Sony's W570 is a small, slender point-and-shoot compact. It may look the part, but can its 16MP sensor play the part too? The What Digital Camera Sony Cyber-shot W570 review investigates...
Sony Cyber-shot W570 Review
Performance & Image Quality
Sony Cyber-shot W570 review – Performance
With only a few shooting options any performance issues would feel amplified, but the Sony W570 is swift and smooth in use. Powering up takes no time at all and you’re up and ready to shoot in a flash.
Autofocus is a multi-area (nine zones) system that automates where focus is selected. This is fed-back to the user on the screen by showing green focus boxes to confirm the subject focus. It’s quick and reliable, and Face Detection works well too, though the camera’s decision is final – there’s no fine tuning, AF point adjustment or manual focusing.
For close-up subjects the W570 can get as near as 5cms from subject when at its widest-angle 25mm setting. This bodes well for macro shots.
Should you want to take a little more control, such as setting the ISO sensitivity, then the W570’s main menu does offer a Programme mode. Switch into this and the likes of ISO and White Balance control open up to you. The more novice user will be happy with the iAuto mode’s auto-selection of settings, though there are also 10 specific Scene modes to choose from. Scene options such as Twilight shoot a series of images in quick succession and combine them in camera for a sharper, better exposed shoot when shooting in low-light or nighttime conditions.
The W570’s rear 2.7in LCD does a fine job of playing images back when viewed straight on, but steeper angles can cause viewing issues. Furthermore there can be the occasional ‘flickering’ in fine detail areas due to the low 230k-dot resolution. It’s not the end of the world but can mess with your eyes from time to time.
Sony Cyber-shot W570 review – Image Quality
Cramming 16.1-megapixels onto a small compact sensor doesn’t help image quality compared to a lower resolution equivalent, indeed it’s likely to hinder the camera’s ability to resolve sharp images and increases the presence of image noise. Indeed a 16MP image is far larger than you’re likely to need, plus it increases file sizes.
Fortunately the W570’s final image quality qualifies well for its target audience. At full size there are issues with sharpness and finer detail lacks, but for day-to-day shots of friends and family printed on a smaller scale or viewed on screen this isn’t a particular issue.
Auto ISO selection produced results that were reasonable up as far as ISO 800 – certainly not bad for a compact camera. Above this and the higher settings break down available detail yet more, rendering them of lesser use.
Exposure is generally good, though a blue shadow-like effect (known as chromatic aberration) can often be seen around back-lit subject edges, particularly towards the edges of the frame. This is a common lens-related issue for many cameras, though it’s subtle in the W570’s instance.