I’ve been using Sony superzooms for years (the H5 before the HX1). The HX1 is very convenient size for a 20X zoom. I just bought a Fujifilm HS10/11 with a 30X zoom (720mm equivalent). The HS10 is a true ‘bridge’ camera with features normally found in DSLRs. Its size and weight are closer to a DSLR, too. In these photos, the Sony HX1 is on the left and the Fujifilm HS10 is on the right.
I’ve had the Sony HX1 for a while now and I still like it a lot. Never the less, I’m keeping an eye out for my next camera. I’m not interested in DSLRs with swappable lenses – been there, done that with film and a lens I loved. So, I’m always in the market for a bridge camera, a high-end Point&Shoot camera that is between casual consumer P&S and professional-grade DSLR. I’ve liked several Sonys, but a year and a half after the HX1 was announced, Sony hasn’t brought out its successor. (That will probably happen the day after I decide to buy another brand.)
A few months ago, the Nikon P100 caught my eye, but the image quality seemed questionable. Now, I’m looking at the Fujifilm Finepix HS10. (I’m ignoring the Canon 35x superzoom that was just announced – too new and the wrong sensor.) Looking at reviews and comparing the HS10 to the HX-1, I’m struck by the (slightly) improved sensor. I’m lukewarm to RAW format, but curious about its potential. Supposedly, the HS10 writes to a card very slowly – a serious minus if you shoot action. One plus for the HX1 is optical image stabilization versus sensor-based stabilization in the HS10. Other pluses for the Sony are smaller size and weight, as well as higher resolution in the electronic viewfinder and LCD.
In an era of small digicams this is a monster. The size of a DSLR, it weighs a little under 750g and, mounted into the front of the body, is its big, big feature… a 30x zoom that stretches from a 35 SLR equivalent of an enjoyably wide 24mm starting point way, way out to 720mm! Naturally, the zoom has manual operation.
FujiFilm has released one of their most impressive high performance "Bridge" cameras to date (6/2010) with the introduction of the Fujifilm FinePix HS10. This new camera combines a powerful Fujinon 30x manual optical zoom lens and advanced functionality, all in a body slightly more compact than a standard DSLR, but with all the attributes of its full sized brethren. The Fujinon 30x optical zoom covers a versatile 24-720mm (equivalent on a 35mm camera) range from true wide-angle to ultra telephoto. And the fact that this is a fixed lens means no worries about dust on the image sensor. Some of the great features of the HS10 are attributed to the BSI CMOS sensor and include: High Speed Continuous Shooting which shoots the action at 10fps at full resolution, Multi-Frame Technology which lets you use powerful Pro Modes to capture scenes with mood and depth and High Sensitivity/Low Noise which means superior photos in low light with even lower noise.
Digital Cameras Side-by-Side, 3 cameras: Digital Photography Review (Fujifilm HS10, Nikon P100, Sony HX1
Feel free to write me if you have experience with the HS10 or P100.
I’m looking at the Nikon Coolpix P100. I’m a sucker for a superzoom plus macro – get me close, one way or another. I’ve owned a Sony Cybershot DSC-HX1 for just over a year. I like it quite a bit. So, naturally, I’ll compare my next camera closely to my current camera. These two sites make it easy to see specs side-by-side.
Take such comparisons with a grain of salt. As just one example, the DPR site says the P100 comes with a charger – not anywhere I’ve seen, other than the in-camera charger, which may be what they mean.
These kinds of charts cannot replace actual reviews, both professional and amateur, such as on Amazon. I also saw one review on YouTube that was pretty informative.
Someone who has lived with a camera can point out things that a quick survey or chart won’t. For example, the Sony HX1 automatically switches into Macro mode; the Nikon P100, like the earlier Sony models, requires a button press – not a deal-breaker. On the other hand, the Nikon’s method of releasing the flash makes it easy to suppress the flash, as on earlier Sonys; the Sony HX1 opens the flash automatically, meaning you have to press buttons to suppress it. These are details most reviews miss but which may make affect you every day.
I recently bought a Sony Cybershot DSC-HX1 9MP Digital Camera with 20x Optical Zoom with Super Steady Shot Image Stabilization and 3.0 Inch LCD (tilts out), great macro, and a lot of automatic, easy-to-use features. You might compare the HX-1 to Canon IS and Panasonic Lumix. I used a Sony H5 for a couple of years and gave that one to my wife — she loves it. If the Sony H50 is still available, it has gotten good reviews; it’s the model just before mine.
Speaking of reviews, these sites have great reviews and comparisons. Look at Amazon for reviews, too, even if you aren’t buying from them. (I’ve bought several cameras from Amazon and returned a couple without any hassles — they even paid return shipping.)
[I may work up a longer review. If I do, I’ll post it on this blog and link to it from here.]