Print 18 comment(s) - last by MGSsancho.. on Jan 30 at 7:55 PM

New cams shoot still shots and video at once

Sony has tossed three new compact digital cameras onto the market that slip into the company's Cyber-shot line. The announcement comes even as Sony admits that the point-and-shoot category is a dying breed due to the prevalence of smartphones with high-resolution cameras onboard (the company has seen its P&S sales plummet 20 percent over the past year and expects the trend to continue).
The three new cameras include the DSC-TX200V slipping into the new ultrathin T series Cyber-shot series, and two more cameras that fall into the W series dubbed the DSC-WX70 and the DSC-WX50. The cameras share some common features such as new Exmor R CMOS sensors in new and improved BIONZ image processors.
The TX200V digital camera has 18.2-megapixel resolution, which Sony claims is the highest resolution sensor that's currently offered in the point-and-shoot market. The camera also boasts superfast autofocus speeds needing only 0.13 seconds during the day and 0.25 seconds in lowlight situations to focus.
Sony also gifted the new camera with a large 3.3-inch Xtra Fine TruBlack OLED touchscreen. The TX200V is also ruggedized with ability to survive water submersion up to 16 feet deep, and the camera is dust proof, and freeze proof to 14°F. The WX70 and WX50 cameras both sport 16.2-megapixel resolution with the same sensors as the other camera. These two cameras both use 921K dot resolution LCD touchscreens with the WX70 sporting a 3-inch screen and the WX50 sporting a 2.7-inch screen.
"We continue to innovate in the compact camera space, finding new ways to help consumers produce high-quality photos and videos as easily as possible, regardless of lighting conditions," said Yosuke Tomoda, director of the Cyber-shot business at Sony Electronics. "With new technologies designed to improve the overall imaging experience - including extended creativity, control and more - this new lineup of Cyber-shot cameras delivers impressive results with stylish, pocket-sized bodies." 
The TX200V has a 26 mm equivalent lens and has 5x optical zoom. It also boasts the ability to capture 13-megapixel still images while shooting video with dual record. The camera can capture 1080p resolution video and has Optical Steady Shot Active Mode for clear video recording.
The WX70 has a 25mm equivalent lens and five times optical zoom. It can also capture full HD video while shooting 12-megapixel still shots with its own dual record mode. The WX50 has the same lens as its bigger brother and can shoot 12-megapixel images while recording 1080p video.
The TX200V will be offered in silver, red, and violet for about $500. The WX70 will sell for about $230 in silver, black, pink, violet, and white. The WX50 will sell for $200 and will come in silver or black. All of the cameras are set to hit the market in March.

Sources: Sony, Imaging-Resource, The Verge

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By chris2618 on 1/30/2012 11:39:25 AM , Rating: 2
I think part of the reduction is due to digital cameras being at the back of the innovation curve. We've had all the development required: all the mega pixels you will need, lens of very good quality, good low light images and ability to take video. Can't really think of what more you would need.

RE: Saturation
By lucyfek on 1/30/2012 12:20:15 PM , Rating: 3
Mostly true - there's no point in getting just more megapixels at the expense of picture quality. At the same time I replaced my aged 6 megapixel Sony that would not fire flash reliably with Canon that has 10 Mp (I was positively surprised that someone would market new camera bucking the trends for higher pixel count), GPS (nice), HD video (with available zoom). Not exactly disposable but feels solid and is super portable. No phone camera can compare and upgrading to most recent ones (4S etc) just to get decent pics seems ridiculous (unless you like supporting wireless providers and stay locked in contracts).
I also have a interchangeable lens camera but for daily use/hiking/biking P&S is the way to go. My corporate 3G is fine for what it's meant to do but no pics (fine if it gets upgraded but I won't give a penny towards this).

RE: Saturation
By kmmatney on 1/30/2012 12:59:06 PM , Rating: 2
Coming from a 3GS to a 4S, the image quality difference is amazing. The 4S has the same/better image quality compared to my 5 year old Panasonic Lumix - the only thing missing is optical zoom. I'm sure that a newer 13MP camera is better, but there are never felt resolution limited even at 5 MP.

For Christmas, the family got together and took our annual Christmas picture. Someone had a 12MP point-and-shoot camera, but I had a picture taken with my 4S as well. We reviewed all the pictures, and ended up using the phone picture. We picked the picture mainly of non-camera things (like more people looking at the camera) but the image quality was high enough such than onone knew it came from a phone.

RE: Saturation
By spread on 1/30/2012 1:39:39 PM , Rating: 3
Can't really think of what more you would need.

Increase sensor size slightly. Decrease megapixel count and make each pixel larger so it can capture a cleaner image with more dynamic range and better color accuracy. Also backside illumiated everything with the new white pixel tech that Sony released if possible. So the pixels are now RGBW instead of the standard Bayer RGB patterns. Now with even better dynamic range and noise control.

Add in some RAW mode alongside JPEG so the quality can be improved even more.

Larger battery as well. Yes the camera becomes slightly thicker but now you should be able to take more than a 3min video clip before the battery is depleted. A external powersource jack would be very useful for video mode if you say... wanted to carry a USB battery on your belt or wanted to plug it into the wall or the car lighter plug or wherever.

Now you have a hell of a camera. It's slightly thicker but the image quality should be a generation or two ahead. Resolution not so much but now the choice is between a crisp clean image and a high resolution noisy muddy looking thing.

RE: Saturation
By MGSsancho on 1/30/2012 3:55:28 PM , Rating: 3
Bigger sensor, raw mode, big glass.... non-interchangeable lenses... sounds like this but granted at that price point and features it blows away any other point-and-shoot. Still the idea that the sensor size is more important that pixels.

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