The coolest camera features of 2010

Sometimes, choosing a camera demands considerations other than image quality and battery life. These cameras have innovative extras that may win you over as soon as you try them.

Sony's Intelligent Sweep Panorama Mode

Good for: The easiest panorama shots ever

We rated Sony's Sweep Panorama mode as one of the coolest features in last year's point-and-shoot cameras, and for 2010 the company has been fine-tuning the technology. It still works the same way: You press the shutter button once, pan the camera from side to side, and then wait a second or two for the camera to create an instant, seamless panoramic image. But last year's Sweep Panorama mode had a problem with moving subjects--if anyone in your panoramic shot moved, they often looked like they were stretched across the frame. This year's Cyber-shot HX5V, Cyber-shot DSC-TX7, and Cyber-shot DSC-TX5 offer a revamped Intelligent Sweep Panorama mode that goes one step further, scanning the scene for moving subjects and making them appear still in the final panoramic image.

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