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Just Posted: Canon PowerShot SX50 HS Review

By dpreview staff on Jan 15, 2013 at 23:15 GMT
Buy on GearShop$399.00

Just Posted: Our review of the Canon PowerShot SX50 HS. Canon's latest superzoom, the SX50, features a 24-1200mm (equivalent) lens and a feature set that compares well to its competition, in what is now one of the most competitive segments of the compact camera market. Specifications include a 12MP CMOS sensor, 2.8" fully-articulated LCD screen, Raw capture and full manual control. Is this the travel camera enthusiasts have been waiting for? Read our review - created in collaboration with Jeff Keller of The Digital Camera Resource Page - to find out.

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Canon PowerShot SX50 HS

Comments

Total comments: 165
12
brolitz
By brolitz (Apr 5, 2013)

I was going to get a Nikon D3100 as my first camera for my new interest, but after doing a lot of research and decision making and a good deal. I chose the the Canon sx50 hs, currently taking picks now and I really like the quality.

I am very interested in capturing moving object (High Speed Photography), can anyone tell me how to set the camera to get the moving shots I want?

0 upvotes
nikoneed
By nikoneed (Feb 6, 2013)

Very good camera, very good picture quality, blazing fast operation (but with high speed sd card)

1 upvote
Zerg2905
By Zerg2905 (Jan 20, 2013)

Once upon a time I was the proud owner of the S3IS... Since then, I went the DSLR "way", owning various APS-C & FF camera bodies from Canon. Now, I was curious about the 50X "performance", because as I do not make money from photography, a (=THE) 1200 mm lens is out of scope - otherwise my wife will prepare an IED or equivalent. Just one opinion: at the "perceived quality" level, the SX50 looks... cheap (well, at least compared with the G series). It seems that indeed Canon is doing some hard "cost cutting" work. For the rest, however, I was impressed - and I will certainly buy one, just for the fun to have access to that amazing zoom range... as per the IQ, you cannot have the 5DIII quality here, right? :) Cheers! :)

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 1 minute after posting
0 upvotes
peevee1
By peevee1 (Jan 19, 2013)

Finally, a review which gave neither silver nor gold award.

0 upvotes
mingan
By mingan (Jan 18, 2013)

I bought the SX 50 because of its long focal lens and the CHDK.
In the past I have done some nice timelapse with my S100 and some realy good night shots. Things you only can do with compact Canons. And the SX 50 is one of the best!

2 upvotes
bobbarber
By bobbarber (Jan 18, 2013)

"CHDK is not available for the Powershot SX50 HS yet "
http://chdk.wikia.com/wiki/SX50

It probably will be though...

0 upvotes
odoketa
By odoketa (Jan 18, 2013)

I am also on the side of 'please review more cameras like this'. However, I feel like this review fails to capture the only reason people would buy this camera - the long reach. I think there are ways to address this - maybe shots from a tall place of a faraway landmark, for example. Or birds, or you could take all the superzooms on African safari.... I just feel like this review misses the essence of superzooms. Showing me how it performs at 85mm equiv. just doesn't really help much.

5 upvotes
zinedi
By zinedi (Jan 18, 2013)

Another "giant leap for mankind" in conquering cyber-space! The software "art" filter TOY CAMERA got its own hardwarization! You can, Canon! (I am not so rich to buy these cheap plastic things, so I have to turn the "art" filter on to simulate this IQ - if I really want).

0 upvotes
Alvar
By Alvar (Jan 17, 2013)

Great zoom range but pretty disappointing aperture. With a max F3.4 you can't do pretty much anything in low light. That's why people move on to larger sensor cameras, I've tried once to take fast action pics in low light with a similar Canon zoom, how clueless I was, you can do nothing with it.

With so many generations of cams and in 2013, you'd guess they at least be at F1.8, ideally at F1.4 or better. With such small and noisy sensors these cameras are useless and the slow lens doesn't make it better.

Faster lenses in compacts/small sensor cameras should be next hot thing brands should be competing for.

Why have such a big zoom when you can't use it past 6 PM?

3 upvotes
jasomill
By jasomill (Jan 18, 2013)

Given the present state of the art, large-aperture zooms are expensive and heavy. Canon's f/1.7–f/3.0 60x zoom for small sensor (2/3") cameras weighs almost 20kg and costs nearly $100,000 (search B&H for "DIGISUPER 60").

