Sony Cybershot DSC-HX100V Review

June 28, 2011 | Mark Goldstein | Rating star Rating star Rating star Rating star Half rating star


The Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX100V is a feature-packed super-zoom camera, offering a 30x, 27-810mm zoom lens, 16.2 megapixel back-illuminated Exmor R CMOS sensor, built-in GPS tracking complete with a compass, full 1080p high-definition video recording with stereo sound and HDMI output and 3D Sweep Panoramas and 3D Still Images. Other key features of the well-appointed Sony HX100V include Intelligent Sweep Panoramas, which now include a 42.9 megapixel high resolution mode, a tilting 3 inch LCD screen with 921,000-dots, 10fps burst shooting mode at full resolution, ISO range of 100-3200, Optical SteadyShot with Active Mode which cuts camera-shake while you're shooting handheld HD video, Intelligent Auto Plus, Program and full Manual shooting modes, and support for both Memory Stick PRO Duo and Secure Digital cards. The Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX100V is available in black for £429.99 / $450.

Ease of Use

The new Sony DSC-HX100V superzoom is the successor to 2009's HX1 model. Super-zooms now typically offer at least a 24x or bigger lens in a relatively compact body that you can fit inside a small camera bag, with some models upping the ante to a 35x lens. The Sony DSC-HX100V joins the party with a 30x extending optical lens with very respectable maximum apertures of f/2.8 at the 27mm wide-angle setting and f/5.6 at the 810mm full telephoto setting.

A camera with a 30x zoom will obviously never be shirt pocketable, but the Sony HX100V is actually relatively compact and lightweight - definitely smaller and lighter than most DSLRs with a typical 3x kit zoom. Interestingly, this does not really affect handling in a negative way. While people with large hands will find that the little finger of their right hand has a more comfortable place underneath the camera than on the right-hand grip, most users will find the grip quite nice. It is ergonomically sculpted and the textured finish provides great purchase for your fingers.

Arguably the most remarkable part of the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX100V is the lens. As mentioned earlier, this is a 30x zoom that spans focal lengths ranging from 27mm to 810mm. While there are a couple of competitors sporting an even more impressive range, this is still nothing to sneeze at. The zoom is of course stepped, but feels surprisingly smooth in action. It is quite fast too, especially considering the huge focal range that it spans. This is greatly helped by the fly-by-wire manual control ring on the lens barrel, which can be easily assigned to adjust either focus or zoom via a switch on the side. The former is great for macro photography, where the focus can be precisely adjusted while viewing a magnified portion of the image, but we preferred to use it to more accurately zoom through the focal range.

The combination of the fast f/2.8 aperture, effective optical image stabilizer and maximum ISO speed of 3200 makes this camera well suited to hand-held low-light photography. Sony has fitted a dual image stabilisation mechanism in the shape of both optical SteadyShot and an ISO range that extends up to ISO 3200. If not quite class leading, it's better than you'll find on your average point-and-shoot. Note that you can't actually turn off the SteadyShot function.

Despite its massive zoom lens, the HX100V is still quite a compact superzoom, weighing 577g with the battery and memory card fitted, with a large 3-inch, 921k-dot resolution LCD screen at the rear tilts  90 degrees both up- and downward. This makes it quite flexible, but it's still not as great as the vari-angle design of some competitors. Outdoors visibility is very good, definitely a lot better than many other screens.

Above the lens is a bulge that resembles a prism hump, although of course there is no pentaprism to be found on the HX100V. You can frame your shots using either the aforementioned rear screen or the electronic viewfinder (EVF). Switching between the two is done either by way of a button to the right of the mock prism housing, viewed from the back, or via the eye proximity sensor around the viewfinder eyepiece, which cleverly switches automatically when you lift the camera to your eye. The EVF itself is crisp and reasonably fluid, but very small. One gets the feeling that this was one of the areas where Sony cut corners in order to keep the price within reasonable limits.

