Sony has today announced its competitor in the 'pocket superzoom' sector. Featuring an 8.0 megapixel 1/2.5" sensor and 10x optical zoom, the Cyber-Shot DSC-H3 brings plenty of technology to the table with Super-Steadyshot optical stabilization, Face-Detection and Sony's Dynamic Range Optimizer. In a bid to speed up response whilst photographing fast-moving subjects, Advanced Sports Shooting mode with predictive AF is here too. Finally, If the camera's 2.5" monitor isn't quite big enough for your tastes, there is also HDTV output at full 1080 line resolution so expect the imminent return of post-vacation slide shows.

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Press Release:

BIG ZOOMS COME IN SMALL PACKAGES WITH NEW SONY CYBER-SHOT H-SERIES CAMERA

SAN DIEGO, Aug. 21, 2007 – For parents looking to capture and re-live their children’s back-to-school memories, Sony is introducing a super-zoom digital camera small enough to carry to any school activity. The new 8-megapixel Cyber-shot DSC-H3 camera has a powerful 10x optical zoom lens for those close-up shots you don’t want to miss, and yet features a super compact form so you can take the camera along anywhere.

The model features high-definition component output, putting a high-resolution spin on the family slideshow. By connecting the new camera to any HDTV set with Sony’s VMC-MHC1 high-definition component cable (sold separately), families can see their digital photos the same way they watch their favorite TV shows – in full 1080 HD resolution. The camera is equipped with a built-in slide show function so you can view photos, complete with transitions choreographed to your choice of programmed music clips or by adding your own. When the camera is connected to a new Sony BRAVIA® television, photos are optimized for television viewing with Sony’s new “Photo TV HD” mode. This mode brings the look of actual printed photography to the television set, reproducing high-quality digital photos by fine-tuning image parameters, like sharpness, gradation and color specifically for photographs.

Designed to Capture Great Photos

The DSC-H3 model includes a variety of features to ensure parents can document their kids’ activities, from football games to dance recitals and spelling bees. To begin, the new camera features a powerful Carl Zeiss ® 10x optical zoom lens, which makes it ideal for capturing every expression when shooting little stars from the audience. It also includes a long-range flash that lights up subjects farther from the camera. For group shots, moms and dads will appreciate the model’s face detection technology. It identifies up to eight faces in the camera’s 2.5-inch LCD screen, and automatically adjusts for correctly exposed, sharp photos.

To capture every touchdown, the high-zoom camera also includes Sony’s advanced sports shooting mode, which combines high shutter speed shooting and intelligent continuous auto-focusing. The camera will quickly focus on fast-moving subjects by predicting where they will be in the frame. This technology also helps to reduce shutter lag -- the time it takes for the camera to focus and shoot.

To reduce chances of blurry photos, the H3 model incorporates Super Steady Shot® optical image stabilization that minimizes blur caused by camera shake. This is an important feature when shooting at slow shutter speeds at full zoom. The unit’s high sensitivity (up to ISO 3200) will also capture well-exposed, natural-looking photos, even in challenging low-light conditions.

Equipped with Sony’s Dynamic Range Optimizer, originally developed for the Alpha digital SLR system, the new camera can analyze captured image data, and instantly determine the best exposure and tonality of each picture before JPEG compression. Other helpful in-camera functions include red-eye correction and photo retouching effects with filters.

The Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-H3 camera will ship next month for about $300. Additional accessories will include wide and telephoto conversion lenses, filters, batteries, travel chargers, sports packs and cases. The VMC-HD1 high-definition component cable is currently available for about $40. All can be purchased online at sonystyle.com, at Sony Style® retail stores (www.sonystyle.com/retail), at military base exchanges, and at authorized dealers nationwide. Pre-orders begin on Aug. 23 at www.sonystyle.com.

Sony DSC-H3 specifications

Sensor

• 1/2.5" Type CCD
• 8.3 million pixels total
• 8.1 million effective pixels

Image sizes

• 3264 x 2448
• 2592 x 1944
• 2048 x 1536
• 640 x 480
• 3264 x 2176 (3:2)
• 1920 x 1080 (16:9)

Movie clips • 640 x 480 @ 30fps
• 640 x 480 @ 16.6fps
• 320 x 240 @ 8.3fps
File formats • JPEG Exif v2.21
• DPOF
• MPEG1
Lens • 10x optical zoom
• 38-380 mm (35 mm equiv)
• Carl Zeiss Vario-Tessar
• F3.5 - F4.4
Image stabilization Super SteadyShot
Conversion lenses Yes (wide converter VCL-DH0758, tele converter VCL-DH1578, close-up VCL-M3358)
Digital zoom up to 20x (up to 51x at 640x480)
Focus modes Autofocus, Focus Preset, Macro
Focus distance • Normal: 50 cm-infinity (wide), 90 cm-infinity (tele)
• Macro: 2 cm - infinity (wide), 90 cm - infinity (tele)
AF area modes • 9-point
• Center-Weighted
• Spot
AF assist lamp Yes
Metering • Face Detection
• Multi-Pattern
• Center-weighted
• Spot
ISO sensitivity • Auto
• ISO 100
• ISO 200
• ISO 400
• ISO 800
• ISO 1600
• ISO 3200
Exposure compensation +/- 2EV in 1/3EV steps
Exposure bracketing Yes
Shutter speed • Auto: 1/4 - 1/2000 sec
• Program Auto: 1 sec- 1/1000 sec
• Manual: 30 sec - 1/2000 sec
Aperture F3.5 - 10 (wide) F4.4 - 10 (tele)
Modes • Auto
• Program Auto
• Manual
Scene modes • Twilight
• Twilight Portrait
• Soft Snap
• Landscape
• Beach
• Snow
• Fireworks
• High Sensitivity
• Advanced Sports Shooting
White balance • Auto
• Daylight
• Cloudy
• Fluorescent 1
• Fluorescent 2
• Fluorescent 3
• Incandescent
• Flash
Self timer 2 or 10sec
Continuous shooting Approx 2fps
Image parameters

Color Mode: Vivid, Natural, B&W, Sepia

Flash • Auto
• Forced On
• Slow Sync
• Forced Off
• Range (auto ISO): 0.2 - 7.0 m (wide) 0.9 - 5.6 m (tele)
+/- 2EV in 1/3EV steps
Viewfinder No
LCD monitor • 2.5-inch TFT
• 115,000 pixels
• Variable backlight
Connectivity

• Multi-use Terminal - Incorporates USB 2.0 Hi-Speed and AV output
• DC input

Print compliance • Exif Print
• PictBridge
• Print Image Matching
Storage • Memory Stick Duo
• Memory Stick Pro Duo
• Memory Stick Pro Duo (High Speed)
• Memory Stick Pro-HG Duo
• Internal memory (31 MB)
Power • Li-ion battery pack NP-BG1
• Optional AC adapter
Weight (no batt) 264 g (9.3 oz)
Weight (with batt)

380 g (13.4 oz)

Dimensions 106 x 68.5 x 47.5 mm (4.2 x 2.7 x 1.9 in)

Additional Images