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SonyEricsson MCA-25 - camera review

By producing a new external camera MCA-25 SonyEricsson set new standards for these devices. Main new features of the camera are the following: Zoom, quick shots whcih can be saved in a memory of camera, extra effects. Now the camera has also a new, modern design.

A leather case is included in delivery kit, now you can safely keep a camera and be not afraid to scratch lenses. Optics is not plastic in this model; a quality of the photos is acceptable, though you can estimate it yourself. There is also x68 camera, which is similar to MCA-25, but aimed to Asia market. It wont be delivered to Europe. The difference of this camera is that a cheap plastic optics.

When a camera is connected to system connector it is found by a phone automatically, simultaneously a respective menu is opened. A picture could be viewed via phone display or viewfinder in a camera.

Unfortunately, not all phones support Zoom function. For example, this camera is compatible with SonyEricsson T68i, it works as MCA-20, but Zoom is not available here. We took SonyEricsson T300, which supports Zoom, as a test sample. To magnify a picture press Joystick to the right in a camera mode. You can reach 2X magnification, but such kind of picture (in JPEG format) has many artifacts. Probably, Zoom is only a software implementation here. Take initial file and zoom in a central part of the image. Youll see that our assumption is absolutely right.

This camera has a better white balance, may be because it has a better optics. When lighting is not sufficient, pictures obtain a granular structure, as a matrix has low photosensitivity. In good lighting conditions you can take pictures even from a moving car; pictures wont be smearing.

The same picture taken by -20.

There are also 10 effects, in camera. You can use them while taking pictures. Some of them are just nice frames for your images, another ones are overlay images (for, example, flying bubbles or hearts), and others reflect a picture in various ways. You can see them below (original file size is reduced). After application of effects, middle file size increases from 40 Kb to 50-60 Kb, depending on the effect.

If to compare MCA-25 with a previous model MCA-20, we can say that MCA-25 is much more advanced camera. Firstly, you need only 9 seconds to save shots of high resolution (640480 pixels) while using MCA-25. For example, using MCA-20 youll spend 35-45 seconds to do it. It makes a big difference, isnt it? However, on the contrary to MCA-20, you can store only about 10 photos, 39-50 Kb each, in the memory of MCA-25. Presumably, engineers applied fast flash-memory, which reduces to 512 Kb. Duration of files coping depends not on camera, but on system connector speed, it is the same in both devices. You need about 25 seconds to transfer an image to phone memory.

Today MCA-25 is one of the most interesting external cameras from SonyEricsson. It costs about 150 USD. In some countires it sold together with SonyEricsson T300 and cost 300 USD.

Eldar Murtazin (eldar@mobile-review.com)
Translated by Maria Sennikova (maria@mobile-review.com)

Published — 14 January 2002

Have something to add?! Write us... eldar@mobile-review.com



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