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2011 Comparing Top 8 SuperZoom Cameras 24x Or Higher - June 2011

2011-07-01 07:32
Check out the 2010 article here.
Check out the 2009 article here.

SuperZoom camera is one of the fastest growing segments in the digital camera categories. It typically comes with a DSLR-like body and positions between the entry-level DSLR cameras and the high-end compact digital cameras. Although these SuperZoom lens are not interchangeable unlike the DSLR cameras, SuperZoom cameras are designed to do specific task extremely well, i.e. photograph the subject from some distance away with a telephoto lens that will enlarge the subject and bring it closer. This is particularly appealing if you travel frequently and don't wish to carry a heavy baggage of DSLR camera equipment around.

To make these superzoom cameras even more attractive for camera buyers, the camera manufacturers began to make these standard features of the SuperZoom models such as high-definition HD video recording function as well as high speed continuous shooting (burst mode) function. Other important features on SuperZoom cameras include the image stabilization function, large LCDs screen, and manual controls. Here are the top 24x or higher SuperZoom cameras that we are comparing in this article, hope it will help you with you purchase decision for your photo shooting: Canon Powershot SX30 IS, Nikon Coolpix P500, Olympus SZ-30MR, Pentax X90, Kodak EasyShare MAX Z990, Sony Cybershot DSC-HX100V, Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ100, and finally the Fujifilm Finepix HS20. Also make sure you check out the hourly updated US SuperZoom cameras sales ranking here.

Canon Powershot SX30 IS - 14.1 Megapixels 35x SuperZoom
On September 14 2010, Canon announced the PowerShot G12 and the PowerShot SX30 IS. Following on from last year's SX20 model, the SX30 IS costs slightly more than its predecessor. The SX30 is is a DSLR-styled compact camera with the incredibly versatile 35x image stabilized Wide Angle Optical Zoom lens, providing a broad 35mm equivalent focal range of 24mm to 840mm. Canon's Image Stabilization technology is one of the best in the industry which helps fight the effects of blur from camera shake. Canon is claiming the IS in the SX30 can have a 4.5 stop improvement which is better than many Canon pro lenses. Note that the SX30 doesn't support the RAW file format.

The SX30 features a 14.1 Megapixels sensor, a 2.7-inch (versus 2.5-inch in SX20) vari-angle LCD at 230,000 dots, 720p HD video recording with stereo sound, and a dedicated button at the rear that activates the video feature. You can take advantage of the 35x zoom during recording and also use some of the creative filters, such as Miniature and and Colour Swap, to create some interesting video footage. The Canon PowerShot SX30 IS is currently selling at around $375. Here is the summary of review by ImagingResource:

"The Canon SX30 has a 14-megapixel CCD sensor, and if you've read reviews of cameras with similar resolution, you won't be surprised at the results. At lower ISOs (80 to 200) detail is good with best quality at 100 ISO. ISO 800 is a little soft but it probably makes a good 8x10; at ISO 1,600 you could get away with a 5x7 (see our Print Quality section below for more). I found this to be the case with my 8x10-inch prints made with no post-processing. I've been a fan for a long time of the color output of Canon's better point-and-shoots and the SX30 lived up to that standard. Purple fringing could be an issue with extreme telephotos. It was there at 100% enlargements onscreen but wasn't noticeable on 8x10s. Our lab also found noticeable chromatic aberration (C.A.) at wide-angle but would only likely affect images printed 11x14 or larger. C.A. is also present at telephoto, extending far into the frame, but it's much less noticeable here. Tungsten white balance is too pink in our Indoor Portrait test while Auto and Manual settings get it pretty close. Macro delivers an extremely sharp image at the center with strong C.A. radiating out from the center. Shutter lag at wide-angle is about average. The movies taken by the Canon SX30 IS are a solid 720p HD and the optical zoom is functional while recording. After shooting at the racetrack I could readily understand why many of the TV cameras you see at sporting events are affixed to the ground on massive tripods. In other words, expect some shaky videos at extreme telephoto if you're hand-holding the camera.

At around $399, the Canon PowerShot SX30 is not the most affordable Mega Zoom available. Yet it's currently the second most powerful optically in this class (the recently announced Nikon P500 is the first, at 36x). It's hard to appreciate the 35x 24-840mm zoom without seeing it for yourself--it is amazing--and you'll go zoom crazy just as I did. Once you get that under control you'll find the Canon SX30 IS is a very good camera that takes quality photographs using Smart Auto or the many manual options available. Movies with stereo sound are an added plus. The camera isn't perfect--no digicam is--with its uneven zoom transit speed, relatively pokey frames-per-second response and other negatives detailed earlier. All that on the table, I have no problems recommending the Canon SX30. Get ready to see things very differently. The Canon PowerShot SX30 is a Dave's Pick."... [Source]

Canon PowerShot SX30 IS Review Roundup and sample photos here.

Nikon Coolpix P500 - 12.1 Megapixels 36x SuperZoom

On February 8 2011, Nikon announced the new COOLPIX P500 and P300 high-end compact digital cameras. The P500 replaces the highly-acclaimed P100 26x advanced bridge camera, and packs in an even more impressive 36x optical zoom range. It features a wide-angle (22.5mm-810mm) optical Zoom NIKKOR ED glass lens, Nikon's EXPEED C2 dual image processor for enhanced performance and noise reduction, as well as a new shooting mode button that facilitates quick setting of continuous frame shooting, in addition to the pre shooting cache that starts to snap photos before the button is fully depressed. It also comes with tiltable high resolution 921K dot LCD monitor, full 1080p HD movie recording capability and the Easy Panorama mode. Note that the P500 doesn't support the RAW file format.

Nikon has included Vibration Reduction (VR) to help prevent camera-shake, which makes a noticeable difference to the sharpness of the images. The P500 can also shoot Full HD (1920x1080-pixel) movies at 30 frames per second, with stereo sound and full use of the optical zoom. It also offers a 720p mode at 1280x720 pixels (30 fps) and VGA mode at 640x480 pixels (30 fps). Sensor-shift VR is not available during movie recording, but you may opt to turn on electronic image stabilization. The P500 is also capable of high-speed (HS) movie recording, at an impressive 240fps in QVGA resolution (or 120fps at VGA resolution, or 60fps at 720p HD resolution). The only drawback is that the maximum recording time per clip is limited to only 10 seconds in the HS video modes and sound is also not recorded. The COOLPIX P500 is listed for retail at $399.95 and is offered in black and red. It is currently selling at around $355. Here is the summary of review by DigitalCameraResorucePage:

"The Coolpix P500 starts up remarkably quickly for a super zoom, taking just over a second to extend its lens and prepare for shooting. In good light, autofocus speeds ranged from 0.3 - 0.5 seconds at wide-angle to around twice that at full telephoto. Low light focusing is accurate, but on the slower side of the spectrum. I didn't find shutter lag to be a problem, and shot-to-shot delays were brief in most situations. The exception is when you've taken a burst of photos, which will lock up the camera for anywhere from 8 to 30 seconds (and that's with a very fast SDHC card). Speaking of burst modes, the P500 has seven of them, plus a time-lapse feature. You can shoot at 10 frames/second (up to 5 shots) or 1.8 frames/second (up to twelve shots), and there are even faster options if you lower the resolution considerably. The Coolpix P500's battery life is well below average for its class, and the internal charging system takes forever (5 hours), so do yourself a favor and buy an external charger.

