IFA 2001: 0800 EDT / 1300 GMT: Sony today announces two new 'P' model digital cameras. The DSC-P5 has a 3.34 megapixel CCD (3.14 effective) and a 3x optical zoom lens, it's an evolution to last years DSC-P1 which adds manual focus, selectable ISO sensitivity an AF assist lamp, burst mode, MPEG EX and a new compact battery which makes the camera's case a third of an inch thinner. The DSC-P3, based on the DSC-P5 has a fixed focal length lens which crops the CCD producing a 2.8 megapixel image. The DSC-P5 has a street price of $600, the DSC-P3 around $500.

We have a full in-depth review of the DSC-P5 already available:

Click here for our full review of the Sony DSC-P5

Press release:

NEW PETITE SERIES OF CYBER-SHOT CAMERAS MAKE THE MOST OF A WINNING CONCEPT

Sony DSC-P5 Sony DSC-P3

New DSC-P5 and DSC-P3 Models Allow Consumers to Capture Great Photos Anywhere

SAN DIEGO, Aug. 21, 2001 - The best camera is the one that is actually on-hand when a photo opportunity arises, and Sony has unveiled two super slender Cyber-shot® digital still cameras that fit the bill.

Created to expand the company's successful P-series, the new DSC-P5 and DSC-P3 models are not only Sony's smallest cameras to date - they also pack a powerful picture-taking punch.

"We have maximized miniaturization and the available technologies in these two models to refine the idea behind our P-series cameras," said Takashi Kondo, senior vice president of Sony Electronics' Digital Imaging Product Division. "We listened to consumers who encouraged us to make cameras that are more slender, yet maintain the comfortable shape and size that make Sony's pocket-size cameras so easy to handle."

Though small in size, these cameras bring new features to the P series, such as an AF Illuminator for focusing in the dark, in addition to two-shot burst mode, for capturing fast action. Both models reflect operating improvements that include simplified menus.

Pocket-sized Pedigree

The ruggedly elegant design and silver case of the Cyber-shot DSC-P5 model resembles that of its popular predecessor, the DSC-P1, but reveals a slimmer profile - thanks to a two-step barrel lens that retracts into the body of the camera; along with the development of a tiny new C-series InfoLithium® battery, with more than an hour of continuous shooting capacity, depending on use.

At a more attractive price than its predecessor, the DSC-P5 model at about $600 will still feature a powerful 3X optical, 6X digital zoom lens and a 3.34 megapixel (MP) CCD (3.2 MP effective) when it becomes available in October. It will also feature a more precise 14-bit A/D converter and MPEG EX™ movie mode.

Digital Necessities

The Cyber-shot DSC-P3 camera invokes the same style as the DSC-P5 model, but is faster and lighter due to its fixed lens with a 3X digital zoom. Its 3.34 megapixel CCD (2.8 MP effective) and high-speed focus produce stunning snapshots, especially for a digital still camera that will be offered for about $500 when it is on store shelves in October.

Both cameras have:

  • AF Illuminator -- To insure accurate focus, even in dark conditions, an AF illuminator light briefly illuminates subjects to allow positive focus lock.
     
  • Two-Shot Burst Mode -- A two-frame burst mode captures two full-resolution images at up to two frames per second to capture fast-moving subjects.
     
  • ClipMotion -- An exclusive Sony GIF animation feature, ClipMotion allows users to take up to 10 pictures that the camera automatically combines to make a single ClipMotion animation file. The ClipMotion file is smaller in memory size than a standard MPEG movie.
     
  • Versatile File Formats -- Files can be saved in several ways: JPEG, TIFF (Tagged Image Fill Format) for higher quality images, GIF for text mode and two different MPEG options for motion video and sound - MPEG HQ (High Quality) and MPEG EX (Extended). MPEG EX captures 160x112 or 320x240 video continuously, up to the capacity of the Memory Stick media in use.
     
  • Supplied Accessories -- These include 8MB Memory Stick media, InfoLithium C-series battery, AC adapter/charger, AV cable, USB cable and application software/USB driver CD-ROM.

Two Cameras on Land Use One Casing at Sea

To protect either of the cameras from water and other elements, such as sand, snow, ice and rain, users may purchase on optional a Marine Pack (MPK-P5) accessory. This underwater housing makes the cameras waterproof up to nearly 133 feet (40 meters). When it comes out in October for about $250, it will be supplied with a neck strap and an anti-fogging lens solution.

Click here for our full review of the Sony DSC-P5

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