Customer Review

436 of 444 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, March 24, 2012
This review is from: Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX200V 18.2 MP Exmor R CMOS Digital Camera with 30x Optical Zoom and 3.0-inch LCD (Black) (2012 Model) (Electronics)
For some reason this was available in New Zealand, via Asia, before the US/UK release. I've had it for about a week now. So, it is as spec'ed in the preview comments about it so far from the various websites.

It starts fast, focuses quickly, does not have shutter lag and is easy to handle and has tons of functions. It handles well for its size and does not feel heavy. Having the zoom on the side of the lens is great - makes it more stable to hold the camera. I've taken some pretty amazing shots with it - the zoom allows good creativity and the low light capability produces detailed and pleasing shots. How much different this camera is to the previous model I'm not really sure in terms of the additional megapixels via the new sensor. My previous camera was a Olympus E620 DSLR - in comparison there is less detail with the Sony, although not hugely noticeable on a 23" LCD computer monitor. The camera is a lot of fun to use and it just begs you to be more creative when shooting. The partial colour shots are great. The LCD screen is very good, nice and bright. Nice touch to use the optical viewfinder and have the screen turn off. The built in user manual is great - to look up what a function does without having to refer to the manual. Also when you find what you want it provides the option to go to that function right away - so for example I wanted to look at the ND filter function, once I've read what it does I can then select to open the function from the help screen rather than exiting help and then trying to find it through the menu system.

It provides good flash coverage and the slow-sync function is great to prevent those deer in the headlights shots - as this flash can put out a lot of light.

The superior auto mode is good for the stability/less blur in long range shots as it takes multiple photos and apparently works out which is the best photo to save. This is great as at maximum zoom the camera shake from your hands can be a problem if you've ever experienced using a megazoom before. Personally without that image stabilisation and multi-shot taking having a megazoom is a bit pointless as you'd never take good photos at long range without frustration.

Shooting movies and the ability to shoot a good sized still at the same time is very impressive - probably one of the best features - as I've always wanted to be able to take a high MP shot during a video shoot because that's when you typically need it and on other cameras it was always one or the other but not both at the same time. The video quality is very good. No issues there and the zoom works well when videoing. The microphone does pick up background noise around the camera (ie from people talking nearby) and without a zoom mic option is somewhat limiting. That said the audio capture is good.

Other good things - HDR - similar function to my iPhone 4S - produces good highlighting without overcooking the photo. When it is taking multiple photos with HDR and other functions it takes a few seconds time to process and save these but I guess thats normal. The menu system is good - particularly given how many functions this camera has.

I use it with a Sandisk 32GB Extreme 32GB SDHC Flash Memory Card (Class 10). Seems fine to use - saves quickly. It is probably better to get higher spec cards like this one if shooting HD video.

On the downside... the lens cap can get stuck if you don't remove it before turning the power on. Flash - there's no button to pop it up as per usual cameras - you need to use the jog dial and select flash to get it to pop-up. Once set it then pops up the flash when needed. The LCD screen doesn't fully articulate but that is not a major for me.

In summary it will never please the pro's out there - the image quality is very good but not perfect. Good enough for most people wanting the "best for me" rather than "best in the world" class of camera - its affordable, has huge capabilities, more than acceptable image quality and fun. A family orientated camera for sure that everyone can pick up and use and get pleasing results (and compliments).

There is a link to a few photos in the comments section (all handheld shots, no photo editing). Have added some more photos - very pleased with the colour accuracy.

A bit more on zooming in photo or video mode and focusing speed which is typically an issue with superzooms. To me the Sony seems quick to focus at maximum zoom in photo or video mode. We're certainly not talking more than a half a second to a second say from one subject to another at the far end of the zoom. It's quick and smooth with no hunting zoom noises. Would be nice if someone else reviewed this camera to concur!
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Comments

Tracked by 17 customers

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Showing 1-10 of 69 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Mar 24, 2012 3:15:36 PM PDT
David Reneau says:
Great review!

Posted on Mar 25, 2012 9:18:33 AM PDT
Photo-Am says:
Could you please provide in comments a link to the sample photos you've mentioned, since Amazon removes all the links from the main review text? Thanks.

Posted on Mar 26, 2012 9:48:16 AM PDT
Survi says:
Great Review. I'm contemplating this camera or the Panasonic FZ150k as the Panasonic has impressive burst photo capacity. Can you tell me how the Sony performs in taking burst photos? How many photos per second and at what resolution? Also, how long do you have to wait between burst photos? THX!!

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 26, 2012 6:37:46 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Mar 26, 2012 11:17:31 PM PDT
RC says:
The Sony can do bursts at 10 fps for 10 shots. The Panasonic FZ150 has issues especially the deal-breaking blink-inducing preflash. This thread has more details. http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1009&message=41025988

Posted on Mar 26, 2012 6:41:04 PM PDT
RC says:
Does your HX200V start recording movies as quickly as the camera in this video? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YIUZSJ7Wiuc Make sure you're in P mode when you test your camera. Does it also start with the same delay in Superior Auto Mode? The previous model (HX100V) took 4 seconds to start recording movies, so I want to know if that delay was reduced. Thanks!

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 26, 2012 11:01:53 PM PDT
TechGuy says:
Hi, I've tried starting video using the red video button in P and Superior Auto mode. From pushing the button to start of recording (the red rec sign is on) takes 1.29 secs in both modes.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 26, 2012 11:03:13 PM PDT
TechGuy says:
Thanks!

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 26, 2012 11:06:27 PM PDT
RC says:
Thank you so much for doing that! I'm very glad that Sony greatly reduced the delay to start video recording in their new models. This will help me miss fewer moments.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 26, 2012 11:09:44 PM PDT
TechGuy says:
There is an option to use red-eye reduction - the strobe flashes two times. It can be on, off or auto mode. The camera also has a blink detection function which warns you if there was a blink during the photo and of course highlights the faces it is selecting to do this.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 26, 2012 11:15:14 PM PDT
TechGuy says:
Try this, some play shots... http://www.flickr.com/photos/78333060@N04/
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Location: New Zealand

Top Reviewer Ranking: 69,665