The P500's weak spot is definitely photo quality. Starting on a positive note, exposures were accurate, and highlight clipping wasn't any worse than other compact cameras. Colors were pleasing in most situations, except in our studio, where everything seemed washed out (I'm guessing it's a white balance issue). Redeye and purple fringing levels were fairly low. Now, the bad news. Despite the back-illuminated CMOS sensor and dual image processors, the P500's photos are soft and over-processed, with lots of detail loss -- even at the base ISO of 160. Things get worse quickly, so don't expect to be shooting above ISO 400 on the Coolpix P500. Now, if you're a casual shooter who shares their photos on Facebook or via 4 x 6 inch prints, then these issues probably won't matter. But those who want to make larger prints or shoot in low light will want to consider another camera.

I have three last things to mention before I wrap things up. First, the P500 scores some points for having a lot of built-in memory -- 102MB, to be exact. That doesn't make up for the fact that Nikon puts the full manual on a CD-ROM, though. Finally, you won't be able to access the memory card while the camera is on a tripod, which is a common issue on compact cameras. The Nikon Coolpix P500 illustrates a point I often make about the marketing-driven world of digital cameras. A camera can have the biggest zoom, the most pixels, or elaborate bells and whistles, but if can't take decent photos, why cares? The P500 is well designed and easy-to-use, but it needs a lot of work in the photo quality department before I start jumping up and down about it. As I said above, if you're not planning on doing much with your photos then it's worth a look, but enthusiasts or those who just want the best picture quality possible should look elsewhere."... [Source]

Nikon Coolpix P500 Review Roundup and sample photos here.

Olympus SZ-30MR - 16 Megapixels 24x SuperZoom

On March 2 2011, Olympus announced the SZ-30MR SuperZoom compact camera. The SZ-30MR comes with a 24x zoom and is the first camera ever to offer simultaneous recording of 1080p Full HD movies and 16 Megapixels still photos. The SZ-30MR features a 24x wide-optical zoom, yielding a 25-600mm zoom equivalent in 35mm format. It also comes with a Dual Engine TruePic III+ image processor, a backlit CMOS sensor, dual image stabilization, 3-inch LCD displays with 460k dots, 3D shooting, i-Auto mode and face and pet detection. 

The SZ-30MR is also capable of capturing images at 9 frames per second in full 16 Megapixels resolution. There is a 3D Photo shooting mode - after you release the shutter for your first shot, you can slowly pan until the camera automatically takes a second image from a slightly different perspective. The 3D data is processed in-camera resulting in an .MPO file, the industry 3D format for display on 3D televisions. Also announced is the UK-only SZ-20, which houses a 12.5x (24-300mm equiv.) zoom in a slightly smaller body. The SZ-20 loses the multi-recording function but is otherwise essentially the same specification. The Olympus SZ-30MR is listed for retail at $399.99 and it is currently selling at around $359. Here's the summary of review by ePhotoZine, giving the camera a rating of 4 out of 5:

"ISO80-100 results are good. ISO200 noise starts to creep in with noticeable red/green/blue dots / splodges of colour in the dark blacks. At ISO400 noise reduction is increased, and these red/green/blue dots seem to be blurred out of the shot more. ISO800 shows more noise again. ISO1600 shots show more noise, and less detail, with ISO3200 showing the most noise, and the least detail. Colour is good right upto ISO1600. Shadow Adjustment Technology (SAT) is designed to boost detail in shadows, and is effective as doing this, however it can give images an artificially low contrast, which tends to make photos less apealing to view. Purple fringing is quite low in these wide angle shots, however detail is sharper in the centre, and at the edges the images are a little soft. Normal focus and macro focus modes focus as close as 10cm, switching on the super macro mode zooms the camera's lens to the optimum focal length and this allows some impressive macro focus where the subject is just 3cm away from the front of the lens.

The pocket zoom market is extremely competitive at the moment, with offerings from nearly all other manufacturers, the Olympus SZ30MR stands out, with the most optical zoom by a long way, and also the only digital camera I know of to record two videos simultaneously. Alternative pocket zooms with 18x optical zoom: Nikon Coolpix S9100, £245, Samsung WB700, £180, Olympus SZ-10, £149, 16x optical zoom: Panasonic Lumix TZ20, £275, TZ18, £229 Sony Cybershot HX9v, £299, 15x optical zoom: Fujifilm FinePix F550, £229, 14x optical zoom: Canon Powershot SX230HS, £265, and SX220HS, £225. For the same amount of zoom or more, alternative ultra zooms / bridge style cameras available include the: 24x optical zoom Panasonic Lumix TZ45 / TZ100, 30x optical zoom Fujifilm Finepix HS20EXR, Kodak Easyshare Max Z990, 35x optical zoom Canon Powershot SX30 IS, 36x optical zoom Nikon Coolpix P500. An amazing amount of zoom in such a compact camera, it really is pocketable! Whether you can use the full zoom to full effect will depend on a number of things, such as good light, a steady hand, and subject being shot. A tripod will become essential if your light becomes less than ideal. Video modes are interesting - and could be useful in the right situation, but again a tripod is recommended if you want to use the full zoom. The screen, controls, and ease of use are all good. Battery life? It would be nice if the camera had some rubberised grips. High speed continuous shooting is very helpful as it lets you take a series of shots for when you couldn't bring a tripod and aren't sure if the long zoom shots are going to work. The camera's macro performance is impressive with bright saturated colours. The camera is capable of producing some great shots, with vivid colours, and good detail, however you do need to be careful to make sure the camera is steady when using the zoom."... [Source]

Olympus SZ-30MR Review Roundup and sample photos here.

Pentax X90 - 12.1 Megapixels 26x SuperZoom

On February 24 2010, Pentax announced the X90 26x SuperZoom camera and the W90 waterproof camera. The 12.1 Megapixels Pentax X90 digital superzoom camera comes with a 26x zoom lens offering a focal-length coverage of 26-676mm in 35mm terms. The Pentax X90 incorporates the Pentax-original CCD-shift-type Shake Reduction system to assure sharply focused, blur-free images even under demanding conditions prone to camera shake.

The camera also comes with an electronic viewfinder of 200 000 dots and a newly incorporated dioptre adjustment mechanism. Manual, Aperture Priority and Shutter Priority modes are all on board to serve the needs of the creative photographer. And in addition to shooting twelve-megapixel stills - or 5-megapixel images at 11 up to frames per second -, the Pentax X90 can also capture 720p HD video clips. Thanks to a large-capacity lithium-ion battery, the X90's battery life is approximately 50 percent longer than that of its predecessor. The Pentax Optio X90 is currently selling at around at $308 and here is the review summary by PhotographyBLOG, giving the camera a rating of 4 out of 5:

"As our white wall test shots indicate, there is some barrel distortion at maximum 26mm equivalent wideangle setting on the X90, but this is kept fairly minimal and so unobtrusive. And, though shots taken handheld with the lens set at maximum telephoto occasionally lack critical sharpness, this is only to be expected given the much better than average reach. Pixel fringing is kept well under control - much better than on consumer-level DSLRs in fact. We also had very occasional white balance issues where there was a dominance of one particular colour in the frame - but this is easily adjusted. In terms of light sensitivity, up to ISO 800 the X90's performance is pretty good, though detail is beginning to soften at ISO 800. At ISO 1600 images really are quite noisy, though as processing kicks in more conclusively at ISO 3200 this lessens; unfortunately at the expense of critical detail. At ISO 6400 pictures look distinctly painterly. Not a great showing in low light then; the best we can say is that's it's an adequate one.

