Sony beefs up slim cams

Since it launched three years ago, Sony's T-Series has been gently tweaked, honed and refined to perfection - it's no small wonder, then, that the DSC

Since it launched three years ago, Sony's T-Series has been gently tweaked, honed and refined to perfection - it's no small wonder, then, that the DSC-T7 is our No.1 camera.

As you'd imagine, our hopes are high for its new 6 megapixel replacement. The T9's nothing revolutionary - the 6MP, 3x optical zoom and 2.5in LCD are all utterly bog-standard - but it boasts some welcome new touches.

The most exciting upgrade is the addition of two gyroscopes. When you take a snap they move to offset handshake and, theoretically, produce blur-free photos. That brings it into line with the likes of Panasonic, although Sony has actually broken some new ground here - this is the first gyro cam with a folding lens (the ones where the lens doesn't protrude from the front).

Also new to the party is an improved macro mode - you can now get your nose right into those daffodils - and better low-light sensitivity for your flash-free indoor shots. Sony's been buggering about with the software, too, adding a slideshow mode accompanied by music. It comes with four preloaded tracks but you can add your own using a PC and software.

Whether it'll be enough to keep the T Series top of our charts remains to be seen - there's some tough competition waiting in the wings, especially from Nikon, Casio and Canon.

The Sony DSC-T9's on sale in January for a price that's TBA.

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