Sony has unwrapped a 9-million pixel Cyber-shot digital camera called the DSC-HX1, borrowing technology from the company’s digital SLRs.

Features include a top burst rate of 10 frames per second at full resolution, plus a Sweep Panorama mode, capable of combining up to 100 images as one panoramic image in ‘one second’.

The camera is designed to record a traditional panorama at 224 degrees or one captured in vertical format at 154 degrees.

The HX1 is the first Cyber-shot to use a G lens, borrowing technology from Sony’s DSLR optics. The lens delivers the 35mm viewing angle equivalent of a 28-560mm zoom and includes six aperture blades.

The HX1 is also the first in the range to house an Exmor imaging sensor.

The camera also boasts HD video (1080 pixels) and a tilting 3in LCD screen.

Sony’s Digital Imaging Group president Shigeki Ishizuka unveiled the HX1 at a press conference in Las Vegas at 5.30pm local time.

He explained that the deployment of a mechanical shutter produces ‘distortion free images’ at 10fps, claiming this as a ‘world first’ for a compact camera.

Ishizuka said that the camera is based on the firm’s ‘Image3’ system – combining the best image, sensor and imaging processor.

Also on board is a handheld ‘twilight’ mode and ‘anti-motion blur’ technology which both use the camera’s high speed shutter to ensure the ‘sharpest image possible’ from six shots captured in less than one second. A Sony spokesman added: ‘Combined with the power of the Bionz imaging processor, it immediately superimposes them into one picture.

‘The camera calculates the position of objects in each frame and composes the sharpest picture possible, resulting in clearer images.’

On-chip analogue to digital conversion aims to minimise image noise, according to Sony.

The camera will go on sale in the US for $500 when it is launched next month.

In the UK it will cost 489 pounds.

Sony DSC-HX1 imageLatest news from PMA 2009