Having read 10+ page reviews of cameras meant to be simple and convenient is a bit much. So, my short review of the Sony CyberShot DSC-W300 will consist of mostly bullet points with a little extra at the end: Quick, to the point, no wasted time.
- Small, light and well built
- Easily accessible manual features
- Little shutter lag
- Fast burst mode
- Acceptable picture quality
- Interesting face tracking feature
- Annoying proprietary data cable
- Annoying proprietary memory
- Only has a 3x optical zoom
- Lens unnecessarily extends when syncing photos via USB
- 13.6 MP is excessive
- Controls are easy to use, but not with gloves
- Creepy ‘Smile Shutter’ feature
Why are the cables annoying? This Sony, like all other Sony cameras (I suspect) uses an unnecessary and inconvenient proprietary cable. This means I have to carry an additional cable with me if I want to transfer photos off of the camera when I’m away from home. A standard mini USB cable is superior in every way.
Why is the Sony Memory Stick Pro Duo Super Extra Jumbo memory format annoying? First, it is Sony-only, and it is more expensive than comparable SD memory. (But only slightly) What else? I can’t use clever memory cards like the EyeFi WiFi and skyhook-enabled SD card that would allow me to tag each photo with GPS coordinates and wirelessly transfer images to my computer. (which would have eliminated the cable issue)
That said, the W300 compares favorably to other similar cameras and the above annoyances are pretty minor. The W300 is a great point-and-shoot and is a good companion to a DSLR.
What review would be complete without a meaningless chart and/or graph?
Some sample photos from the W300: (Click photos for unreasonably large 13.6 MP / 4224×3168 image)