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Sample photos: Canon PowerShot A3100 IS

Check out an examination of photo quality from the 12-megapixel Canon PowerShot A3100 IS.

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Joshua Goldman
Managing Editor Josh Goldman is a laptop expert and has been writing about and reviewing them since built-in Wi-Fi was an optional feature. He also covers almost anything connected to a PC, including keyboards, mice, USB-C docks and PC gaming accessories. In addition, he writes about cameras, including action cams and drones. And while he doesn't consider himself a gamer, he spends entirely too much time playing them.
Joshua Goldman
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1 of 6 Matthew Fitzgerald/CNET
While the A3100 IS might not have much in the way of features, it does have excellent photo quality for the money. Like many compacts in its class, there's a noticeable shift in quality at ISO 400, so the A3100 IS performs its best below this sensitivity. In other words, the more light you have the better off you'll be. Unlike its linemate, the A3000, this camera has less visible noise when photos are viewed at 100 percent. Combined with its higher resolution, you get a little more flexibility when it comes to larger prints and cropping.
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2 of 6 Joshua Goldman/CNET
The A3000 had issues with noise, particularly in darker areas of photos. The A3100 fares better. It's also quite capable in Macro mode.
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3 of 6 Joshua Goldman/CNET
Colors are not always accurate, but they sure look great. With rare exceptions, subjects turned out bright and vibrant. Exposure is good, too, though highlights have a tendency to blow out--typical of its class.
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4 of 6 Joshua Goldman/CNET
Purple fringing is at normal amounts with high-contrast subjects. It's visible when photos are viewed at 100 percent, but not at the picture-destroying levels I've seen from competitive models.
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5 of 6 Joshua Goldman/CNET
The lens has good sharpness edge to edge, but there is some barrel distortion at its widest position (top). There's no discernible pincushioning with the lens fully extended (bottom.
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6 of 6 Joshua Goldman/CNET
If you're interested in the A3000 IS' creative scene modes, here's a idea of what they can do. The top photo was taken using the camera's standard Auto mode. The middle shot uses the new Super Vivid option, and the bottom one was taken with Poster Effect, which creates color banding where there would normally be smoother gradations.

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