New Sony Camera Takes 3-D Pictures
The 3-D craze goes far beyond video, as the new Sony point-and-shoot camera shows. The newly unveiled Cyber-shot cameras from Sony will be able to take 3-D panorama shots without professional equipment.
The Cyber-shot WX5 and TX9 models will be small and slim, just like previous models, but will pack the new 3-D functionality. Because the camera still has only one lens, the 3-D effect is created by taking a burst of 100 frames while the user sweeps the camera around. The special Sony software then stitches the frames together into a single 3-D panorama.
There are a few drawbacks, though. The camera itself is incapable of displaying 3-D images so users will have to view their photos on 3-D TVs or other displays. Also, the effect isn't quite true 3-D. In the announcement, Sony called it a "3-D-style" effect.
Aside from the 3-D capabilities the Sony WX5 and TX9 are pretty standard compact cameras. They include a 12-megapixel image sensor, all the standard shooting modes and high definition video recording. Sony bumped up the resolution for HD video from the common 720p seen in other cameras to 1080i, which is a nice improvement but hardly groundbreaking.
The new Sony Cyber-shot cameras will be available in September 2010 for an undetermined price.