Sony has updated its line of touch-screen ultracompacts with the launch of the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-T700.
The 10.1 megapixel Cyber-shot T700 replaces Sony’s T300 premium touch-screen camera. A 4x Carl Zeiss Vario-Tessar folded optic with SteadyShot optical image stabilization and an effective range of 35-140mm pairs well with the T700’s ultra-thin all metal construction, providing a clean-lined look reminiscent of previous Sony T models.
Photographic modes and features are relatively conventional, with the T700 providing Sony’s standard range of auto, program, and scene modes. Intelligent Scene Recognition technology has been made more intelligent across Sony’s latest models, expanding the number of modes from among which the camera automatically selects. Similarly, Sony’s Smile Shutter portrait capture technology has been lightly refined.
Compared to the anti-blink warning systems currently on the market, Sony’s anti-blink technology goes a step further: part of the iSCN system, anti-blink automatically takes two shots in rapid succession when a portrait situation is detected, recording only the image in which eyes are open (or warning the shooter if neither shot proves acceptable).
Among its notable features, the T700 also takes Sony’s portable photo album concept to new levels. Recognizing that one of the primary conveniences of digital photography is the ability to easily take hundreds of photos anywhere using tiny flash memory, the T700 pulls double duty as a photo viewer with 4 GB of integrated memory (the camera also supports standard varieties of Sony's Memory Stick media).
Improved search and organization features make cataloging images within the T700’s internal memory a snap. Changes to Sony’s slideshow and scrapbook functions in playback mode expand the range of options for playing with your images once you sort them.
Even more unique is Sony’s PC Sync upload software: connect the camera to your computer and PC Sync will automatically back up any full-res photos from the camera to your hard drive and then return a screen-resolution version of the image to the T700. By storing all originals on the computer and keeping only much smaller files optimized for on-screen viewing on the camera, the T700 is able to hold literally thousands more images in its onboard memory than a typical camera or viewer—“Up to 40,000 photos in your pocket,” according to Sony—and it isn’t restricted to photos taken by the T700 either: simply port shots from your other cameras into PC Sync, and the T700 will automatically add them to its library.
Of course, no great portable photo library/camera combo would be complete without an equally great screen, and if the specs are any indication the T700 has a fantastic one: a 3.5-inch wide-aspect XtraFine LCD touch panel with a stunning 921,000 dot resolution.
The T700’s icon-based sidebar touch interface appears to be largely familiar for users of other T-series touch-screen cameras. As before, the T700’s back panel is completely button free, relying on on-screen icons to change settings instead.
Sony has floated a retail launch in late September for the T700. Expect to pay around $400.
Sony Cyber-shot DSC-T700 Specifications:
|Sensor||10.1 megapixel, 1/2.3" Super HAD CCD|
|Zoom||4x (35-140mm) Carl Zeiss Vario-Tessar, f/3.5-4.4|
|LCD/Viewfinder||3.5", 921K-dot XtraFine LCD with touch interface
|Shutter Speed||60-1/1000 seconds|
|Shooting Modes||Auto, Easy Auto, Program, Scene, Movie, High Sensitivity
|Scene Presets||Twilight, Twilight Portrait, Soft Snap, Landscape, Beach, Snow, Fireworks, Hi-Speed Shutter, Hi Sensitivity, Underwater, Gourmet, iSCN
|White Balance Settings||Auto, Daylight, Cloudy, Fluorescent 1, Fluorescent 2, Fluorescent 3, Incandescent, Flash|
|Metering Modes||Multi, Center, Spot|
|Focus Modes||Multi AF, Center AF, Spot AF, Flexible Spot AF, four approximate distance AF modes, Macro, Close Focus
|Drive Modes||Normal, Burst, Self Timer
|Flash Modes||Auto, Forced On, Slow Synchro, Forced Off|
|Self Timer Settings
||10 seconds, 2 seconds, Off
|Memory Formats||Memory Stick Duo, Memory Stick Pro Duo|
|File Formats||JPEG, MPEG|
|Max. Image Size||Not Specified
|Max. Video Size
||640x480, 30 fps
|Zoom During Video||Not Specified
|Battery||Rechargeable lithium-ion, 680 mAh
|Connections||USB 2.0, AV output (includes HD output), DC input|
|Additional Features||Face Detection, Smile Shutter, Bionz processor, touch screen interface, super macro mode, HD Slide Show with music, scrapbook mode, photo library, PC Sync software