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Sony makes waves with Cyber-shot DSC-TX5
by Allison Johnson -  2/17/2010

Sony unveils today the Cyber-shot DSC-TX5, an ultra-slim camera that isn't afraid of a little water. The waterproof, dustproof, freezeproof, and shockproof TX5 features their Exmor R CMOS sensor and a 3.0 inch touch screen. Sony hopes it will offer a sophisticated style option to those seeking a rugged point and shoot.

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-TX5

Sony's fashionable T-series of Cyber-shots gets a little bit tougher with the TX5. It's rated for underwater use up to 10 feet. The TX5 is also shockproof up to a 5 foot fall and freezeproof down to 14 degrees Fahrenheit (-10 Celsius). The camera body is sealed to resist the likes of dust and sand clogging up the inner workings. All this, and it's still under an inch in thickness.

The TX5's 10.2 megapixel Exmor R CMOS sensor and BIONZ image processor bring with it a few notable capabilities. First, the TX5 offers a full-res burst shooting mode of 10 fps with a limit of ten frames. It also adds the popular Intelligent Sweep Panorama feature to the TX5, allowing the user to capture a panoramic image by pressing the shutter once and panning the camera across a horizontal or vertical scene.

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-TX5

Sony also touts the Exmor R as a good low-light performer. An in-camera HDR tool is designed to rescue shadow detail usually lost in backlit situations by combining two images automatically. And by resisting the urge to cram more pixels onto a small sensor, the 10.2 megapixel CMOS imager stands a good chance of producing cleaner images at higher ISO settings than its 14+ megapixel competitors.

The Cyber-shot TX5 does away with most control buttons in favor of a wide aspect, 3.0 inch touch screen of 230k-dot composition. Users will rely on it to frame images and shoot 720p HD videos. Like all of Sony's recent releases, the TX5 features a dual memory card slot that accepts both SD/SDHC cards and their proprietary MemoryStick Pro Duo format.

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-TX5

The 4x optical zoom zoom lens boasts a Carl Zeiss Vario-Tessar branding and offers an equivalent focal length of 25mm at wide angle. It's equipped with optical SteadyShot image stabilization, a feature that users in unsteady terrain and dim conditions may appreciate. The TX5 will feature a 9-point AF system with the option to manually select a focus target using the touch screen.

Pricing and availability
The Cyber-shot DSC-TX5 will be offered in silver, black, pink, and green when it becomes available this April with a $350 MSRP. Eager shoppers can place a pre-order starting this month. For a look at more of the color options, check out the image gallery on the next page.