Sony Cybershot DSC-H9 Summary
Sony Cybershot DSC-H9 Assessment
The Sony Cybershot DSC-H9 is a feature-rich ultra-zoom camera with good overall performance. Compared to its predecessor, the Sony Cybershot DSC-H5, Sony augmented several major specifications: a wider 15X optical zoom (instead of 12X), a maximum ISO of 3200 (instead of 1000) and a 2.2 FPS continuous drive (instead of 1.1 FPS). However, Sony unfortunately cut-down on the quality of the viewfinder and the use of AA batteries.
The direct competition of this digital camera is the Canon Powershot S3 IS and the Olympus Stylus SP-550 UZ. Though, these two cameras are also both rated good, they handle better in terms of control layout and ergonomics. While the S3 sports a smaller 12X zoom, the SP-550 sports an incredible wide-angle 18X optical zoom, the longest of any digital camera. In terms of image noise, the H9 performs better than these two models. However, the SP-550 UZ shows less softness and much less chromatic aberrations than either the Sony H9 or Canon S3 IS.
The excellent Fuji Finepix S9000 may not be a direct competitor due to its larger size and shorter zoom (10.7X) but its image quality is so superior it is definitely worth a look. Differences between these cameras is that the S9000 features clean high-ISO capabilities instead of optical stabilization and that the optical zoom lens of the S9000 starts at a wide-angle equivalent to 28mm, just like the SP-550 UZ.
|Vibrant image colors||Very high purple fringing|
|Good exposure and focus accuracy||Auto ISO goes to 800, which is rather noisy|
|Extremely fast focusing near wide-angle||Strong edge softness, more so near telephoto|
|Very fast focusing near telephoto||Slight general image softness|
|Quite responsive with short shutter-lag||Noticeable lens distortion at wide-angle|
|Good control over noise||Useless ISO 3200|
|Above average indoor white-balance||Very inconsistent white-balance under low light|
|Great LCD visibility||Rear buttons easily pressed accidentally|
|Pressure-sensitive zoom controller||Below average battery life|
|Very good macro coverage||Tiny low-resolution viewfinder|
|Powerful flash||Strong blue tint in viewfinder image|
|LCD blanks between shots during continuous shooting|
|Supplied charger is very slow|
|Histogram not displayed for rotated images|
Recent Similar Cameras
|Sony Cybershot DSC-H7 - 2.5" LCD 115K Pixels, No Night-Shot Function|
|Sony Cybershot DSC-H5 - 7 Megapixels, 12X Optical zoom, ISO 80-1000, AA Batteries, No Night-Shot Function|
|Sony Cybershot DSC-H2 - 6 Megapixels, 12X Optical zoom, 2" LCD 85K Pixels, ISO 80-1000, AA Batteries, No Night-Shot Function|
|Sony Cybershot DSC-H1 - 5 Megapixels, 12X Optical zoom, ISO 64-400, 2.5" LCD 115K Pixels, Memory Stick, AA Batteries, No Night-Shot Function|
Sony DSC-H9 Highlights
Sensor-Size: 6 x 4mm
Actual size when viewed at 100 DPI
|8 Megapixels Ultra Zoom||ISO 80-3200|
|15X Optical Zoom||Shutter 1/4000-30s|
|Built-in Stabilization||Full manual controls|
|0.20" Built-in EVF 200K Pixels||Custom white-balance|
|2 FPS Drive, 100 Images||Spot-Metering|
|640x480 @ 30 FPS Video Recording||Lithium-Ion Battery|
|3" LCD 230K Pixels||Memory Stick Duo|
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