Although it's silly to compare a compact superzoom camera to a broadcast lens, "fast and long" nevertheless implies a large entrance pupil (e.g., 215mm/1.4 ~= 154mm for a "1200mm equivalent" f/1.4 for the SX50 sensor), so seemingly difficult to design into a "compact" camera at any price.

0 upvotes
ARTASHES
By ARTASHES (Jan 19, 2013)

Talking about sensor, this 1/2.3 sensor is better and less/as noisy than/as any 1/1.7 apart maybe those last backlit CMOSs

0 upvotes
Alvar
By Alvar (Jan 22, 2013)

You're right but obviously that glass is of better quality than a superzoom one. If any camera maker can make folded zooms, Sony translucent mirrors, some hybrid AF, etc, why can't they work on faster lenses?

I mean the generation before this camera had a an F2.7 lens, why step back almost a full stop with an F3.4? Probably this generation should have been an F2.

What I'm saying is that I'm sure there are ways to design faster lenses for compacts but there is not an interesting to do that in the first place 'cause mostly everyone overlooks that. They're squeezing 20X zooms in little compacts. If there was an interest in developing that technology, it wouldn't be so hard to have compacts with lenses like that. As it isn't hard to watch a cinema 35mm sized sensor in a DSLR.

0 upvotes
Waldman Jordaan
By Waldman Jordaan (Jan 17, 2013)

Dear Webmaster of DPR,
I would really appreciate it if I could at least have the option to skip this silly page and go directly form the News page or emails that I receive, to the actual test or article and skip this page entirely. It wastes my time and your resources - please think about adding a direct link button or something, pretty please.

Comment edited 4 times, last edit 8 minutes after posting
3 upvotes
keeponkeepingon
By keeponkeepingon (Jan 17, 2013)

Thanks for reviewing the SX50

I agree that the final score seems a little low. Hand-holdable 50x is a fairly amazing stand-out groundbreaking feat. With the zoom and a better sensor than the FZ200, I'd think the scores would be a bit closer. I'm not suprised by all the complaining here.

3 upvotes
Joe Pakleni
By Joe Pakleni (Jan 17, 2013)

Thank you dpreview and Jeff Kellar for this review. To those of you who scoff at dp for such reviews, may I remind them that many of us could be new to photography or buying a second camera, and still trying to decide what sort of camera we want...and need...and can afford. I guess you were all in that position at one time or other.

I personally come to dpreview because I feel their reviews are very professional. I am very much a beginner...with birding as my main hobby...and slowly getting into photography. The SX50, I've decided - with it's reach and pretty good IQ and other positives - sounds perfect for me.

My next/second camera for pure photography? Who knows, maybe a dslr, maybe a mirrorless, maybe a compact...whatever my needs, my expertise, and/or my budget, dpreview will help me decide. So please keep up the good work DPR and a sincere big thanks from me.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
3 upvotes
bobbarber
By bobbarber (Jan 18, 2013)

I'm with you, Joe, lots of us buy cameras like this.

For birding, you might want to consider the Panasonic FZ200. The faster aperture will help with moving subjects, at the expense of some reach.

EDIT: The reason is that for a (fast) moving subject, you generally want a shutter speed of 1/250 or faster. For a stationary subject, you can use slow shutter speeds, as long as you have a tripod. Birds are "in-betweenish" to me. They are not stationary, but they often are not moving too fast when they are feeding, etc. You don't need 1/250 of a second all the time, but you do want as fast a shutter speed as you can get. With every stop in aperture you lose, you lose half your shutter speed. I think that this camera and the FZ200 are at least a stop apart at 600mm equivalent, which means that shutter speed of 1/200 on the FZ200 would slow down to 1/100 on this camera. That's roughly the idea, though my numbers are not exact.

Comment edited 5 minutes after posting
2 upvotes
Joe Pakleni
By Joe Pakleni (Jan 18, 2013)

Thanks bobbarber - it's also thanks to comments like yours that guys like me can learn more about photography and get into a focused decision-taking process.

