Digital Cameras Guide

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W120 review

First Looks: Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W120

Compare This

Aim, Ready, Shoot

Aim, Ready, Shoot

Compact digital cameras have always been a popular choice for simple point and shoot photography, but recent advancements have made it possible for professional-like imaging even on the humble compact. Enter Sony's updated W-series Cyber-shot digital cameras, with beautiful aesthetics and imaging prowess packed in a comfortable, lightweight design.

Pocketful of High Definition Comfort

The new DSC-W120 conforms to the hands easily with its slim 22mm dimensions and light weight of only 123g (without battery). With such svelte figures, it also slips easily into the bag or pocket.

In terms of user friendliness, the DSC-W120 comes with a comfortable 2.5-inch LCD screen, and an intuitive navigation system that allows you to make all the necessary settings adjustments such as image sizes, white balance, ISO, face detection priority and many others. A dial wheel on the back of the body is used to switch between shooting modes.

The DSC-W120 boasts an effective 7.2-megapixel resolution and with the current high definition (HD) trend, it also finds itself outfitted with integrated HD support that includes snapping images in proper 16:9 ratio. This imaging mode allows full screen viewing on a HDTV with the aid of a HD component cable. Take note that a HD ready image would require at least 2MB per image, which will be an additional overhead on available storage on your Memory Stick.

Smile, you're on Sony Camera!

Making its debut on the DSC-W120 is Sony's very own Smile Shutter technology. Smile Shutter compliments Face Detection technology by firing the shutter only when a smile is registered on the face of your subject(s).Varying levels of smile detection sensitivity can be adjusted, from the smallest tweak of the lips (High) to a big and jovial smile (Low), giving you some form of control over the feature. Beyond human photography, the DSC-W120 is quick to impress with its fast responsive time for image processing, aided in part by its BIONZ imaging processing engine. A few test shots revealed its ability to automatically tweak red-eye reduction, exposure, contrast and even skin-tones on differing adult and children subjects.

Truth be told though, running the DSC-W120 on auto mode is more than sufficient for your daily photography needs. There is also no need to worry about low lighting conditions as Sony has bumped up sensitivity support as high as ISO 3200, and its Super SteadyShot image stabilizer becomes a great help when shooting at lower shutter speeds. Of course, when all else fails, you can still rely on the built-in flash, which is surprisingly quite powerful for its size.

Final Thoughts

Setting itself ready for an end February release date, the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W120 will be available in four different colors: pink, blue, black and silver. Expect a recommended retail price of US$199.99 (~S$283), which is pretty reasonable for a mid-range compact digital camera packed with interesting features. The Smile Shutter feature alone is worth taking it out at social events and parties.