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This camera won the TIPA award in 2005 and was given the No 1 spot in Stuff magazine top 10 digital cameras.
For the reason above, I purchased the camera. Everything went downhill from then on.
1 - Has the worst lowlight quality pictures - grainy and dark
2 - Rubbish output when taking a picture in any condition, except on a bright sunny day.
3 - The back screen is too small, and easily scratched
4 - Poor build quality
5 - Sony memory sticks are too expensive compared to CF and SD flash cards
6 - Being a Sony, the technology changes very fast. This makes your camera out of date in no time at all (same goes with any Sony brand)
And now, the good part :
1 - Won the TIPA award for 2005 and also rated the best by Stuff TV in 2005.
2 - Compact and small - very easy to carry anywhere.
Thats about it really. I had to fork out nearly GBP350.00 and really wanted to return the camera after using it first time. Too bad, the shop (at Tottenham Court Road) did not have a returns policy.
My advice is, for a digital Camera, stick with the big boys in the game, like Canon, Nikon, or Leica...
DSC T5 is a mid-range camera, (which was true when it came out around a year or two ago). Highest resolution of 5.1MP, it is not one of the greatest camera out there. It is more expensive too, than the competitors. It has steel construction and the camera lens is fun to use, but it did get slightly annoying after a while, as it started to lop-sided with frequent use. It is durable and the screen for viewing your photos, is marvelous, 2.5inch screen is more than big enough to identify your mistakes! The pictures are average quality, what you would expect from a cybershot camera. There are expected cybershot functions, nothing new, nothing old. Snappy and compact, it is great to carry around, and it did impress few eyes when I had it in the beginning. However, as years pass on, and as of now, it is an outdated camera - though the price conpensates for that now! So, overall, not such a bad choice.
I was somewhat reluctant to buy a Sony camera as this would require the purchase of yet another type of memory card to add to my collection. The lack of flexibility and increased price of the Sony memory stick format had always been a sticking point.
This though is no longer such a huge issue; the increase in popularity of SonyEricsson mobile phones and the PSP make the memory stick duo pro format more readily available and importantly - cheaper.
So that said, Sony has become a more serious player in the camera market and the T5 takes full advantage of this by packaging a whole list of features into a minature package.
This is one small camera. Perhaps not the smallest out there but the flat style and weighty feel allow it to sit comfortably in the hand and slip almost unoticed into the pocket.
As is often the case the camera ships with only the bare essentials: a battery pack complete with charger, hand strap, AV cable, and..... that's it. Why a basic pouch is not included is beyond me as such a purchase requires at least minimalistic protection. The absense of a memory card is also a shame as the 32mb built in is hardly sufficient.
The camera is nicely styled with just a single horizontal slider with a reasurring click is used to reveal the lens and kick the camera into life. Though this feels solid a frustrating side effect of the design is the unintentional opening of the slide and powering up of the camera when placed in a bag or pocket - a good enough reason for a pouch if ever there were one.
Another Sony oddity is the inability to charge the battery when inside the camera. The charge process involves removing the battery and placing it into the provided cradle for charging. Thankfully though the charge lasts sufficiently long for this to be of only minor inconveinience; tested on a weeks holiday accumilating arounf 150 snaps with and without flash the camera did the lot on a single charge.
The T5 boasts a 5mp sensor, something unheard of just a few years ago. Making use of this is made simple by a very user friendly if a litle unusual menu system.
The butons mounted on the back provide basic functions relating to the camera mode; picture, movie, preview, and are clearly indicated for ease of use.
This is clearly a camera aimed at the point and shoot market with most features only allowing for a limited adjustment in the basic features such as mode selection: Portrait, landscape, macro, etc. These work well and need little tweaking. Handy options though are the ability to overide autoexposure and white balance settings. Additionally the flash settings allow for more flexibility than in similarly sized cameras. This though is a must since I found that back-lit subjects failed miserably and without some basic photographic knowledge these images would have proven impossible to take.
Other subjects though produced beautiful results with excellent colour depth and rich contrast. At times this certainly produced results comparible to my professional digital SLR. This is where the exceptional quality of the Carl Zeus lens comes in to play.
The 3x optical zoom is a breeze to use with the simple two way thumb operated switch. Not being a fan of digital zoom I was able to deactivate this via the menu and found the results perfectly acceptable.
Previewing shots is easy enough with a large colourful display with wonderfully rich colours. This in itself is a huge selling point as this makes the whole shooting experience so much easier and rewarding.
The top of the camera houses the power switch (overrides the front slide) and mode selector. These, unlike the slide, are carefully placed and easily accessible.
Flicking into movie mode enables you to to record full motion video with sound, though the results as expected are not fantastic.
Viewing your shots is fairly straight forward either by connecting to a PC via mini USB or to the tv via the supplied AV cable.
Ultimately this camera is a serious contender for your hard earned cash. With a stunning Carl Zeus lens producing exceptional 5mp images this is a serious camera in a minature package. The one or two niggles such as the unpredictable slider, and more importantly that below average backlit photo capabilty are far outweighed by the image quality, pocketable size and ease of use.