The target audience for the Pentax X90 is surely the existing compact camera user looking to upgrade, as well as the family user. But then the same audience will also be ideally suited to an entry level DSLR or a lower-priced Micro Four Thirds type interchangeable lens camera for that matter. So what's the difference here? Basically the X90 can be viewed as a 'DSLR Lite' for those aspiring photographers who would like more control over their images than a regular compact will allow - and obviously a whopping zoom range - without that steeply pronounced learning curve. It's arguably even easier to use than a compact system or 'hybrid' camera. And don't forget that while £329.99 seems quite high an asking price for a specification set that isn't quite at the level of a DSLR, it's the attached big zoom capability, giving amateurs the equivalent reach of a paparazzi, that you're paying this sort of premium for. The lack of optical zoom control in movie mode is a real disappointment however, given that the former is the X90's major USP. Still everything on the camera falls readily to hand, making for both swifter and easier use than flashier alternatives. Ultimately that means that the Pentax X90 gets a Photography Blog Recommended badge, but with the above caveats."... [Source]

Pentax X90 Review Roundup and sample photos here.

Kodak EasyShare MAX Z990 - 12 Megapixels 30x SuperZoom

On January 5 2011, Kodak announced the EASYSHARE MAX (aka Z990) camera. This new superzoom class camera comes built with a 30x optical zoom lens - perfect for those long range wildlife photography trips. The 30x Schneider Kreuznach Variogon optical zoom Lens (35 mm equivalent: 28-676 mm) comes with the fast f/2.8 28 mm wide-angle capability. The Kodak EasyShare Max features optical image stabilization enables you to capture sharp, steady shots when shooting at long zoom ranges. It also features the option of shooting in the advanced RAW format.

At the heart lies a 12 Megapixels BSI CMOS sensor as opposed to a CCD sensor, which is unique as it's something you would normally find on a camcorder. The BSI CMOS sensor should technically be able to product better quality images with low noise at higher ISO settings as compared to CCD sensors. Video recording resolutions go right up to 1080p at 30 fps. The 3-inch display runs on an HVGA (480x320) resolution. The EASYSHARE MAX is is listed for retail at $330 and currently selling at around $277. Here's the summary of review by ePhotoZine, giving the camera a rating of 4 out of 5:

"Images are good at wide and mid-zoom telephoto with good details, little chromatic aberration or purple fringing, and detail remains quite good at full zoom, although some chromatic aberation becomes apparent. The HDR mode combines three shots into one image improving dynamic range  noticeably. The camera produces images with extremely low noise levels at ISO125, ISO200, chroma noise (blotches of colour) start appearing at ISO400, and again increases at ISO800 with edge detail being eroded. At ISO1600 noise reduction becomes more aggressive, so you see less chroma noise, but detail suffers with edges losing detail. At ISO3200 noise reduction is very strong and detail is quite dramatically lost, as well as some of the darker colours. ISO6400 is best avoided altogether, as images start to resemble a watercolour picture. 

The Kodak Easyshare Max Z990 is available for £250, this makes it quite competitively priced compared to the competition, which includes the Nikon Coolpix P500 (£299), Canon Powershot SX30 IS (£350), Olympus SP-800UZ (£229), Fujifilm FinePix HS20 (£329), S4000 (£209), and with less zoom the Panasonic Lumix FZ45 or FZ100 (£269). The Kodak Easyshare Max Z990 has some great features, and I really wanted to like this camera, but a lot of the time its sluggish responsiveness and delays writing photos to the card makes it awkward to use. The menu system and controls could definitely do with some improvement, as these were often quite awkward and seemed delayed. The full HD video, high speed shooting, long telephoto reach, and excellent macro modes make this an interesting camera, especially with some very good image quality and low noise, it's worth considering if you don't mind the sluggish and sometimes awkward controls, or recommended if you simply want to point and shoot."... [Source]

Kodak Easyshare MAX Z990 Review Roundup and sample photos here.

Sony Cybershot DSC-HX100V - 16.2 Megapixels 30x SuperZoom

On January 31 2011, Sony announced two new 16.2 Megapixels Cyber-shot SuperZoom digital cameras - DSC-HX100V and DSC-HX9V. The HX100V camera comes with 27mm Carl Zeiss® Vario-Sonar T* lens capable of 30x optical zoom. It features the 16.2 Megapixels Exmor R back-illuminated CMOS sensor supporting a new Intelligent Sweep Panorama HR (High Resolution) mode at 42.9 Megapixels panoramic images (10480x4096 resolution). There is a dedicated movie button offering HD video shooting capability at 60 progressive frames per second (1920x1080 60p). 

Other features of the HX100V include a tilting 3-inch LCD screen with 921,000-dots, 10fps burst shooting mode at full resolution, ISO range of 100-3200, Optical SteadyShot with Active Mode which cuts camera-shake while you're shooting handheld HD video, Intelligent Auto Plus, Program and full Manual shooting modes, and support for both Memory Stick PRO Duo and Secure Digital cards. The DSC-HX100V camera is available in black and is listed for retail at $450. It is currently selling at around $399. Here is the summary of review by Pocket-lint, giving the camera a rating of 4.5 out of 5:

"But the big question of them all has to be about image quality. Just how good are the HX100V's images? The short answer would be "ok" rather than "great". Sony has put a standard 1/2.3-inch-sized compact sensor into the HX100V's body but then crammed some 16.2-megapixels onto this small space. Apart from the marketing benefits this may give the company it does absolutely nothing to enhance the resulting image quality for the end user. In fact it hinders it compared to a lower resolution sensor. Although the ISO 100-200 settings are of good enough quality, examine them at actual pixel size and there's notable softness and over-sharpened artifacts that result from processing. Here's where RAW shooting would have come in handy for more user control - though there are three-level controls for Sharpness, Colour Saturation, Contrast and Noise Reduction to add that extra lick of detail (it's only possible to see the results off-camera though, so you'll need to tweak with the settings and view files in full before you know what suits). Above ISO 400 and image quality becomes even more limited, meaning the HX100V isn't ideal for high ISO, low-light work - a shame when considering the success of Sony's Twilight mode as found in its current compact camera range. However exposure is always accurate throughout the zoom range and scenes exude realistic colours whatever the ISO settings. Those looking for a DSLR alternative be warned: although the HX100V will provide a zoom range beyond almost anything else on the market in a small and single package, the final image quality is the compromise. Sony should have stuck with a 10- or 12-megapixel sensor and tweaked it as best as possible to give the utmost quality. Casual users will be more than happy with its image quality that's more than good enough for a variety of tasks, it's just those looking to use full resolution files for critical detail prints won't get quite everything here.

When it comes to superzoom cameras there are three major ones to consider: the 30x zoom Fujifilm HS20, 35x zoom Canon SX30 IS and now the Sony HX100V. Although the Sony may not offer the ability to shoot RAW files (Fuji HS20 only) and its images aren't any better than a standard compact, it's a belter of a performer in every other department. The manual zoom/focus ring is great in use, movie quality is decent and the variety of features such as GPS, 10fps shooting and iSweep Panorama add that extra layer of appeal that also provides a lot of fun. In our books the HX100V is a champion superzoom, if not the very best 30x zoom that's available on the market. "... [Source]

Sony Cybershot DSC-HX100V Review Roundup and sample photos here.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ100 - 14.1 Megapixels 24x SuperZoom

On July 21 2010, Panasonic announced the Lumix DMC-FZ100 which is a 24x SuperZoom digital camera with 25-600mm focal range, 14.1-megapixel MOS sensor, and 1920 x 1080 full HD movies. Successor to the popular DMC-FZ38 model, the Panasonic DMC-FZ100 features a burst shooting spped in 14.1 Megapixels full resolution at 11 fps with a mechanical shutter (it can even do 60 fps in 3.5 Megapixels recording mode), plus a 460,000-dot high resolution 3 inch LCD screen. The camera can record high speed movie at 220 fps in QVGA size. The FZ100 retains the Power O.I.S anti-shake system, iA (intelligent auto) mode, manual shooting modes, RAW format support and ISO 1600 mode from its predecessor. 

