Despite its higher resolution, the R847 consistently beat its little brother in our lab tests. After 1.9 seconds from power-on to first shot, it could take a new shot once every 1.3 seconds with the onboard flash turned off. With the flash enabled, that wait increased to a still-good 1.8 seconds. The shutter responded quickly, lagging only 0.5 second with our high-contrast target and 1 second with our low-contrast target. Only in burst mode did the R847 lose to its predecessor, taking three full-resolution photos in 2.2 seconds for a rate of 1.4 frames per second, compared to the R837's 2.1 frames per second. This slower burst rate can probably be attributed to the R847's higher resolution.
Unfortunately, the R847's photos disappoint just as much as its performance impresses. Unacceptable levels of noise appear even at ISO 100. If you dare hit ISO 800 or ISO 1600, grain utterly consumes any and all detail in your shot. The R847's predecessor could only reach ISO 400, and now we know why: photos taken at higher sensitivity levels look horrible. Besides noise, the R847's shots suffered from some painful distortion; wide-angle shots balloon out comically, while telephoto shots pinch inward. In the end, while you can coax the camera into grabbing decent shots at ISO 100, it simply misses far more than it hits.
With its disappointing picture quality, the HP Photosmart R847 simply isn't a very good camera. It might be well-designed, and it might shoot quickly, but those boons just can't make up for its horribly noisy, distorted photos.
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)
|Typical shot-to-shot time||Time to first shot||Shutter lag (typical)|
(Longer bars indicate better performance)