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I am not a professional photographer but a photography enthusiast so if you are expecting an expert's point of view please skip. I have been using it for over a year now, the photos look actual, but if you compare it with a Sony Cybershot or a Panasonic Lumix, which I did, the photos do not look nicer but somewhat closer to reality. I am a PhD student and my project is pretty much image processing. I can pretty much bet on it that Sony compact cameras apply some sort of digital filters that enhances the colors and adjusts the histogram. But with this version of Canon Powershot the quality of your photos more or less depends on your own skills. The one thing which I really like is the Manual mode, I was able to take some interesting images of the moon or a 100W switched-ON light bulb that with other compact cameras is pretty much next to impossible to shoot. The video capturing is not good at all. Some mobile phones can do better honestly. The video zoom is very slow. The stabilizer does not work properly on heavy zooms. The flash capacitor takes ages to recharge for heavy shots. The auto focus technology used is rather out dated. I assume this camera does the job for you so you are not wasting your money but if you are really after something that fulfills your special requests, I recommend you look more.