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Canon PowerShot A1100 IS, A2100 IS refresh current A models
by David Rasnake -  2/18/2009

In addition to today's onslaught of new and updated products, Canon has opted to lightly refresh its PowerShot A1000 and A2000 models.

Basic updates, still no manual controls for latest A models
The new Canon PowerShot A1100 IS and PowerShot A2100 IS are largely unchanged, still sporting the same basic designs and AA power. In terms of updates, both models now pack the 12.1 megapixel sensor seen elsewhere in today's releases, as well as Canon's Smart Auto scene recognition technology and DIGIC IV processing.

Canon PowerShot A1100 IS

The A1100 IS features a 4x stabilized zoom lens, a 2.5 inch LCD and optical viewfinder, and four unique color options.

Canon PowerShot A1100 IS

The A2100 IS is, as before, slimmer and more compact, with a 3.0 inch display and no viewfinder.

Canon PowerShot A2100 IS

Instead of the 4x zoom used on the A1100, a 6x, optically stabilized zoom lens graces the upper-bracket A model.

Canon PowerShot A2100 IS

Unfortunately, photo enthusiasts will be sad to note that Canon has yet to rectify the decision to remove P/A/S/M manual exposure models from its latest A models with these newest offerings. Users seeking a Canon compact with manual exposure control will still have to look to the aging A590 to meet these requirements.

Entry-level A model also gets a facelift
The even bigger news in Canon's A series may be the launch of the Canon PowerShot A480.

Canon PowerShot A480

Revealed to audiences elsewhere in the world last month, the PowerShot A480 replaces the bulky A470 with a svelte new camera that manages amazing compactness in spite of its AA power source.

A 10.0 megapixel sensor, a 3.3x zoom lens, a 2.5 inch LCD, and DIGIC III processing form the core of the A480's specs, though this highly affordable (and now very stylish) entry point to Canon's PowerShot line does come in a range of bright colors.

Pricing and availability
With an anticipated price tag around $249, the PowerShot A2100 should hit store shelves in April. The $199 A1100 is scheduled for retail launch in March.

The PowerShot A480 is expected for retail delivery in March, with an MSRP of $129.