Sony has delivered on its promise of a firmware upgrade for NEX interchangeable lens digital cameras which brings 3D capability to Sweep Panorama mode. The company says the free upgrade also improves the normal 2D Sweep Panorama shooting, reduces power drain when the camera is off and delivers faster start-up in low-light conditions.

We've tried out the NEX Sweep Panorama mode in 2D and it's one of the smoothest examples going around. The high-burst rate (specced at 2.3fps with auto focus and 7fps without) means the "sweep" movement can be quite fast and the on-camera stitching is very slick, taking just a few seconds to produce an impressive – and in most cases pretty seamless – 23 megapixel panorama covering up to 226 degrees.

With the 3D functionality added, the frames are automatically sliced and combined inside the camera to create a stereo pair. You can then don your glasses and view these shots in 3D on a 3D BRAVIA or another compatible 3D television (you'll also need a a high speed HDMI cable).

The firmware upgrade is available for download from Sony.

NEX pricing

  • α NEX-3 with 18-55mm Lens - US$599.99
  • α NEX-3 with 16mm Lens - US$549.99
  • α NEX-5 with 16mm Lens - US$649.99
  • α NEX-5 with 18-55mm Lens - $699.99