For the reasons you mentioned (and some other less important ones) I actually came and went so many times between the FZ200 and the SX50...but the extra reach won the day especially because I felt I could afford the slower lens since where I come from (and where I do most of my birding) the days are usually bright and sunny.

I must admit that my ideal bridge would be a combination of the sx50 and the fz200 plus the manual zoom of the Fujifilm XS-1. Maybe one day...

Ciao...thanks again!

2 upvotes
bobbarber
By bobbarber (Jan 18, 2013)

You're welcome, and best of luck with your new camera.

0 upvotes
chillgreg
By chillgreg (Jan 17, 2013)

Dear DPR,

In addition to thanking you for the fine review, special thanks for selecting this particular camera - the commentary from the lunatic asylum is priceless entertainment - sheer genius!

Can I suggest the next review posted in lieu of the 60D, be the GE Power Pro X500?

http://www.amazon.com/GE-X500-BK-Optical-Digital-Camera/dp/B004LB4SAM/

;))

1 upvote
zinedi
By zinedi (Jan 17, 2013)

I tell it open: Canon recycles cheap electronic garbage coming from the previous millennium. To disguise this fact Canon raise one parameter to absurd value to get a record echo. Once upon a time - I loved you Canon.

2 upvotes
ddolde
By ddolde (Jan 17, 2013)

The new DPR (or is it new ?) vogue: review the junk don't bother with the gems. I'm talkin about the 1DX you idiots

1 upvote
jmv76
By jmv76 (Jan 17, 2013)

I bought the SX50 because my daughter allready got the SX40 and I was surprised by IQ, its excellent zoom, its impressive stabilization (but with some difficulties to keep the subject in the viewfinder at full zoom) good exposition, nice colours... and particularly the ease of obtaining nice pictures compared to my Pentax K-x...
And The SX50 is equal or superior to the SX40 in all domains.
See previous post !
Jean-Marc
From Normandy
See my moon shot in my gallery ; in this case I used a tripod !

3 upvotes
zinedi
By zinedi (Jan 17, 2013)

Some people shouldn't neglect periodic visits at their occulist.

0 upvotes
jmv76
By jmv76 (Jan 17, 2013)

The SX50 is equal or superior to the SX40 in all domains :
- same IQ
- more powerful zoom (with a much better quality than the FZ200 as seen in some forum comparisons) and much easier to use than the SX40
- Excellent stabilization : it is currently possible to shoot at full zoom at 1/40s without tripod
- the possibility to shoot raw what I use currently since DPP delivers clearly better results than jpeg (more details, less noise) (I have read in a forum that FZ200 Raw files are not so easy to process since Raw images are noisier, cameralabs review)
So, I don't understand the DPR conclusions. It seems to me that the SX50 is underestimated. I agree that the lens is slow but the SX50 qualities are so high... In the past, DPR tested the stabilization efficiency. Why no longer ? This is a major parameter because this is the a necessary condition to obtain nice pictures in the real life !
So, in conclusion... I love my SX50 ! and I think that DPR has not made a so good job here !

5 upvotes
SLove
By SLove (Jan 17, 2013)

If the quality comparisons to FZ200 were not made at the same f-stop, they are hardly relevant. Faster lenses are more difficult to make sharp at wide open, but the quality will usually improve by stopping down. Every photographer used to know this, but the high quality DSLR lenses of the past decade has "spoiled" the expectations of many.

I think the main reason why DPR no longer tests stabilization efficiency is that DCR, which makes the bulk of these collaboration reviews, does not do that on their own and DPR don't want to dedicate the additional resources and time for their own testing.

3 upvotes
chillgreg
By chillgreg (Jan 17, 2013)

Glad you love your camera. Some of your observations however, indicate you may be living on another planet, or even in another dimension!

1 upvote
howardroark
By howardroark (Jan 17, 2013)

Nevermind.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
0 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Jan 17, 2013)

OMG, why would someone get THIS CAMERA to shoot videos with? WHAT YEAR does Canon think this is?