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V
Front Rear

For its size, the Sony HX100V has quite a lot of external controls. This is most welcome, as these controls provide quick access to the most often used functions. Some ingenious design ideas improve the handling experience further still. The humble-looking thumb wheel  is a case in point: depending on shooting mode, it can be used to alter up to three different settings, e.g. shutter speed, aperture and ISO sensitivity. Its 'secret' is that you can not only rotate it but also press it inwards, and pressing it is how you go from one parameter to the other. Intuitive it may not be - upon picking up the camera for the first time, I spent quite a few minutes looking for an ISO button or menu item in vain -, but once you figure it out, you'll be blessing the designers for their creativity. (OK, it's not the first jog dial in the world, but it's definitely one of the best implementations out there.)

Press the small lozenge-shaped On/Off button on the shiny silver top plate and the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX100V quickly readies itself for action in a just over a second. The adequately sized shutter-release button has a definite halfway point, determining focus and exposure with a bleep of affirmation, focus points highlighted as green rectangles on the LCD. Go on to take the shot and the JPEG images are committed to memory in a single second, the screen momentarily blanking out and then displaying the captured image before the user can go on to take a second shot.

The shutter release button is encircled by a responsive forefinger-operated push/pull rocker zoom lever, with the camera taking around five seconds to zoom from wide-angle to full telephoto. The HX100V's built-in stereo microphone is also located on top of the camera, plus the Custom button which as the name suggests can be customised to access one commonly used setting, such as ISO speed or Exposure Compensation. The Focus button switches between the Multi AF, Center AF and Flexible Spot AF modes.

A round shooting mode dial with a knurled edge and positive action completes the HX100V's top-plate, letting you quickly switch between the various shooting modes that are on offer. Sony has included Intelligent Auto scene recognition, which works in virtually identical fashion to the intelligent auto modes of Panasonic's and Canon's compact ranges. Simply point the HX100V at a scene or subject and the camera analyses it and automatically chooses one of 11 pre-optimised settings to best suit. There's also the new Superior Auto mode, which places greater emphasis on reducing blur and noise and increasing the dynamic range.

Adding to the HX100V's snapshot simplicity, these features join face recognition and smile shutter functionality on board, the former mode biasing human faces in the frame and the latter mode firing the shutter when it detects a smiling subject. The Face Detection system automatically adjusts the focus, exposure and white balance for people in the frame, and can even be set to distinguish between children and adults. Smile Detection offers three self-explanatory options, Big, Normal and Slight. Used in conjunction, the Face and Smile Detection systems do result in more hits than misses, especially in contrasty lighting conditions, although all those smiling faces could ultimately freak you out a little! The self-portrait options in the self-timer menu work by automatically taking the shot with a two second delay after either one or two people have entered the frame.

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V
Top Side

In addition to the regular Program mode, which provides the full range of camera options and additionally allows you to change settings like the ISO speed and metering, is the welcome inclusion of a fully Manual mode that lets you independently set the aperture and shutter speed, which will instantly appeal to the more experienced photographer. The ability to choose from 30 - 1/4000th second shutter speeds and nine different apertures opens up a lot of creative potential, and there are also Aperture and Shutter Priority modes which helpfully narrow the skill gap between the Program and Manual modes. Sadly there's no support for the RAW file format, which would really have been the icing on the cake for serious photographers looking for a real alternative to a DSLR.

The Intelligent Sweep Panorama mode lets you capture a panoramic image very easily without the use of a tripod. All you need to decide is whether you would like to start from left or right, top or bottom. Then press and hold down the shutter release while doing a "sweep" with the camera in hand. Exposure compensation is available before you start the sweep, but the exposure is fixed once you depress the shutter button. After you are done with the sweeping, the camera does all the processing required, and presents you with a finished panoramic image. There are three modes, Standard, Wide and High Resolution, with the latter mode successfully stitching together a 42.9 megapixel image - not bad for a humble compact! Note that if you do the sweeping too slowly, or you let go of the shutter release button too early, the panorama will be truncated.

