Sony made a post-PMA addition to its 2002 digital camera lineup last week with the announcement of its next generation P-series Cyber-shot digital still camera, the DSC-P9.
The DSC-P9 will be available in May for about $600. Offering 4-megapixel resolution, it features Sony's AF Illuminator mode, which briefly illuminates the subject of a picture with an infrared light for an accurate focus lock in total darkness. A multi-point auto focus allows the camera to intuitively choose between three separate focus areas within the frame and automatically select the best setting.
For irregular lighting, the DSC-P9 offers a multi-pattern metering feature that divides the scene into a matrix of 49 independently metered cells. The camera calculates the right exposure for each cell so that a brightly lit portion of the picture doesn't cause the camera to leave a dimly lit subject in the dark.
A multi-frame burst mode lets the camera take 16 rapid-fire sequential pictures at any of three selected intervals. The camera also features Sony's new MPEG Movie HQX video mode that records non-stop, full-screen, high-resolution MPEG videos with audio up to the capacity of the Memory Stick media.