The new image processing LSI the Venus Engine FHD assures high picture quality in both photo and movie recording. It also compiles the Intelligent Resolution technology to perform the optimum signal processing depending on the part of a picture to give a whole image outstandingly natural clearness with fine details. The  24x optical zoom can be increased its power to 32x equivalent with the Intelligent Zoom function taking advantage of the Intelligent Resolution technology maintaining the picture quality even using digital zoom. In addition to Motion JPEG images, the DMC-FZ100 can record high-resolution full-HD 1920 x 1080 60i (NTSC) / 50i (PAL) movies in AVCHD (MPEG-4/H.264) format. The AVCHD format features almost twice the recording time in HD quality than the conventional Motion JPEG and excels in the compatibility with AV equipment like HDTVs or Blu-ray players. The 24x optical zoom is available in movie recording with the mechanism designed to minimize the noise of auto focusing or zooming. The iA (Intelligent Auto) mode, the anti-shake function, Face Detection, and Intelligent Scene Selector are also available in movie recording. The Lumix DMC-FZ100 in black as the only color is currently selling at around $398. Here is the summary of review by Steve's Digicam:

"With a newly designed Venus Engine powering the FZ100, it has some pretty outstanding performance features. It uses advanced signal processing to reduce image noise and controls the camera's intelligent features. A button on top of the camera allows you to quickly choose the burst rate that is right for your shooting situation. They range from full 14-Megapixel images at speeds of up to 11fps to 3.5-Megapixel images at 60fps. This engine also allows for the capture of full 1080i HD videos at 60fps. If you are into slow motion movies, you can also capture QVGA (320x240) sized videos at an astounding 220fps. Capturing our outdoor image samples using the iAuto shooting mode provided us with very high image quality. The images are well exposed, vibrant and sharp, showing us extensive amounts of fine details within the photos. Noise and chromatic aberrations are controlled very well, but there are slight instances throughout our outdoor samples. You will also see some very distinct barrel distortion when shooting at the 25mm wide end. We also noticed that when shooting at the wide end of the zoom with the included lens hood, you will see the hood on the outside edges of your images, which you might not notice when you are shooting. 

Our indoor sample images were taken using both iAuto and Aperture priority modes. Both modes produced excellent quality, capturing very sharp images whether at f/3.3 or f/8. Noise is also controlled very well, allowing you to make prints when shooting at any of the ISO settings. ISO 100 - 400 will allow you to make large clear images. While ISO 800 and 1600 are not as clear, they can still be used to make smaller prints. Assisting with your indoor and low-light shooting is a pop-up flash unit. This flash has a range of up to 31 feet (9.5m) at wide angle using ISO auto, but the range becomes very limited if you want to keep the ISO down for higher quality images. This can be seen in our portrait sample, as the ISO quickly went to 400 with the subject only being about 6ft. away. On the bright side, the flash did provide us with natural looking skin tones and no redness in the eyes. Helping with your portrait shots, Panasonic has included Face Detection and Face Recognition software. This allows you to store your favorite faces in the camera, allowing it to give them priority over the rest of the image when they are detected. The Face Detection works very quickly, finding and then easily following any faces within the frame. It is also one of the best that we have used at finding and following faces while using the full telephoto zoom.

Shooting video with the FZ100 is very easy and almost instantaneous thanks to the dedicated video recording button located right behind the shutter release. This allows you to capture 1080i or 720p HD videos with stereo sound, depending on what the camera is set for. This button allows you to capture these videos no matter what shooting mode the camera is in. The FZ100's video quality is very good for a compact camera, with movies that are bright with vivid colors and play back smoothly. On the computer the videos look very sharp, and when viewing on an HDTV through the HDMI port, we did see a little bit of noise, increasing quickly with faster motion, but overall it provides a good viewing experience. Bottom Line - Panasonic's Lumix DMC-FZ100 is a powerful compact super-zoom camera that is packed with impressive features and controls. With excellent image quality, performance and high-speed burst and video shooting, there is nothing that this camera struggles with. With a street price of $499.95 US or less, this is an excellent choice if you are in the market for a powerful digital camera."... [Source]

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ100 Review Roundup and sample photos here.

Fujifilm FinePix HS20 - 16 Megapixels 30x SuperZoom

On January 5 2011, Fujifilm announced the new FinePix HS20 30x superzoom digital camera. Replacing the FinePix HS10, this latest addition target the photographers who want the specification and picture quality of an SLR without the heavy camera bag. It features a brand new EXR CMOS sensor that's a combination of Back Side Illuminated (BSI) CMOS and Fujifilm's unique EXR sensor technology. It also comes with high speed continuous shooting capability, improved user interface, versatile video functions, 30x zoom lens and a 16 Megapixels resolution.

The HS20 can shoot continuously at full resolution with speed of 8 frames per second. It can also shoot 11 frames per second at 8 Megapixels resolution. The HS20's contrast AF system takes no longer than 0.16 seconds to focus. The camera starts recording images from the moment you half-press the shutter release to focus. When you do take a picture, the HS20 also capture seven frames before or after you've taken the shot to make sure you get one perfect image. The FinePix HS20 offers video functionality using the H.264 (MOV) Full 1080p HD format and stereo sound at 1920 x 1080p 30 frames per second. The Fujifilm FinePix HS20 is currently selling at around $439. Here is the summary of review by TechRadar, giving the camera a rating of 2 out of 5:

"Throughout our testing of the HS20; investigating all of its scene modes, effects and auto technology we found that on the whole the camera has a slight tendency to overexpose captures; diluting colour, texture and definition. However a shortcut exposure compensation button has been included on the top of the camera - in between the shooting dial and on/off switch for users to quickly adjust exposure as needed and a range of manual and semi-manual controls mean users can tweak exposure to perfection once more confident. A selection of metering options are provided in the form of multi, spot and average and again a dedicated shortcut key is provide to maximise ease of use, yet as summarised previously we did find the camera to be slightly off kilter during use in auto modes. White balance on the whole was of a good standard, but if we were being picky we would point out that with the issues of overexposure in auto modes the colour replication wasn't as spot on as we'd have expected for a camera of this price - as the colours produced lacked the vivacity and depth they presented in reality. What is good, however, is that users can access a catalogue of Film Simulation effects and opt for the 'Vivid' option to pump up hues when needed. The dynamic range provided is impressive as we would have perhaps expected being able to offer 1600%, yet we did find on the whole images perhaps lacked that level of contrast needed to add punch to the picture; especially evident in those frames affected with a B&W or Sepia filter.

In terms of noise we found the camera's sensitivity range was more than adequate up to ISO 800. At ISO 1600 the results were still usable but coloured pixels begun to creep into the shadows and there was evidence of compromised definition. At ISO 3200 the whole image takes on a mottled grey tinge with noise becoming uncomfortable which is exaggerated further at ISO 6400, and thus colours and details become awkwardly distorted at ISO 12800. Comparatively however, the ISO performance of the HS20 is certainly within the same performance levels of its competitors. At £430 some may argue that the HS20 is a little over priced for the quality of images it produces, yet its wealth of high-end specs certainly do well to dilute any qualms. Ideally Fujifilm wanted to create an easy-to-use super zoom camera, packed full of fun and creative features which ultimately produces a higher level of picture quality. What they have in fact achieved is a feature-filled super zoom that does produce stellar images when used manually, but may provide disappointing results for those shooters content with using auto commands."... [Source]

Fujifilm FinePix HS20 Review Roundup and sample photos here.

