The Sony Ericsson Satio is a high-spec cameraphone, with an impressive 12.1MP and useful camera functionality also on hand. The What Digital Camera Satio review checks it out
Sony Ericsson Satio
2009 was very much the year of the iPhone. The launch of the latest, 3GS, version of the smartphone saw improved functionality, a range of mapping enhancements and, above all, an improved camera. Users now have the option of shooting video, and also utilising the upgraded 3.2MP camera by way of selecting focal points by simply tapping the large touchscreen. However, in terms of cameraphones, the iPhone is still very much off the pace – the 3.2MP resolution is way down the pecking order. When looking for innovators in the field of the cameraphone, look no further than Sony Ericsson.
The Sony Ericsson Satio is the latest in a long line of high-specification cameraphones, and raises the bar to an impressive 12.1MP with regards to resolution.
The model doesn’t just sport a high megapixel count, however, as a range of impressive camera functionality is also on hand. First of all, there is the striking screen – measuring 3.5in and with a 360 x 640 pixel resolution in 16:9 ratio, it’s also a touchscreen to both improve usability and keep the device to a pocketable size. The Satio cameraphone supports microSD cards, meaning that the onboard memory of the device is expandable right up to 32GB.
As with recent Sony Ericsson cameraphones, the Satio sports a host of dedicated camera controls. The camera is activated by the dedicated slide cover, while a shutter release features on the top of the camera in landscape mode, much the same as you would expect from a compact camera.
These controls give the Sony Ericsson Satio more the feel of a compact camera than a phone, and are a welcome addition.
The large touchscreen of the Sony Ericsson Satio makes shooting with it a pleasure. Options and functions are easily selected, while composing images on the screen is a pleasure. A criticism of previous generations of cameraphone is how long it takes for them to focus, and despite a notable improvement on previous Sony Ericsson cameraphones, the autofocus is still fairly laggy.
Image quality is still fairly poor – the issue with cameraphones is that, despite the hike in megapixel count, the physical size of the sensor is limited, meaning that noise is an issue at all ISO sensitivities amongst other flaws. However, the Sony Ericsson Satio is a pleasure to use as a camera.
Though there is still room to improve the image quality, the Sony Ericsson Satio is a pleasure to use as a camera, and is no doubt one of the best cameraphones on the market.