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Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H400 vs. Canon PowerShot SX60 HS?

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Old Wednesday 1st October 2014, 18:30   #1
CalvinFold
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Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H400 vs. Canon PowerShot SX60 HS?

The Sony would appear to have a longer reach (1550mm vs. 1365mm) than the Canon. If my primary motivation is "getting in close on far away subjects" in a near-digiscoping way, what are the real-world differences between the Sony and Canon?

Other things I'd like to know the comparison between the two (or more about on the Sony specifically): remote shutter release, tripod usefulness, image stabilization, good color/sharpness, good depth of field, the ability to mount a lens hood, good in low-light (overcast and near-sunup at maximum zoom), fast burst mode, fast autofocus, and useful prosumer features (variety of focus modes, metering modes, and if possible, shooting in RAW).

Part of my query is that the H400 is a contemporary of the SX50, but if the Google searches and bird blogs are to be trusted, the SX50 was favored for reasons I can't quite figure out. I'm assuming the SX60 will have the same pros/cons.

Thanks in advance for the "Sony take" on the issue.

Last edited by CalvinFold : Wednesday 1st October 2014 at 19:52.
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Old Thursday 2nd October 2014, 07:20   #2
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I am a HX300 user, this was from another post i wrote and may help you. The SONY has everything but the RAW and the buffer..


SOny HX400 Hands down for Speed and Burst rate. Video will be the best and it has awesome MF with Light Peaking. Build quality is the best also. Problem is there is no buffer, once you hit the 10th shot you must wait 10 seconds to shoot again. Best View finder and to me the best low light compared to the Sx50. ALso....Sony will not shoot RAW!

This is from the HX300, last years model.

This was shot before the sun was up, the sky was just turning blue. You could not get better performance for a bridge than this.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3hTr9s5xb0M

This is in perfect light but being hand held with max zoom.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7CPkApQdNAY


I have played with the HX400 and to me it is better than the hx300 with the IS.

I would wait till the reviews of the new SX60 come out before buying though to see what Canon has done with the latest.

Again the only problem with the Sony is there is no buffer. you have to plan your shots or you will be waiting. With any bridge you won't be able to crop afterwards because the sensor is way too small. With a 50-65 zoom you might thinking you won't need to crop but if you get too close you can't track the bird if it moves then.
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Old Thursday 2nd October 2014, 11:11   #3
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Also interested in these, and in partiuclar regarding the EVF quality/usability.

There is also the Olympus Stylus SP-100 in the same category.

The first reviews on the SX60 do not point to big improvment regarding IQ and low light ability compared to the sx50, but for "casual" birding, for sure the reach is tempting ! (from both)

Regarding the viewfinder, dp review list 920 000 for the Olympus, 922 000 for the sx60, no data for the sx50 and sony, but I think the Sony is around 200 000, making it much lower resolution, any feedback on this (viewfinder usability) ?

Yes the sony hx400 viewfinder listed with 201k dots below :
http://store.sony.com/sony-high-zoom...-DI-Camcorders

So same as the sx50 (202k) :
http://www.cameralabs.com/reviews/Ca...rShot_SX50_HS/

Last edited by Alain75 : Thursday 2nd October 2014 at 12:25.
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Old Thursday 2nd October 2014, 11:54   #4
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The Sony apparently has a manual zoom mode just like the Fujifilm HS50EXR wherein the broad moveable ring around the lens can act as a zoom. That makes it way faster than the mechanized zoom of the Canon, and thus far more suitable for bird photography.
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Old Thursday 2nd October 2014, 13:05   #5
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And there is the panasonic FZ70 also, to cover the offering in the category

200k for the viewfinder as well
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Old Thursday 2nd October 2014, 15:54   #6
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Thanks for the other suggestions, specifically the Panasonic and Fuji. I had narrowed down to the cameras with extreme zooms in the hopes of "digiscoping without the scope." So I'm looking at this with a different frame of mind than a user of a DSLR or MFT who has wonderful lenses and is shooting for magazine-quality photography.

Right now, I use an old Nikon Coolpix 4500 and a Celestron C90 (Maksutov-Cassegrain scope). Given the small aperture and slow scope, the complaints about the low-light shooting on the extreme zooms on doesn't concern me as much--they are still far better than what I have, and I already manage "decent" long-range photos in my mind. Enough to say "I shot this cool bird, with decent details, at 100m, 200m, and even 300m."