Which SuperZoom Camera to Choose?

Finding the perfect SuperZoom camera is not an easy task. Depending on what you are looking for...if you are most concerned about the image quality of the SuperZoom cameras, you should look at the Canon Powershot SX30 IS, Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ100 and the Sony Cybershot DSC-HX100V. The three SuperZoom cameras all perform well in terms of image quality, but the Panasonic DMC-FZ100 comes with less zoom at only 24x, versus SX30 35x and HX100V 30x. The Canon SX30 can produce images in above average quality and it's main drawback is noise. Images with ISO 400 showing some noise, blurring of detail and slight color desaturation. The noise and loss of detail get progressively worse as you go from ISO 800 to the fastest 1600 setting. As you'd imagine with a telephoto this powerful, image stabilization is a critical feature. Canon comes implemented with an excellent IS system, people are typically impressed by the handheld results of the SX30. The 4.5-stop anti-shake system works very well when hand-holding the camera in low-light conditions or when using the telephoto end of the huge zoom range. The Panasonic DMC-FZ100 can produce images in very good quality by producing noise-free images at ISO 100-200, with limited noise and color desaturation starting to appear at ISO 400. ISO 800 exhibits quite visible noise, smearing of fine detail and color desaturation, and ISO 1600 is even noisier, although still usable for small prints. Some reviews said the image quality of FZ100 wasn't able to match the quality of either the SX30 or even it's predecessor FZ45 (aka FZ40). The DMC-FZ100 comes with a new Intelligent Resolution feature either makes a standard image look sharper, albeit with some unwanted artifacts appearing, or it digitally increases the 24x optical zoom to 32x, again with a slight loss in quality. The Sony DSC-HX100V can produce images in very good quality and the handled noise is very well, not becoming obvious until the relatively slow speed of ISO 800 and then becoming progressively worse at the fastest settings of ISO 1600 and 3200. It offers a compelling mix of advanced features (full range of manual, aperture and shutter priority modes). It also comes with the Backlight Correction HDR feature which dramatically increases the detail in the shadow and highlight areas, as well as the Hand-held Twilight mode and Sweep Panorama modes, making it simple to take hand-held low-light and panorama shots.

For the best Zoom capability (this is probably why you are interested in this SuperZoom category of cameras in the first place), you should look at the Nikon Coolpix P500 and the Canon Powershot SX30. The SX30 comes with the incredibly 35x image stabilized Wide Angle Optical Zoom lens, providing a 35mm equivalent focal range of 24mm to 840mm. The wide-angle optical Zoom NIKKOR ED glass lens on the P500 supports a range from 22.5 to 810mm. Note that the P500 maximum aperture is f/3.4 at the wide end, smaller than the SX30's f/2.7. The Nikon P500's widest setting is too wide for most people-pictures, introducing distortion that stretches heads and distorts bodies with unflattering results. People also seems to have more problems with the image stabilization system on the Nikon P500. The fact is that even with dual image stabilization, it can be difficult to get a sharp shot at full telephoto zoom. Its 810 millimeters equivalent at maximum telephoto is a long lens and hand-holding image result is less than optimal. In terms of P500 image quality, it is a mixed bag - shots made toward the wide end of the lens and fairly close up looked pretty good, while shots made at telephoto tended to look a bit soft. Nikon P500 comes with the BSS features that can capture 10 images and choose the least blurry shot to save to the memory card. It might be difficult to frame at 810mm long zoom, but it might be a good way to get a shot without a tripod in long zoom. 

For the best continuous burst shooting speed, the Olympus SZ-30MR, Sony Cybershot DSC-HX100V and Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ100. The SZ-30MR enables 15 fps (frames per second) shooting at 5 Megapixels resolution and 3 fps at full 16 Megapixels full resolution. The HX100V can shoot up to ten 16.2 Megapixels full resolution images at an astounding 10 fps, which is the fastest continuous shooting SuperZoom cameras among the pack in full resolution. It is indeed faster than most compact cameras and most DSLR cameras as well. The main drawback is that it need over 15 seconds for the camera to clear the buffer and during which you cannot take another picture. In the other two continuous shooting modes, the HX100V can take up to 10 pictures, but at slower speeds of 5 or 2 fps. The FZ100 supports a number of burst shooting options that are accessed from a dedicated button on the top panel. It can take 11 fps for up to 15 pictures at 14.1 Megapixels full resolution, only at single auto-focusing mode which can make it tricky to keep fast-moving subjects sharp. If you like to use continuous auto-focusing mode, the frame rates then drop to 5 fps or 2 fps. The FZ100 can also support faster continuous burst rates of 40 fps and 60 fps, at reduced resolutions of 5 Megapixels and 2.5 Megapixels respectively. Perhaps most impressive of all, these continuous rates apply to both JPEG and RAW images, so there's no speed penalty when shooting in RAW other than having to wait longer for the camera to process all the images. It's worth noting that the Nikon P500 can shoot in slow or quick motion using recording speeds of nearly 240 fps (in QVGA resolution). Continuous shooting at full resolution can reach speeds of 8 fps, but only for 5 shots. Other burst options include 120 fps capturing 50 images at 1280 x 960 resolution, or 60 fps capturing 25 images at 1600 x 1200 resolution.

If you are interested to take HD video along with the SuperZoom capability, then the Nikon Coolpix P500, Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ100, and Sony Cybershot DSC-HX100V are the best choices. These three SuperZoom cameras can record Full HD (1080p) movies at 30fps with stereo sound using the built-in microphone. In the P500, you can use the optical zoom while shooting video, and full-time AF is also available. The P500 records standard H.264/MPEG-4 AVC with AAC stereo audio files stored in a QuickTime .MOV container and the maximum clip length is limited to 29 minutes. The P500 is also capable of high-speed (HS) movie recording at 240 fps in QVGA resolution, 120 fps in VGA resolution, 60 fps in 720p HD resolution. Sound is not recorded and VR is not available. When these videos are played back at the normal 30fps, they become slow-motion movies. The major drawback of the HS video mode is that the maximum recording time per clip is limited to only 10 seconds. The Panasonic DMC-FZ100 can record full HD 1920 x 1280 60i (NTSC) / 50i (PAL) movies at 30 frames per second at either 17Mbps or 13Mbps in the AVCHD (MPEG-4/H.264) format, and also 1280 x 720 at 30fps, together with stereo sound via the large internal mic on the top of camera. In addition it can also record Motion JPEG movies at 320 x 240 at 30fps, 640 x 480 at 30fps, 848 x 480 at 30fps and 1280 x 720 at 30fps. The FZ100 can also support a High Speed Movie scene mode, which can record high speed movies at 220fps in QVGA size. AVCHD can almost double the recording time in HD quality compared with Motion JPEG, while delivering roughly similar image quality. On the FZ100, you can simultaneously take still images while recording movies, although only at a reduced resolution of 3.5 Megapixels, while the Video Divide function divides the video into two sections to shorten or delete them in-camera. Maximum recording time depends on memory card capacity. The Sony HX100V can deliver a Full HD 1080p movie mode at 60 fps using the AVCHD format with H.264 compression. You can activate the lens-based optical stabilization system that now includes an 'Active Mode' to counteract the vertical shake apparent when recording movies on the move. The movie mode itself is automated, i.e. point the camera and it'll continuously focus and auto-adjust exposure. The one and only manual control here is real-time exposure compensation adjustment that can prove particularly useful. the HX100V can record in AVCHD format (or the optional MP4 format) and has a variety of quality settings - with the option to capture 50p, 50i or lower resolution settings using the one-touch movie button. The Sony HX100V can record full HD 1920 x 1280 60p/50p at 28Mbps, or 60i/50i at 24Mbps or 17Mbps in the AVCHD format.

