Cyber-shot® Digital Still Camera
Crisp and clear
I bought this W370 whilst in Hanoi Vietnam as a backup to my trusty Olympus 1030 Tough.
The Olympus is great and can take all the abuse I can give it, but has mediocre image quality.
As I was enroute to a couple of weeks in China, I wanted something that could give me excellent image quality and HD video (Olympus has only 640x480 VGA video).
After buying the W370, I got back to the hotel and tried it out.
The image quality was awful and blurred, and I was going to return it to the shop as faulty.
As it was night time, and I was taking low light pictures, I thought that may be the problem.
So, after spending a while looking through the settings and experimenting, I found that I WAS using all the wrong settings, and obviously the camera didn't produce the goods.
When the settings are set properly, this camera gives fantastic, crisp and clear photos and stunning HD video.
One of my tests is to take a long distance picture of a sign or car license plate number, and see whether the letters and numbers are legible on the photo.
If any of you have been to Hanoi, then you'll know the lake in the old quarter.
From one side of the lake to the other is about 400m, and I was able to take a picture of a building on the other side, using zoom at max, and clearly read the sign on a Japanese restaurant about 500m away!
The Panoramic pictures were excellent, with no obvious 'stitching' in the image, and the ability to play back the image on the camera, like a short movie!
This feature was used a lot on the Great Wall of China pictures I took.
The HD video also impressed me, and has even allowed me to get extra still shots from my trip, by taking them from the video!
One problem I found with the video, is the very responsive autofocus will kick in when anything moves across the foreground (a PITA when you get some prat walk across your shot when you're videoing a landscape, because it automatically focuses on the subject closest).
The ability to zoom in and while filming is a definite plus, and as yet, I've not been able to get any noise on my video from the zoom lens as some have reported.
Another thing I've read on reviews is the complaints about the sound quality on videos.
Whilst in China, I played back my videos on the camera, and was very disappointed with the audio.
However, when I got back home, and downloaded the video from the MicroSD to the laptop, I found that the audio was very clear and legible.
The problem lies with the tiny speaker on the camera, which is only good for reviewing videos, and is not indicative of the audio actually on the video, which is excellent!
Macro is not available in any settings, but can be achieved with using the zoom.
BUT, don't use the flash for macro shots, because it is too strong and will 'white-out' the photo.
Use natural or strong external light, and the results are pretty good (though not a patch on the Olympus).
Shutter lag is NOT a real problem if you use at least a class 4 memory card (I use an 8GB Kingston), and if you really need to capture that quick moment, then, as someone else pointed out, you can use the burst mode, and pick the pic you want.
All in all, I'm satisfied with the camera, but was a bit miffed it didn't have the Zeiss lens, and was made in China!
If you want the best from the 14.1 MP, spend time playing with the camera, shooting the same subject using different settings to find the 'sweet-spot'.
You'll be surprised how many complaints about the W370 are simply down to operator error and not the camera, which is just doing what it's told!
I am a very inexperienced camera user, and just like to have a camera available in my pockets for the 'Kodak moment'.
The Olympus fits the bill for when I'm off-roading on the bike in the wet, and the W370 is there for when I want that picture to be as crisp as I can get from a pocket camera.
September 20, 2010
Best Point-and-Shoot I have Used.
I have had this camera for a while to replace my old point-and-shoot. This camera is quick to start and take pictures and the panorama mode is great. I've used the sweep panorama at my graduation and it handled all the people in the crowd nicely. This camera takes nice pictures under normal conditions, but the images are oddly colored when its somewhat cloudy, dim, or at twilight. The flash helps, but the camera doesn't seem to think the flash is necessary in some situations. The color seems to be a little washed out and as if all the colors in the picture are trying to blend into gray.
The zoom is good and satisfies your average "zooming needs."
Also a minor inconvenience is that the power button is close to and feels like the shutter button, so I have turned off the camera many times while taking a picture, but this has only happened when doing my "self-portraits" or when I give the camera to someone else who is unfamiliar with it. This can be annoying because although the camera is quick to start, it takes a little longer to turn off.
This camera is also durable. I have been using it heavily for many months and there are not scratches on it anywhere, not even small little microscopic ones on the bottom or screen. But the screen does attract finger prints like crazy.
The movie mode works wonderfully and has all the necessary features of a point-and-shoot camera, and it even warns you if someone blinks and it tracks faces.
It does have some weird features though, like putting music on the card, I haven't really been able to figure out how to do that or why you'd need that feature.
Overall this camera is great and you won't be disappointed.
August 9, 2010
Pretty red camera worked like a charm
I love my camera even though I broke it when I dropped it on the floor of the dining room on the last night of my cruise. The battery trap door flew open, and the tiny blue plastic piece that holds the battery in place snapped off. I retrieved it and submitted a claim to American Express under their Purchase Protection Program. They will credit me the original price which I will use to buy another W370.
June 17, 2010
Sony Camera with Sony Lens
Sony Cybershots that were made with Carl Zeiss lenses were great. Picture quality was astounding. But notice how this uses a Sony lens..and that means you will get horrible photos. Sure, they can pass for Facebook or MySpace uploads...but still..why would you ever pay this much for it? Bottom line, go with a different brand like canon, or go with an older model Cybershot that still have the Carl Zeiss lenses.
April 9, 2010