The Cybershot DSC-V1 was introduced by Sony just before the Photo Marketing Association (PMA 2003) trade show this year. Despite its compact proportions the five megapixel, four times optical zoom DSC-V1 is squarely aimed at the 'Prosumer' market and will have to compete with the likes of the recently announced Nikon Coolpix 5400 (5 mp, 4x zoom) and Canon PowerShot G5 (5 mp, 4x zoom). Other interesting features of the V1 are Sony's first hot-shoe for external flash (they have introduced complementary the HVL-F32X flash too), support for Memory Stick Pro (up to 1 GB), 'Hologram AF' laser based low-light AF assist, five-area auto focus, Night Shot and Night Framing, USB 2.0 connectivity and full control of sharpening, tone and color saturation (at long last).

Like previous high-end Sony digital cameras the DSC-V1 has a 'Carl Zeiss' branded lens system, although not as fast (large maximum aperture) as previous 'Carl Zeiss' lenses we certainly hope that this crucial element of image quality will give the DSC-V1 an edge over the competition.