For those who like a healthy dose of gimmickry with their gadgets, Sony claims that the HX100V is one of the first of its type (along with three co-announced Cyber-shot siblings) to offer a 3D still image mode - an addition to the now expected 3D Sweep Panorama mode and the 'cheat' of the lenticular print-like Sweep Multi Angle mode, also again featured here. This option doesn't require two lenses and two sensors to produce a stereoscopic image. Instead the Sony takes two consecutive shots from two different vantage positions and combines them for its 3D effect. Like all of its stereoscopic rivals you'll still need a 3D equipped TV to properly view the results.

In the Hand-held Twilight and Anti Motion Blur shooting modes, the DSC-HX100V takes six shots in a rapid sequence, typically at a high sensitivity setting and a (relatively) fast shutter speed, and then combines them into a single image that has somewhat less noise than a single shot taken at the same ISO and exposure settings. In my experience, the difference between the two modes is that in Anti Motion Blur mode, the camera is more willing to pick a really high ISO setting like ISO 1600 to maintain a fast shutter speed, whereas in Hand-held Twilight mode, it will only go as high as absolutely necessary to avoid camera shake at the chosen focal length. If light levels are truly low, however, the HX100V will pick a high ISO speed even in this mode.

Backlight Correction HDR is a feature where the HX100V automatically shoots two frames quick succession, varying the exposure for each one then combining them to create a single image with the most detail possible in both the shadows and highlights. You can see from the example on the Image Quality page that this feature produces a photo with noticeably more dynamic range than one taken using one of the standard shooting modes, but at the same time without replicating the often "false" look of many HDR programs. Note that you should mount the camera on a tripod to avoid any unwanted camera-shake, and we were disappointed that you can only turn Backlight Correction HDR on or off, with no options for varying the intensity of the effect. Background Defocus attempts to mimic the sharp subject and out-of-focus background effect that DSLR owners typically enjoy, again shooting two frames in quick succession but this time varying the aperture.

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V
Front Tilting LCD Screen

Present and correct is the increasingly ubiquitous ability to shoot High Definition video clips, but unlike its main competitors the HX100V does so at full 1080p HD rather than 1080i or 720p, and also with stereo sound rather than mono. The various options are 1920x1280 or 1440x1280 pixels at 50p or 50i in the AVCHD format, and 1440x1280, 1280x720 or 640x480 pixels at 25fps in the MPEG4 format.

There is full use of the optical zoom during recording so you can really make the most of that 30x focal range, plus the ability to change the EV level, white balance, and metering options and turn on either standard SteadyShot or the new Active Mode mode, which provides up to 10x more effectiveness with no side-effects. There's also a direct HDMI output from the camera, useful for playing back your footage on a HDTV set, although sadly there's no HDMI cable supplied in the box. The dedicated Movie button on the rear of the DSC-HX100V allows you to start recording a movie with a single push of a button, and then stop recording by pressing the same button - a lot more intuitive than having to select the movie mode then press the shutter button, as on most compacts. You can also activate the movie mode via the Shooting Mode dial.

GPS is a feature that has slowly but surely been finding its way into digital cameras as the technology has got smaller and cheaper to implement, making its debut on last year's HX5 and unsurprisingly being inherited by the HX100V. This potentially allows you to seamlessly geo-tag your photos (latitude and longitude co-ordinates are stored in the EXIF data) and then sort and display them using geo-friendly websites such as Google Earth and Google Maps or the supplied Picture Motion Browser PC software. The HX100V also uses the GPS to keep the camera time accurate, and even has a built-in compass that shows shows which direction you were pointing when the picture was taken!

The GPS function can be manually turned on or off and the current GPS status is displayed as a small icon on the LCD screen. Three bars appear next to the icon when the GPS has synced with one or more satellites, which unfortunately takes a few minutes from powering on the camera. Thankfully once it's synced, the HX100V's GPS receiver works a lot better than most other GPS-capable cameras that we've reviewed, saving accurate positioning information for the majority of the images that we shot in built-up central London, making this camera much more useful for urban photographers. The main downside of the HX100V's GPS is the subsequent drain on battery life, with the camera only managing just over 200 shots with GPS turned on instead of the 300 that it can manage without.

