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Sony introduce F717 digital camera - This new digital camera offers a number of improvements over the older F707.
Sony DSC-F717 Press release
Sony Europe has announced today the introduction of its most sophisticated ever Cyber-shot digital still camera. Designated DSC-F717, this new camera builds on the success of the companys established high-end camera range and sets new standards in digital acquisition. Sony claims that this new model represents a strategic element in its efforts to attract traditional photography enthusiasts to convert to digital.
"For the demanding photographer, the DSC-F717 offers the best of both worlds," explained Akihiro Nishikawa, Director at Sony Digital Imaging Europe. The Carl Zeiss lens, hot shoe, zoom ring, histogram indication, ISO options and fast shutter speeds are just a few of the features that rank this camera alongside some of the very best traditional cameras. At the same time intrinsically digital features, such as various noise reduction functions and NightFraming provide a much larger creative canvas for the serious photographer to work on."
The DSC-F717 caters for the most discerning digital photographer. Sonys Super-HAD CCD with 5 million effective pixels and a Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar lens with F2.0-2.4 provide stunning image quality. Add a Sony-developed 14-bit digital extended processor and numerous other technological refinements and this camera achieves a picture quality that meets professional requirements.
A range of enhanced camera features include shutter speeds from 30 to 1/2000 sec. and ISO settings up to 800. The DSC-F717 is equipped with a manual zoom ring, which gives photographers more control over their picture. The ring can also be used as a manual focus ring and additionally, the camera features a zoom lever which is convenient when taking shots of moving objects.
Hot shoe connections are something that photography enthusiasts are well used to and enable the connection of additional external flash systems without using a cable.
Digital speed and versatility
In developing the DSC-F717, Sony has pushed back the frontiers of digital technology in a number of ways. The cameras start up time and shutter interval are significantly less than previous camera models. With 1.4 seconds start up time and a shutter interval of 1.9 seconds, users are ready to shoot almost straightaway.
Another new feature is a histogram display - a luminance distribution diagram, which is displayed live. This sensitive measurement device is a superb reference tool when adjusting exposure settings to suit the ambient lighting conditions.
Downloading images using the DSC-F717 is very quick and easy, thanks to the integration, for the first time, of the new hi-speed USB 2.0 interface. Another advanced facility is the image transfer software, which comes bundled with each camera. Once the software is installed on to a PC and the camera connected via the USB port, images are automatically up-loaded to a selected directory and sorted in to pre-scribed folders that can be organised and annotated by the user.
Manual and automatic shooting
Aperture, exposure and focus are manually adjustable, while several automatic programs implement digital effects and exposure metering methods, including centre-weighted metering, spot metering and multi-pattern metering to ensure users the ideal exposure. In case of multi-pattern metering, the camera image is divided into no fewer than 49 metering areas. The processor calculates each area individually and constructs an exposure pattern ideally suited to that particular shot.
Users can rely on the cameras focusing skills as well. A Hologram AF function uses laser hologram technology that is safe for the human eye. Hologram AF increases the cameras focus range so that you get precisely focused images even under low contrast conditions. On occasions when the light is poor, the DSC-F717 uses this laser technology to accurately measure focus longer distance, resulting in greater focusing range and, in low-contrast shooting conditions, much more precise results.
Using the capabilities of NightShot, the Nightframing function enables users to see and frame a subject in low or zero light conditions. Push the shutter button halfway down and Night framing activates Hologram AF, enabling the camera to focus on the subject. Then, the NightShot function automatically shuts off and the integrated Pre Flash turns on before taking the shot. The result: precisely metered, beautifully framed and focused images under any lighting conditions.
Battery life is an important issue to photographers. The DSC-F717 is equipped with a InfoLITHIUM M Series battery, which offers more power and longer operating time. A fully charged NP-FM50 rechargeable battery has a life of up to 3,5 hours continuous use.
The DSC-F717 will be available throughout Europe from October 2002.