It plays games, it plays movies and now, thanks to the Go!Cam, the PSP takes pictures and shoots video. But does it make a happy snapper?
The game of one-upmanship between the Sony PSP and Nintendo DS Lite has seen the two handhelds stick their finger into virtually every peripheral pie in the tech oven. Speaker docks, web browsers and headsets have all arrived, and now it’s the turn of the camera.
While the DS’ camera add-on is still Japan-only, the PSP Go!Cam is available here in the UK. The small, chrome camera attachment comes with a neat plastic hard case to protect it. You just pop it out and place it on top of the PSP, screwing the connector down to hold it firmly in place.
Macro mode included
From there you just scroll through the home menu to ‘Photo’ and the camera icon that now appears. It’s then just a case of picking ‘camera’ or ‘video’. If you’re taking still photos there’s the additional bonus of macro vision – you just carefully rotate the lens to the tiny flower icon to engage the macro mode.
For everything else, the regular mode suffices. And apart from a menu to adjust white balance or add effects, that’s about it as far as sophistication goes. The camera is not high-definition, clocking in at 1.3MP. It saves images to Memory Stick Duo cards and won’t take pictures if one of these is not inserted.
Without a flash or light, you’re already limited to what you can shoot and colour fidelity in low light is poor. When you switch to video mode it becomes apparent just how limited the resolution is for moving pictures.
It’ll never replace a regular digital camera, and even mobile phones often have higher resolution cameras now, which makes you wonder just how useful this attachment is. On the other hand, it’s pretty easy to use.
There are a few more features available when you’ve downloaded the ‘Go!Edit’ software, which requires at least 146MB of space on your Memory Stick Duo card. Once downloaded it offers extra functions such as image editing and uploading to the internet. For this, of course, the Go!Cam’s low resolution is ideal.
Review continues after the break...
And it’s also pretty impressive as far as shutter lag goes – something that lets down most budget digicams. Here, the moment you press the button the shutter clicks. You can set the image size and quality and there are even effects you can add, most striking of which is Sketch mode, where the image is transformed into a black-and-white line drawing.
On the whole, though, the Go!Cam won’t better the camera in your mobile phone, and you’re probably better off investing the cash on Medal of Honour Heroes 2.
Sony Go! Cam review
The Go!Cam is compact and takes OK pictures, but its low light performance is poor and it’s really only for people who don’t have a camphone