Canon Compact Cameras Stay Focused on Moving Targets

Capturing fast-moving kids is easier with new feature coming from SLRs.

This $400 model packs a 15 megapixel punch.
This $400 model packs a 15 megapixel punch.

Focusing on fast-moving kids will get easier with new point-and-shoot cameras from Canon. The cams use something called "Servo Autofocus" to capture a sharp image of a moving target, say a 4-year-old dancing about the backyard.

It's a feature that's coming to the Canon consumer line from digital SLRs, the higher-end and bulkier models that professionals have long favored. They have fast shutters and Servo AF that adjusts their focus as an object moves closer or farther away. Those features help catch fast-moving tykes and is a reason that many parents have turned to SLRs, which generally start at about $600 or $700.

Starting at $300, Canon's new PowerShot models (including cameras described here and here) will come with Servo AF. They all start selling next month. The cameras include a slew of other new features, including a gaudy resolution of 15 megapixels on two of the models.

More pixels are always good, but they don't help when the kid is out of focus.