Beauty does lie in the eyes of the beholder, but when one looks at the stream of ads in the market, being slim is the best bet. Sony has been holding true to this mantra with its Cyber-shot series. This is especially so with its slimmest offering to date, the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-T77.
Now, we aren't kidding when we say the T77 is considerably slim. Measuring in at 13.9mm with the lens cover down, the T77 is what you might expect from first impressions. Svelte, sleek and most of all, aesthetically pleasing to the eyes, the T77 should likely garner a huge following from the fashion-conscious crowd.
Handling the device was easy. We found the familiar slider cover on the T77, which acts as an alternate power switch to start up the camera in a short two seconds. With the T tagged to the T77, it's no surprise that you'll be utilizing a touch interface on the 3.0-inch LCD screen. Leaving it on Auto mode should be sufficient for most users. Should you wish to be a bit more hands-on, there is some flexibility with numerous modes such as Easy, Program Auto, or the various Scene selections.
The T77 also comes with a pretty new and interesting Scene mode known as Gourmet. As its name suggests, this particular Scene is designed for food photography and supposedly enhances images of the food on your platter. Interesting, yes. Useful, probably so for the avid food-loving bloggers out there.
Like most of its Cyber-shot series, the T77 comes with a 1/2.3 type Super HAD CCD sensor, at up to 10.1-megapixel in resolution. That places the T77 as one of the mid-range cameras out there and it should do well with its Carl Zeiss Tessar-Vario lens. Looking through the test shots from our line resolution charts, we weren't surprised at the noise that appeared when we pushed it beyond ISO400. This was more prominently seen in the color charts, where we noticed discernible noise in the black and darker areas.
Colors weren't overly warm, which came off good for us, but we did notice that the T77's color balance was a tad cooler than most other devices out there. Using its generic Auto mode, we drained the battery dry after approximately 250 images of our lab setup.
Next, we took the T77 out for some field testing to get a better feel of this point-and-shoot compact. Its BIONZ imaging processor is considerably fast, given for a fact that it takes slightly less than two seconds to capture and display the resulting image. Seeing as how the T77 comes with Sony's Optical SteadyShot, we didn't notice much blurriness on the resulting images. But, like we've mentioned, pushing the ISO through the roof is not the best idea. As such, night shots did tend to be slightly compromised, even with the aid of the Scene mode.
The T77's Intelligent Scene Recognition mode performed as expected, so users won't need to worry about scene selection. Its Smile Shutter technology, coupled with the improved Face Detection technology is a nice bonus for users, as it lets the camera do all the work after users select a pre-defined smile sensitivity of their choice. But if you are more of a hands-on person, you'll probably opt to skip this feature.
The Sony Cyber-shot T77 exudes sexiness, without too much of a compromise in its imaging department. Need something slim? Check out the T77. Easy to use? Again, the T77. In all, the T77 can fulfill the needs of the general consumer who aren't too nitpicky about noise levels, provided that they are willing to stump up its $499 price tag.