I had almost settled on MFT (DSLR being overkill) and attaching it to my scope (digiscoping, better camera) when I was recommended towards the superzoom bridge cameras as an alternative way to look at the problem. Didn't know they even existed.

So I have much different (lower?) expectations, and reach is (almost) everything!

I had pretty much decided on the SX60 when it comes out, based on the SX50 and all the great birding reviews for that camera, but I ran in to the Nikon P600 (dismissed for a number of reasons) and the H400 (which I wanted to give a fair shake to). Hence here I am in the Sony section trying to get some balance to my decision making process.
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Old Thursday 2nd October 2014, 16:06   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aloof1 View Post
I would wait till the reviews of the new SX60 come out before buying though to see what Canon has done with the latest.
There are some reviews out already, and at least one guy posting about it in the forums, because apparently it's available overseas already.

Sounds like a wonderful alternative to "DSLR with huge lens" for prosumers. Maybe not drool-worthy enough for SX50 users to upgrade, but if you haven't bought, worth waiting for over the SX50.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aloof1 View Post
Again the only problem with the Sony is there is no buffer. you have to plan your shots or you will be waiting.
Well, I can only pull-off 5 shots with my current camera and have to wait about 30 seconds until I can shoot again, so anything is an improvement. But to be honest, I get camera-envy because my girlfriend borrows a high-end Nikon DLSR which pretty much you can hold-down the button and take photos until the card is full if the resolution is notched down a bit.

But nice to know because I had hoped for at least a 5-shot burst WITHOUT waiting, since that seems to be the average of what I really need for digiscoping. Now once I'm not tethered to a tripod for long-range shots, and trying to shoot flying birds, I might regret not having a larger buffer and/or faster card write speeds, so this is good to know.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aloof1 View Post
With any bridge you won't be able to crop afterwards because the sensor is way too small. With a 50-65 zoom you might thinking you won't need to crop but if you get too close you can't track the bird if it moves then.
Again, problems I have now.

I crop my photos, artistically, all the time, even with shots from the Nikon Coolpix 4500 (4 MP). So 16+ MP and larger sensor is still "cropable" in my book. I don't get hung-up on all that, I just want "pretty close-ups from long distances with good focus." Mostly for web, occassionally for print (and I have access to high-end, calibrated color printers and plotters).

Heck, no way I can track birds now, even with my shorter 8x24 lens on the Nikon...the field of view is just too narrow through the lens or the scope. I'm probably going to just marvel at the wider-angles yet longer-reach of these superzoom bridge cameras.

Having a perspective based on 10+ year old digital cameras makes me far less worried about these things than more serious photographers, I think. :)
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Old Thursday 2nd October 2014, 17:29   #8
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A comparative review of the sx60, 50 and the sony :
http://psnp.lightshedder.com/?p=267
mentioned in below thread :
http://www.birdforum.net/showthread....highlight=sx60
And unfortunately disapointing for the sx60 :(
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Old Thursday 2nd October 2014, 17:49   #9
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Alain75:

Your second link mention's Niel's feedback, but I think he's generally been very with the SX60 since then, as evidenced in this thread:
http://www.birdforum.net/showthread.php?t=291649

Maybe the production versions have some tweaking since the reviewer you cited got his?

Which brings up the question: do cameras like these have mechanisms for firmware upgrades?

That's why I've been having such a tough time with the whole "SX60 vs. H400" thing...seems almost a draw overall.

Last edited by CalvinFold : Thursday 2nd October 2014 at 17:55.
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Old Thursday 2nd October 2014, 18:20   #10
Alain75
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At least the review mentions the EVF being much better on the sx60 than on the sony (and having more than 4x the resolution it makes sense)
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Old Wednesday 8th October 2014, 12:57   #11
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IF you want to do any cropping then a 1.6 or 1.5 sensor is what you need...hence DSLR.

You can buy a used $500 7D and a used 400 5.6 for $900. You will have a true photo gunning machine with much faster autofocus, serious buffer even for RAW, and a 640mm FEV range that you can crop the crap out of. But it cost $1400..eek

I was playing with a friends SX50 the other day, honestly next to the SONY it feels like a toy. I do like the pictures it takes and the View finder but the feel of it is just too toyish to me.
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Old Wednesday 8th October 2014, 16:25   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aloof1 View Post
IF you want to do any cropping then a 1.6 or 1.5 sensor is what you need...hence DSLR.

