The Canon PowerShot A2600 is a budget camera designed to be easy to use - it has a built-in help menu and Smart Auto mode. There is also a 16 megapixel sensor and 5x optical zoom lens. The A2600 is available in black, blue, red and silver from Currys for £79.99.
Canon PowerShot A2600 Features
The Canon PowerShot A2600 has a 16 megapixel CCD sensor and 5x optical zoom lens which is a 35mm equivalent of 28-140mm. The zoom can be extended to 10x using ZoomPlus. The help counteract blur there is digital image stabilisation.
To make picture taking as easy as possible there is Smart Auto mode which automatically adjusts the camera settings for the detected scenes. There is also a number of scene modes to choose from as well as creative effects such as fisheye, miniature and toy camera. Live view control allows you to experiment with picture settings such as brightness and contrast will seeing the results before shooting.
Videos are recorded in 720p HD and optical zoom is available during recording.
16 megapixel CCD sensor
5x optical zoom lens (35mm equiv: 28-140mm)
Digital image stabilisation
3.0 inch 230k dot LCD screen
Smart Auto mode
720p HD video recording
3cm minimum focusing distance
Available in black, blue, red and silver
Canon PowerShot A2600 Handling
The Canon PowerShot A2600 has a metal body and is a good size for carrying around in your pocket. The grey rear and coloured front makes the camera look stylish. The rear of the camera is filled largely by the 3 inch screen - it goes almost all the way to three edges of the camera with the fourth being where the buttons are. The screen has a resolution of 230k dots which is typical for a budget camera of this type.
The buttons on the camera include movie record, ? (help), playback and menu. There is a d-pad with a function / set button in the middle for cycling through the menus which also gives access to modes, eco, flash and display. The help button takes you into a built-in guide on using the camera. The menu system is easy to navigate - all the settings for shooting are found via the function button. To change other general camera settings you need to use the menu button.
Battery life is rated at 220 shots according to CIPA test results, this isn't a lot of shots but you can help get as much out of a charge by using the eco mode. This turns the screen off where possible to save power. We took a number of shots to test the camera's responsiveness, from switch on to first photo, shot to shot, focusing speed etc. We take a number of shots and then use the average to ensure accurate and consistent tests, making it easy to compare with other cameras.
Wide - Focus / Shutter Response
Full zoom - Focus / Shutter Response
Switch on Time to Taking a Photo
Shot to Shot without Flash
Shot to Shot with Flash
Continuous Shooting - Flash
Focus speed is fairly quick, but continuous shooting speeds are nothing to get excited about.
Canon PowerShot A2600 Performance
Additional sample photos and product shots are available in the Equipment Database, where you can add your own review, photos and product ratings.
Canon Powershot A2600 Sample Photos
Sample Photos - Colour reproduction is good and images are well exposed. Skin tones are decent and there is not sign of red-eye when using the flash. To extend the dynamic range you switch on the i-contrast option.
Canon Powershot A2600 Lens test images
Lens Performance - Images have a decent amount of detail at both ends of the lens. There is some purple fringing in contrasting areas but this is generally kept under reasonable control. The lens has a minimum focusing distance of 3cm which means you can take decent macro shots.
Canon Powershot A2600 ISO test images
ISO Noise Performance - Noise is kept low at ISO 100, 200 and 400 with just small increases at each setting. Images become soft at ISO 800, with ISO 1600 becoming softer still, but detail is still good.
Canon Powershot A2600 White-balance test images
White Balance Performance - Under the incandescent lights the Auto White Balance (AWB) produces an image with an orange cast, with the incandescent preset performing well. Under the fluorescent lights the AWB performs excellently, the fluorescent preset also performs well, with the slightest colour cast present.
Canon Powershot A2600 Digital filters
Digital Filters - The A2600 has a number of creative shooting modes with some examples above.
Video - Below is a video recorded in 720p HD. Quality is OK, you can use the optical zoom during recording, an example of which can be seen on the ePHOTOzine Youtube page.
Value For Money
The Canon PowerShot A2600 is available from Currys for £79.99. Other cameras to consider with a similar specification include the Fujifilm FinePix AX650 @ £50, Samsung ST72 at £72, Olympus Stylus VG-180 at £60, Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS50 at £66 and Sony Cybershot DSC-W710 at £72. For more ideas, read our Top 11 Best Budget Cameras article.
For those in the market for a budget compact camera, the Canon PowerShot A2600 is going to appeal. Available for just £80, it has decent enough image quality and a well built metal body that looks stylish in any of the colours it is available in. There are a few cons; short battery life, slow continuous shooting and the lack of optical image stabilisation, but these are perfectly acceptable for this price. You can use the eco mode to ensure you get the most from the battery and beginners to photography will find the help menu useful.
Canon PowerShot A2600 Pros
Decent image quality
3cm close focusing distance
Good value for money
Easy to use with built-in help guide
Canon PowerShot A2600 Cons
No optical image stabilisation
Quite low battery life
Slow continuous shooting