Sony MVC-CD300 Review
Timings & File Sizes
The CD300 did well, much better indeed than the CD1000. Sony took note of comments made in the reviews and fitted out the CD300 with a buffer which allows you to take the next shot while the camera writes the image away to the disc, this now makes CD-R/RW storage far more acceptable as a digital camera storage format (if you can get over the size of the camera).
Timing Notes: All times calculated as an average of three operations. Unless otherwise stated all timings were made on a 2048 x 1536 FINE JPEG image (approx. 1.3 MB per image). We performed all the tests below for both CD-R and CD-RW discs in case there was any performance difference, as it turns out for the majority of actions there was none.
|Power: Off to Record||CD-R||6.4||Lens takes 3.4 secs|
|Power: Off to Record||CD-RW||6.4||Lens takes 3.4 secs|
|Power: Off to Play||CD-R||9.0||Image loading *1|
|Power: Off to Play||CD-RW||9.0||Image loading *1|
|Power: Record to Off||CD-R||4.9||Lens retract|
|Power: Record to Off||CD-RW||4.9||Lens retract|
|Power: Play to Off||CD-R||2.1||Lens already retracted|
|Power: Play to Off||CD-RW||2.1||Lens already retracted|
|Mode: Record to Play||CD-R||3.0||Image loading *1|
|Mode: Record to Play||CD-RW||3.0||Image loading *1|
|Mode: Play to Record||CD-R||0.5|
|Mode: Play to Record||CD-RW||0.5|
|Play: Magnify||From x1 to x5.0||CD-R||7.4||(17 steps)|
|Play: Magnify||From x1 to x5.0||CD-RW||7.4||(17 steps)|
|Rec: Thumbnail view||3 x 3 thumbnails||CD-R||6.7|
|Rec: Thumbnail view||3 x 3 thumbnails||CD-RW||7.2|
|Auto Focus LAG||0.7 - 1.4||Average|
|Shutter Release LAG||0.1||Fast|
|Total LAG||1.1||Average to Slow|
|Off to Shot Taken||6.6||Average|
|Shot to Shot||2048 JPEG FINE||CD-R||3.7||Fast|
|Shot to Shot||2048 JPEG FINE||CD-RW||3.7||Fast|
|*1||Camera displays rough image (enough detail to see what the image is), you can interrupt the rest of the loading process by pressing the left or right cursor or rolling the jog-dial.|
Burst 3 Mode
One thing missing on all Sony digital cameras was any form of continuous shooting mode, the CD300 extends the S75's 2 shot burst to "Burst 3 " shooting mode which allows you to take three frames in a burst (0.8 secs apart; 1.3 fps equiv.) it's there, I'm not sure how useful it is but at least Sony have recognised their weakness and have at least partially addressed it. To summarise:
- Three frames 0.8 secs apart, wait 26 seconds before you can take the next burst.
File Flush / Display Timing
Timings shown below are the time taken for the camera to process and "flush" the image out to the disc, the timer was started as soon as the shutter release was pressed (mirror noise was heard) and stopped when ACCESS LED below the LCD went out. This means the timings also include the cameras processing time and as such are more representative of the actual time to "complete the task".
Unlike the S70/S75 the CD300 will allow you to take the next shot before the current one has been written away (except for TIFF and TEXT format), shot-to-shot times can be found in the table above. All the timings below are dependent on the time it takes the disc to ready, thus some of the "lead-in" to these timings will include the half second or so it takes the disc to spin up and laser to be in the correct position (this can be more clearly seen in the time to display timings).
For CD-R discs:
|Store file of type||Time
on a 156 MB
|2048 x 1536 TIFF||44.4||5.9||9,219 KB||11|
|2048 x 1536 TEXT (GIF) **||29.3||38.8||~160 KB||800|
|2048 x 1536 JPEG FINE||6.6||4.9||~1,300 KB||81|
|2048 x 1536 JPEG STANDARD||5.1||4.9||~800 KB||147|
|1600 x 1200 JPEG FINE||5.4||4.9||~900 KB||132|
|1600 x 1200 JPEG STANDARD||4.9||4.9||~480 KB||237|
For CD-RW discs:
|Store file of type||Time
on a 156 MB
|2048 x 1536 TIFF||58.0||5.9||9,219 KB||11|
|2048 x 1536 TEXT (GIF) **||29.3||38.8||~160 KB||800|
|2048 x 1536 JPEG FINE||9.5||5.9||~1,300 KB||81|
|2048 x 1536 JPEG STANDARD||6.8||5.0||~800 KB||147|
|1600 x 1200 JPEG FINE||6.8||4.8||~900 KB||132|
|1600 x 1200 JPEG STANDARD||6.0||4.5||~480 KB||237|
* All file sizes are an average of three files. As is the case with JPEG it's difficult to predict the size of an image because it will vary a fair amount depending on the content of the image (especially the amount of detail captured). For example, take a photograph of a fairly empty wall and you'll get a small JPEG, take a photograph of a bush with a lot of detail and you'll get a larger image. File sizes here are closer to the later, the larger size of file you should expect.
** Majority of this time is spent processing (generating) the GIF file.
Surprisingly good for a device with a mechanical / magneto-optical storage system, on a days outing the battery lasted well over two hours with careful use of the DISPLAY button (to power the LCD backlight off when not using it). Obviously performing regular playback, intialize or finalize takes a heavier toll on the battery. The CD300 uses the same powerful NP-FM50 "M series" InfoLithium (Lithium-Ion) battery we saw in the S70 (rated at 7.2V 8.5Wh, 1200mAh).
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