Nikon P500 sample indoor video at 1080p resolution:

Nikon P500 sample outdoor video at 1080p resolution:

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ100 sample video at 1080i resolution:

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ100 sample video of a pine needles and starter fluid being lit at 220fps:

Sony Cybershot DSC-HX100V sample video:

If you are most concerned about price, the Kodak EasyShare MAX Z990 12 Megapixels 30x SuperZoom selling at around $277 is the most affordable SuperZoom camera among the pack. The Fujifilm FinePix HS20 is the most expensive, selling at around $439. If camera weight is your concern, the Olympus SZ-30MR 16 Megapixels 24x SuperZoom, selling at around $359, is the lightest SuperZoom camera among the pack at only 226g (without battery & memory card). The Fujifilm FinePix HS20 16 Megapixels 30x SuperZoom is the heaviest at 636g. I hope you find this SuperZoom cameras comparison useful, enjoy your photo shooting!

ModelPowershot SX30 ISCoolpix P500SZ-30MRX90Easyshare Z990DSC-HX100VDMC-FZ100Finepix HS20
StyleExtended ZoomExtended ZoomAdvanced CompactExtended ZoomExtended ZoomExtended ZoomExtended ZoomExtended Zoom
LCD Screen2.7-inch TFT color LCD (Vari-angle type with wide viewing angle) with Approx. 230,000 pixels3-inch Vari-Angle TFT-LCD with Anti-reflection coating with 921,000 dots3-inch TFT LCD, 460,000 dots2.7-inch TFT color LCD w anti-reflective coating, 230,000 dots3.0-inch 460K dots TFT color LCD with smart display feature3.0-inch XtraFine LCD with TruBlack technology (921K dots)3.0-inch Free-Angle TFT Screen LCD Display (460K dots), AR Coating3.0-inch, approx. 460,000 dots, TFT color LCD monitor, approx. 100% coverage
Memory CardsSD/SDHC Memory Card, SDXC Memory Card, MultiMedia Card, MMC Plus Card, HC MMC Plus CardSD memory card SDHC memory card SDXC memory card with 102MB internal memoryInternal Memory 59MB, SD / SDHC / SDXCInternal memory: 31.2 MB Removable memory: SD, SDHC128 MB internal memory[ available, SD/SDHC card expansion slotoptional Memory Stick Duo (No movie recording), optional Memory Stick PRO Duo (Mark 2 only for movie recording), optional Memory Stick PRO-HG Duo, optional SD Memory Card (Class 4 or higher), optional SDHC Memory Card (Class 4 or higher), optional SDXC Memory Card (Class 4 or higher)40MB Built-in Memory, SD Memory Card, SDHC Memory Card, SDXC Memory CardInternal memory (Approx. 20MB) SD / SDHC / SDXC(UHS-I) memory card
ResolutionStill Image: 4320 x 3240 (Large), 3072 x 2304 (Medium 1), 1600 x 1200 (Medium 2)*, 640 x 480 (Small), 3744 x 2104 (Widescreen), * Same as when shooting in Low Light4000 x 3000 (12M)16M (4608 x 3456) 8M (3264 x 2448) 5M (2560 x 1920) 3M (2048 x 1536) 2M (1600 x 1200) 1M (1280 x 960) VGA (640 x 480)Still: 12M (4000 x 3000), 10.7M (3:2, 4000 x 2672), 9M (16:9, 4000 x 2256), 9M (1:1, 2992 x 2992), 7M (3072 x 2304), 5M (2592 x 1944), 3M (2048 x 1536), 1024 (1024 x 768), VGA (640 x 480)12 MP (4000 x 3000)-4:3 11 MP (4000 x 2664)-3:2 9 MP (4000 x 2256)-16:9 6 MP (2832 x 2128)-4:3 3 MP (2048 x 1536)-4:316M (4,608 x 3,456), 10M (3,648 x 2,736), 5M (2,592 x 1,944), VGA (640 x 480); 3D: 16M (4,608 x 3,456) / 16:9 (12M) (4,608 x 2,592)4:3 Aspect Ratio (Still Image) 4320 x 3240 (14M) / 3648 x 2736 (10M) / 3072 x 2304 (7M) / 2560 x 1920 (5M) / 2048 x 1536 (3M) / 640 x 480 (0.3M) 3:2 Aspect Ratio (Still Image) 4320 x 2880 (12.5M) / 3648 x 2432 (9M) L : (4:3) 4608 x 3456 / (3:2) 4608 x 3072 / (16:9) 4608 x 2592 M : (4:3) 3264 x 2448 / (3:2) 3264 x 2176 / (16:9) 3264 x 1840 S : (4:3) 2304 x 1728 / (3:2) 2304 x 1536 / (16:9) 1920 x 1080
File FormatsStill: JPEG (Exif v2.2), Movie: MOV [H.264 + Linear PCM (monaural / stereo)]Still pictures: JPEG Full HD: 1920x1080p / 30fpsJPEG EXIF v 2.2 PIM III DPOF, Movie recording with sound MPEG-4 AVC/H.264Still: JPG (EXIF 2.2), DCF 2.0, DPOF, Print Image Matching III Movie (compression): AVI (Motion JPG) Sound: WAV (PCM), monauralJPEG/EXIF v2.21 DPOF, KCD RAW Movie: H.264 (MP4), AAC stereoJPEG, Video Format : AVCHD 60i / 60p / MP4 / MPEG-4 AVC(H.264)Still Image: JPEG (DCF / Exif2.3) Motion picture: AVCHD, QuickTime Motion JPEGstill image JPEG (Exif Ver 2.3)*3, RAW (RAF format), RAW+JPEG (Design rule for Camera File system compliant / DPOF-compatible) movie H.264 (MOV) sound WAVE format, Stereo sound
Focal Length35x zoom, 4.3 (W) - 150.5 (T) mm (35mm film equivalent: 24 (W) - 840 (T) mm)36x zoom, 4.0-144.0mm (angle of view equivalent to that of 22.5-810mm lens in 35mm [135] format)24x zoom, 4.5 -108.0 mm (25-600mm, 35mm camera equivalent)26x Zoom, 4.6-119.6mm (26-676mm)30x zoom, 28-840 mm (35 mm equiv.) SCHNEIDER-KREUZNACH VARIOGON Optical Zoom Lens30x zoom, Still 16:9: 29-870mm, Still 4:3: 27-810mm24x zoom, f=4.5-108mm (25-600mm in 35mm equiv.)30x zoom, f=4.2 - 126mm, equivalent to 24-720mm on a 35mm camera
Shutter Speed1 - 1/3200 sec. 15 - 1/3200 sec. (Total shutter speed range) - Shutter speeds differs depending on the shooting mode.1/1500-2 sec. (P, S mode)1/4 - 1/1700 s / < 4 s (Night scene)1/4000 to 1/4 sec (up to 4 sec in Tv, Av, M, Night Scene modes)Smart Capture mode: 1/2-1/2000 sec. S/M modes: 1/2000-16 sec. iAuto (2"" - 1/4000) / Program Auto (1"" - 1/4000) / Shutter Priority (30"" - 1/4000) / Aperture Priority (8"" - 1/2000) / Manual (30"" - 1/4000)60 - 1/2000 sec (Auto mode) 1/4sec. to 1/4000sec., (All other modes) 30sec. to 1/4000sec. (combined mechanical and electronic shutter)
