Pros: Easy to use, good picture quality. Has video mode and several shooting modes. Several features.
Cons: Pictures grainy in low-light settings. Could be built a little more solid.
My Mom has never had a digital camera, though she's wanted one for years. Being the self-proclaimed "illiterate", she didn't know how to go about buying a camera. Hence, my wife and I decided that we would buy her this camera and an AIO photo printer.
Although a cheaper camera, the R725 has several features that make it a good deal. Features include built-in red-eye removal, Design Gallery (allows you to apply several creative effects such as watercolor or 'slimming' the person in the photo), a built-in camera advice function that tells you what each function on you camera does and how to use it, tips, and video. The camera comes with a lithium-ion battery, AC adapter, manual, quick start guide, USB cable, warranty booklet, and photo software discs for Windows 98 or better and Mac OS X v 10.2.8 or better.
The camera is polished aluminum and weighs 0.4 pound. It is 3.67w x 0.93d x 2.4h inches and the LCD screen is 2.0 inches. The menu button on the back of the camera us surrounded by up/down/left/right navigation toggles. Above this is the boomerang-shaped zoom in/out button (3x optical, 8x digital), and below it is the delete button. Directly above the LCD screen is the on/off button. The top of the camera features 6 buttons for flash settings, automatic focus settings, print and share button, video playback, video mode and of course your photo shooting button. The right side of the camera contains your USB and wall outlet connection ports housed in a fragile plastic cover. On the bottom of the camera, you have the battery and memory card (SD up to 2gb) compartments.
This camera uses an internal lens. At first I had trouble with my fingers getting in the way because the lens is in the upper left corner of the camera. After a while, we got used to it and it doesn't cause any trouble. I find that the camera is comfortable to hold.
Using the Camera
I think most people will find the camera very easy to use, as I have. The menu buttons are easy to navigate, provide tips and instructions on how to use them, and allow for advanced users to control their own settings.
Picture quality is good, especially in sunlight. In favorable conditions, the pictures are clear and sharp. In poorly lit situations, however, photos can get grainy, dark, or blurry without the use of flash. Shutter speed is slow in poorly lit situations and a tripod is recommended. Battery life is decent when following the provided tips. I took photos throughout the day without recharging, though for trips a back-up battery is recommended.
This camera is perfect for a beginner. It's easy to use, the on-camera advice is a great help, and the photo quality is pleasing. For those who are already familiar with digital photography, however, this camera leaves things to be desired and is no match for SLRs.