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Sony's Cyber-shot P-31 camera concentrates on the essentials of good picture-taking: sharp focus and accurate exposure. Technologies like multi-point auto focus, multi-pattern and pre-flash exposure metering, and scene modes work transparently to give amateur photographers the head start they need.
Better Focus and Exposure - AutomaticallySony's newly developed multi-point auto focus is one feature that takes the guesswork away from the picture-taker. It allows the camera to intelligently evaluate three different focus areas and select the best focus setting for the subject instead of the background. This ensures that the star of the photo is always the clearest part of the picture, even if they aren't in the center of the frame.
For greater exposure accuracy, Sony's pre-flash exposure metering calculates exposure with light from the flash itself. When the picture is taken, the flash fires twice; once to illuminate the subject and determine the correct exposure, then a second time to record the image with the best exposure possible.
To provide accurate exposure in uneven lighting, multi-pattern metering divides the scene into a matrix of 49 separate cells, each of which can be metered independently. This feature calculates exposure when highlights and shadows exist outside the center of the frame, like a beach scene with the sun in one corner and a shaded hammock in the other.
Special Lighting Problems SolvedIt's difficult for most amateur photographers to take a flash picture that correctly exposes both the subject and the background. So, for example, nighttime pictures of people standing in the middle of New York's Time's Square can lose the exciting backdrop details.
The new Twilight Portrait scene mode, is designed to automatically control exposure and flash in a heavily backlit scene when you want to illuminate your subject with flash and not loose the darker background. To best capture the light and image from the background, it slows the shutter speed for a long exposure AND, to properly illuminate the person in the foreground, it adds the flexibility of a flash.
To make the picture even more clear, Sony has added a mechanism that was previously found only in more expensive, professional-grade cameras, slow shutter noise reduction. It eliminates the "visual noise" that often appears in long exposure time digital camera images as grain, by capturing two successive pictures. The first captures what the photographer sees. The second closes the iris and captures the noise. The camera then subtracts the noise pattern from the picture, resulting in a beautiful low light photograph that is virtually noise-free.
Useful Recording OptionsMulti-frame burst mode is a recording option that captures action by taking 16 rapid-fire sequential pictures at any of three selected intervals. Saved as a single digital file, these images can be beneficial in analyzing a golf, tennis or baseball swing.
The P31 also features the new MPEG Movie HQX video mode that allows users to capture nonstop, full-screen, high-resolution MPEG videos to the capacity of the Memory Stick media.
Tools for Added ConvenienceIn low light situations, advanced LCD auto bright monitoring automatically increases the brightness of an image on the LCD display so photographers can see and frame objects.
For reliable, long-lasting operation, The CyberShot DSC-P31 is supplied with two rechargeable nickel metal hydride AA batteries and a charger.
DSC-P31 features include:
- 1/2.7" (6.64mm) Sony Super HAD 2.0 Megapixel Effective;
- Still Image: 1600 x 1200, 1600x1072 (3:2), 1280 x 960, 640 x 480, 320x240
- MPEG Movie: 320 x 240 HQX, 320 x 240, 160 x 112;
- Scene Selection (3 modes: Twilight / Twilight Portrait / Landscape);
- New Focusing System with 3 Area Multi-point AF;
- New Noise Reduction: Auto at 1/2 second or longer shutter speeds;
- 12bit A/D Conversion - allows a wider dynamic range from highlight to shadow;
- Adjustable Flash with Red Eye Reduction;
- 1.6" TFT color (61,000 pixels) LCD Screen with Auto Brightness;
- Fast USB download to computer;
- 2 x AA NiMH rechargeable batteries (1750mAH included with BC-CS1 charger).
- Sony Memory Stick media, 8MB included.
The DSC-P31 camera will be available at the end of March, 2002 for about $220.