Aperturef/2.7 (W) - f/5.8 (T) - The following f/numbers are available in Av or M: W: f/2.7, 3.2, 3.5, 4.0, 4.5, 5.0, 5.6, 6.3, 7.1, 8.0 T: f/5.8, 6.3, 7.1, 8.0f/3.5-5.73.0 - 6.9F2.8-5.0f/2.8-5.6iAuto (F2.8-F6.3 (W) / Program Auto (F2.8-F6.3 (W) / Speed Priority (F2.8-F6.3 (W) / Aperture Priority (F2.8-F8.0 (W) / Manual (F2.8-F8.0 (W)F2.8 - 5.2 / Multistage Iris Diaphragm (F2.8 - 8 (W) / F5.2 - 8 (T))F2.8-F11 (Wide) F5.6-F11 (Telephoto) 1/3EV step
ISO SensitivityISO Auto, 80, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600 equivalent (Camera automatically sets the optimal ISO speed according to shooting mode.)Auto (auto gain ISO 160-800) High ISO Sensitivity auto (ISO 160-1600)ISO 80, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200Auto: 80-1600 auto range adjustable, Digital SR 80-6400 (ISO 3200-6400 5M) Manual: 80-6400 (ISO 3200-6400 5M)auto, 125, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200, 6400Auto / 100 / 125 / 160 / 200 / 250 / 320 / 400 / 500 / 640 / 800 / 1000 / 1250 / 1600 / 2000 / 2500 / 3200Auto / i.ISO / 100 / 200 / 400 / 800 / 1600 High Sensitivity (ISO 1600-6400)Auto / Equivalent to ISO 100 / 200 / 400 / 800 / 1600 / 3200 / 6400 / 12800 (Standard Output Sensitivity)
White Balance SettingsAuto*, Daylight, Cloudy, Tungsten, Fluorescent, Fluorescent H, Flash, Custom *Facial color is evaluated in Face AiAF.Not SuppliedAuto, Presets (Daylight, Overcast, Tungsten and 3 Fluorescents)Auto preset modes: Auto, Daylight, Shade, Tungsten, Fluorescent (W, D, N)auto, daylight, tungsten, fluorescent, open shadeAuto (Intelligent) / Daylight / Cloudy / Fluorescent 1 (White Fluorescent Lighting) / Fluorescent 2 (Natural White Fluorescent Lighting) / Fluorescent 3 (Day White Fluorescent Lighting) / Incandescent / Flash / One Push / White Balance SiftAuto, Daylight, Cloudy, Shade, Halogen, White Set 1, White Set 2, Color TempratureFine, Shade, Fluorescent light (Daylight), Fluorescent light (Warm White), Fluorescent light (Cool White), Incandescent light, Custom
Flash ModesAuto, Red-eye Reduction, Auto Red-eye Correction, Flash On, Flash Off; FE lock, Slow Synchro, Smart FlashTTL auto flash with monitor preflashesAUTO, Red-eye reduction, Fill-in, OffAuto, Flash Off, Flash On, Auto + Redeye, On + Redeye, Slow Sync, Slow Sync + Redeyeauto, fill, red-eye reduction, offAuto / Flash On / Slow Synchro / Rear Slow Synchro / Flash OffAuto, Auto/Red-eye Reduction, Forced On, Slow Sync./Red-eye Reduction, Forced Off,Flash Synchro; 1st / 2ndRed-eye removal OFF : Auto, Forced Flash, Suppressed Flash, Slow Synchro. Red-eye removal ON : Red-eye Reduction Auto, Red-eye Reduction & Forced Flash, Suppressed Flash, Red-eye Reduction & Slow Sync
Flash Range1.6 - 19 ft. (W), 4.6 - 9.2 ft. (T), (50 cm - 5.8 m (W), 1.4 - 2.8 m (T))[W]: 0.5 to 8.0 m (1 ft. 8 in. to 26 ft.) [T]: 2.2 to 4.5 m (7ft 3 in. to 14 ft.)Working range (wide) 0.1 - 9.3 m (ISO 1600) Working range (tele) 0.4 - 4.0 m (ISO 1600)30' (wide, auto ISO), 17' (tele, auto ISO)(wide) 0.5-8.9 m (1.6-29.2 ft) ISO 800 (tele) 1.8-4.4 m (5.9-14.4 ft) ISO 800ISO Auto: Approx. 0.3 - Approx. 12.7m (Approx. 0.984' - Approx. 41.7') (W) / Approx. 2.0 - Approx. 5.9m (Approx. 6.56' - Approx. 19.4') (T), ISO3200: up to Approx. 18.0m (Approx. 59.1) (W) / Approx. 8.4m (Approx. 27.6') (T)0.3 - 9.5m (Wide / ISO Auto), 1.0 - 5.1m (Tele/ISO Auto)Wide : Approx. 30cm - 7.1m / 1ft. - 23.2ft. Telephoto : Approx. 2.0m - 3.8m / 6.5ft. - 12.4ft.
Shooting ModesSmart AUTO, P, Tv, Av, M, C1, C2, Portrait, Landscape, Sports, SCN*1, Movie*2 *1Smart Shutter*3, Low Light, Super Vivid, Poster Effect, Color Accent, Color Swap, Fisheye Effect, Miniature Effect, Beach, Foliage, Snow, Fireworks, Stitch Assist *2Smart AUTO available *3 Smile, Wink, Self-timer, Face SBack Light Beach Black and White Copy Close Up Dusk/Dawn Fireworks Show Food Landscape Museum Night Landscape Night Portrait Panorama Party/Indoor Pet Portrait Portrait Scene Auto Selector Snow Sports SunsetPortrait, Beauty, Landscape, Night Scene, Night Scene with portrait, Hand-held Starlight, Sports, Indoor, Self-portrait, Sunset, Fireworks, Cuisine, Documents, Beach and Snow, Pet (cat), Pet (dog)Auto Picture (Standard, Landscape, Portrait, Night Scene Portrait, Night Scene, Sport, Flower), Sport, Digital SR (ISO 3200-6400 5M), Movie, USER, Manual, Aperture Priority, Shutter Priority, Program, Scenesport, portrait, children, backlight, high ISO, bright, sunset, self-portrait, night portrait, candlelight, night landscape, landscape, stage, fireworks, flower, panoramaHigh Sensitivity / Soft snap / Landscape / Twilight Portrait / Twilight / Gourmet / Beach / Snow / Fireworks / Pet / Soft Skin / Handheld Twilight / Anti Motion BlurPanorama Assist, Party, Candle Light, Baby1, Baby2, Pet, Sunset, High Sensitivity, Flash Burst, Panning, Starry Sky, Fireworks, Beach, Snow, Aerial Photo, Photo Frame, High Speed MovieNatural Light, Natural Light & with Flash, Portrait, Portrait Enhancer, Dog, Cat, Landscape, Sport, Night, Night (Tripod), Fireworks, Sunset, Snow, Beach, Party, Flower, Text