0 upvotes
wb2trf
By wb2trf (Jan 16, 2013)

"While having all that telephoto power sounds appealing, keep in mind that you'll need to either use a tripod or crank up the ISO a bit in order to get a sharp photo at full telephoto"

This statement in the conclusion is deeply misleading. I bought this camera, (and returned it for some handling issues), but this is mostly false based on my experience with it. I could post plenty of handheld full telephoto shots at low enough ISO (<=400) taken outdoors in moderate daylight. Not a problem. Indoors or low light, yes this is probably true, but for example for wildlife photo buffs shooting in normal daylight, this is not true. The IS is fantastic on this camera.
Not noted in the review is that the high speed burst mode (13 fps) is completely blind. All displays (viewfinder/lcd) are black during this. This is why I didn't keep the camera, but I found IQ, as the review notes, and IS to be very good.

4 upvotes
Sdaniella
By Sdaniella (Jan 16, 2013)

thx for review of Canon 'super-zoom'... all the better, one that offers super-broad wide-long 24-1200... (had asked/ponder a 24-1200 before... glad it's finally here)

no doubt 'super-zooms' wiill never compete with 'prosumer bridge' dcams (PowerShot G is Flagship Canon prosumer, not the SX), but super-zooms remain the pinnacle of pushing BOTH small sensor tech and wide-to-long lenses... i'm happy to see each next gen are better both areas than previous

now all Canon has to do is stop stalling on offering a '24' WA FoV on their PowerShot G series... '28' just doesn't meet my needs

already have their EF24 f1.4L II and TS-E24 f3.5L II for my FF 5DMkII dSLR... what more do they expect... restrict me from having a suitable 'carry around' PowerShot G lacking the '24'???

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 3 minutes after posting
2 upvotes
Simon97
By Simon97 (Jan 16, 2013)

This 12mp camera makes images that are sharper and cleaner than the ones with more photo detectors. It goes to show you how pointless it is stuffing more pixels on these pin head sized sensors. Yet, there will be more P&S models released with 16+ MP sensors. Bummer.

1 upvote
Elaka Farmor
By Elaka Farmor (Jan 16, 2013)

SX30 was not reviewed, people complained,
SX40 was not reviewed, people complained,
SX50 was at last reviewed, people complain.
Now I want to complain about the complaints ;-)

17 upvotes
Barney Britton
By Barney Britton (Jan 16, 2013)

Careful, there is a very real risk here of starting an infinite loop...

4 upvotes
Elaka Farmor
By Elaka Farmor (Jan 16, 2013)

Don't worry Barney, as long as the infinite loop is forever eternal there is no room for endless discussions.....kind of :-/

0 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Jan 17, 2013)

As long as it is a Canon or Nikon, it will get reviewed.

0 upvotes
chillgreg
By chillgreg (Jan 17, 2013)

Do you have a violin to go with that drum?

1 upvote
nonDLSR user
By nonDLSR user (7 months ago)

I cannot more agree with Elaka Famor. I thiink that review wrote member of the DSLR club, which know nothing about problems compact camera users.It's obviopus to me that reviewers of this portal clearly thinks, that what is downside DSLR cameras was a downside compact camera too.

I bought lately this camera and I think that is one of the top compact cameras with functionality and quality pictures of the DSLR cameras.

Personally, for this review I wlill fired reviewer and hired reviewer which knows only compact cameras. One more this type review and reward you publicly IQ Stupidity.

0 upvotes
mappingbirder
By mappingbirder (Jan 16, 2013)

I congratulate DPR for this review since the quality of analyse is very good and usefull. What I mean, there are cameras that are mostly tools than ways to express myself artisticly. IQ or DR are not so important for me than to have the images because my camera is light and versatile so I will carry it all the time. My need for bridge camera is different of other photographers because this is like a pen to help me taking note of what I saw in the wilderness or in my vicinity. Specifically, I am a birder so I use Canon SX40 HS for identify birds or to make video clip of behaviors that I share with fellows in the web. So it is good to have reviews of quality about a growing market and many readers expect to know more about this kind of cameras.

4 upvotes
wakaba
By wakaba (Jan 16, 2013)

http://www.dxomark.com/index.php/Cameras/Compare-Camera-Sensors/Compare-cameras-side-by-side/%28appareil1%29/848|0/%28brand%29/Canon/%28appareil2%29/738|0/%28brand2%29/Panasonic/%28appareil3%29/195|0/%28brand3%29/Nikon

DXO comparison with a 7 year old Nikon D50 and a current Psonic. Wishful marketing and reality collide big time with mediocre Canon engineering and dpr writers push to make a story happening.

