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March 14, 2006 – A Korean electronics company, Qrio, has its version of the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-M2 on the market. The Qrio CamP3 X1 has the same vertically oriented shape and swiveling, rotating LCD that Sony has. The casing may be very similar, but the insides are different. The Qrio X1 has a Panasonic CCD with 5.36 megapixels and can interpolate up to 8-megapixel images; the M2 has 5.1 effective megapixels. Still, the X1 adds compelling features that the M2 does not have: MP3 and movie playing capabilities.
The most blatant similarity is the design that features the camcorder-like LCD monitor. The LCD flips outward and rotates 270 degrees on both the Qrio X1 and the Sony M2. The M2’s screen is larger though at 2.5 inches, while the X1 keeps a smaller 2-inch LCD on its frame. Both models have 3x optical zoom lenses, but they are quite different. The Sony M2 has a Carl Zeiss lens with a maximum f/3.5 aperture and the Qrio X1 has a larger f/2.8 aperture.
The Qrio CamP3 X1 is a little thinner with its 4.7 x 2 x 1.1-inch measurements. This is almost identical to the Sony camera except for the width; the Sony M2 is 1.25 inches thick. The Qrio model can record MPEG4 video with 640 x 480 pixels at a rate of 30 frames per second – without needing the pricey Memory Stick Duo Pro card that Sony cameras require. The X1 has 32 MB of internal memory but also has a slot for SD or MMC cards.
While the Sony M2 does not have an image stabilization system, the Qrio X1 incorporates it into its design. The X1 also has stereo speakers for movie playback and headphones for listening to MP3s and watching movies. The Qrio CamP3 X1 is available now for 399,000 Korean won or about $410 USD.