Sanyo Xacti HD2000 Review

Review Date: February 12th 2009
Author: Gavin Stoker

Leave a comment about this review

Page 1
Introduction / Ease of Use
Page 2
Image Quality
Page 3
Sample Images
Page 4
Design
Page 5
Specifications
Page 6
Conclusion

Image Quality

All of the sample images in this Review were taken using the 8.1 megapixel 8M-H JPEG setting, which gives an average image size of around 3-4Mb.

While light sensitivity can be bumped up to an equivalent ISO 3200, the Sanyo Xacti HD2000 struggles to find focus in dim light, suggesting if you don't want to use flash the inclusion of an AF assist lamp might have been worth it. It's also nigh impossible to hold the camera firmly enough to avoid camera shake, its unusual styling meaning that it can't be balanced makeshift style on the nearest hard surface you simply need a tripod, though there is a selectable anti-shake feature built in. Despite this, images look sharp and bright on the HD2000's screen, so you really need to download them to get (forgive the pun) the full picture. Unfortunately that full picture is not so pleasant, shots having the appearance of video grabs, and certainly benefiting from an application of Unsharp Mask in Photoshop. Purple fringing is also evident on close inspection, though this is somewhat disguised by the smudgy appearance of detail witnessed when zooming in. What's also more positive is the fact that Sanyo's flagship Xacti offers such a broad selectable ISO range, with incremental options ranging from ISO 50 to ISO 3200. If you rely on auto ISO it's capped at a lowly ISO 200 for stills however and at ISO 800 for video. To nit pick, some corner shading and softening of detail is visible in images taken at maximum wideangle, and barrel distortion too particularly visible on our white wall test shots. OK, this isn't anything that you would create a fuss over if the Sanyo Xacti HD2000 was your standard digital point and shoot, but it isn't; at the time of writing this one costs 549. Though the Sanyo Xacti HD2000's highest resolution video clips will replay in QuickTime as they're recorded in MPEG-4 format rather than the newer AVCHD, which non Intel powered Apple Macs have trouble coping with, I still had to update my version of QuickTime to the very latest to view properly. Otherwise all I initially had was a blank screen with audio. Again, as with the Sanyo's stills, it's when there's plenty of ambient light available that you're going to achieve sharpest, best quality results so a sunny holiday destination is the perfect environment for the Sanyo Xacti HD2000 to strut its proverbial stuff.

Noise

There are 7 ISO settings available on the Sanyo Xacti HD2000. Here are some 100% crops which show the noise levels for each ISO setting.

ISO 80 (100% Crop)

ISO 100 (100% Crop)

   

ISO 200 (100% Crop)

ISO 400 (100% Crop)

   

ISO 800 (100% Crop)

ISO 1600 (100% Crop)

   

ISO 1600 (100% Crop)

 
 

Sharpening

Here are two 100% crops which have been Saved as Web - Quality 50 in Photoshop. The right-hand image has had some sharpening applied in Photoshop. The out-of-the camera images are a soft at the default setting ideally and benefit from some further sharpening in a program like Adobe Photoshop. You cannot change the in-camera sharpening level.

Original (100% Crop)

Sharpened (100% Crop)

   

Chromatic Aberrations

The Sanyo Xacti HD2000 handled chromatic aberrations quite well during the review. There's some purple fringing between areas of high contrast, but it's only noticeable on close inspection, as shown in the example below.

Example 1 (100% Crop)
Example 2 (100% Crop)

Macro

The Sanyo Xacti HD2000 offers a Macro setting that allows you to focus on a subject that is just 1cm away from the camera when the lens is set to wide-angle. The first image shows how close you can get to the subject (in this case a compact flash card). The second image is a 100% crop.

Macro Shot

Macro Shot (100% Crop)

Flash

The flash settings on the Sanyo Xacti HD2000 are Auto, Forced, Red-eye Reduction, and Off. These shots of a white coloured wall were taken at a distance of 1.5m.

Flash Off - Wide Angle (29mm)

Auto Flash - Wide Angle (29mm)

ISO 64
ISO 64
   

Flash Off - Telephoto (145mm)

Auto Flash - Telephoto (145mm)
ISO 64
ISO 64

And here are some portrait shots. Both the Forced and the Red-eye reduction modes caused a small amount of red-eye.

Forced

Forced (100% Crop)
   

Flash - Red-eye Reduction

Flash - Red-eye Reduction (100% Crop)

Night Shot

The Sanyo Xacti HD2000's maximum shutter speed is 2 seconds in the Lamp scene mode, which isn't great news if you're seriously interested in night photography. The shot below was taken using a shutter speed of 1/26th second, f/1.8 at ISO 3200. I've included a 100% crop of the image to show what the quality is like.

Night Shot

Night Shot (100% Crop)
   
Page 1
Introduction / Ease of Use
Page 2
Image Quality
Page 3
Sample Images
Page 4
Design
Page 5
Specifications
Page 6
Conclusion

DIWAPhotographyBLOG is a member of the DIWA organisation. Our test results for the Sanyo Xacti HD2000 have been submitted to DIWA for comparison with test results for different samples of the same camera model supplied by other DIWA member sites.