The Sony HX100V supports TransferJet, a relatively new wireless transfer protocol that's supported by most of the major manufacturers. TransferJet allows you to very quickly (up to 375 Mbps) and easily copy images between two compatible devices - Sony recently showed us a neat docking station that instantly transferred files from camera to picture frame just by resting the camera on the station, with no need to pair the two devices. There are a few limitations - TransferJet is reliant on using a compatible Sony Memory Stick, which as you'd probably expect are more expensive than the standard ones, and the receiving device must also be compatible with this relatively new protocol.

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V
Memory Card Slot Battery Compartment

Somewhat surprisingly for a camera in this class, the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX100V does not feature a hot-shoe, so the only way to sync up an external flash with it is to optically slave it to the built-in unit. Speaking of which, it lacks a mechanical button to simply pop it up. Instead you need to go into the Flash menu by way of the Right arrow key, choose the required flash mode and exit the Flash menu. The flash will only pop up when you (half-)press the shutter release. If you don't want to use it any more, it is not enough to push it back - you need to re-enter the Flash menu and select the Flash Off option. Otherwise it will pop up again the next time you hit the shutter button.

The rear of the DSC-HX100V is dominated by the large 3 inch LCD screen, with the resolution now a much improved 912k dots, fixing one of our main criticisms of the HX1. To the right of the screen is the useful one-touch movie record button and a small button for playing back your images. Users have the ability to dip in and out of created folders of images or the calendar view, view thumbnails, select slideshows and choose transitional effects and accompanying music, or delete shots. Press the shutter button halfway and you're helpfully catapulted back into capture mode. And that's basically it. With a press of the Menu button in playback, users have access to a few in-camera retouching effects, including the ability to crop and sharpen an image and apply red-eye correction.

Underneath the Playback button is a traditional round navigation pad which you can use to navigate through menus and options, in conjunction with the small button in the middle which activates whatever it is you've chosen. The four directions on the navigation pad also provide a quick way of setting the Display, Flash, Timer and Continuous Shooting options. Finally, there are buttons for the camera's menu system and for deleting images. The menu button accesses most of the camera's main functions - image size, burst settings, bracketing, exposure compensation, ISO, white balance, focus mode, metering, smile detection, and face detection - plus an icon at the bottom to open the four Settings menus. The latter includes the ability to deactivate the camera's 'bleep' that otherwise sounds at every button press, choose the movie format and activate red-eye reduction if required.

Pressing the drive mode button brings up two options, single or burst, with high-, mid- and low-speed continuous options then available in the Menu system. Out of these, the high-speed continuous mode is the most remarkable. The HX100V takes up to 10 full-resolution photos at a frankly astounding 10 frames per second, which is faster than most compact cameras and indeed most DSLRs too. The only fly in the ointment is that once the burst is completed, it takes over fifteen seconds for the camera to clear the buffer, during which you cannot take another picture. In the other two continuous shooting modes, the Sony HX100V also takes up to 10 pictures, but at slower speeds of 5 or 2 frames per second.

The bottom of the Sony HX100V features a standard metal screw thread for attaching it to a tripod which is conveniently located in the centre. A plastic cover protects the lithium-ion battery and the removable memory card, with the HX100V supporting the SD / SDHC format in addition to Sony's own proprietary Pro Duo Memory Stick format. Both sides of the HX100V have a small metal eyelet for the supplied wrist strap, while on the left is the HDMI port underneath a sturdy plastic cover and a DC In port for charging up the HX100V's battery, which rather annoyingly can only be achieved with the battery inside the camera.

Image Quality

All of the sample images in this Review were taken using the 16 megapixel JPEG setting, which gives an average image size of around 4.5Mb.

The Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V produced images of very good quality during the review period. This camera handled noise very well, not becoming obvious until the relatively slow speed of ISO 800 and then becoming progressively worse at the fastest settings of ISO 1600 and 3200, good for such a small image sensor.

Chromatic aberrations were in evidence but were well-controlled, with some limited purple fringing effects appearing in high contrast situations. The 16 megapixel images were a little soft straight out of the camera at the default sharpen setting and require some further sharpening in an application like Adobe Photoshop, or you can increase the in-camera sharpening level.

