Budget Camera Grouptest - Sony W310
Sony's Cyber-shot W310 offers optical image stabilisation, as well as the usual electronic ISO-based option, and a 28mm lens with a 4x optical zoom. There's also an Easy Shooting mode, which clears the display of all but the most pertinent information, and even modes with a degree of in-camera editing.
Although it may seem somewhat frivolous to put optical image stabilisation into a camera with such a limited zoom, the comparison between relying entirely on ISO and adding some physical assistance is clear. The Sony W310's focus is helped hugely, as is the exposure, and movement is far easier to track. The LCD is also impressively bright and detailed for such a budget-aimed model, and the Intelligent Auto doesn't create any huge delays when taking images. The nine-zone focus system also makes the camera more accurate when shooting a varied scene, and can be switched back to capturing the central area as required.
The W310 does offer impressively fast focusing, and generally very sharp results, only being caught out once or twice by excessive movement. The images produced favoured darker tones as opposed to the lighter end of the scale, very occasionally blowing out the highlights, although not to the extent to lose a huge amount of detail. Image noise creeps in above the ISO 400 mark, which was surprising as the light conditions usually didn't require it.
All in all, the W310 does look and feel far more expensive than its price would indicate.
LENS 28-1123.3mm (4x Zoom)
SCREEN SIZE 2.7in
MODES Auto, P, 9 Scene modes
MEMORY CARDS SD/SDHC, MS Duo
SOCKETS USB, AV
DIMENSIONS 95.3 x 55 x 18.7mm
Looks great, which doesn't translate fully to the image quality as noise was an issue, but focus and tones were perfectly passable.
This article has more pages:
- 1. Best budget cameras: Group test of cheap digital cameras
- 2. Budget Camera Grouptest - Verdict
- 3. Budget Camera Grouptest - Performance and Value
- 4. Budget Camera Grouptest - Canon A495
- 5. Budget Camera Grouptest - Fujifilm Z70
- 6. Budget Camera Grouptest - Nikon S3000
- 7. Budget Camera Grouptest - Samsung PL80
- 8. Budget Camera Grouptest - Panasonic FS25
- 9. Budget Camera Grouptest - Sony W310