1 upvote
matty_boy
By matty_boy (Jan 16, 2013)

so much fail in this post. i despair of those for whom review sites become the be all and end all (and highly subjective ones with questionable metrics at that) DXOMark ... meh !

apart from that your comparison is totally flawed, you are comparing a DSLR with a SuperZoom. I suppose it serves your petty argument though. Maybe, instead of obsessing about some abstract metrics, you could take a look at the images from this camera. There are some great examples of its capabilities on Flickr. Photography would be much better off without this sort of unhelpful statistical obsession, thanks all the same.

2 upvotes
wakaba
By wakaba (Jan 16, 2013)

DxoM has sound physics, math and engineering background. If your math is as good - go ahead with criticism - otherwise...

What I compare is picturequality, we dont talk content here and if this new camera is up to par to a design that is 7 years old - which it clearly is not - it is a lot worse than this old design.

It is just a fact that a 7 year old D50 is better than the brand new Canon p&s by a comfortable margin.

I think you prefer marketing over fact. That is called faithbased and has not much merit with us factbased guys. This stuff you like is bad engineering to cheapen things, mediocre cheap lenses and a huge amount of incamere software processing, overpriced junk - and - just does not turn out decent pictures and this is the bottom line we both can agree.

0 upvotes
howardroark
By howardroark (Jan 16, 2013)

wakaba, I hate to use this analogy <cringing> but you're....comparing....apples and....ORANGES! There, I said it. A seven year old D50 has a sensor -- please stop me if I'm being condescending and telling you something you already know -- that is MUCH larger than the SX50 and half the pixels, which means the pixels are freaking huge by comparison. Not only that, it's a DSLR with some high quality glass attached. Back in the day that D50 was $900 with a crappy lens, and a whole lot more with a good lens. Not only that, superzoom cameras do compromise on image quality to some extent to get the reach and we all know that. Why don't you find a 50X zoom lens for the D50 and then start doing a side-by-side for us. Good luck and I hope you win the lottery to afford that.

4 upvotes
Michael_13
By Michael_13 (Jan 16, 2013)

wakaba, if you want to use facts in your arguments, you need to understand them first.

1 upvote
MarkInSF
By MarkInSF (Jan 16, 2013)

So an inexpensive consumer superzoom can compete with a dslr of seven years ago. Good job, SX50 engineers! Oh, that's not the conclusion you were looking for? I'm sorry I couldn't follow your foolish comparison to its irrational conclusion. This new camera costs far less and includes a 1200mm lens, yet gives images with similar IQ, despite its tiny sensor. That's real progress. The SX50 is an excellent tool for people who need it, especially wildlife photographers. I don't want one, but I'm impressed by it's abilities.

1 upvote
chillgreg
By chillgreg (Jan 17, 2013)

@Wankaba, I am very disappointed that the new Canon SX50 cannot outresolve the ageing Hubble telescope.

Back to the drawing board for those lazy Canon engineers I'm afraid!

(guffaw guffaw guffaw)

1 upvote
wakaba
By wakaba (Jan 17, 2013)

Canongroupies: If it cant beat an age old D50. The Canon is clearly worse. Pricepoint of the Nikon kit $480 in 2005. So yes it is comparable.

There are no 50x zooms - nomenclatura is 150mm, 200mm and so on. 50x is interpolating pixels, a nice way to say the camera adds pixels were there are none. the more x`s - the more pixels are added. Its Fisherprice...fgs.

This has been taken with a 7 year old D50 and Nikon/Cosinakitcraplens by an 11 year old girl - 2 weeks ago:

http://sphotos-e.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc6/736965_265364480259228_1024741590_o.jpg

Now you guys tell me if your Canon is fast enough, sharp enough, spits out decent raw and can even compete with the lowest of lowest lens from 20 years ago.

0 upvotes
Michael_13
By Michael_13 (Jan 17, 2013)

wakaba, do you really not understand that your comparison does not make much sense? Let me try to make it clear:
Someone who needs a lightweight zoom with very long reach will always pick a super zoom. The larger sensor of a DSLR is useles to him. So the SX50 is a fine choice WITHIN its class

1 upvote
wakaba
By wakaba (Jan 18, 2013)

Image quality is what counts, class is artificial and irrelevant. Dronetalk. And what is a superzoom worth if the result is pure c...?

