Canon PowerShot A2200 Hands-On Review

by on January 23, 2011

in Canon

The Canon PowerShot A2200 is a new 14.1MP, budget-oriented point and shoot camera with a retail price around $140.  The A2200 offers a 4x optical zoom that gives you a 28-112mm equivalent zoom range.  The A2200 can also capture 720p HD video and it sports a 2.7-inch LCD.

I had a chance to spend a few minutes with the new compact camera at CES 2011.  My initial impressions are below.

As a compact, budget-friendly shooter, the A2200 is an attractive little camera.  It offers a top-mounted mode dial, which is nice for quick access to common shooting modes.  The A2200 has the standard full-auto mode, multiple scene modes (accessible via a menu system after selecting SCN on the mode dial), video capture mode and P (or program auto) mode for taking more control over the camera’s exposure – along with other options that you can see in the above image.

One thing that’s missing on the PowerShot A2200 is a direct record button for video capture.  While this is a becoming a more and more common feature on point and shoot cameras that capture video, none of the new PowerShot A-series models offer this feature.

As more evidence that video capture is an add-on feature for the A2200, the camera will only zoom “digitally” while recording video, instead of taking advantage of the 4x optical zoom lens.  While this is likely designed to prevent lens motor noise from being a distraction while recording video, it makes “zoomed video” rather grainy and unattractive.

On the still image side of things, there’s a lot to like with the A2200 and it’s $140 retail price point (which you can expect to drop after these sit on store shelves for a few weeks).  The controls (including the mode dial detailed above) are intuitive and easy to operate.  Shutter response is good for a compact camera of this class, and you get reasonable control over exposure in P mode.

Here are a couple of images that demonstrate how much zoom you get out of that 4x zoom lens.

The video, while 720p, won’t quite replace your dedicated camcorder; however, it will suffice for short clips for sharing on Facebook or YouTube.  Below is a short clip taken from the CES show floor.

The camera is not as slim for as ultra-compact models out there, but for the price you pay, it’s a reasonably compact camera that will easily fit into a pocket or purse.  The A2200 comes in multi-colored flavors of black, blue, silver and red.  I expect the A2200 to be a good seller in 2011.  While the A2200′s 720p video feature won’t replace your dedicated camcorder, my initial impressions are that it’s well worth the price of admission for a basic budget camera.

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