There exists a type of photographer who can't quite get by with a pocketable compact, but also hesitates to commit to a full-size (and pricey) DSLR rig. This shooter is all too familiar with the superzoom -- and Sony's latest 30x model may just offer the perfect excuse for an upgrade. The 9.6-ounce device has earned the title of "world's smallest and lightest 30x optical zoom camera," which, judging by its spec sheet, is quite an achievement. There's a 24-720mm SteadyShot-equipped optical zoom lens, a 20.4-megapixel 1/2.3-inch Exmor R CMOS sensor, a 921k-dot 3-inch LCD, 1080/60p video capture, a top sensitivity of ISO 12,800 and a battery that's rated for up to 400 shots. As you may have noticed from the image above, there's also a dedicated mode dial, exposure-compensation control and a full-size hot shoe. You can pick up Sony's Cyber-shot HX50V next month for $449, or check it out right now in the gallery just below.
Sony Cyber-shot HX50V
Sony Announces the Cyber-shot HX50V: The World's Smallest and Lightest 30x Optical Zoom Camera
New Compact High-Zoom Camera boasts high-resolution 20.4MP Image sensor, Wi-Fi and more
SAN DIEGO, Apr 23, 2013 – Today, Sony introduced the Cyber-shot™ HX50 camera – a powerful new compact featuring an impressive 30x optical zoom range and advanced 20.4 MP "Exmor R" CMOS image sensor. Measuring approximately 4.4"x2.6"x1.2"1 in size and weighing in at approximately 9.6 oz. 2, it is the world's smallest and lightest camera with 30x optical zoom capability.
"Despite the emergence of smart phone cameras in today's market, the HX50V model gives photographers plenty of reason to invest in a dedicated pocket camera" said Patrick Huang, director of the Cyber-shot digital camera business at Sony Electronics. "Its wide-ranging 30x optical zoom gives users more freedom to pick their shooting subject and position, and its extensive, advanced imaging capabilities give shooters the peace of mind that image quality will never be compromised - every scene will be given the color, detail and clarity that it deserves. This powerful combination of size and performance makes the HX50 an especially unique, versatile camera."
Performance and Design
To complement the extensive zoom, the new Cyber-shot HX50V model offers enhanced Optical SteadyShot ™ image stabilization to reduce camera shake and blur at all ranges. At full zoom extension (30x) the HX50V camera offers stabilization that is approximately twice as effective as the HX200V high-zoom model introduced last year.
The high-resolution 20.4 megapixel sensor in the new camera is paired with a powerful BIONZ processor, allowing the HX50V camera to produce high-resolution, high-quality images in all types of lighting conditions – from broad daylight to dimly lit interiors and everything in between. Additionally, the HX50V model features exceptionally high-speed AutoFocus that can lock onto subjects at full zoom approximately twice as fast compared to the HX200V model.
The new HX50V camera has built-in Wi-Fi capabilities, utilizing Sony's PlayMemories™ Mobile application, available for both Android and iOS app platforms, to wirelessly transfer photos and videos to a connected smartphone or tablet. The application also allows a connected device to be used as a handy wireless remote to control the camera – ideal for self-portraits and group shots where the photographer wants to be included.
For more advanced users who like to fine-tune the details of a shot, the HX50V camera has a dedicated exposure compensation dial and a P/A/S/M model dial for adjusting other manual shooting settings. It also features 5-blade aperture for smooth background defocusing effect and a Multi Interface Shoe for attaching compatible accessories including an electronic viewfinder, flash, or microphone. It also has a Multi Terminal for using a compatible remote control.
The camera also features a powerful X-type lithium ion battery that is smaller than any of its predecessor batteries (in Sony Cyber-shot HX series) yet delivers an impressive 400 photos from a single charge.
HD Video and Creative Modes
The new HX50V camera has an impressive video feature set as well, delivering stunning, beautifully crisp full HD (60p) movies that benefit from Optical SteadyShot ™ Active mode7 for reduced shake and image blur if the camera is in motion. The HX50V model is also compatible with TRILUMINOUS Color technology, an expanded range of vivid, ultra-realistic colors that is available on select Sony BRAVIA TVs. Content shot with the HX50V camera can be enjoyed in these vibrant colors when connected to compatible televisions.
Additionally, the HX50V camera offers a variety of different creative picture effect settings that make it easy to spice up photos, movies and panoramas instantly and automatically with a range of fun, impressive artistic treatments including Pop Color, Partial Color, Soft High-Key and more.
With its extensive feature set, extremely compact size and advanced performance capabilities, the Cyber-shot HX50V represents the ultimate in flexibility in a compact camera.
Pricing and Availability
The new Cyber-shot HX50V compact digital camera will be available next month for about $450. The camera and a range of compatible accessories can be purchased at Sony retail stores (www.store.sony.com) and other authorized dealers nationwide.