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The A570 has a very good selection of features. As well as the moving-lens optical image stabilisation system, which reliably provides an extra two stops of blur-free hand-held shooting at low shutter speeds, it has a full range of manual exposure options, including aperture and shutter priority as well as full manual. The aperture and shutter speeds are adjustable in 1/3-stop increments, which is ideal for precise exposure control, with an aperture range of f/2.8 to f/8.0 and a shutter speed range of 15 seconds to 1/2000th of a second. As well as the manual modes there is program mode, full auto and are five special scene program modes, as well as seven scene modes. Also on the menu are a number of special colour modes, adjustable flash power, three metering modes, selectable focus point, face detection and many more. The movie mode has a useful extra feature in the shape of a high-speed 60fps QVGA mode. The A570 has enough versatility for creative photography, and would be an ideal camera for anyone interested in learning more about the subject.
In terms of image quality, the A570 has many good points and one or two not so good. Exposure and colour rendition are first class as one might expect, and dynamic range is surprisingly good for a 1/2.5-in sensor. The overall level of detail is good, but the lens does produce noticeable spherical distortion at the wide end of the zoom range, and corner sharpness is surprisingly poor. Refreshingly there is no sign of purple fringing even on the brightest highlights. Image noise is very low at up to 200 ISO, reasonable at 400, but becomes a real problem at 800. The 1600 ISO maximum sensitivity, which is touted as a feature of this model, is pretty much useless. However as long as you bear this limitation in mind the PowerShot A570 IS is capable of turning in good results under varied lighting conditions, and will seldom disappoint.
With the PowerShot A570 IS Canon continues what is arguably the best value series of mid-range enthusiast’s cameras on the market. Performance, build quality and design are up to Canon’s usual high standard, it has a wider range of features than anything else at its price point, and produces good results in a wide range of lighting conditions. It is an ideal camera for anyone keen to learn, and is capable of real creative photography.
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