HP Photosmart M407
Review Date: December 2nd 2004
The HP Photosmart M407 has a 4.23 megapixel, 1/2.5 inch CCD that delivers 4.11 effective megapixels. There are 4 image quality settings available (4MP Best, 4MP, 2MP and VGA), which are recorded as JPEGs. There are no RAW or TIFF formats. The camera's 3x optical zoom lens is equivalent to a 34–95mm lens on a 35mm format camera. There is also a 6x digital zoom should you feel the need to use it. The camera uses Secure Digital (SD) memory cards.
This camera offers an Auto exposure modes and a number of scene modes (Macro, Fast Shot, Action, Portrait, Landscape, Beach & Snow). The aperture range is f2.9– f8 and the shutter speed range is 2 sec. – 1/2000 sec. There are 3 ISO speeds ranging from 100 to 400. There are 4 different White Balance settings to choose from (Sun, Shade, Tungsten, Fluorescent), plus an Auto setting. The camera offers exposure compensation in ± 2 in 1/2 EV stops, but there is no autobracketing of either exposure or white balance available.
The HP Photosmart M407has a normal shooting mode (still), self-timer, self-timer – 2 shot mode and a burst mode, which allows you take up to 3 shots as quickly as possible. There are 3 different colour modes on offer - colour, black and white and sepia. The built-in flash offers a range of different modes; Flash Off, Auto, Red-eye, Flash On and Night. The working distance at ISO 100 at the wide angle lens setting is 2.8m, and at the telephoto setting 1.7m. The flash typically takes 7.5 seconds to recharge.
To compose your images, you can use the LCD monitor or the optical viewfinder. The HP Photosmart M407 has a 1.8 inch colour TFT LCD monitor which has 130,338 pixels. There is also a traditional optical viewfinder (without diopter control). The HP Photosmart M407 can record movies with sound at one setting; 320x240 pixels at 30 frames per second. This is recorded in the MPEG-1 format. As well as recording movies, the HP Photosmart M407 also doubles up as a voice recorder, allowing you to attach an audio clip to an image that you have taken.
The camera's dimensions are 107mm (W) x 53mm (H) x 36mm (D), and it weighs 146g without batteries and storage cards fitted. The camera is powered by 2 x AA size alkaline batteries or 2 x Ni-MH rechargeable batteries.
Finally, the standard box kit contains 2 USB cables (1 camera to PC, 1 camera to printer), 2 AA Photo lithium batteries, wrist strap, user's manual and a CD-ROM(s) with HP Image Zone software 4.0 for Windows® and Macintosh with HP Instant Share technology. Note that HP have chosen to not supply a memory card. The HP Photosmart M407 does have 16Mb internal memory, but you can only store 6 images at the highest quality setting. You will therefore need to invest in some SD Cards to store your images on. You will also have to budget for some rechargeable batteries and a recharger, as the supplied batteries don't last very long. HP have also been rather mean by not including either their M-series camera dock or an A/V cable to connect the camera to a TV. This is because they want you to purchase the optional Photosmart M-series camera dock, to "further enhance your experience" as the first page of the manual states! In my opinion they should have included this in the basic kit. The camera has a 1 year standard warranty.
PhotographyBLOG is a member of the DIWA organisation. Our test results for the HP Photosmart M407 have been submitted to DIWA for comparison with test results for different samples of the same camera model supplied by other DIWA member sites.