Re: Versus DSLR?
Get your entry levely DSLR, buy a 400mm lens for it and then compare the price(*). They are also a lot easier to carry about than theDSLR/big lens combination.
(*)The poor mans Nikon 80-400mm runs at 1100+ and the 200-400mm 5000+
These days you’re rather spoilt for choice when it comes to super zoom compacts, and so it’s simply not enough to offer a camera sporting an extra-long zoom; you’ve got to make it stand out in the crowd. Sony reckons the DSC-HX1 offers something special beyond a 20x optical zoom, to tempt the super zoom customer, including a …
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No so. OK I agree you can maybe buy a Nikon/Canon body with an 18-55mm kit for cheaper. But to match the Sony's optical and digital zoom range you'd have to spend another £1000+ on clunky and fragile SLR lenses that you'd have to cart around in a clunky padded camera bag.
The only reason I can see that you'd go for an entry level SLR over this is if you wanted better aperture and depth of field control as I think you'd also be hard pressed to distinguish between the two in picture quality.
Picture quality is truly terrible for this price point - the superzoom is only really usable with a tripod and timer, almost any entry-level DSLR is a better purchase. I own an H9 which rarely sees the light of day for the same reaons. Some of the smaller compacts from Sony are worth a look, but nothing to see here, all the bulk and fuss of a DSLR but without the reward.
I honestly do not believe that you have used a DSLR if think that there is no difference in image quality.
I brought a bridge camera to save money on lenses, and for ease of carrying a few years back. The image quality was on par with the shots in this review, and even a bridge camera is cluncky to carry around.
Within a year I was that fed up of the artifacts in the images, even on 100 ISO, that I swapped for a second hand mid range DSLR. Yes I have spent far more money on professional quality lenses etc - but even friends that have the standard lenses (and have spent not that much more than these cost, and have a nice upgrade path for the future) produce shots with quality way in excess of the sample shots here.
If you want snap shots of your holidays then fine (but if that's the case why not get a cheaper compact that produces similar image quality), if you want something to produce nice phtographs with get a real camera - you won't regret it in the long term.
Have you ever used the HX1? Well I have and the image quality is brilliant for its price range.
Sweep panorama is brilliantly simple to use and produce ready to use panaromic images without the need of clunky stitching programs. Twilight is even more brilliant as it produces blur-less, flash-free and almost noise-free images in low-light situation comparable to my £700 DSLR.
Read the review by Steve Huff and you will see what the fuss is all about.
You bought a bridge camera for the wrong reason. These and the better compact cameras are for people who do have real cameras but also like to have a second camera to carry with them 24/7.
And before spouting forth about the quality of something you bought a few years back take a look at this site. You can make direct comparisons of a wide range of cameras.
Yes there are differences but nothing that would justify carrying a full backpack of gear on the off chance of finding a not to be missed shot, nor in most cases such a great difference that it would jump out at you if you weren't looking for it.