the carrying strap, which I never use. On the top of the camera, you will find your on/off button and the most important button of all, the button that takes the picture. The camera has a hole at the bottom so you can mount in on a stand.
On the main menu (the menu button on the back), you can change or view quite a few things. For example, the time and date, whether auto flash is on or not, to check how memory is left on your memory card, the volume etc.
Picture menu (when you're ready to take a picture), you can change a lot there too. What size you want to have your pictures, red eye, 15 different shooting modes, 8 different lightening modes for tricking lightening including Beach, Snow and Foliage.
You can choose between 1600 x 1200, 1024 x 768, 640x480, 320x240 for the size of the pictures. Also get a panorama view by photo stitching (2272 x 1704). You can do this two ways, with the camera or with the software that comes with it.
On the control dial, there are 5 different options. The only option I use are the first one, that is for seeing the pictures on screen and uploading the pictures. The second one is a red camera and taking the pictures. The other options are for movies, panorama and linking it to the TV.
You can also set it to manual mode so you can adjust white balance, the speed of the shutter, etc but I think if you want to do that, get a better camera than this.
...Flash and Zoom...
The built in flash is meant to have a range of 3 metres but if you use the zoom lens, the range goes down to 2. The flash modes available on the menu are Auto, on or off. Can also play with the red eye reduction especial for those night time pictures where everyone seems to get red eye.
Like I have said before in the review, the zoom is four times optical. Combine that with the digital zoom that is available, you can zoom in 14x to magnify. You do seem to start to lose the quality on about 6x or 7x zoom.
You get a 16MB MultiMediaCard in the box. That holds between 9 high quality pictures to 137 small lower quality pictures. You can get ahold of 1GB MMCs for £5 or less, depending on what make it is.
You can record up to 1GB of movie with sound. The actually size is dependent on the memory card but can only take a 1GB card. 640x480 is the maximum resolution that you can video in. In this resolution, it does 10 frames per second, which if you're linking it to a TV may cause your movie when playback to flicker. At the lower resolution of 320x240 or 160 x 120, it will do it at 30 frames per second, which should illuminate that flickering. Up to 30 seconds of continuous recording is possible in 640x480, 3 minutes in 320x240 or 160 x 120.
I think for the age of the camera and the price its available at, it's brilliant. Sometimes I even get annoyed at how good quality it is because it shows up my spots too well. Nothing that PhotoShop wouldn't sort out but still. I've tried it on different setting and the best pictures are taken on 640x480 and 1024 x 768.
...Uploading your pictures...
There are three ways uploading your pictures. There's button and a cable, there's a cable and software or just a cable. Confused? Don't be. It's really easy.
On the camera at the back, you have a button to your right with a little blue printer and arrow. This is if you want to connect to a printer with the USB cable. They called it PictBridge. Basically, plug it the cable at both end, camera and printer, press the button on the camera, press a button on the printer and hey presto, your pictures are printing.
The second way is if you want to connect it to the PC and want to edit them. You need the cable and the Canon software installed on the PC. Load the software, connect the cable and you can download all the pictures that you want and edit them.
The third way is the easiest way. Just need the cable and no software if you are using Windows XP or higher. It just plug and play. Plug the cable in and Windows own software pops up and you can just download all of them onto your PC in one go.
...In the box...
A cover for the camera
Manual and CD for the software
16 MMC card
2 AA-type alkaline batteries
It's still on sale online on various websites. On Ebay, I've seen them go for £20-£30 but on some other sites, they are still price up at £130-£200. That's just mad for a camera of only 4 megapixels.
I love this little camera. The only thing that could be better would be the battery life other than that, it's perfect for what I want it for. Besides, for the price (free in my case), it's great. It think it's perfect for children or older people because it's really easy to use.