The TX1 looks the part of a nightlife camera. Available in four colors–blue, gray, silver, and pink–it is eye-catching for its size alone. Add in its near-total lack of physical controls, the slide-down brushed-metal lens cover, and the 3-inch touch-screen LCD, and you’re bound to get looks and questions. The slim body doesn’t give you much room to rest your fingers and with the internal lens positioned high on the front left side, it’s easy to accidentally get your digits in shots and touch the lens.
The only physical controls are the power and shutter buttons, a small zoom rocker, and a small Playback mode button at the top of the display. The camera can also be powered on or off by lowering or raising the lens cover. Everything else is handled through the LCD.
The touch-screen display is fairly responsive to fingers, but it works better with the included stylus likely because you can be more precise with it. It clips onto the wrist strap and lets you quickly poke around menus and view and edit photos. Because it has a wide-screen LCD, there are gutters on the left and right sides when using the camera’s full resolution. If you want to use the full screen to frame shots, you’ll need to shoot in a wide-screen aspect ratio, which drops photos to a 7-megapixel resolution.
Sony, thankfully, reworked its touch-screen interface making settings faster to find. Tap the Menu icon in the upper left corner and a panel of available shooting options slides out as well as a Toolbox icon to take you to a secondary menu for general settings. Back out to the main screen for framing shots and down the left side is a row of four customizable shooting function icons (changing them is a simple drag-and-drop procedure). On the right side of the screen are shooting mode and playback icons. And if you don’t want to see anything but what’s in the lens, a simple tap and swipe on the left side hides everything else.
|Key specifications||Sony Cyber-shot DSC-TX1|
|Dimensions (WHD)||3.7×2.3×0.6 inches|
|Weight (with battery and media)||5 ounces|
|Megapixels, image sensor size, type||10 megapixels, 1/2.4-inch Exmor R CMOS|
|LCD size, resolution/viewfinder||3-inch LCD (touch screen), 230K dots/None|
|Lens (zoom, aperture, focal length)||4x, f3.5-4.6, 35-140mm (35mm equivalent)|
|File format (still/video)||JPEG/MPEG-4 (.MP4)|
|Highest resolution size (still/video)||3,648×2,736 pixels/1,280×720 at 30fps|
|Image stabilization type||Optical and digital|
|Battery type, rated life||Lithium ion rechargeable, 250 shots|
|Storage type||Memory Stick Pro Duo|