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I have been the proud owner of this camera for well over a year. Having previously been warned off any camera's with more than 8 mega pixels (was told that the pictures are too noisy?) I decided to ignore the advice and dive in with my purchase. I bought this camera for around £100 from Boots and felt I was getting a real bargain. Seeing how the prices have come down for this model now really surprises me as I can honestly say it's the best camera I have owned. It's a sturdy but light little camera, with a large LCD screen for viewing pics on or for using as the viewfinder should you wish. It's rechargeable which is a god-send ... the battery lasts for ages ... unlike the good old days when you had to carry pockets full of AAA batteries on a night / day out.
12.2 mega pixels is great. What it allows you to do is to take shots and then crop them without losing any image quality of the original shot. I know on my previous 8 mega pixel cybershot I found the loss of quality / blurring of the image when cropping a real pain. The PL80 also comes with a 5 x optical zoom which I found great for zooming in on birds feeding in the tree outside my window.
The settings for capturing the perfect shot are great too. It comes with all the usual features such as 4 different timer settings, flash on or off, beauty shot, night, portrait, children, landscape, close up, text, sunset, dawn, backlight, fireworks, beach & snow & frame guide. You also get smart auto which recognises the scene automatically ... most times I used this and it worked very well. I actually took a shot of grafitti on a all one day - put it on flickr - and my shot (taken with my humble camera) was used as the front cover of a magazine! Boy was I proud!
My main reason for buying this camera was that it could record HD videos with sound. I have taken it to many a gig and have treasured the footage of Morten Harket lamenting about being 'hunting high and low'.
The one downside I found with the video was that if you zoomed in or out whilst recording it cuts the sounds for a second or two. I guess this is so that you don't record the whirring of the camera features kicking in. It's not a big issue & there more than likely is a way to change this in one of the settings but it was never enough of an issue for me to look into it.
Overall, if you want a quality camera at a cheap price, you could do worse than to pick this camera.