Maximum Movie ResolutionHD: 1280 x 720, 640 x 480, 320 x 2401920x1080p1080P, 720P, 360P, 180P, VGA, QVGAHD (1280 x 720 p 30/15), VGA (640 x 480 p 30/15), QVGA (320 x 240 p 30/15)HD: 1080p (1920 x 1080 @30 fps); 720p (1280 x 720 @ 30 fps) VGA: 640 x 480 @ 30 fps WVGA: 640 x 352 @ 30 fpsAVCHD 1920 x 1080 (50i, Interlace) Approx. 17Mbps AVCHD 1440 x 1080 (50i, Interlace) Approx. 9Mbps MP4 / AVI 1440 x 1080 Approx. 25fps Progressive Approx.12Mbps MP4 / AVI 1280 x 720 Approx. 25fps Progressive Ap1920x1080 pixels,NTSC Mode: NTSC model: 60i (AVCHD, FSH: 17Mbps / FH:13Mbps) 1280x720 pixels,NTSC Mode: NTSC model: 60p (AVCHD Lite, SH: 17Mbps / H:13Mbps) / 30fps (Motion JPEG)1920 x 1080 pixels / 1280 x 720 pixels / 640 x 480 pixels (30 frames / sec.) with stereo sound
Maximum Movie Frames Per Second30 fps30 fps30 fps30 fps30 fps50/25 fps30 fps30 fps
Maximum Movie Duration4GB or 1 hourTo capacity of memory cardmaximum file size 4GBNot SuppliedHD: < 4 GB or < 29 min. VGA: < 4 GBTo capacity of memory cardAVCHD or AVCHD Lite with picture quality set to [FSH or SH] approx.110 min (FSH), 130 min (SH) MOTIOTo capacity of memory card
Macro Focus0 in. - 1.6 ft./ 0 - 50 cm (W)[W]: Approx. 4 in. (10 cm.) to infinityW:0.1m-infinity / Tele:0.4m-infinity0.33-1.64' (wide to mid zoom)(wide) 0.1-0.8 m (3.9 in.-2.6 ft), (tele) 1.8-3.5 m (5.9-11.5 ft)iAuto (W: Approx. 1cm (0.03') to Infinity, T: Approx. 200cm (6.56') to Infinity)Wide 1 cm - infinity / Tele 100cm - infinityWide : Approx. 10cm - 3.0m / 0.3ft. - 9.8ft. Telephoto : Approx. 2.0m - 5.0m / 6.5ft. - 16.4ft.
MeteringEvaluative*, Center - weighted average, Spot** * Control to incorporate facial brightness in Face Detection AF ** Metering frame is fixed to the center *2 Fixed to center 256-segment matrix, center-weighted, spot, spot AF area (with support for 99 focus areas) ESP light metering, Spot meteringMulti - segment, Center - weighted, Spotmulti-pattern, center-weighted, spotMulti Point, Center Weighted, SpotIntelligent Multiple / Center Weighted / SpotUnknown
Image StabilizationYes (Lens shift-type) Yes, Combination of Image-sensor shift and Electronic VR (still pictures) Electronic VR (movies)Yes, CCD Shift Image Stabiliser correcting to 4 shutter speed stepsYes, Still: Sensor-Shift SR, Digital SR (ISO 3200-6400 5M) Movie: Movie SRYes, still: optical, video: digitalYes, Optical SteadyShot? Image Stabilization with Active ModeYes, Power O.I.S. (Off / Auto / Mode1 / Mode2) Photo & MovieYes, CMOS shift type
Self TimerCustom* / approx. 10-sec. delay / approx. 2-sec. delay * Delay time (0 - 10 sec. (in one-second increment)Can be selected from 10 and 2 seconds duration12 sec10 sec, 2 secself-timer (2 sec., 10 sec., 2 shots)Off / 10sec. / 2sec. / portrait1 / portrait22sec / 10sec / 10sec[3 pictures]Approx. 10sec. / 2sec. delay
Video Out (TV Playback)Yes, NTSC/PAL, digital: HDMI mini connectorYes, NTSC PAL HDMIYes, HDMI (HD / Stereo Sound), VIDEO-OUT (SD / Mono Sound)Yes, NTSC, PAL (HDMI out supports Auto, 1080i, 720p, 480p) YesYesYes, AV Output (NTSC), mini HDMI, USB2.0 High speedYes, HDMI (Type C) NTSC/PAL selectable
BatteriesBattery Pack NB-7LRechargeable Li-ion Battery EN-EL5LI-ion rechargeable battery (model) LI-50BRechargeable Li-Ion battery D-LI106 4 AA Ni-MH batteries (included), single use alkalineLITHIUM ION NP-FH50 6.8VID-Security Li-ion Battery Pack (7.2V, Minimum: 895mAh) (Included)4xAA type alkaline batteries (included)
Dimensions4.84 x 3.64 x 4.24 in. / 122.9 x 92.4 x 107.7mmHeight: 3.3 in. (83.7mm) Width: 4.6 in. (115.5mm) Depth: 4.1 in. (102.5mm)106.3 x 68.7 x 39.5mm4.4 x 3.3 x 4.3 in.4.9 x 3.4 x 3.7 in.4 5/8" x 3 4/8" x 3 5/8" (119.0mm x 88.9mm x 93.0mm)4.89 x 3.20 x 3.74 in130.6(W) x 90.7(H) x 126.0(D) mm / 5.1(W) x 3.6(H) x 5.0(D) in.
Weight21.2 oz. / 601g17.5 oz. (494g) with battery and SD memory card226g14.1 oz.1.3 lb with batteries and memory card2.4oz.(523g)1.09lb636g / 22.4oz.
Other InfoContinuous Shooting Normal: Approx. 1.3 shots/sec. (when shooting in P mode), Approx. 3.6 shots/sec. (when shooting in Low Light mode) AF: Approx. 0.6 shots/sec. (when shooting in P mode), Approx. 1.0 shots/sec. (when shooting in Low Light mode) LV: Approx. 0.6 shots/sec. (when shooting in P mode), Approx. 1.1 shots/sec. (when shooting in Low Light mode) - Under conditions where the flash does not fire automatically. - Differs depending on the zoom position.Top Continuous Shooting Speed at full resolution Up to 5 shots at approx. 8 frames per secondSequential shooting mode (high speed) 15 fps / 70 frames (in 5MP mode) 7.0 fps / 5 frames (Full Image Size) Sequential shooting mode 1.7 fps / 18 frames (Full Image Size)Continuous FPS: Approx 1.12 FPS, Burst L 4 FPS for 6 frames (5M), Burst M 7.14 FPS for 6 frames (5M), Burst H 11.11 FPS for 15 frames (5M)Smart Capture burst-1.1 fps; PASM burst-5 fps, max 5; 10 fps, max 5; 60 fps @ 2 MP, max 20Burst Mode : Approx 10 fps at 16.2MP (Maximum 10 shots)Continuous Shooting Mode Full-Resolution Image, 11 frames/sec Max. 15 images High-speed Burst Shooting: max. 60 frames/sec (recorded in 2.5M for 4:3, 3M for 3:2, 3.5M for 16:9, 2M for 1:1) Continuous shooting TOP L : TOP- 4 / 8 frames (3 / 5 / 8 frames/sec.) M : TOP- 4 / 8 / 16 frames (3 / 5 / 8 / 11 frames/sec.) S : TOP- 4 / 8 / 16 / 32 frames (3 / 5 / 8 / 11 frames/sec.)
Release Date2010-09-152011-02-082011-03-022010-02-242011-01-052011-01-312010-07-212011-01-05

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