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Sony DSC-F707 and reviewed!

By dpreview staff on Aug 27, 2001 at 04:00 GMT

IFA 2001: 0800 EDT / 1300 GMT: Sony has today announced the successor to the popular DSC-F505V, the new DSC-F707. The DSC-F707 has a 5 megapixel CCD (4.92 megapixels effective) with a F2.0 - F2.4 5x optical zoom lens, the same design split lens / body as the 505V, longer life InfoLithium 'M' battery, an electronic viewfinder, jog-wheel, Multi-Segment metering, burst shooting, full manual exposure, NightShot and a new laser based 'hologram AF' low light focusing system. Unlike the misinformation leaked elsewhere on the net in the last 24 hours we can confirm that this beast of a digital camera will have a street price of $1,000.

We have a full in-depth review of the DSC-F707 already available:

Click here for our full review of the Sony DSC-F707

Rumours and leaks

Rumours of the DSC-F707 first surfaced on our Sony Talk forum back in July, I was one of those who dismissed it as fantasy. Not long after that I learned the facts and that the camera was indeed real. So apologies (once more) to Joshua and STF. To answer those 'critics' on STF I had no knowledge of the camera at the time Joshua posted his leaked information.

It's unfortunate also that several European websites published some of this information several hours early, it appears there was a lot of confusion between Sony Germany and these websites. This did lead to some mis-information (especially about price) being spread.

Press release:

SONY INTRODUCES FIVE-MEGAPIXEL CYBER-SHOT CAMERA

Offers Fun and Performance for Consumer Market

SAN DIEGO, Aug. 21, 2001 - Now all digital photographers can achieve professional results with the introduction of Sony's Cyber-shot® DSC-F707 digital still camera, featuring new technologies that make previously difficult pictures a whole lot easier to shoot. Priced at about $1,000, the five-megapixel (MP) camera is the first of its kind to be aimed at, and priced for, the broad consumer market.

This new Cyber-shot model offers numerous options for both manual and automatic controls, so photographers can do as much, or as little, as they want to achieve extraordinary images. Built-in photo quality comes with a 5.24 MP CCD (5.02 MP effective), Carl Zeiss™ optics, and an advanced automatic flash system. Other controls have been added to enhance focus, exposure and composition.

"We're establishing a new benchmark with this camera for all photography - not just in the digital realm," said Takashi Kondo, senior vice president of Sony Electronics' Digital Imaging Product Division. "Not only does it take better pictures, it also offers new tools to challenge the creativity of even the most experienced photographer."

Among its features are:

  • Resolution - Sony's new 5.24 MP CCD image sensor (5.02 MP effective) provides the Cyber-shot DSC-F707 camera with a maximum image size of 2560 x 1920. At this resolution, photographers can capture images with the detail required for vibrant, lifelike photographs.
     
  • Zoom - To catch high-resolution images from afar, the camera has a pivoting Carl Zeiss™ Vario Sonnar 5X optical zoom lens with F2.0 aperture, giving it extraordinary light gathering capability.
     
  • Two LCDs - Photographers can compose shots with either the 1.8-inch LCD screen or a new eye-level electronic viewfinder they can hold up directly to their eye.
     
  • Focus
    • High-speed AutoFocus and Manual Focus Ring with LCD Magnifier
       
    • Hologram AF - Ideal for photographing a smooth beach on a moonless night, Hologram AF is a Sony-exclusive laser focusing system designed to achieve accurate focus on subjects with little contrast in dark conditions. It projects a visible Class 1 laser hologram pattern directly onto the subject so the camera can detect the contrast between the edge of the laser pattern and the subject itself.
       
  • Exposure
    • Multi-Pattern Metering - To get accurate exposure in uneven lighting, like a scene with the sun in one corner and a shaded hammock in the other, a multi-pattern metering option is included for the first time in a Sony digital still camera. By dividing the scene into a matrix of separate cells, each which can be metered independently, it accurately calculates exposure when highlights and shadows exist outside the center of the frame.
       
    • Pre-flash Metering - To get the best shots with the flash, the camera incorporates Sony's new pre-flash metering system. Unlike other flash metering systems, pre-flash metering actually measures the light from the flash as it passes through the lens to calculate correct exposure. At the time of exposure, the flash fires twice - once to illuminate the subject and calculate correct exposure, then a second time to record the image with the best exposure possible.
       
    • Spot Metering and Center-Weighted Averaging - Also available when needed.
       
  • Special Features
    • NightShot® - Sony's DSC-F707 makes it easy to take pictures in low- and no-light situations. With the flip of a switch, the infrared NightShot mode is activated, which defeats the flash and an infrared picture is captured with no visible light at all. NightShot makes it possible to take pictures or MPEG movies of sleeping children and nocturnal wildlife in a way that is impossible with all other digital still cameras.
       
    • NightFraming® - In order to compose pictures in a dimly lit restaurant or other settings with challenging light, NightFraming, another Sony exclusive feature, integrates NightShot technology, Hologram AF and TTL pre-flash metering. This seamless system enables the photographer to properly frame the subject, attain accurate focus and achieve correct flash exposure for consistently excellent flash shots.
       
  • Noise Reduction
    • Clear Color NR - The DSC-F707 model introduces this new noise reduction tool for the first time. Clear Color NR reduces noise in the color signal, which is useful when the subject includes areas of similar color, such as blue sky backgrounds.
       
    • Slow Shutter NR - In order to capture strikingly natural night scenes with available light, Slow Shutter NR overcomes the problem of CCD noise in long time exposures. The camera first captures the image. It then closes the iris while it captures a black frame - just the noise pattern of the CCD. The camera then subtracts the noise pattern from the image and leaves it virtually noise-free.

Sony's new Cyber-shot DSC-F707 camera captures the moment in a variety of formats, including: JPEG, TIFF, voice memo, e-mail and text. It also has MPEG-HQ and MPEG-EX video modes, Clip Motion animated GIF modes and in-camera editing functions. The camera ships with a 16MB Memory Stick® media card, an InfoLithium M battery, an AC adapter/in-camera charger, an A/V output cable, a USB cable, a shoulder strap and a lens cap.

Click here for our full review of the Sony DSC-F707

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