Macro performance is quite good, allowing you to focus as close as 5cms away from the subject. Commendably barrel distortion is well controlled even at the 24mm wide-angle focal length of the versatile 16x zoom lens. The built-in flash worked well indoors, with no red-eye and adequate overall exposure. The maximum shutter speed of 30 seconds allows the cameras to capture enough light for most after-dark situations.

The Backlight Correction HDR feature dramatically increases the detail in the shadow and highlight areas, although we miss being able to choose just how much correction is applied. Both the Hand-held Twilight mode and Sweep Panorama modes work as advertised, making it simple to take hand-held low-light and wide-vista shots.


There are 6 ISO settings available on the Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V. Here are some 100% crops which show the noise levels for each ISO setting.

ISO 100 (100% Crop)

ISO 200 (100% Crop)


ISO 400 (100% Crop)

ISO 800 (100% Crop)


ISO 1600 (100% Crop)

ISO 3200 (100% Crop)

Focal Range

The Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V's 30x zoom lens offers an incredibly versatile focal range, as illustrated by these examples:




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 just a little soft and ideally benefit from some further sharpening in a program like Adobe Photoshop. Alternatively you can change the in-camera sharpening level.

Original (100% Crop)

Sharpened (100% Crop)


Chromatic Aberrations

The Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V handled chromatic aberrations well during the review, with some purple fringing present around the edges of objects in high-contrast situations, as shown in the examples below.

Example 1 (100% Crop)

Example 2 (100% Crop)


The Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V 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

100% Crop


The flash settings on the Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V are Auto, Forced Flash, Slow Syncro, No Flash, with a Red-eye Reduction option in the Main menu. These shots of a white coloured wall were taken at a distance of 1.5m.

Suppressed Flash - Wide Angle (27mm)

Forced Flash - Wide Angle (27mm)

ISO 64 ISO 64

Suppressed Flash - Telephoto (810mm)

Forced Flash - Telephoto (810mm)

ISO 64 ISO 64

And here are some portrait shots. As you can see, both the Forced Flash setting or the Red-Eye Correction option caused a tiny amount of red-eye.

Forced Flash

Forced Flash (100% Crop)

Red-eye Reduction

Red-eye Reduction (100% Crop)

Night Shot

The Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V's maximum shutter speed is 30 seconds in the Manual mode, which is great news if you're seriously interested in night photography. The shot below was taken using a shutter speed of 2 seconds at ISO 100. I've included a 100% crop of the image to show what the quality is like.

Night Shot

Night Shot (100% Crop)

Background Defocus

Background Defocus attempts to mimic the sharp subject and out-of-focus background effect that DSLR owners typically enjoy, shooting two frames in quick succession and varying the aperture between each one.



Backlight Correction HDR

Backlight Correction HDR is Sony's solution for improving shadow and highlight detail in photos taken in contrasty light, significantly increasing the image's dynamic range. The examples show the rather dramatic effect of turning this feature on.



Hand-held Twilight

In the Hand-held Twilight mode the DSC-HX100V takes six high-ISO photos in rapid succession and combines them into a single image.

Manual Mode Manual Mode (100% Crop)
Hand-held Twilight Mode Hand-held Twilight Mode (100% Crop)

Intelligent Sweep Panorama

The Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX100V allows you to take panoramic images very easily, by 'sweeping' with the camera while keeping the shutter release depressed. The camera does all the processing and stitching and even successfully compensates for moving subjects, with the new High Resolution mode successfully creating a 40+ megapixel image.

High Resolution

Sample Images

This is a selection of sample images from the Sony Cybershot DSC-HX100V camera, which were all taken using the 16 megapixel Fine JPEG setting. The thumbnails below link to the full-sized versions, which have not been altered in any way.

Sample Movie & Video

This is a sample video from the Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V camera at the highest quality setting of 1920x1080 pixels at 30 frames per second. Please note that this 15 second movie is 49.6Mb in size.

