I could say that V1 is a very nice camera on the spec, especially the 4x zeiss zoom lens with f/4.0 at the tele end.
But my friend got one and I borrowed to play with it for a day. My findings is:
1. V1 is super slow when shooting and saving photos. Not to mention AF speed, at 5MP resolution after you press the shutter release you will instantly see a BLACK SCREEN with a line "processing" at the center. After a brief wait (about 0.5s I guess) you will be presented with a 2nd BLACK SCREEN with a line "saving" at the center and again a brief wait. When the process is done the viewfinder function come back finally. What surprises me is how can sony live up with the same speed of sony S85 (which another friend of mine owns) till 5MP V1?! Also another very bad point is when the camera is *exposing* the screen is black!!! That means you dunno what is going on and even cannot know if you have moved during it is exposing.
2. V1 does not have a flip-out LCD like A80. It could be a very important issue if you really love to start a hobby of photography. For example, when shooting children playing you don't need to stay down to the level of them cause you can turn the LCD facing up for the action. Self portrait is also super-easy with a flip out LCD.
3. The photos taken with 5MP on V1 is quite soft due to smaller sensor pitch. So unless you frequently print 8" x 10" and don't want to do any upsampling work in your PC, you get nothing gain from the 1MP more of V1.
4. If you are a beginner (me too!) you should not choose V1. V1 is not working very well in Auto/Programmed mode. Everybody has experiences with sony camera will understand sony's AWB (Auto White Balance) is terrible. What's more, my friend use his camera to shoot on a sunny noon get iso sensitivity jacked up to 320 (hence a very noise photo) just because he point the camera towards a black zone under the bridge!! For A80 I can say in addition to all advanced features it is fully ok to regard it as a competent automatic camera and you can get most photos coming out brilliant even if you have little knowledge about photography.
5. Battery of V1 is quite short life. And it is nothing when compared with A80. My A80 + Sanyo 2100mAh battery is always capable of shooting 350 to 400 photos without flash. I did not test it with flash always on, but I bet it can still take more than 200 photos with LCD and flash both on all-the-way.
I think if you are not in a hurry you can wait till the sony W1 to come out and see if the speed is better. Sony claims they have used faster logic like that on F828 for W1.