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Sony Cyber-shot WX220 Review

Sony Cyber-shot WX220 Review - We put the ultra-compact Sony Cyber-shot WX220 to the test to see how this pocket wonder performs.

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Category : Digital Cameras
Product : Sony Cyber-shot WX220
Price : £149
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Features
Handling
Performance
Verdict
Specification

Sony Cyber Shot WX220 Black (2)

The Sony Cyber-shot WX220 updates the WX200, with built-in NFC.The Sony Cyber-shot WX220 is an ultra compact digital camera with a 10x optical zoom lens, an 18.2 megapixel sensor, high speed shooting and built in Wi-Fi. It is available in black, pink or gold. 

Sony Cyber-shot WX220 Features

Sony Cyber Shot WX220 Black (3)
The Sony Cyber-shot WX220 offers an 18.2 megapixel Exmor R (Backlit) CMOS sensor for high speed shooting as well as improved low light performance. A number of intelligent auto modes are built in to help achieve the best shots regardless of your camera experience, and there are a wealth of scene modes and creative options including backlighting / HDR modes, handheld night scenes, and multiple artistic creative shooting modes.

The 10x optical zoom lens features optical image stabilisation, and is the equivalent of 25 - 250mm in 35mm terms. Despite the large amount of optical zoom, the camera is extremely compact thanks in part to the relatively small 2.7inch screen on the back. This is all put into a stylish metal body that is available in black, gold or pink. Full HD video is recorded with stereo sound and optical zoom is available while recording - you can also take photos while recording.

Built in Wi-Fi lets you control the camera with a smartphone or tablet using the Sony Playmemories app, and you can share or upload images straight to social media websites like Facebook and YouTube. NFC lets you touch the camera to a compatible smartphone or tablet creating the connection much more quickly than manually setting it up.

Sony Cyber Shot WX220 Black (4)

Key Features

  • 18.2 megapixel backlit CMOS sensor
  • 10x optical zoom lens, equivalent to 25-250mm in 35mm terms
  • Optical Steadyshot image stabilisation
  • 2.7inch screen, 460k dots
  • Wi-Fi / NFC built in
  • Full HD video with stereo sound
  • ISO100 to 12800
  • 5cm macro focus
  • HDR / i-Sweep panoramic
  • 10fps continuous shooting
  • Available in black, gold and pink

Sony Cyber-shot WX220 Handling

Sony Cyber Shot WX220 Black (5)
The camera features a well built metal body that is surprisingly compact given the 10x optical zoom lens offered. There is little grip at the front or back but the front is textured, giving some grip, although use of the wrist strap is definitely recommended. Build quality is good with the camera feeling good in the hand, and the ultra compact size means it can easily be slipped into a pocket and forgotten about. There are a good number of buttons and controls on the back and top of the camera despite the small size. Pressing the middle button in the scroll wheel lets you change the shooting mode. 

Sony Cyber Shot WX220 Black (6)
The menu system is easy to navigate, press the menu button the enter the menus and in there you can change the camera settings. The menu options are spread over several screens and there are numerous options and settings available. 

To use the Wi-Fi you need to install the free PlayMemories app on your smartphone. Pairing the devices and using the app is easy, letting you setup the connect quickly if your smartphone or tablet supports NFC. You can transfer images and videos, as well as use the app to capture them as well. You can control the zoom and set a self-timer with the app.

Battery life - Battery life is rated at 210 shots according to Sony / CIPA test results, which is average for a compact class of camera - therefore we would recommend a spare battery if you plan on shooting more, and want to use Wi-Fi a lot. 

Sony Cyber Shot WX220 Black (1)

Speed - We took a number of shots to test the camera's responsiveness, from switch on to first photo, shot to shot, focusing speed etc. We take a number of shots and then use the average to ensure accurate and consistent tests, making it easy to compare with other cameras.

Shutter Response <0.05secs
Wide - Focus / Shutter Response 0.2secs
Full zoom - Focus / Shutter Response 0.2secs
Switch on Time to Taking a Photo 1.4secs
Shot to Shot without Flash 1.2secs
Shot to Shot with Flash 2.1secs
Continuous Shooting - JPEG
(shots before stopping)
10fps (10 shots)
Continuous Shooting - Flash N/A

Focus and shutter response are both excellent, and shot to shot time is also good, with an impressive 10fps continuous shooting mode available. 

Sony Cyber-shot WX220 Performance

Additional sample photos and product shots are available in the Equipment Database, where you can add your own review, photos and product ratings.

Sony Cyber-shot WX220 Sample Photos


Sample Photos - Colour and exposure are good with the camera providing consistent results. Portrait photos taken with flash are good, although detail is quite low, as the ISO setting is increased. 

Sony Cyber-shot WX220 Lens test images


Lens Performance - The lens performs reasonably well at both the wide-angle or telephoto settings, with very little signs of distortion. Purple fringing is well controlled, as well as chromatic abberation. Fine detail is a little difficult to see in trees or areas where you would expect high levels of detail, or when the ISO setting increases. The lens has a minimum focusing distance of 5cm, this allows for a reasonable macro shot to be taken. 

Sony Cyber-shot WX220 ISO test images


ISO Noise Performance - Some noise is visible in ISO100 shots, this increases at ISO200, and again very slightly at ISO400, and at ISO800 there's a noticeable drop in detail. At ISO1600 noise increases again and detail becomes soft. Noise is high at ISO3200 with very soft images. At ISO6400, and ISO12800, the camera takes a number of shots, and combines them in order to reduce noise further - these images have very low levels of detail.

