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Old Jan 25, 2010, 8:31 PM   #1
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Default Sony DSC-W350 First Impressions

Hi, I'm a long-time lurker around here but this is my first time posting. So I'll introduce myself, my name is Mark, I'm just a hobbyist, and I wanted a smaller camera that wasn't garbage (I have a Canon EOS Rebel XT which is huge but great and an Olympus SW850 which takes terrible pictures but is fun in the pool). I bought a Sony DSC-W350 based on no information, I just could tell it was what I wanted. I probably had my hopes a little too high, but it's a great compact. You can read my full first impressions (I just got it today) and find a link to some of my test shots with it here http://markuhde.blogspot.com/2010/01...pressions.html

If you don't wanna read all that, long story short is - as long as you're being reasonable in what you expect from a $200 camera, it's fantastic.
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Old Jan 25, 2010, 8:34 PM   #2
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I was just about to ask to have your impressions moved to its own thread for easier findings, but i see you beat me to it.

thanks again for sharing your impressions. and glad to have you on the forums.
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Old Jan 25, 2010, 10:14 PM   #3
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Thank you for the welcome. I felt that, given I am likely one of the first people to have this camera in my hands, I owed it to all y'all since I've gained a lot of knowledge from this site over the years. By any chance do you know if Sony compact cameras just do no have auto exposure bracketing, or am I just missing it?

Thanks,

Mark
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Old Jan 25, 2010, 10:33 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Uhde View Post
Thank you for the welcome. I felt that, given I am likely one of the first people to have this camera in my hands, I owed it to all y'all since I've gained a lot of knowledge from this site over the years. By any chance do you know if Sony compact cameras just do no have auto exposure bracketing, or am I just missing it?

Thanks,

Mark
i know some of the older W-series had autoexposure bracket up 1 stop. not sure about the newer ones though.
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Old Jan 25, 2010, 11:03 PM   #5
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Yeah, I was pretty sure I remembered it being on my old Sony I gave to my aunt (which was a good camera, I gave it to her figuring my new at the time Olympus 850SW would be better all around. It wasn't. It's strictly a swimming pool/beach camera. I finally decided I needed a good point and shoot - I'm going to a convention in Vegas I'll want to take tons of pics at and not be dragging my DSLR around.

I can't find it ANYWHERE. The other thing I cannot find is a way to turn down the level of sharpening the camera applies - which is excessive, in my opinion.
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Old Jan 25, 2010, 11:50 PM   #6
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I am not really surprised, as the years have progressed manufacturers have stripped many functions from their lower end digicams, basically for market segmentation and to not step on the toes of their more expensive bretheren.

usually the sub200$ market consumer would not miss autoexposure bracketing or control over sharpening parameters, as the typical consumer of these cameras wants sharp, sharp, sharp, out of camera.

not someone like yourself who uses it as a backup to the dslr and is used to a softer image with more latitude to sharpen as desired in post-processing.
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Old Jan 26, 2010, 12:27 AM   #7
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You're right, it seems a lot of things are removed simply for market segmentation. I know people have hacked missing features onto older Canons but I've never heard of it being done with any newer camera.

It's also amazing the megapixel wars. Sure, this cameras shoots a file with 14 million pixels. But I've not yet got one with more actual detail than my 8 megapixel DSLR. Maybe on a nice bright sunny day (which, God knows why, He didn't give me today when I would have loved one...) with all the stars in place, but it seems they'd be much better off focusing on bigger physical pixel sizes that can capture more light in indoor situations.

That said, I did shoot a 3200 ISO image (it's on my Flickr now) and, truth be told, for a compact camera it's pretty darn good. That's why I bought this one. I've always been impressed with the speed and sensitivity of Sony compacts and wanted to get my hands on their latest creation (the SD card support is a huge plus since I'm a Mac user and new Macs have SD card slots in them).

The image stabilization is also really nice. Due to that, I could actually imagine myself taking images with this at concerts (where taking a DSLR is impractical) that are decent quality-wise (since I can get off with much lower shutter speeds - I'm rather surprised just how much lower - I've never used a camera with optical IS before).
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Old Jan 26, 2010, 11:54 AM   #8
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Mark-

Let me also add my own welcome. You have done an excellent job with the Blog and I feel that your filling in info in a very needed area of the camera market. Well done! I will make it a point to visit your blog on a regular basis.

Have a great day.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Jan 26, 2010, 12:52 PM   #9
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Thank you Sarah, now that I have an account I probably will post more on here too, at least for awhile. Day #2 with this Sony but I've been at work all day and haven't shot a single frame yet . I think I'm going to like it a lot though, it really is what I was looking for. I'm disappointed about the lack of exposure bracketing, lack of sharpening control, poor HD video, and lack of waterproofing (the convenience of a waterproof camera is in the old saying that the best camera is the one you have with you, and my Olympus can go with me ANYWHERE).

However, there are trade-offs in all things and it's nice to once again own a point and shoot that can take good quality images (and is still very pocketable - the Canon G series is a type of camera that puzzles me - it's so big and expensive, why not just take a DSLR?)
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Old Jan 26, 2010, 1:00 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Uhde View Post
the Canon G series is a type of camera that puzzles me - it's so big and expensive, why not just take a DSLR?)
its not much smaller than the body itself. but when you consider it has a zoom that is equivalent of 28-140mm, then the size advantage does become more substantial. and for some types of shooting, the G11's output is more than adequate, even when compared with a DSLR.

and i personally love the control setup on the G11. it gives you so much control on very easy to check and use dials and dedicated buttons.

so for those that do enjoy good control over their photography but do not want/need to switch lenses, etc, i think its a great high end photo tool.

i by no means need one, between my 50d kit and compacts, but i do WANT one. lol
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