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Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W510 Overview

Posted: 01/05/2011

The Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W510 digital camera is based around a 1/2.3"-type, 12.1 effective megapixel Sony SuperHAD CCD image sensor with RGB color filter array, coupled to a Sony-branded 4x optical zoom lens. For 4:3 aspect-ratio shooting, the Sony W510's lens offers a 35mm-equivalent range from a generous 26mm wide angle to a moderate 105mm telephoto, while 16:9 shooting yields a sensor crop and 28 - 114mm equivalent focal range. The lens has a two-step aperture with ND filter, which offers either F2.8 or F8.0 at wide angle; at telephoto the maximum aperture is F5.9, and the minimum aperture isn't stated. Autofocusing is possible to a minimum of just four centimeters at wide angle, or 60 centimeters at telephoto. The camera can capture 4:3 aspect ratio images at up to 4,000 x 3,000 pixel resolution, 16:9 aspect ratio images at up to 4,000 x 2,248 pixels, or 30 frames-per-second video at VGA (640 x 480 pixel) resolution or below with monaural audio.

On the rear panel of the Sony Cyber-shot W510 is a 2.7-inch Clear Photo LCD panel with a resolution of 230,400 dots. This serves as the only method of framing and reviewing images, since the Sony W510 doesn't feature an optical or electronic viewfinder. The Sony DSC-W510 has a 9-point autofocus system, and includes a face detection system, capable of detecting up to eight faces in a scene. The face detection function is also used to provide a Smile Shutter function that automatically triggers the shutter when your subject is smiling. There's no blink detection feature in the W510, however. The W510 offers three methods for determining exposures - multi-pattern, center-weighted or spot metering. Shutter speeds from 1 to 1/1,500 second are possible under automatic control, and sensitivities ranging from ISO 80 to 3,200 equivalents are on offer. 2.0EV of exposure compensation is available, in 1/3 EV steps. The DSC-W510 doesn't offer any form of optical image stabilization.

Eight white balance settings are available, including auto and seven presets, but there's no manual white balance setting in the Sony W510. As well as Intelligent Auto and Program modes, the W510 offers a selection of nine scene modes -- High Sensitivity, Twilight, Twilight Portrait, Landscape, Soft Snap, Beach, Snow, Gourmet, and Pet -- which offer a modicum of control over the look of images. The Sony W510 includes a four-mode flash strobe with red-eye reduction capability. Flash range is stated as 0.2 to 4.8 meters at wide angle, or 0.2 to 2.3 meters at telephto, when using automatic ISO sensitivity. A two- or ten-second self timer allows the photographer to get in the picture themselves, or to avoid camera shake caused by pressing the shutter button when shooting on a tripod.

Images and movies can be recorded on Secure Digital or SDHC cards, but not the latest SDXC types. The W510 is also compatible with Sony's own proprietary Memory Stick PRO Duo cards. No information was available at press time regarding internal memory, if included. The Sony W510 includes standard definition video output connectivity, as well as USB data connectivity. Power comes courtesy of a proprietary NP-BN1 Infolithium battery pack, rated as good for 220 shots on a charge to CIPA testing standards.

The Sony W510 digital camera is available from February 2011, priced at around US$110. Four body colors will be available -- silver, black, pink, or red.