Product Images

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V

Front of the Camera

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V

Front of the Camera - Lens Extended

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V

Isometric View

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V

Isometric View

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V

Isometric View

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V

Isometric View

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V

Rear of the Camera

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V

Rear of the Camera / Image Displayed

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V

Rear of the Camera / Turned On


Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V

Rear of the Camera / Main Menu

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V

Rear of the Camera / Main Menu

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V

Rear of the Camera / In-Camera Guide

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V

Rear of the Camera / Tilting LCD Screen

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V

Rear of the Camera / Tilting LCD Screen

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V

Rear of the Camera / Tilting LCD Screen

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V

Rear of the Camera / Tilting LCD Screen

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V

Top of the Camera

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V

Bottom of the Camera

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V

Side of the Camera

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V

Side of the Camera

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V

Front of the Camera

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V

Front of the Camera

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V

Battery Compartment

Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V

Memory Card Slot


The Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V is one of the best super-zoom camera that we've ever reviewed, offering a compelling mix of advanced features, excellent still image quality, fantastic lens and a class-leading video mode, all at a price that is competitive with its main rivals.

The move to a 16 megapixel sensor may elicit groans amongst more experienced photographers, but in reality Sony have been able to maintain the excellent image quality that the previous 9 megapixel HX1 offered. The 16 megapixel backlit sensor provides excellent results from ISO 100-800, with only the fastest settings of 1600 and 3200 suffering from too much noise and smearing of fine detail. Chromatic aberrations are well controlled and colours accurate, and the incredible 27-810mm lens remarkably doesn't suffer from too much distortion at either end of the zoom range.

In addition to the excellent still images, the Sony HX100V is one of very few digital compacts to offer full 1080p video recording, gaining the upper hand on its key rivals. You can use the 30x zoom during recording, sound is stereo rather than mono, and the AVCHD format ensures that file sizes don't get out of control, although regrettably there is no manual control available during filming. The built-in GPS also works well, unobtrusively and reliably recording your every movement, although the camera takes a few minutes to sync with one or more satellites and the battery life is reduced by around 25% if you leave it constantly switched on.

The full range of manual, aperture and shutter priority modes and the intuitive focus/zoom ring means that the HX100V can rival a DSLR in terms of its handling, although the lack of a RAW mode and the non-rotating LCD screen may put off some more demanding users. The Hand-held Twilight mode delivers great results at night, albeit with an increase in noise levels, and Sony's ever popular Sweep Panorama mode now offers an impressive 42.9 megapixel high resolution mode. The Backlight Correction HDR feature dramatically increases the detail in the shadow and highlight areas, while Sony's excellent hand-holding Intelligent Auto modes are as effective as the competition's.

Add in the 3D Sweep Panoramas and 3D Still Images, amazing 10fps burst shooting mode and 0.1 second auto-focusing, and it's very easy for us to highly recommend the Sony CyberShot DSC-HX100V as an all-in-one, do-it-all camera that won't break the bank.

4.5 stars

Ratings (out of 5)
Design 4.5
Features 4.5
Ease-of-use 4.5
Image quality 4.5
Value for money 4.5

Review Roundup

Reviews of the Sony Cybershot DSC-HX100V from around the web. »

As the superzoom market continues to hot up, Sony’s latest HX100V dips its oar into the 30x ultra-zoom sector. With unique features such as GPS (Global Positioning Satellite), does it have the goods to be the very best superzoom out there? The What Digital Camera Sony Cyber-shot HX100V review takes a look…
Read the full review » »

It's not the size of your camera that counts, but the length of your superzoom. Sony's wading into the long-zooming arms race with its new Cyber-shot DSC-HX100V. It packs a 30x optical zoom and a bunch of 3D goodies to boot. We've gone hands-on in advance of a full review to let you know what to expect when it hits the shops in late April, priced around £400.
Read the full review »


