Jan 22, 2011

Sony Cybershot DSC-TX5: A User's Review

Posted by Goldi on Jan 22, 2011 at 8:15 AM
Alright! Here's my much awaited personal review of my new gadget, the Sony Cybershot DSC-TX5. I've blogged a few days ago about my plan to get this little piece of wonder tool and actually, I got it on that same day. LoLs!

I bought this from Kimstore at Php 11,900. Way cheaper than how much you will get it from the malls, which I believe at this point ranges from about 22,000 - 24,000 Php. I have been shopping for this item for a long time already and so far, Kimstore is one of the cheapest that sell this, brand new and with warranty. I got the black color as what I mentioned with my previous post. Now on with the review. :)

 Primary reasons why I decided to get this over a wide range of other compact digital cameras:
  1. It's an all-weather, rugged camera. Waterproof to as deep as 3m/10ft (for 60 minutes. Based on Sony testing standards), shock-proof to a drop height of 1.5m/5ft, dust-proof, and freeze-proof down to to -10◦C.
  2. It's super slim at 17.7mm thickness, and almost the same size as a credit card (pictures will be shown for this)
  3. Takes great pictures on low-light conditions, thanks to the Exmor R™ CMOS Sensor

...Plus it's a Sony digicam which has already established a name when it comes to taking clear pictures.

The Sony Cybershot DSC-TX5 belongs to the line of compact cameras. And mind you, this one is ULTRA compact--which I liked most about it. I've always been after the handiness of a gadget, as I own a number of them and carry them almost all the time. I have 2 phones, and I carry around my favorite of all the gadgets I own, the Apple iPod Touch 4G, 32GB. So if there's anything I first consider when I shop for a gadget, it's its handiness and compactness, to fit in a decent sized purse or bag.

It's so small it's just the size of a credit card. And I find it soooo cool.

tx5 with card
The TX5 beside my Unisilver warranty card

tx5 under card

I find this camera beautiful, owing to its diminutive size. The body, as I see it, looks like it's made of metal at least in some parts. It's made in Japan, and it feels solid in my small hands, not wobbly. Feels sturdy even with its small and compact/light size. The body itself has a matte color, but the lens cover is glossy, which attracts finger prints and it really doesn't look good. It makes me always wipe it with a cloth for the prints irritate my OC eyes.

See how it attracts fingerprints

Well, this can be helped by carrying a cotton cloth always to wipe all those prints if it bothers one much. I can live with that so I still find this cool gadget pretty.

Image Quality
Like I said earlier, Sony is already one established name when it comes to digital compact cameras that take great pictures. I will be showing some sample images here taken from my own DSC-TX5, by myself. I am not a pro when it comes to taking pictures, I'm just a regular photo taker. I was surprised though at some of the images I was able to produce with this small but terrible tool.

One of the features that the Sony Cybershot DSC-TX5 boasts is its ability to take clear pictures even in low-light, and this is the first one I tested because this is actually one of the reasons why I kept changing digital cameras over time.
10.2 megapixel Sony CyberShot DSC-TX5 camera
Beneath the tough exterior you’ll find some equally serious imaging features. With a resolution of 10.2 effective megapixels, the advanced Exmor R CMOS Sensor ensures detail-packed pictures, with superlative low-noise imaging performance in low light. It’s a perfect complement for the superb Carl Zeiss lens with 4x optical zoom and 25mm wide angle for perfectly framed shots - from intimate portraits to dramatic travel scenes.

Brief history of the digicams I owned:
I first owned a Canon Powershot A495 which was the first best digicam I owned, but its size is not too compact and it's not waterproof. The time I owned that one though, waterproof models are not yet out in the market. At the first sign of these all weather cameras, I got myself a Pentax Optio W10 and fell in love with it. It's a lot more compact and the best of all, it's waterproof. It also takes great pictures, but still not comparable with the image quality a Canon or Sony digital camera produces. And it sucks on low-light. However as time went by, the waterproof line of cameras are being a lot more competitive overtime and Canon & Sony started producing their own. But they're way more expensive than the others when they first came out so I got myself a Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS1 as replacement for my Pentax due to the reviews I've read in the internet, it being one of the most recommended waterproof cameras. When I owned one though, I was not happy because I found it too bulky for me, though I liked it's wide angled lens, which became a very welcome upgrade from my Pentax which can only take in a small portion of a scene in its frame. I was not happy with the image quality though. I found it too soft, and it still sucks in low light. The gadget, unfortunately didn't even last a year with me. I sold it after a few months.

I chose the Sony DSC TX5 over Canon Powershot D10 because of its compactness. I was going to go for the Canon, if it only didn't look like a submarine. It's waaay bulkier than the Sony, and it's even bulkier than the Panasonic and I didn't like that. Besides, it's more expensive compared to TX5. Though I'm sure it delivers the best image quality because I owned a Canon before and I attest to that but it's just too bulky for my liking. So Sony won over it because of its size, and price :D.

I was supposed to be talking about image quality here, right? Check these out:

wwjd with flash
One of the great features of the TX5 is being able to select from the touch screen the point of focus. Cool, right? I played with the selective focus feature of the TX5 and this is what I got. I made the camera focus on the little calendar. This is with flash.

priorities with flash
Now I made it focus on the pen holder, still with flash

wwjd without flash
without flash, focused on the calendar. The light is only coming from the window, though our window's big so it's actually quite bright. This is still taken with a natural lighting

priorities no flash
pen holder focused, natural day light

macro no flash daylight
Macro shot of the calendar

macro without flash
macro shot of my lip balm, with natural light, which is quite low because this is somewhere in my table in front of curtained windows. Indeed it still can take clear photos in low light, and this is just a macro shot.

Low light macro of my icky laptop stickers

I just tested the macro low light shots, because in my opinion, this is where most of the compact digital cameras struggle. I am always sure that digital photos always look great with a generous supply of lighting so I no longer tested this with outdoor shots, though I've placed one in my photo stream. If you want to see the rest of the test shots, you can check my Sony DSC-TX5 User Review set in Flickr.

My verdict: Great low-light photos! I'm one happy owner! :D :D :D

a portrait shot of mine holding my black Sony Cybershot DSC-TX5

It will take a lot of words and a long blog page for me to make a comprehensive review of this thing so I just covered the parts that made me choose this camera over its other competitors. I still believe the best would still depend on the preference of the user so it still varies from person to person. If I'm to be asked, I'm pretty satisfied upon purchase of this gadget, but I can't answer for someone else who might not like this because they have a different preference. I no longer did a review on the waterproof feature because I don't think there's much to see there. Much of the picture quality still depends on the amount of light the camera can take in and we all know this is greatly reduced if you go under water so I'm not expecting much on this anymore. As long as I'm able to take pictures under water, it's already a great plus. So a good photo quality would already be considered a bonus.

So would I recommend this camera? I think so, if you have have the same preference as mine :).

I would welcome other questions if you want my opinion on the other features of this camera. Feel free to post your comments and I would probably just make a new blog entry should I gather a few more inquiries about the other features.


Diamond R said...

ang galing naman ng camerang ito.
i have a canon digital ixus 60 6.0 mega fixel lang. wala yatang macro focus na ganyan or di ko lang alam gamitin.

nakakaingit naman ang mga test photos mo

Anonymous said...

hala,,bili ka na....

Meg said...

Thanks for the wonderful blog! May I ask if you tried it underwater? is the quality of the pics ok?


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