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Home arrow Digital Camera Reviews arrow Sony > arrow Sony Cyber-shot DSC-T77 Digital Camera Review
Sony Cyber-shot DSC-T77 Digital Camera Review

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Digital Camera Review by: Katrina Putker 

 

The Cyber-shot DSC-T77 is the stylish amateur photographer’s dream: it comes in a range of contemporary colours including black, silver, rose pink, and chocolate brown, is super-slim and portable, and generally speaking is one of the sexier compacts on the market in its price range.

Its truly ultra slim body has a snappy metallic lens cover that further accentuates the overall streamlined and minimalist design and as remarkably skinny as it is at just 15mm wide, the T77 weighs a decent 149g and resultantly feels both solid and robust in hand despite its petite frame.

The back of the unit hosts a generous 3-inch wide screen LCD although the T77’s dominant touch screen operation is likely to divide users: some will love it and some will hate it. Considering though, that the only operations not controlled directly via the touch screen are power, zoom, shutter release and playback, the latter group should steer clear of this unit for that reason only.

Users do have the option however of strapping the provided ‘paint pen’ to the wrist strap, which can then be used to touch the LCD for you. This can become another fiddly item to control though and may frustrate some users who prefer low-fuss operation in which case, those with longer nails offering a well-defined point of contact will find they have the greatest ease-of-use.

Generally speaking, the touch screen does seem to work well but as with any device of a similar nature, there is always room for error. Although there are defined spaces for touch activation, often these have areas of crossover, occasionally making it difficult to select the exact option you were intending to.

The T77 is a discreet little unit and not only in terms of its size. If the sound effects are manually switched off, the camera makes virtually no sound upon powering up, auto focuses silently using visual cues to signal to the user when focus is locked, and only the most discreet popping noises can be heard as the flash fires.

An effective intelligent scene recognition system is included that allows the T77 to automatically determine the type of scene currently composed and adjust relevant settings accordingly.

Often recognised scene modes include: landscape, macro, twilight, and snow while other scene modes available via manual selection include: underwater (with the appropriate housing, which is an optional additional accessory,) soft snap, twilight portrait, gourmet, fireworks, hi-speed shutter, easy shot, high sensitivity and program auto.

VGA movie mode with sound recording ability is also available at 640x480 dimension and 30 frames a second and is capable of producing clips up to a maximum of ten minutes in length irrespective of memory card capacity. That is, even with larger capacity cards, movies can only ever span for ten minutes.

The fully internal Carle Zeiss lens offers 4x optical (coupled with 8x digital) zoom, an optical image stabiliser, and an ISO speed ranging from 80 right through to 3200.

It is questionable however whether images shot beyond 800 ISO are usable for anything other than reference and 6x4-inch or smaller prints. In other words, just because the ability is there, doesn’t necessarily mean you should use it or indeed, that it will give you promising results.

At these higher ISO levels (1600 and 3200) a significant loss of detail occurs as a result of noise reduction software in camera that sees images appear somewhat smudged and ultra-grainy. The smudging of details seems to occur at varying levels across the board and while it compliments some images, it can spoil others.

To help reduce the effects of red-eye, the flash fires in two distinct sets of pairs so users will need to warn subjects to remain still for at least 2 seconds and beyond the first pair of flashes to avoid unwanted movements or blinks etc.

The playback slideshow feature is enjoyable to use and allows you to upload your own music (or choose from the eight pre-loaded tracks) and select from a range of presentation styles and transitions so as to create a truly personal slideshow experience perfectly suited for different sets of images or audiences etc.

Face detection technology coupled with three levels of smile shutter sensitivity helps to ensure the best possible results are obtained when taking portraits.

Keeping in mind that the T77 is probably best-suited for point-and-shoot happy-snappers who are likely to shoot lots of images of people, these technologies are well-placed and do indeed help to achieve good results.medal-gold-r.jpg

Image quality overall is good but unlikely to satisfy keen photographers who demand sharper, more consistently exposed photographs. As mentioned, internal noise reduction software does contribute to a general softening of images although colour reproduction is mostly good along with saturation.

Style-conscious users who are looking for an attractive, highly portable unit that takes a nice happy snap at a moment’s notice will be pleased with Sony’s Cyber-shot DSC T77.

Those also familiar with touch screen technology found in modern phones and MP3 players etc. are likely to be immediately comfortable operating the majority of functions and controls via touch and will find that overall, the T77 performs well enough for amateur photographers looking for simple point-and-shoot operation.

   
Appearance rating 4.5 stars
Functionality rating 3 stars
Image quality
3 stars
Lens quality
3 stars
View finder / LCD screen 3.5 stars
Value for money 3 stars
RRP (AUD) $429
SPACER.GIF  
Effective Pixels 10.1 Million mega pixels
Image Sizes 6 Sizes
Lens - zoom wide [mm] 35mm (35mm equivalent )
Lens -zoom tele [mm] 140mm (35mm equivalent )
Lens - Optical Zoom Yes, 4x
Resolution Settings From 640 x 480 to 3648 x 2736
Shooting Modes 10 Scene options
Face Detection Yes
Manual Focus No
Auto Focus Yes
Focus Range [cm] W: Approx. 8cm to Infinity, T: Approx. 50cm to Infinity
Aperture Range f/3.5 (W) - f/4.6 (T)
Aperture Priority No
Macro Yes
Macro Range [cm] W: Approx. 8cm to Infinity, T: Approx. 50cm to Infinity
Shutter Speeds Auto (1/4 - 1/1000) / Program Auto (1" - 1/1000)
Shutter Priority No
ISO Auto / 80 / 100 / 200 / 400 / 800 / 1600 / 3200
LCD Monitor Yes
LCD Size 3.0" LCD touch screen
Viewfinder No
Flash Auto, Flash On, Flash Off, Slow Synchro
Hot Shoe No
White balance Auto / Daylight / Cloudy / Fluorescent / Incandescent / Flash
Self Timer Yes (10sec / 2sec / off)
HD Movie Option No
Movie Sizes 640 x 480 30fps, 640 x 480 16.6fps, 320 x 240, 8.3fps
Video Out Yes
Audio Out Yes
Other Out  
Storage Type Memory Stick Duo / Memory Stick PRO Duo / Memory Stick PRO Duo (High Speed) / Memory Stick PRO-HG Duo
Storage Included [Mb] 15mb internal
Still Image Formats JPEG
Audio Formats No stand alone feature
Movie Formats MPEG1
Connectivity Yes, Multi-use terminal (AV / USB / DC)
Power Source BC-CSD Battery charger
Battery Options Lithium ION Battery NP-BD1
Dimensions (W) 93.6 x (H) 57.2 x (D) 15.0 mm
Weight 126g

 

 
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