0 upvotes
Revenant
By Revenant (Jan 18, 2013)

"There are no 50x zooms - nomenclatura is 150mm, 200mm and so on. 50x is interpolating pixels, a nice way to say the camera adds pixels were there are none."

It's not 50x digital zoom, but 50x optical zoom. It's standard nomenclature for expressing the zoom capability of fixed lens cameras (but not interchangeable zoom lenses). It just means the lens goes from 24 mm (eq.) to 1200 mm (eq.).
This camera has 4x digital "zoom", and that's accomplished by interpolating pixels.

Btw, I wouldn't expect a tiny 1/2.3" sensor to outperform an APS-C sensor, even an older one. At least not when it comes to High ISO noise performance, where sensor size matters more than pixel technology.

1 upvote
Marty4650
By Marty4650 (Jan 16, 2013)

I think a lot of folks are missing the point.

This review was NOT done at the expense of reviewing any other camera. It's not like this will create any delay in reviewing some DSLR you want to see reviewed.

The review was largely written by Jeff Kellar. Jeff has always been great at writing quick reviews of P&S cameras. He's got it down to a science. Dpreview has some sort of arrangement with Jeff where they take his basic review, transfer it into their own format and then publish it.

Everyone wins this way.

Dpreview gets to print reviews for cameras they would otherwise not be reviewing, the Dpreview members get to read these reviews, and hopefully... Jeff gets paid something. If Dpreview didn't do this this we would get fewer reviews of P&S cameras, and many of the members here have a strong interest in these cameras.

Jeff will not be writing the review for the Canon 6D. That will most likely be done by Amadou, Richard, Barnaby, Andy or Lars, or maybe a combination of them.

15 upvotes
Barney Britton
By Barney Britton (Jan 16, 2013)

And Jeff will be joining us full-time in a few weeks, in our Seattle office.

14 upvotes
gatorowl
By gatorowl (Jan 16, 2013)

that's great news! I've been a fan of Jeff from back in the days when he ran websites devoted to Mac clones and camcorders. I think that his work provides a really nice complement to what you do here.

I wish you and Jeff an long and productive relationship.

Great hire!

2 upvotes
Marty4650
By Marty4650 (Jan 16, 2013)

Barney.... that really is good news. Jeff is an exceptionally good camera reviewer. He combines technical measurements with lots of very practical insights about ergonomics and real world use of a camera. I always felt he did an outstanding job reviewing cameras.

The Dpreview team has just gotten stronger.

5 upvotes
howardroark
By howardroark (Jan 16, 2013)

Can I join you in your Seattle office in a few weeks?

1 upvote
Gothmoth
By Gothmoth (Jan 16, 2013)

howardroark i guess you can make coffee and clean the toilets...

0 upvotes
Marty4650
By Marty4650 (Jan 16, 2013)

I'm not so sure if they drink coffee. Tea perhaps?

0 upvotes
howardroark
By howardroark (Jan 17, 2013)

Actually, Seattle is one step short of having a tap placed in every home for coffee dispensing...maybe a second for espresso. Hey, DPReview guys, if you're hiring I'm not a bad barista and I've been reading your reviews since 2001. I can turn a phrase or two, too. :)

Comment edited 39 seconds after posting
1 upvote
Simon Joinson
By Simon Joinson (Jan 17, 2013)

DPR runs on strong coffee

2 upvotes
howardroark
By howardroark (Jan 17, 2013)

I can't do foam art (yet) but I can make an espresso that'll straighten out your short curlies.

1 upvote
PaulHannover
By PaulHannover (Jan 16, 2013)

Isn't the 6d Review more urgent?

1 upvote
Barney Britton
By Barney Britton (Jan 16, 2013)

Yes, and we'll be publishing a LOT of data from the 6D very very shortly.

2 upvotes
Gothmoth
By Gothmoth (Jan 16, 2013)

do a test of spatial resolution and compare it with 5D MK2 and 5D MK3.

and say it in plain words.
otherwise some will not believe the findings that the 5D MK2 beats both the 5D MK3 and 6D.