Optical Zoom 30x
Precision Digital Zoom Approx. 120x (Total)
Smart Zoom up to 216x (with VGA)
F 2.8-5.6
Focal Length (f= mm) 4.8-144
Focal Length (f=35mm conversion) 27-810
Macro (cm) iAuto (W:Approx.1cm(0.03') to Infinity, T:Approx.200cm(6.56') to Infinity)
Filter Diameter (mm) NO
Conversion Lens compatibility NO
Carl Zeiss® Vario-Sonnar T* Lens YES
Sony G NO
Image Sensory
CCD Type Exmor R™ CMOS Sensor
Size (Inches) 1/2.3 type(7.75mm)
Effective Pixels (Mega Pixels) Approx. 16.2
Bionz Processor YES
Face Detection YES
Smile Shutter YES
Soft Skin Mode YES
Background Defocus YES
Waterproof NO
Backlight correction YES
Sweep Panorama NO
Intelligent Sweep Panorama YES
Underwater Sweep Panorama NO
3D Sweep Panorama YES
Auto Focus Area (Multi Point) 9 points (Under Face Undetected)
Auto Focus Area (Centre weighted) YES
Auto Focus Area (Spot) NO
Auto Focus Area (Flexible Spot) YES
Manual Focus YES
Aperture Auto Mode YES
Aperture Priority Mode YES
ApertureManual Mode YES
Shutter Speed Auto Mode (sec) iAuto(2"" - 1/4000) / Program Auto(1"" - 1/4000) / Shutter Priority(30"" - 1/4000) / Aperture Priority(8"" - 1/2000) / Manual(30"" - 1/4000)
NR Slow Shutter 1/3sec or slower
Hand Shake Alert YES
Exposure Control ± 2.0EV, 1/3EV step
White Balance Auto (intelligent), Daylight, Cloudy, Fluorescent1, Fluorescent2, Fluorescent3, Incandescent, Flash, One Push, One Push Set
AutomaticWhite Balance YES (Intelligent)
Light Metering (Multi Pattern) YES
Light Metering (Centre weighted) YES
Light Metering (Spot) YES
Sharpness Setting YES
Saturation Setting YES
Contrast Setting YES
ISO Sensitivity (REI) Auto / 100 / 125 / 160 / 200 / 250 / 320 / 400 / 500 / 640 / 800 / 1000 / 1250 / 1600 / 2000 / 2500 / 3200
Scene Selection 11 (Auto / Portrait / Backlight Portrait / Twilight Portrait / Twilight / Backlight / Macro / Landscape / Infant / Spot Light / Low Light )
SteadyShot capability YES
OpticalSteadyShot capability YES
Auto Focus System
AF Illuminator Auto / Off
Flash Mode Auto / Flash On / Slow Synchro / Rear Slow Synchro / Flash Off
Pre-flash YES
Red-Eye Correction Auto / On / Off
Auto Daylight Synchronized Flash YES
Distance limitations using Flash (m) ISO Auto: Approx.0.3-Approx.12.7m (Approx.0.984'-Approx.41.7')(W) / Approx.2.0Approx.5.9m(Approx.6.56'-Approx.19.4')(T), ISO3200: up to Approx.18.0m(Approx59.1)(W) / Approx.8.4m(Approx27.6')(T)
LCD/ Viewfinder
LCD Screen Size (inches) 7.5cm (3.0type)
LCD Total Dots Number 921.600
LCD Monitor Type TFT
Auto Bright Monitoring YES
Optical Viewfinder NO
Electrical Viewfinder YES
Recording Media Memory Stick™ Duo / Memory Stick PRO Duo™(Mark2 only for movie) / Memory Stick PRO Duo™ High Speed (No Speed Advantage) / Memory Stick PRO-HG Duo™ (No Speed Advantage)
Recording Media II SD Memory Card(Class4 or Higher for movie), SDHC/SDXC Memory Card(Class4 or Higher for movie)
Recording Format JPEG
DCF (Design rule for Camera File System) YES
DPOF (Digital Print Order Format) YES
Burst Mode (shots) Approx.10 fps(10 shots)
Burst Interval (approximately sec) Approx.0.1 sec.(10 shots)
Still Image size (16M 4608 x 3456) YES
Still Image size (14M 4320 x 3240) NO
Still Image size (13M 4224 x 3168) NO
Still Image size (12M 4000 x 3000) NO
