but if you need a quick device to do a simple job well, the Bloggie is at your service
The Sony Bloggie has a weird name. And screen. And lens. And design. Sony’s Bloggie is, in fact, a wholly peculiar piece of hardware. Pitched (obviously) as ideal for keen or budding bloggers, this device gets straight to work. In fact it’s so easy to use one could probably just will it to record smooth 1080p videos, and the Bloggie will have it uploaded to “watch-me-natter-on-about-crap.com” with a cup of tea ready and waiting. Probably.
It’s this ease of use that allows us to over look any peculiar aspects, and one of its primary features is the accompanying software, PMB, which following some minor tinkering, automatically uploads any videos you may take onto your blog. Couple this with a nifty 360 lens, which can be used to take neat landscape videos, or make them appear like they’re inside an active tumble dryer and we’re convinced Sony’s new Bloggie may just be the digital incarnation of Batman’s ever vigilant butler , Alfred: Varied, yet still efficient.
There are drawbacks, as don’t forget, the Bloggie is still a budget item. The plastic finish spoils the neat aesthetics to a degree, while the absence of a flash is mind boggling. There are limited video and camera options on the device itself and photos sometimes suffer from a bit too much shine and flare, even with Flicker Reduction active. You wouldn’t catch Alfred pulling those stunts!
The rear display consumes the majority of the Bloggie’s modest frame, however only half of this is actually used as a rangefinder, the rest is comprised of an unnecessarily large heads up display. Perhaps Video Bloggers aren’t considered the most discerning of photographers. Either way, this is a pitfall considering the flippin’ huge screens costlier devices offer.
This is forgivable (if you’re into that) considering all the stuff the Bloggie does so very well. Its lens is housed on a rotatable hood, allowing camera-users to capture themselves as well as their viewpoints. And ceilings. Videos can achieve a lofty 1080p and remain fluid and high in resolution no matter how much you fidget while shooting. Motion blur is kept to a minimum.
If you know what a Lithium Ion NP-BK1 battery is, you can bet your behind you’ll find it powering your machine for a solid day’s blogging. Naturally if you run the camera constantly the battery will diminish but generally it offers decent service. It must eat brown bread or something.
You’ll also find a generous 4GB MagicGate Memory Stick PRO Duo (Mark 2) housed neatly within. The aforementioned HUD redeems itself by constantly displaying how many 5M pictures can still be captured or how many minutes of 1080p footage can still be shot; roughly 1500 and 40 minutes on an empty card.
The cheap plastic design also goes a ways to redress its finish, as slick spring loaded panels can be clicked open to reveal the USB plug, battery and memory card slot. The panels conceal these features elegantly, protecting them from harm and looking good in the process. Just like Alfred!
Taking pictures is less of a joy, as the ‘snap’ button is mapped awkwardly to the top right, which can often fudge a capture or reduce the blogger to using both hands. And seriously, who has one to spare? Photos have to be dropped from 5M configuration to accommodate the zoom feature, but it can be used once the photo has been snapped and it’s fantastic. You could photograph the Moon in highest resolution and still be able to make out a billowing flag somewhere… That’s probably exaggeration but the zoom is impressive nonetheless.
Considering it is available for roughly €110 there is a lot to be said for Sony’s Bloggie. Its compact, easy to use, relatively durable, does its job well and without incident, while offering a few unique features. There are far more sophisticated cameras out there, capable of greater feats, but if you need a quick device to do a simple job well, the Bloggie is at your service. Sir.