The Sony TX10 is a tough little point-and-shoot compact from Sony with a decent features and a premium price tag to match.
Waterproof to 5m, freezeproof to -10°C, shockproof to 1.5m and fully sealed against dust, the TX10 is also the smallest 'ruggedised' compact to have landed on the TrustedReviews test bench in recent months. Does that make it the perfect pocket companion for adventurous photographers? Lets take a closer look and find out.
The TX10 supersedes the TX9 that was launched in mid-2010, but which remains in the Sony line-up for now. The new model gains an extra 4MP of resolution.
The TX10 uses a 1/2.3in Exmor R CMOS sensor offering an effective resolution of 16.2MP. It’s a backside-illuminated sensor, which means that it sits inside the camera with the internal wiring positioned behind the chip rather than front of it, thereby allowing more light to reach the individual photodiodes on the surface of the sensor, effectively making it more receptive – and less prone to noise – in poor light conditions.
This Exmor sensor is paired with a Sony Bionz processor to allow for relatively quick processing of individual images. The TX10 can only record single-shot images at full 16.2MP resolution, although it is possible to switch to High-Speed burst mode and shoot at up to10fps continuously - resolution here drops to 400 x 600 pixels. Sensitivity meanwhile ranges between ISO 125 and 3200.
The TX10 is fitted with a 4x optical zoom that offers the 35mm equivalent of a 25mm-100mm focal range. The lens is entirely contained within a sealed housing on the shoulder of the camera and further protected by the camera’s sliding front cover.
It is also possible to deploy the TX10’s Precision and Smart digital zoom technology to increase magnification at the expense of resolution, maxing-out at 28x in VGA resolution. However, as might be expected, images taken at this setting display plenty of pixellation and are of rather poor quality. Using the digital zoom is very much a last resort, which does have some implications for the camera’s overall flexibility, seeing as the 4x range is a little limited.