For some reason, Sony has decided to put their Smile Shutter stills camera technology into the new Handycam HDR-CX11E camcorder.

This means that, in its default 'Dual Capture' mode, the 1920x1080 Full HD footage you shoot will also grab a 7.6 megapixel still every time somebody simpers or smirks.

The patented "Smile Sensitivity" can be adjusted to the level of smileyness in your subject's rictus, and priority can even be set to recognise child or adult faces through the Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* lens.

'Maximising shadows'

Running on a high-speed BIONZ processor with D-range Optimiser technology, Sony promises that the camcorder "automatically adjusts exposure and contrast to maxmise shadows and highlight detail with tricky high-contrast scenes," which sounds useful.

Used as a stills camera on its own, the CX11E is also apparently capable of 10.2 effective megapixels, which holds up pretty well against standard cameras.

The camcorder also records 5.1 channel surround sound with a zoom microphone to minimise background noise when the image is zoomed in.

A 2.7in LCD plus widescreen touch-panel to display video and photos rounds off what sounds a pretty good package.

Sony isn't yet naming a price for the CX11E, but it can already be pre-ordered from its website.