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Excerpt: They’ve got to be kidding! No…. It’s true. The Canon PowerShot SX30 IS has a 35x zoom lens! Stabilised and with a reasonably fast f2.7 maximum aperture. I had an early preview of this gem a few months before its official release and was stunned at the range of the hyper zoom. Then, more recently, spent a day with one, chasing cars, boats and choppers.
Excerpt: The Canon PowerShot SX30 IS ($429) is currently the "big gun" in the super zoom camera world. Packing a whopping 35X optical zoom lens (covering a focal range of 24 - 840 mm), the SX30 can be used in virtually any shooting situation that may arise. Other features include optical image stabilization (naturally), a rotating 2.7" LCD, a hot shoe, manual and automatic controls, and a 720p movie recording with stereo sound and use of the optical zoom.
Summary: Creatively it would be unfair to compare the SX30 directly with a budget DSLR, as there are many areas where it cannot compete; in focus speed, viewfinder and burst mode especially. This camera does have plenty of strengths, offering not only one of the longest zooms on the market but also with the most impressive stabilisation. It produces some great-looking results and, thanks to the manual controls and vari-angle screen, you can get some really creative shots.
Pros: Huge zoom, very useable for this type of camera, lots of functionality
Summary: The Canon Powershot SX30 IS is
a 14 Megapixel super-zoom with a 35x optical zoom lens and a fully articulated 2.7in screen.
An update to the hugely successful PowerShot SX20 IS, it adds significantly to the older model's zoom range at both ends with a 24mm ultra-wide-angle extending a long, long way up to an 840mm super-telephoto giving it the longest zoom range of any consumer super-zoom on the market.
Conclusion: The Canon Powershot SX30 IS is about more than just an extra long lens. There are plenty of features to get your teeth into and photo quality is very good too. If extreme zoom is something you need then this camera ticks all the right boxes.
Pros: Long lens - general features - picture quality