0 upvotes
Nikonworks
By Nikonworks (Jan 16, 2013)

The wide to 1200 tele shot is remarkable.

You can see grappling pins on the chimney and the interior of the building on the right.

I guess this was handheld?

If so - WOW!!

5 upvotes
G Davidson
By G Davidson (Jan 16, 2013)

I think a lot of people are underestimating the importance of this kind of camera. Its true that right now, 'one size doesn't fit all', but in the future the versatility of something like this could well make most other cameras either specialist items, or obsolete. The variety of images possible and their already reasonable quality should really make manufacturers take note. A 'killer' bridge cam could well take off like no other camera before it.

1 upvote
tommy leong
By tommy leong (Jan 16, 2013)

didnt mention any shots at 1200mm ?
why ?
wouldn't that be MAJOR interest for such a camera ?

3 upvotes
adrianf2
By adrianf2 (Jan 16, 2013)

I think DP is losing the plot. Still no G5 review for eg, yet we get a review of what is a rather uninteresting camera so soon after its release.. The priorities of this site are hard to fathom these days. It certainly doesn't seem that detailed reviews of interesting and innovative cameras are high on the list unfortunately.

0 upvotes
iudex
By iudex (Jan 16, 2013)

Be glad you can see review of 1/2,33" sensor compact/bridge along with APS-C or full frame cameras. How else would you be able to compare it and see that superzoom image quality is still bad? ;-)

2 upvotes
Dave Oddie
By Dave Oddie (Jan 16, 2013)

DPR didn't even do this review. DC resource did.

All DPR did was lifted it from here:

http://www.dcresource.com/reviews/canon/powershot_sx50-review

Now I know they have an agreement to do so but DPR calling it "our" review is disingenuous to say the least.

1 upvote
Barney Britton
By Barney Britton (Jan 16, 2013)

@ Dave - we added a full set of studio comparisons, all of our own product photography, radically restructured the content, added more than half as many images to the real-world samples gallery, and a standard, dynamically-comparable dpreview score. To claim that this review was 'lifted' is in your words, disingenuous to say the least...

Comment edited 13 seconds after posting
8 upvotes
MrTaikitso
By MrTaikitso (Jan 16, 2013)

Having spent much time deliberating between a bridge camera and a real camera, I went for an NEX, because although you pay (depending on the model and deal at the time) £100 to £200 more, you get vastly superior IQ and low noise in low light. These superzooms are versatile and good value, but hopeless at 'all conditions' photography. Without a tripod, nightshots are a big no no for a start.

1 upvote
AmateurSnaps
By AmateurSnaps (Jan 19, 2013)

An NEX with a 24-1200mm lens range is £100 - £200 more expensive. Really.

I do wonder.

0 upvotes
Rachotilko
By Rachotilko (Jan 16, 2013)

Regarding sensor improvement: grils&guys, you can use DPR studio comparison tool to compare Canon SX20 vs Canon SX50: you'll see that 1/2.33 sensors have improved, quite substantially.

3 upvotes
iudex
By iudex (Jan 16, 2013)

Sensor imrpovement is general rule, applying not only on 1/2,3" sensors. I agree that according to comparison scene the outcome from SX50 looks surprisingly good and I cannot tell the difference between this and (e.g.) the FZ200; 1/1,7" sensors do not offer much better pictures either. However I believe it is the real life where the difference shows up: then the lens speed plays part - f2,8 of FZ200 vs. f6,5 of SX50 means difference of ISO400 vs. ISO2000, which means usable picture vs. unusable mess.

2 upvotes
Rachotilko
By Rachotilko (Jan 16, 2013)

@iudex
I'm with you on the lens speed issue completely. But I spotted some comment below saying that the pinheads don't improve - which is obviously not true, at least not for Canon.

Well, actually, I am wrong: FZ200 is noisier than FZ150, which is actually sad.

2 upvotes
ARTASHES
By ARTASHES (Jan 16, 2013)

@Rachotilko
Well, actually, I am wrong: FZ200 is noisier than FZ150, which is actually sad.

