I just upgraded from my trusty old Canon PowerShot SD100 3.2 megapixel camera to a spankin’ new Canon PowerShot SD450 5 megapixel model. I’ve always enjoyed Canon’s digital Elph cameras. Like the iPod, they’re compact, stylish, and full-featured without being complicated.

Compared to the old model, photos are noticeably sharper, with greater detail and more accurate color. The SD450 has a big, bright LCD screen – great for showing the photos and movies on the camera. After all, everyone wants to see the photo you just took of them, immediately after you’ve snapped it. Also, the SD450 can record TV-quality movies, limited only by the size of the memory card in the camera. My old camera could only take 30 second clips, which was often not long enough.

The SD450 has a few gee-whiz features. If the camera is still for more than a minute, the screen powers down, but immediately powers back up when the camera is moved – an excellent power saving feature. Also, the image on the screen can rotate with the camera. And there are a number of handy pre-loaded image settings for taking photos in low-light, of sports, or even of pets (small dogs included).

All this in a tough metal case smaller than a pack of cards.

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