Hewlett-Packard Australia Photosmart R717

  • Review
  • Specs
  • Images
  • User Reviews
  • Buy Now
Hewlett-Packard Australia Photosmart R717
  • Expert Rating

    4.00 / 5

Pros

  • Museum mode is handy, images are good quality, image advice is useful for newbies

Cons

  • Awkward to handle

Bottom Line

Extensive in-camera coaching and some convenient extra features make the easy-to-use HP Photosmart R717 a great choice for an ambitious beginner.

Would you buy this?

With its rubberised black body and brushed-metal face plate, the 6.2-megapixel HP Photosmart R717 bears a marked family resemblance to its 5.1-megapixel predecessor, the R707. However, it upgrades many of its older sibling's features.

The R717 allows photographers to select from several different scene modes. The usual suspects--including portrait, action and landscape, plus panorama and the user-configurable My Mode--are available. The R717 also has Museum mode, which takes flashless photos and silences the usual camera sounds.

The long, banana-shaped zoom-control button resides on the back. Because it sits in a shallow indentation--a trough it shares with the direction and Menu/OK buttons--we found it a bit awkward to use. Our most successful technique was to run the side of a thumb along it, a motion better suited to a dial than to this smooth and strangely shaped button.

The R717's easily navigated menus borrow many useful features from the R707. For example, you can set HP's Adaptive Lighting function at high or regular levels to even out images with very light and very dark areas. We found it useful for capturing objects in a bright greenhouse window and for reducing flash glare on glassware photographed in a dark room. The in-camera red-eye reduction is simple and effective as well.

The HP Instant Share feature allows you to set up profiles for printers and email addresses; by tagging photos for these destinations while the shots are still in the camera, you can subsequently send the images out within minutes of sitting down at a PC.

From the R717's Playback menu, you can request image advice on shots already taken. It displays text that explains which features and modes might be useful for improving focus, exposure, depth of field and so on. The separate Help menu provides basic definitions and instructions plus "Top Ten Tips" for the new owner who's itching to snap some shots. Although none of this replaces the manual, it's certainly helpful for getting up to speed.

The quality of the R717's photos impressed us, as it produced some of the sharpest images we've seen from a point-and-shoot. Colours looked attractive, though a bit more oversaturated than the actual hues. We also saw a little speckling--possibly the result of oversharpening--on our colour-distortion tests. These were minor weaknesses, however.

The Photosmart R717 runs on either a rechargeable lithium ion battery (included in the box) or a disposable Duracell CP1 battery--which is good to carry in your camera bag in case the rechargeable dies sooner than you expected. Tested with the rechargeable lithium ion battery, the R717 lasted for 227 shots, or a period of just over two hours.

The R717 ships with no media for its SD Card slot, but the 32MB of internal memory suffices for taking a few high-res test shots on your way to the electronics store to buy media. A USB cable is included in the box for connection to a PC or to a PictBridge-compatible printer, or you can purchase HP's optional Photosmart R-series cradle.

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Essentials

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?