You can buy a used $500 7D and a used 400 5.6 for $900. You will have a true photo gunning machine with much faster autofocus, serious buffer even for RAW, and a 640mm FEV range that you can crop the crap out of. But it cost $1400..eek
And I won't argue that DSLR gets the best shots, it's just more camera than I can afford or even take full advantage of. I prefer new where my cameras are concerned—I've been burned a couple times on expensive electronics.

I was flirting with micro four-thirds though as a lighter and less expensive alternative (specifically, was really close to diving-in with an Olympus OM-D EM-10).

Quote:
I was playing with a friends SX50 the other day, honestly next to the SONY it feels like a toy. I do like the pictures it takes and the View finder but the feel of it is just too toyish to me.
Meh, as long as it does what I want and isn't built cheaply it could be bright yellow and say "TONKA" on it and I'd buy it. ;-p

To be fair to this thread, while the SX60 was my initial thought, I am leaning now towards the older SX50 for various reasons. So I'll take feedback on that as well.
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Old Friday 31st October 2014, 04:39   #13
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Suggest to have a good look at the Sony HX-400 with latest Bionz X processer.
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Old Tuesday 2nd December 2014, 22:45   #14
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A little late in pitching in here guys,took a chance to purchase the Sony Dsc H400 in one of those black friday deals.Feels solid to handle certainly agree the earlier mention re canons feeling like a toy.Have had both the sx40 and sx50 and must admit can see the differance in build.
Starting to find my way around the Sony,feel its a lot easier to get around than the canons.
GEORGE.
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Old Wednesday 3rd December 2014, 18:47   #15
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Let us know how you get on with it.
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Old Wednesday 3rd December 2014, 22:37   #16
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I have had the Sony HX400 since September 2014, here are some photos and videos:

http://www.birdforum.net/gallery/sho...85/ppuser/6405


http://www.birdforum.net/gallery/sho...23/ppuser/6405


http://www.birdforum.net/gallery/sho...79/ppuser/6405


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=88fZltQsbdo


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QpvQ_CMgQvo

Note that the videos (all hand held) were recorded in mp4 mode (1440 X 1080) but the YouTube versions are 720 X 540 and most of the elephant video was recorded through the dusty windshield of a car.
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Old Wednesday 3rd December 2014, 23:59   #17
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Dacol, nice photos! What was the focal length?
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Old Thursday 4th December 2014, 21:55   #18
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Quote:
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Dacol, nice photos! What was the focal length?
Thanks Lisa. Both the Roller and the Sugarbird photos were cropped.
Here is the exif data:

Roller: f/5.6 FL 121.2mm (SLR equivalent 676mm) Shutter 1/640 s ISO 80

Grassbird: f/6.3 FL 215.0mm (SLR eqv 1200mm) Shutter 1/250 s ISO 800

Sugarbird: f/6.3 FL 215.0mm (SLR eqv 1200mm) Shutter 1/250 s ISO 100
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Old Saturday 20th December 2014, 01:50   #19
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I pulled the trigger on a the DSCHX400V a month or so ago. I spent a bit of time researching before I bought it.

For the last 4 years I have carried a Lumix 24x zoom (forget the model) all over the place from Canada to Ecuador. I use it mostly as a trail/hiking camera.

I also shoot a DSLR(Nikon ) with Nikon glass and a APSC (Sony) digiscoping with Swarovski ATX.

I don't think there are great meaningful differences between all the superzooms. The thing I have learned over the years is shoot with the MINIMUM zoom you need to get the picture. Don't zoom instead of trying to get closer to your subject... unless its a bear.

Ultimately none of these super-zoom/bridge cameras really have the reach out lens quality to get great shots at the maximum. They can provide some amazing shots, but big glass is big glass and the difference shows at long distances.

Exposure compensation is a very useful tool to use with these cameras especially when shooting during daylight hours.

The main reason I chose the Sony over all the others was the GPS feature.
The software is pretty incredible also. I'm liking it as I use it more.
The VR seems solid.
For less than $500 its hard to beat
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Old Monday 22nd December 2014, 20:34   #20
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Song Sparrow video recorded with Sony HX400.
Whooping Crane video recorded with a handheld Sony HX400.
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Last edited by dacol : Monday 22nd December 2014 at 20:37.
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Old Sunday 1st November 2015, 01:37   #21
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Sony HX400v (on a tripod) video recorded at a wetland in Gainesville, Florida, USA.
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