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Sony Cyber-shot DSC-TX1
The TX1 could easily be one of the smallest and the slimmest consumer camera in the market today. The device is smaller than most of the multimedia and business phones out there.
The ultra compact TX1 weighs 119g (without battery) and with dimensions 94 x 58 x 17. The hard plastic body feels good and the brush metal finish on the slide shutter gives the camera a great look. And don’t let the small size fool you; the TX1 is fully loaded with features.
The TX1 offers 4x optical zoom with a 10.2 megapixel image resolution. But unlike its brother, the WX1, TX1 features a Carl Zeiss –Vario Tessar lens. At the top, the power and shutter button are placed alongside the zoom lever. The camera functions on a touchscreen 3-inch LCD screen with a pixel count of 230,000 dots.
Just to give some information on the Exmor R sensor — Its main feature is to produce clear images under low light. The high speed sensor, clicks 6 separate images in less than a second and combines them into a single shot. The processor which does this function is the Bionz processor. On the camera, this technology is put to use on the Hand-held Twilight mode, Anti Motion Blur mode and the Panoramic mode.
Test results of this new feature by Sony were very good. Though it may take time to process the image, the quality of the pictures in Hand-held Twilight and Anti Motion blur mode is absolutely amazing. Now we did find the stitching visible in some images, but it’s nothing to complain about.
In most of the cameras, taking a panoramic shot meant adjusting the image as per the ghost of the previous image and complete the shot. With the TX1, you just have to move the camera in the required direction of the panoramic shot. Shooting directions can be changed to left, right, up and down.
The Intelligent Auto Adjustment (IAA) is brilliant. It automatically adjusts to the mode which is best for taking a particular shot and it always makes the right choice. Though at times it may not show what mode it is on for that particular shot, the IAA will make things much too easy for the point and shoot audience.
The touchscreen response is very good. Modes can be changed with the tap of a single button and the menu can be accessed by either tapping on the menu button or by a simple touch and drag. The photo album has been improved to preview the images easily. Browsing through images has become easier, as now one can just touch and drag to scroll to the next image.
The optical image stabilization is very good, which makes sense, considering the nature of the image sensor.
The colors are saturated, but the images are still crisp and clear. The saturated colors may seem aappealing to casual users at first, but to me it only dissolves the minute details. If only the colors weren't saturated the TX1's performance would have been near perfect.
The macro mode or close focus is solid. Its able to capture an image from a distance of 2-inches with ease. The steady shot is enabled on the macro mode, which helps avoiding blurred images caused by jittery hands. The detailing is very good even on pictures taken in low light.
The camera performed well on our ISO tests. The auto white balance was near-perfect and the details were pretty good even at ISO 800 with very little noise. The test was done on the Program Auto mode for where the highest ISO level was 800, since no manual mode was available to test the camera on higher ISO.
The camera took about 1.6 seconds to start up and it shuts down in less than a second. The camera runs on the Info Lithium D type battery which had issues of draining out too soon in the older Cyber-shot T-series. But amazingly on the TX1 the battery-life is quite good with around a 100 shots at a single charge (mixed shots — with and without flash).
The TX1 sells for Rs 20,990, that's Rs 1,000 more than the WX1, so it's going to be really difficult to chose one over the other. In the end its going to come down to personal choice and preference with touch interface, wide angle lens (on the WX1), looks and size. Sony has scored with the TX1 making it one of the best consumer cameras available in the market now. If you are looking for an ultra-compact digicam that's good looking with a 10 megapixel resolution and a solid feature set, Sony Cyber-shot DSC-TX1 is highly suggested.
- Dimensions (WxHxD): 94 x 58 x17
- Weight: 119g (without battery)
- LCD Display: 3" 230,000 dots
- Sensor: CMOS
- Resolution: 10.2 megapixels
- Aperture range: F3.5 - F4.6
- Shutter Speed: 2 - 1/1,250 sec
- Optical Zoom: 4x
- ISO sensitivity: Auto, 160, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200
- Flash: Auto, Auto, Flash On, Slow Syncro, Flash Off
- Self Timer: 2 or 10 sec
- Movie recording: 720p
- Storage: Memory Stick Duo / Pro Duo, Internal
- MRP: Rs. 20,990