JordanAT: I'm not sure this is so fabulous for most "small sensor" cameras, except that the bulk of the sensors produced are of that type. I generally don't have a driving need for expanding the bright side of the dynamic range in 1/2.3 (or smaller) cameras - what I really need is more sensitivity in dark scenes.
While you could claim that this allows getting more light to the sensor without blowing highlights...yes - sort of. Most exposures are limited by absolute duration (shake/subject movement) and not the fear of clipping on highlights.
Expanding the highlights equals expanding the shadows. Its really about how many tones fit into your total dynamic range. Add more range at the top and then re-bias the whole scale so mid of your dynamic range is mid tone and then you have more range on both ends. Then because you've effectively pulled the dark regions up it comes to the point of how good your signal to noise is.
Some images from the HX100V for comparisons. Keep in mind though some of these are fairly severe crops. This is a mix of shots with some being at full tele and others cm's close. I actually find this lens to be pretty amazing (for its context) from that respect -- even given it's median sharpness, it appears to be pretty consistent both wide and tele.
wb2trf: As a user of the very similar HX-100V the review seems generally fair to me and most of the comments here are wildly off the mark, reflecting the insecure clubby snobbishness that is typical of people who need to see their equipment as an externalization of their ego.
The comments about needing a tripod to use the 810mm and the uselessness of the long zoom reflect simple ignorance. Here is a handheld shot at 1/20 and 810mm in indoor light, taken only to illustrate the remarkable effectiveness of IS in the HX-100V, which I am sure carries over to the HX-200V, and is true of its competitors probably. http://www.dpreview.com/galleries/4179087231/photos/1466743/dsc05439
Eventually you will all give up the notion of looking at pixels. The Nikon D800 and other cameras will teach you to find some other club handshake than simply denigrating higher pixel count. Those of you who want fewer pixels can always buy old cameras and extol their virtues on some "collectables" site.
Having owned many cameras through the years - still own an RB67, Canon 5D, waiting on my Oly OM-D E-M5, Fujifilm X10 and more; I purchased the HX-100V for my wife who is an avid bird watcher. Its been a perfect purchase and I have to admit, all pixel peeping aside, I've had a bundle of fun using this camera. When purchasing a camera such as this, you recognize up front you are making a world of compromises for the targeted use. In my case it was a question of my wife catching the birds and squirrels while sitting on the deck with a camera simple enough for novice use. For that this camera I'd say greatly exceeded my expectations. Trying to use manual or other features of the camera are frustrating but I found just leaving it in full auto it did a nice job. It allows my wife to successfully get the shots she wants without becoming a photographer. Its just a fun camera. Some pic's I shot are posted here .. http://www.shorterimage.com/Nature/Blooms/20175974_36ktWd#!i=1776672795&k=GWHGcjd