Cyber-shot Digital Still Camera DSC-W310
Digital Still Camera Sony Cyber-shot
I just bought a new digital camera this night. It is a Sony Cybershot DSC-W310 digital still camera. On its outer package, there are three icons. The first one is Intelligent Auto, the Second one is Smile Shutter and the third one - Face Detection. All of these features are new to me. This is the third digital camera that I have bought so far. I sold the first one three years ago. The second one was broken while I was on a snorkeling tour to Kaki island in the northern coast of Manokwari city and this new camera a 12.1 mega pixels digital still camera that is powered with an NP-BN1 Lithium Ion Type N rechargeable battery pack. I am curious to find out what the intelligent auto of this camera means. When I open the pdf handbook file which is the manual book of Sony digital still camera DSC-W310, on page 29, it says that the Intelligent Auto Adjustment lets the camera automatically recognize the shooting conditions and shoot the image. Actually, this is the shooting mode that most people use while taking pictures.
Furthermore, according to the explanation of the manual book of the camera, DSC-W310 recognizes several such shooting conditions as:
- Twilight Portrait
- Backlight Portrait
- or Portrait
Focusing of the camera may be difficult in unfavorable shooting conditions
I am an experienced user of Cybershot digital camera products manufactured by Sony. Although the quality of the photographs that I shot using Cyber-shot is excellent, there are a number of shooting conditions that are difficult for the camera to focus. Sony knows them and honestly explain such conditions on the same page of the book. The unfavorable shooting conditions are as follows:
- the subject that we want to shoot is far and is in dark condition
- the contrast between the subject and the background is not clear or very poor
- if we take picture of a subject through a glass panel that is not clear or that can create mirror effect to the lens of the camera
- a fast moving subject. The photograph which we take will usually be blurred
we take picture of object that is shiny and can reflect light. For
example, if we take a picture of a book whose cover is black and is
wrapped with a smooth plastic film. I have an online bookstore. When I
want to promote a book on the internet, I need to take picture of it
using my digital Sony Cyber-shot. I set the camera to macro shooting
but I forgot to turn the flash off. The result will be the picture of
the book with a reflection of flash light on it.
- the subject is backlit. For example if we take picture of a butterfly on a branch of a tree while we are facing the sunlight.
Shooting in low light conditions
I often take picture at night. Sometimes, I take pictures of city-scape Manokwari - the city where I live to see how beautiful it is at night. I also like to shoot subjects at night in the rooms that are lighted with fluorescent lamps. These are outdoor and indoor night shooting conditions that a professional or an amateur photographers have to tackle. There are a number of techniques that I usually apply when facing such condition.
- For shooting indoor subjects in low light condition, I use the White Balance Settings. We can set the WB menu to auto if we are still knew to our camera. This lets the camera automatically adjusts itself to the surrounding area or the target of the lens so that colors in the picture will be as natural as possible. If we have been more familiar with the camera, we can explore or try the fluorescent and incandescent modes of the camera.
- The next mode that is good for taking outdoor subjects at night is by using the ISO mode. When we set the camera to ISO, it will take pictures without using flash although we are using it at night. Taking cityscape photographs using this ISO mode is better than using flash.
- Twilight mode. My old Cyber-shot camera has got only one mode of it. But this new DSC W310 camera has two twilight modes. The first is for taking portrait photographs with the night view of a city at the background and the second one is for taking scenery pictures at far distance, for example the view of the city of Manokwari from the other side of the Dorey bay.
- Using flash. If the subject that I want to shoot is located between 3 to 5 meters away from me using flash that is set to auto it a good solution. But if I also want to get a result of my photo better with the background of the subject is also bright, then I usually set the flash mode to SL.
- Sometimes taking pictures of subject in a low light shooting condition without flash can give us better results.
We should try all modes that our digital camera have to know more about their functions and to be more familiar with them.
Also read my other article: How to photograph object in the dark
We often see the photographs or the pictures that we just shot are blurry. Blurred pictures can be frustrating we cannot recreate the moments that we need to record in the form of pictures or movie. Blur is usually caused by two things, our shaking hands or shaking body, and moving subjects. I have three solutions for this problem:
- Take pictures using tripod. When the digital camera is mounted on a tripod, it will be more stable than if we hold it. We only need to press the shutter button.
- Set the self timer of the camera to a 2 second delay. Or fingers cause some shakes when we press the shutter button. This effect can be eliminated if the shooting of the subject is delayed for 2 seconds when we have release our finger from the shutter button and when our holding of the camera is more stable.
- Using ISO setting mode. If we set our camera to higher ISO resolution, the speed of the shutter will be faster.
A conventional approach for minimizing blur is shooting the subject before it moves.
Camera for the South Africa 2010 FIFA World Cup
When I examined the packaging box of my new digital still camera DSC-W310, I saw two logos on the top right corner. They were logos of South Africa 2010 FIFA World Cup and UEFA Champions League. Perhaps Sony use these international sports event to launch this product. Of course, Sony Corporation spent a lot of money for buying advertising spaces during the event.
A Recommended Camera for Everybody
I see that this camera is good for recreational purposes. It might not be suitable for photographers who are serious in producing high quality photographs that are needed my magazines, and other publishing companies. When I bought it last night, its price was 2.1 million rupiahs or around 233 US dollars in a local digital camera store. After buying it, I opened the internet and tried to compare it with the price that an online camera store offers. I was surprised to see that the same camera is offered for only 170 US dollars. Ugh..., What a stupid decision I had made last night! I could get cheaper price for this camera.
Telephoto Digital Camera
Well, if you need a digital camera with super zoom capability, then I will recommend Nikon Coolpix P500. With its 36x optical zoom feature, you can shoot any distant subjects without difficulties. This camera can even create bright pictures in low light environment. I bought it in late August 2011 and have used it a lot of times particularly during my bird watching trip in Arfak mountains.