Canon has alerted consumers to a batch of faulty PowerShot A650 IS compact cameras which can produce a ?ghosting? effect caused by light entering the back of the camera.

However, the company?s European office will not say how many of the cameras are in the UK, if any.

The A650 IS is a 12.1MP digital compact, launched in the UK last month priced £329 (See AP News 8/9/07).

When AP asked how many had reached the UK market a Canon UK spokeswoman indicated that the firm?s European Office would not supply any more information other than what appears on the Canon Europe website.

In the statement Canon Europe says: ?Canon has discovered that, when shooting with the variangle LCD monitor open in bright light or sunny conditions with light shining on the back of the camera, an effect such as that pictured below can occur in images taken with the PowerShot A650 IS.?

To avoid this ?phenomenon? Canon advises users to shoot with the variangle LCD monitor ?closed? (that is, in the flat position).

The website adds that the problem results in ?ghosting in the centre part of images?.

Canon has offered to repair any faulty cameras for free.

Affected products have a ?zero? in the fifth digit of the serial number, according to the statement which adds that this number can be found on the bottom of the camera.

Canon?s website suggests the firm has corrected the fault in some existing units prior to distribution.

Consumers can tell whether this ?counter-measure? has been incorporated by checking the marking inside the battery cover, adds Canon Europe.

For the full Canon Europe statement click here