Sony's DSC-P9 is a natural progression from the three megapixel DSC-P5 (which itself succeeded the original DSC-P1). The DSC-P9 (expected street price around $600) joins a growing segment of four megapixel ultra-compact digital cameras which also includes the Canon PowerShot S40 ($650), Pentax Optio 430 ($700), Olympus D-40Z ($700) and the new Minolta DiMAGE F100 ($700). Interestingly three of that bunch have gone for the long / thin body design which we first saw with the DSC-P1.

Note that because the DSC-P9 is very similar to the DSC-P5 many sections of this review are based on that review, notably the body/design and operation sections.

Sony DSC-P9 compared to Sony DSC-P5 (differences only)

  Sony DSC-P9 Sony DSC-P5
CCD 1/1.8" 4.1 megapixels 1/1.8" 3.3 megapixels
Effective pixels 3.9 megapixels 3.1 megapixels
Image sizes 2272 x 1704, 2272 x 1520 (3:2),
1600 x 1200, 1280 x 960, 640 x 480
2048 x 1536, 2048 x 1360 (3:2),
1600 x 1200, 1280 x 960, 640 x 480
Image formats JPEG JPEG, TIFF
Lens 3 x optical zoom
39 - 117 mm equiv. (F2.8 - F5.6)
3 x optical zoom
39 - 117 mm equiv. (F2.8 - F5.6 )
Auto focus Multi AF (3 point), Center AF, Manual Focus Center AF, Manual Focus
White balance Auto, Daylight, Cloudy, Fluorescent, Tungsten Auto, Indoor, Outdoor, Hold
Program AE modes Twilight, Twilight Portrait, Landscape Twilight
Noise reduction Clear Color / Luminance NR, Dark frame subtraction (slower than 0.5 sec) Dark frame subtraction (slower than 0.5 sec)
Flash range 0.5 - 3.8 m (1.6 - 12.5 ft) 0.5 - 2.8 m (1.6 - 9.2 ft)
Burst mode Yes, Multiburst (7.5, 15 or 30 fps, 16 320 x 240 frames) Yes, 2 frames (1.4 fps)
MPEG Yes, HQX (320 x 240 inc audio) only space limited Yes, EX (320 x 240 inc audio) only space limited
Displays LCD Monitor LCD Monitor, status LCD panel
Storage Memory Stick, 16 MB included Memory Stick, 8 MB included
Compartment Door opens vertically Door opens horizontally
Grip Front metallic finger 'hook' grip Plastic dots
Dimensions 113 x 53 x 36 mm
(4.4 x 2.1 x 1.7 in)
113 x 53 x 36 mm
(4.4 x 2.1 x 1.4 in)
Volume 216 cm3 216 cm3
Weight (inc. batt) 203 g (7.2 oz) 214 g (7.8 oz)

If you're new to digital photography you may wish to read the Digital Photography Glossary before diving into this article (it may help you understand some of the terms used).

Conclusion / Recommendation / Ratings are based on the opinion of the reviewer, you should read the ENTIRE review before coming to your own conclusions.

We recommend to make the most of this review you should be able to see the difference (at least) between X, Y, and Z and ideally A, B, and C.

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