Sony Cyber-shot DSC-T7

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-T7

sonycyber.jpgIf the swimsuit contest held the most weight in this roundup, Sony’s DSC-T7 would trump the competition—and soundly. This is of course not the case, and this camera’s slick looks and overall design can’t overcome its relatively mediocre image output or its high price.

Thin may be in, but the DSC-T7 is apparently too slim for its own good. Its internal 3x optical zoom lens and CCD combine to produce the least impressive shots of any of the cameras in this roundup. Noise was more apparent at ISO speeds of 200 and above, colors were not as saturated as we’d like, and scenes with bright lighting and shadows tended to be overexposed.

The latter can be overcome at times by manually adjusting such things as white balance and flash power. But from a pure point-and-shoot perspective, the DSC-T7 is not the best choice for budding photographers. Even with tweaking, the output was still not as nice—or as high-resolution—as what you’ll get from the SD500 for the same cost.

Still, the DSC-T7 is one very slim, very cool-looking camera. To boot, it’s a speedy performer, for the most part, and sports a beautiful 2.5-inch LCD (of course, the spiffy LCD comes at a price: You get only about 40 minutes of use out of the camera for each battery charge). You can power it on and start shooting in less than two seconds, and shot-to-shot times were excellent too, averaging less than two seconds even with flash. Unfortunately, the zoom is one of the slowest we’ve seen, the button to control it is ridiculously small, and making precise adjustments is tough.

In general, the controls are well-spaced and easy to use; however, the camera suffers even more than the S1 as regards the placement of its internal zoom lens in the extreme upper-right-hand corner of the body. This position makes it far too easy for your hands to disrupt a shot.

With better-performing, less-expensive options out there, it’s tough to recommend this one.
--Steve Klett

Month Reviewed: Holiday 2005

Verdict: 5

+ Beauty: Slick, durable design; large, vibrant LCD.

- Beast: Slow lens, average image quality, and expensive.

URL: www.sony.com

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