Saturday, 30 March 2013

Canon SX50, Fuji HS50, Nikon P520, Sony HX-300 Reviewed in AP

Amateur Photographer (20 March) has a useful comparative review of these 'flagship bridge cameras' in the 'zoom war' I have followed in earlier posts.

I have covered the main points previously as far as birding/wildlife are concerned. By comparing the handling and output of all four, the AP review adds further information.

Some issues AP raised are:

Canon SX50. Difficult to grip. LCD and EVF (the thing that passes for a viewfinder these days) worst on test.
Fuji HS50. Largest and heaviest. On/off switch turns too easily.
Nikon P520. Autofocus (contrast detection) slow compared with the others. No quick menu. Handles well.
Sony HX300. Handling very good. Large but lightweight.

In terms of resolution, the Sony and Nikon were best but the Fuji and Canon were better at higher ISO settings, as would be expected from the size of, and number of photoreceptive sites on, the sensor.

At the 24 mm equivalent to 35 mm end of the zoom, the Fuji showed marked barrel distortion. The Nikon and Sony were best. However, for chromatic aberration, Fuji was the best, followed by Sony and then the Nikon and Canon.

AP gave an overall mark of 81% to the Canon (why?) and Sony, 79% to the Fuji and 78% to the Nikon, which, surprise, surprise, correlates with the price. They regarded the Sony HX300 as the best overall, despite its lack of RAW output.

I would be hard pushed to choose now that Nikon has been joined by the others in this market. Since my P510 is used for birding/wildlife and travel as an additional camera, only if one of the others showed a marked superiority in speed of focusing would I consider defecting from the really light Nikon to one of the others.

The player missing in this market at the moment is Panasonic. Will they come up with a competitor?

Here is an Easter Bunny, taken a couple of days ago using one of the family Nikon P510s with the zoom fully extended.

180 mm (equivalent to 1000 mm full-frame 35 mm). ISO 320, f5.9, 1/500. AJP Photo