Still Image size (10M 3648 x 2736) YES
Still Image size (9.0M, 3456 x 2592) NO
Still Image size (8.0M, 3264 x 2448) NO
Still Image size (7.2M 3072 x 2304) NO
Still Image size (5.0M, 2592 x 1944) YES
Still Image size (3.1M, 2048 x 1536) NO
Still Image size (VGA, 640 x 480) YES
Still Image size (16:9 mode, 1920 x 1080) YES
Still Image size (16:9 mode, 4,608 x 2,592) YES
Still Image size (16:9 mode, 4,320 x 2,432) NO
Still Image size (16:9 mode, 4000 x 2248) NO
Still Image size (3:2 mode, 4000 x 2672) NO
Still Image size (3:2 mode 3648 x 2432) NO
Still Image size (3:2 mode 3456 x 2304) NO
2D Panorama 7,152 x 1,080(204deg) / 4,912 x 1,080(140deg) / 4,912 x 1,920(149deg) / 3,424 x 1,920(104deg) / HR (10,480 x 4,096, 162deg)
3D Panorama 7,152 x 1,080(183deg) / 4,912 x 1,080(126deg) / 4,912 x 1,920(130deg) / 3,424 x 1,920(90deg) / 1,920 x 1,080(49deg)
Moving Image Size (1280x720 30fps Fine Approx.9Mbps) NO
Moving Image Size (1280x720 30fps Standard Approx.6Mbps) NO
Moving Image Size (640x480 30fps Approx.3Mbps) NO
Moving Image Size (320x240 30fps) NO
Moving Image Size (AVCHD 1920 x 1080(50i, Interlace) Approx.17Mbps(Averagebit-rate)) YES
Moving Image Size (AVCHD 1440 x 1080(50i, Interlace) Approx.9Mbps(Averagebit-rate)) YES
Moving Image Size (MP4/AVI 1440 x 1080 Approx.25fps Progressive) Approx.12Mbps(Averagebit-rate)) YES
Moving Image Size (MP4/AVI 1280 x 720 Approx.25fps Progressive) Approx.6Mbps(Averagebit-rate)) YES
Moving Image Size (MP4/AVI 640 x 480 Approx.25fps Progressive) Approx.3Mbps(Averagebit-rate)) YES
Moving Image Size (AVCHD 1920 x 1080(50i, Interlace) Approx.24Mbps(Averagebit-rate)) YES
Playback/ Edit
HD (High Definition) Playback Under 16M(4,608 x 3,456)
Slideshow Playback YES
Slideshow with Music YES
Slideshow Movie YES
Trimming YES
Playback Zoom YES (8x)
Cue & Review (MPEG) YES
Index Playback 16 / 25 images (Date / Folder-Still / Folder-Movie / AVCHD)
Image Rotation YES
Auto Image Rotation YES
Auto grouping and & Best Picture Recognition YES
Battery Remaining Indicator YES
Histogram Indicator YES
Exposure Warning Indicator YES
Disk / Memory Stick remaining indicator YES
PTP (Picture Transfer Protocol) NO
Print Image Matching YES
PictBridge NO
Shop Front Mode YES
Start up time (approximately sec) Approx. 2.3 sec
Menu Language English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Finnish, Polish, Czech, Hungarian , Turkish, Greek, Bulgarian, Croatian, Romanian
Multi use Terminal with HD Type3c, AV ( SD ) / USB
Multi use Terminal YES
USB 2.0 Hi-Speed YES
Power/ Others
Battery System Lithium N
Supplied Battery NP-FH50
Stamina (battery life) with the supplied battery(s) in normal shooting condition 303 shots, 150min (CIPA standard with LCD screen on)
Battery for Clock Manganese-Lithium (MS614SE)
Weight (g) Approx. 525g (1lb 2.5oz.)
Weight with Accessories (g) Approx. 577g (1lb 4.4oz.)
SuppliedSoftware Picture Motion Browser (Windows only), PMP Portable, Music Transfer
Supplied Accessories Rechargeable Battery Pack(NP-BN1), USB charger(AC-UB10/10B), USB cable, Power cord, Neck strap, Lens cap, Lens cap strap, CD-ROM
Width (mm) 121.6
Height (mm) 86.6
Depth (mm) 93.1

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