Canon PowerShot A800 review

Cheap and cheerful, but not all plain sailing

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Canon powershot a800

Sixty quid will barely cover a get-together meal in a pub these days, so at this price the PowerShot A800 is a great little family camera. It takes consistently good pictures from the box, and while nigh foolproof if you shout in Auto mode, the camera also offers some manual control over the final images.

There's also a good choice of Scene Modes for specific photo situations too, and the whole process of using this camera is relatively straightforward. We say relatively as some of the key menu functions are needlessly tricky to locate, and the icons could be more obvious.

So the PowerShot 800 is a no-brainer budget choice, right? Yes and no. While we've established its many virtues, shop around and you can get the Nikon S3100, for instance, at a similar price. This 14Mp head-turner is slimmer, looks better in black and offers 720p video recording.

We liked

Smart Auto mode makes it hard to take a bad picture, and there's a good choice of Scene Modes. While very much a point and click device, the PowerShot A800 offers a reasonable amount of manual adjustment and has a decent built-in flash.

Battery life's been boosted too.

We disliked

Canon should make it easier for newcomers to figure out the icons and menu settings. The camera's dumpy, dated looks won't win you any cool points, and the lens can feel a bit restricted. You can't record movies in high definition, either.

Tech Specs

Product TypeCompact Camera
Battery Size SupportedAA
Maximum Video Resolution640 x 480
Effective Camera Resolution10 Megapixel
Wide AngleNo
Product FamilyPowerShot A
HD Movie ModeNo
Memory Card SupportedSecure Digital (SD) Card, Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC) Card, Secure Digital Extended Capacity (SDXC), MultiMediaCard (MMC), MMCplus, HC MMCplus
Optical Zoom3.3x
Digital Zoom4x
Brand NameCanon
FeaturesFace Detection, Continuous Shooting Mode, Manual White Balance
Screen Size6.4 cm (2.5")
Video FormatsMotion JPEG (AVI)
Viewfinder TypeNo
Weight (Approximate)186 g
Image Sensor Size1/2.3" (6.16 mm x 4.62 mm)
Maximum Image Resolution3648 x 2736
Display Screen TypeLCD
Height61.6 mm
Width94.3 mm
Depth31.2 mm
Product SeriesA
Focal Length6.60 mm to 21.60 mm
Image FormatsJPEG
Focus ModesAuto
ManufacturerCanon, Inc
Product ModelA800
Product NamePowerShot A800 Compact Camera
Product LinePowerShot
Exposure Control

Program AE

Aspect Ratio16:9
Manufacturer Part Number5027B016
Manufacturer Website Address
Marketing Information

You can rely on Canon know-how to take great 10 Megapixel photos with Smart Auto mode. Available in 4 colours, the PowerShot A800 has a lightweight design that is fun and easy to use.

Package Contents
  • PowerShot A800 Compact Camera
  • 2 x AA Alkaline Batteries
Limited Warranty1 Year