Sony Cyber-shot WX220 White-balance test images


White Balance Performance - Auto White Balance (AWB) performs well under tungsten lighting, with the tungsten preset giving a slightly warmer result. AWB performs very well under fluorescent lighting, and for most shots the fluorescent presets are best avoided due to a strong colour cast. 

Sony Cyber Shot WX220 Panoramic DSC00067 | 1/1000 sec | f/3.3 | 4.5 mm | ISO 100
Panoramic | 1/1000 sec | f/3.3 | 4.5 mm | ISO 100

Panorama mode - The camera has an automatic panoramic mode, where you simply press and hold the shutter release button and pan the camera, and the camera automatically stitches the images together. Images are good, although there is some ghosting with movement in the scene.

Sony Cyber-shot WX220 Outdoor images


The camera has a number of different ways to improve dynamic range, and when left in intelligent auto or superior auto modes will automatically activate the backlight scene mode or HDR mode as needed. You can also select these modes yourself, with the backlight mode using the flash to illuminate the foreground, as shown in the example above.

Sony Cyber-shot WX220 Digital filters


Digital Filters - The camera has a number of creative effects, as shown above, including HDR painting, and Rich Tone Monochrome.

Video - Video quality is good with the camera offering full HD video with stereo sound, in addition optical zoom is available.


Value For Money

The Sony Cyber-shot WX220 is available for £179 which makes it average value for money, particularly up against the following cameras, shown below:

Panasonic Lumix SZ8, 12x optical zoom, Wi-Fi, £139
Nikon Coolpix S6800, 12x optical zoom, Wi-Fi, £172
Canon IXUS 255, 10x optical zoom, Wi-Fi, £175,
Canon IXUS 265, 12x optical zoom, Wi-Fi, NFC, £179
Canon Powershot SX600, 18x optical zoom, Wi-Fi, NFC, £173

You'll also need to buy a memory card and a case or bag to keep your camera safe and protected - have a look at our complete guide to camera bags.

Sony Cyber-shot WX220 Verdict

Like the previous version, the Sony Cyber-shot WX220 delivers bright colourful photos, with good exposure. Rather more impressive is that the camera packs a wide-angle 10x optical zoom lens with optical image stabilisation in a metal body not much larger than your typical 5-6x zoom camera (and more compact than many modern smartphones), making this camera extremely pocketable and versatile.

The WX220 is a well-rounded camera with high speed shooting at 10fps, rapid performance, full HD video with stereo sound, Wi-Fi and good ease of use, making it an ideal camera for the casual snapper who wants to be able to quickly share photos. Although the price does put this compact camera at the more expensive end of the market, and those wishing to make large prints may be disappointed by the level of detail in photos, although if you are looking for an ultra sleek camera with a lot of zoom and Wi-Fi then this delivers.
 
Sony Cyber-shot WX220 Pros
Built in Wi-Fi and NFC
Metal body available in a number of colours
Extremely compact
10fps continuous shooting
10x optical zoom lens
Image stabilisation
Easy to use

Sony Cyber-shot WX220 Cons

Could be too small for some hands, little grip
Low levels of detail (especially shooting above ISO400)
Small 2.7inch screen - however this keeps it small
Short battery life

FEATURES  
HANDLING  
PERFORMANCE  
VALUE FOR MONEY  
VERDICT  

Sony Cyber-shot WX220 Specifications

ManufacturerSony
Lens
Max Aperturef/3.3 - f/5.9
35mm equivalent25mm - 250mm
Optical Zoom10x
Image Sensor
CCD pixels18.2Mp (Megapixels)
Pixels (W)4896
Pixels (H)3672
Sensor TypeExmor CMOS
Sensor Size1/2.3 inch
Sensor Size (width)No Data
Sensor Size (height)No Data
Aspect Ratio
  • 4:3
  • 16:9
LCD Monitor
LCD Monitor2.7in
Screen resolution460k
Touch ScreenNo
Focusing
Min Focus5cm
Focusing modes
  • Autofocus
  • Spot
  • AF Tracking
  • Multi
  • Centre
Exposure Control
Shutter speeds shortest1/1600sec
Shutter speeds longest4sec
Exp modes
  • Program
  • Scene modes
Metering
  • Centre-weighted - Average
  • Multi Pattern
  • Spot
ISO sensitivity100 - 12800
White balance
  • Auto
  • Manual
  • Incandescent
  • Fluorescent
Exposure Comp+/-2
Shooting Options
Continuous shooting10fps
Video
Movie modeYes
Video Resolution
  • 1920x1080
  • 1280x720 720p
  • 1440x1080
Video FPS50i
Stereo SoundYes
Optical Zoom with VideoYes
Other Features
Image StabilisationYes
Interface
HDMIYes
USBUSB 2
Wi-FiYes
Storage
Card Type
  • SD
  • SDHC
  • Memory Stick
  • SDXC
File Type
  • JPG
Power Source
Battery TypeLithium N NP-BN
CIPA Rating210
Box Contents
Box ContentsRechargeable Battery Pack (NP-BN), AC Adaptor (AC-UB10/UB10B), Micro USB cable, Wrist Strap, Instruction Manual
Dimensions
Weight105g
Width92.3mm
Height52.4mm
Depth21.6mm

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