Monday, 23 May 2011

Sony Camera Bargain

Looking for alternatives for paying to get my Canon repaired, I found a Sony 2011 Limited Edition package for just 370 zloties in Tesco in Piastów. (The calendar inside the camera starts in 2011, so it really seems to be a 2011 model.)

Apart from the camera, cables, etc that are standard with all/most cameras, it has two rechargeable batteries with a charger, a 2 Gb memory card and a small bag that you can attach to a belt. Since that seems to bring the cost of the camera down to about 300zl, the value is incredible and highly recommended to anyone who hasn't got any of these things and would like something to carry around for taking snaps. (Tesco Piastów still has some.)

I've included Misia's Nikon in the picture as a comparison, which I have been borrowing and which has been my regular companion. I'm not fully used to the Sony yet, but was worried about the sharpness of the pictures, but I suspect this is because I have been using a 'steady shot' feature, which from one test shot a short while ago, makes the picture slightly blurred. If this is solved, I should be happy with it. Indeed, its ability to focus and adjust exposure for close-up objects like flowers is the best I have experienced.

It would have been nice to have a found a camera that I could use without taking my glasses off, but I suspect that that aspiration would have camera developers splitting their sides with laughter. My little Minolta Dimage G400 had this capability, but, although the Canon that broke had an eye-level viewfinder, that didn't.

All the above pictures were taken with my Minolta Dimage Z1, in the middle below, with the little Minolta on the right. (Canon box on the left.) The Z1 was my first ever digital camera, bought about 8 years ago when I recall thinking it was incredibly cheap. It's basically a standard digital camera with an SLR structure and, apart from not fitting in my pocket, remains my camera of choice. It has some oddities, but is brilliant overall. (I was bit too over enthusiastic for the little Minolta, when trying to photograph that beautiful red ball of fire rising in the morning.)

That picture was taken with the Sony with the steady shot feature still in operation - the precision might have been better otherwise. All the pictures were taken at roughly the same time this morning. It was dark and cloudy and I had to use the flash for all of them. I didn't add any additional room lighting, which often gives a better result. The picture required some adjustment of the contrast, but that's easy enough to do in Picasa. The same goes for the Nikon, as shown below: the pictures from that are normally much sharper, however.

Assessment goes on, but it has one very fun gadget: a one click panoramic feature: simply click once and then turn the camera smoothly round until it shows you have turned far enough. The process is amazing simple - even I could do it straight away. This 180 degree picture is taken in the little village of Konotopa, west of Warsaw near Ożarów. It will soon burst into public consciousness as the Konotopa interchange on the western expressway.

To see how construction is progressing - 20 May, right click on the picture and open in a new tab, or just double click on it and navigate away from this page. This should bring you to the Picasa view page. Press on the magnifying glass on the top right of the picture to get a better view, which can be expanded again and the picture rotated.

I spent hours trying to find code that could easily integrate a rotation feature onto the blog directly, but couldn't find one. If anyone knows of one ...


Tefl Secretagent said...

370PLN? *Sends wife to shop*

Paddy said...

That is incredibly cheap, and my birthday is a up-coming too.

Surely there must be a catch?

Steve - we were going to go for a drink, but I lost your number. Feel free to message me! Paddy

Paddy said...

Also - what is the model and make number? So I can research online?