Sony Ericsson K770 review: Cyber-shot in the middle
In the Picture
There is nothing new in the file browser department as well. It allows you to mark files (single or multiple), copy them, move them, and also create and delete folders as you please. There are three tabs of file lists - one for the phone memory files, one for the memory stick files and one shared for all files. By selecting a given tab you can filter the files shown. The integrated memory of the K770 is 16MB. There is also a Memory Stick Micro M2 memory card slot.
Browsing your pictures is as easy as ever - you could do that in a list view, with or without thumbnails. You can also view your pictures as a thumbnail grid of 3 x 3 or 5 x 5. The video files can also be browsed as thumbnails. Highlighting a video thumbnail won't make it playing as a preview, as it did in Sony Ericsson K810.
The interesting thing about the picture browsing is the Timeline view, which allows you to filter the pictures according to the month they have been taken in. After you specify the month, you could even choose the exact date. That sort of image filtering is offered by computer picture browsers and digital cameras. The Timeline sorting is seen increasingly often in recent Sony Ericsson phones.
The actual pictures can be viewed in portrait mode (just as you would on any other phone) or in landscape mode, if you prefer. While you are going through your pictures the phone preloads a lower quality preview for faster browsing. Pausing browsing once you've found a picture, you would like to view in full, will result in loading it with its normal quality.
You can zoom in to the actual size of the picture or even more, up to 32x. Given the available megapixel count, zooming beyond 8x would rather produce smudged spots than reveal more details. While zooming, a minimap of the picture appears to let you know exactly where you are in the photo.
While browsing pictures, you can easily do some basic editing or send them as MMS and email or via Bluetooth and Infrared. Should you choose more sophisticated editing, the PhotoDJ application is at your disposal.
|The interesting thing about the picture browsing is the Timeline view, which allows you to filter the pictures according to the month they have been taken in. After you specify the month, you could even choose the exact date. That sort of image filtering is offered by computer picture browsers and digital cameras.|
With it you can easily adjust levels, lighting, brightness and contrast, remove red-eye effect, apply some color effects to the picture, such as negative and sepia, or add a frame or textbox to the picture. We were pleased with its capabilities - it does great with removing red eyes without spoiling the whole picture.
3 megapixel again
The Sony Ericsson K770 comes with a 3 megapixel autofocus camera with a LED flash. The camera user interface is the same as the one we already saw in Sony Ericsson K550, W880, K810 and T650. The camera is quoted at 3.2 megapixel resolution but, as with other Sony Ericsson devices, its effective megapixel count is exactly 3.15 megapixels.
The camera offers night mode, self-timer, panorama, frames, and burst shooting modes. It also features white balance control and several scene-specific presets. Some color effects are available, too. The BestPic shoot mode is not present here. The fellow Cyber-shot K550 didn't have it either. However, the Burst shot mode almost makes up for that. The leftmost and rightmost column of the alphanumeric keys serve a double purpose: in Camera mode they're used for changing the shooting mode, focus, scenes, turn on/off light, zoom in and out and self-timer. Icons with blue backlighting explain the function of each key.
When it comes to focusing, there is a dedicated macro mode and of course you can turn off the auto focus if you need to.
In our firmware version of the handset, the shutter sound couldn't be switched off via the camera interface; you can only change the sound type. The only way to deal with it is to switch the handset into Silent mode.
When viewing the sample images, bear in mind that our test version of K770 has an evident blur on the right side of the picture, probably due to an optical misalignment. Generally, the camera performs very well and produces excellent macro results; however it doesn't reach the other 3 megapixel Cyber-shot models performance. We were particularly curious how the K770 camera competes with the T650 one, and found the results being almost equal in quality, detail and general performance. Based on these facts, we think it's safe to assume that the camera module of K770 is the same, or almost the same, with the camera module of T650.
The options for the video camera are pretty much the same as those for the still camera with very minor differences. K770 captures video at the low QCIF resolution. Not a step up from K810. The Cyber-shot flagship K850 is the only handset in the family to offer QVGA. There's not much point in publishing sample clips taken by phones capturing video in QCIF - there isn't that much to see really.
As regards the functionality of the secondary VGA camera, it offers the usual stuff. The other party's video feed is viewed in a large frame in the middle of the screen while you view your own image in a small frame in the lower left corner. There is also a possibility to view your own image mirror-like, meaning that it gets reversed and looks as if you are staring at yourself in a mirror. It's much more natural that way. You can also digitally zoom your image 2x or choose to replace your live video feed with a picture of your taste. You can also do that during an actual video call and it's handy when you want to show the other call party an interesting picture you have taken, for example. The options don't end here. You can also control the exposure compensation of the camera or even switch it into a night mode. There are 3 different video quality modes: Smooth, Sharp and Normal. Smooth delivers a smoother picture flow while Sharp provides more detailed images.