Interestingly, Sony's decided to supplement the camera's Memory Stick Duo compatibility with a regular SD/SDHC slot, supplying various provisos and warnings about the suitability or otherwise of different types of Memory Stick Duo cards for storing HD movies.
Why no HDMI?
There are some other negatives. The HD movie mode is fine, but you'll need a dedicated cable to hook the W380 up to your HD telly, since it has a single bespoke USB/AV/HD connector, rather than a standard HDMI socket.
Also, the controls are basic, although maybe that's no bad thing. The mode dial has unexpectedly heavy click stops, which means you'll never turn it by accident, but you might occasionally struggle to turn it on purpose.
While the menu system is simple, navigating it is a rather slow process. It's activated by a menu button that's microscopically small too. If you have the thumbs of a seven-year-old waif, you should be okay though.
The Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W380 is a very well-designed and straightforward, yet versatile, camera that produces top-quality pictures. It's technologically advanced, but doesn't keep rubbing your face in it. Above all, the finish and controls are absolutely first-rate. Okay, so it's not quite perfect, but every now and then Sony reminds us how technology and class can go hand in hand.
Edited by Charles Kloet