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Sony's Cyber-shot DSC-W1 digital camera. Courtesy of Sony, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Sony announces DSC-W1 digital camera
By Michael R. Tomkins, The Imaging Resource
(Thursday, February 12, 2004 - 05:01 EST)

Sony USA has today announced its new Cyber-shot DSC-W1 digital camera at the Photo Marketing Association show in Las Vegas.

Sporting a 5.1 megapixel sensor and Carl Zeiss Vario-Tessar 3x optical zoom lens, the DSC-W1 is set for introduction this May at a price of US$400. Other features include a 2.5" LCD display, optical viewfinder, Memory Stick PRO storage, USB 2.0 connectivity, and power from rechargeable AA batteries. As with Sony's other Cyber-shot announcements today, the DSC-W1 is based on Sony's new "Real Imaging Processor"...

Sony DSC-W1
Sony's Cyber-shot DSC-W1 digital camera. Courtesy of Sony, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!
Image Device: 1/1.8" 5.1 Megapixel Effective Super HAD CCD
Recording Media: Memory Stick Media, Memory Stick PRO Media
Zoom: 3X Optical
Smart Zoom Feature: 0-4.0X (at VGA Resolution), 12X Total
Digital Zoom: Precision, 0-2.0X Range, 6X Total
Filter Diameter: 37mm, requires adaptor
Focal Length: 7.9 - 23.7mm
Aperture: f2.8 - 5.2
Auto Focus: 5 Area Multi-Point AF, Center AF, 5-Step Manual
Minimum Focus Distance: 19.7" (50cm)
Macro Focus Distance: 3.9" (10cm)
Shutter Speed:
1/8 - 1/1000 sec. (auto)
2 - 1/1000 sec. (twilight)
30 - 1/1000 sec. (manual)
Aperture Range: N/A
Exposure Compensation: +/- 2.0 EV, 1/3 EV Steps
Color LCD: 2.5" 123K Pixe LCD Screen
Flash Modes: Auto/Forced On/Forced Off/Slow Synchro
Red-Eye Reduction: On/Off
Flash Effective Range: 1.6 - 12.5 ft. (0.5 - 3.8m)
White Balance: Auto, Daylight, Cloudy, Fluorescent, Incandescent
Burst Mode: 4 Shot (JPEG fine), 7 Shot (JPEG std.), 1.7fps
Picture Effects: Sepia, Black & White
ISO: Auto, 100, 200, 400
Scene Modes: Twilight, Twilight Portrait, Landscape, Soft Snap, Candle, Beach
Self-Timer: Yes, 10 Seconds
Video Output: Yes, NTSC/PAL Selectable
Still Image Modes: Normal (JPEG Fine/Standard), Burst, Multi-Burst
MPEG Movie Mode: MPEG VX Fine with Audio (640 x 480 at 30fps), (MPEG VX Fine requires Memory Stick PRO media) MPEG VX Standard with Audio (640 x 480 at 16fps), Video Mail (160 x 112 at 8fps) with Audio
Microphone/Speaker: Yes/Yes
USB Terminal: Yes, Supports USB 2.0
Cradle Compatible: N/A
Memory Stick PRO Media Compatibility: Tested to support up to 1GB media capacity; does not support Access Control security function
Compatible Battery: "AA" NiMH, Alkaline
Supplied Software: Picture Package for Sony ver 1.0, USB Driver
OS Compatibility:
Microsoft Windows 98/98SE/Me/2000/XP Home/XP Pro
Macintosh OS 9.1/9.2/X (10.0, 10.1, 10.2, 10.3)
Supplied Accessories: NH-AA-DA Rechargeable AA Batteries, BC-CS2 Battery Charger, A/V and USB Cables, Wrist Strap, MSA-32A 32MB Memory Stick Media, Software CD-ROM
Dimensions: 3 9/16" x 2 3/8" x 1 1/4" (91 x 60 x 31mm)
Weight: 7.0 oz (190g) (without supplied accessories)
More Photos
Sony's Cyber-shot DSC-W1 digital camera. Courtesy of Sony, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!
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Original Source Press Release:

SONY PACKS PERFORMANCE AND SIMPLICITY INTO NEW RANGEFINDER-STYLE CYBER-SHOT W1 CAMERA

Camera’s Large 2.5-Inch LCD Screen Makes Sharing Images Just as Fun as Capturing Them.

LAS VEGAS (PMA 2004, Booth M30), Feb. 11, 2004 — Once you play with Sony’s new five-megapixel Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W1 camera, you will realize the adage of not judging a book by its cover also applies to digital cameras.

Available in May for about $400, its small size (a little larger than a deck of cards) belies the performance within, which is largely attributed to the inclusion of Sony’s new Real Imaging Processor circuit. Designed specifically for the special tasks of digital cameras, the new processor aids in fast camera response times and extended battery life with up to 340 shots between power charges.

Either as a step-up model for those who have tried digital photography or those who are looking to cross-over from film cameras, the Cyber-shot W1 camera allows users to explore the possibilities of photography digitally.

“As digital music improved music, the new Cyber-shot W1 is an example of Sony’s way of improving photography digitally,” said Greg Young, Sony Electronics’ director of digital camera marketing.

`Turn the camera on and the telescoping Carl Zeiss® Vario Tessar® 3X optical zoom lens fully extends in about a second, and the large 2.5-inch color LCD screen comes to life—signaling that the camera is ready-to-go. For those wanting to frame a shot at eye-level, the optical viewfinder is also available.

Once on, the Cyber-shot W1 camera focuses and shoots full-resolution images in a little over one second intervals, and can capture TV-quality resolution video clips up to the capacity of an optional Memory Stick PRO™ flash media card.

Sophisticated Yet Simple
The W1 is built for photographers who want to capture great images through a host of automatic features to help balance light and exposure, but who also want the option to manually control the picture-taking process. Among the appealing features are:

  • Five-area Multi-Point Auto Focus: The camera evaluates five separate areas of the frame and intelligently focuses on the subject, displaying the selected focus point.
  • Multi-Pattern Measuring: Independently meters the light in 49 points of the frame to establish the optimum exposure, even when highlight and shadow aren’t centered in the frame.
  • Manual Exposure Controls: Flexible exposure control in which shutter speeds from 30-1 1/1000 seconds and apertures of f2.8 – 5.2 can be selected.
  • Live Histogram: The live histogram displays number of pixels at each luminosity, making it easy to evaluate correct exposure for each shot.
  • Auto Fill Flash: When the subject is backlit or in shadow, the fill flash automatically fires to provide optimum exposure.
  • Preset Scene Modes: With 6 scene modes, parameters can be matched to the shooting conditions, including: Twilight, Twilight Portrait, Landscape, Snow, Beach and Candle.
  • Conversion Lens Adapter: The outer ring of the camera’s lens can be removed so that the camera can accommodate various conversion lenses.

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