That was predictable, in FZ150 they used Sony sensor

Comment edited 3 times, last edit 4 minutes after posting
1 upvote
ARTASHES
By ARTASHES (Jan 16, 2013)

"Noise becomes pretty intense at ISO 800 and beyond", it's somehow weird to see that kind of critics over a sensor that practically step better than FZ200's one (check RAWs in lab test) but see no word about average high ISO performance in Panny review

3 upvotes
Steen Bay
By Steen Bay (Jan 16, 2013)

Yes, and maybe it would have been better to use other words than "crazy", "absurd" and "whopping" to describe the SX50's 50x zoom range.

0 upvotes
windmillgolfer
By windmillgolfer (Jan 16, 2013)

Odd isn't it. The SX50 has been out 5 mins and there's a full review. Entirely predictable results on IQ when a manufacturer goes for a headlining focal length far longer than anyone could hold steady. Nothing against Canon - had dSLRs and S1 / S3 IS. However, when can we expect / what happened to the full review of the FZ200?

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
Steen Bay
By Steen Bay (Jan 16, 2013)

The FZ200 review was posted two months ago. And btw, this is the first review of a Canon 'superzoom' for a very long time. The SX30 and SX40 got completely ignored.

5 upvotes
windmillgolfer
By windmillgolfer (Jan 16, 2013)

Doh! The cold here is obviously affecting circulation to my brain :)

0 upvotes
Sergey Borachev
By Sergey Borachev (Jan 16, 2013)

The weakest link in these top superzoom models is clearly the small sensor. Luckily sensors are still improving, by quite a lot each year in fact, e.g. the OMD (E-PM2) sensor, the RX100 sensor, the X-Tran sensor, and there are better sensors also from Canon. Yet, Canon decided to just use the same sensor as in the old SX40.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 2 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
Henry M. Hertz
By Henry M. Hertz (Jan 16, 2013)

well sensors are improving but not canon sensors.

the new canon sensors have a marginal better HIGH ISO performance yes.

BUT... DR is nearly the same as 4 years ago.

and the SPATIAL RESOLUTION of the 6D and 5D MK3 sensors is actually WORSE then the 5D MK2 sensor.

ok lets blame it on a stronger AA filter.... but then.. why is the 6D so bad in resolution and shows so much moire in video?

so NO... canon is not making/showing progress in sensor technology.

the cameras are still great but the sensors are only mediocre for 2013.

Comment edited 3 times, last edit 4 minutes after posting
3 upvotes
Steen Bay
By Steen Bay (Jan 16, 2013)

The BSI-CMOS used in SX40 and SX50 is probably the best 1/2.3" sensor available. Take a look at DxO's test that was published yesterday.

5 upvotes
Sergey Borachev
By Sergey Borachev (Jan 16, 2013)

Canon do have some new sensors, e.g. 6D and 650Dm, but the improvement in them over their older sensors are minimal, and it is true when compared with others' new sensors, Canon sensors seem about 2 generations generations behind. They need to decide quickly whether to use Sony or some other sensors, before even those who blindly follow big brand names notice the wide performance gap.

1 upvote
ARTASHES
By ARTASHES (Jan 16, 2013)

Canon compacts haven't Canon sensors, those are Sony, only 1/1.7s are Canon

0 upvotes
Gothmoth
By Gothmoth (Jan 16, 2013)

@Steen Bay

that is because (im 87,8% sure) it is no canon sensor.

0 upvotes
MarkInSF
By MarkInSF (Jan 16, 2013)

Mmm, no, this is almost certainly a Canon sensor. The technology of their larger sensors has been lagging, but their small sensors are excellent. They are made in different plants using different technology.

1 upvote
Gothmoth
By Gothmoth (Jan 16, 2013)

no this is almost certainly not a canon sensor.

no small canon sensor had such a good DxO mark yet.
sony yes.. canon.. no.

Comment edited 18 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
ARTASHES
By ARTASHES (Jan 17, 2013)

MarkInSF
The matter of fact that this 1/2.3 sensor is as good as G15's 1/1.7 sensor proofs that this isn't a Canon sensor cause with same technology bigger sensors are better

0 upvotes
john Clinch
By john Clinch (Jan 16, 2013)

Great to see a Jeff Keller review. I will really miss Dcresource. Reviews short enough to read but still including things not covered by other review sites. I particular the ideas that high iso performance depends on the lighting.

Its not that useful to know a camera will create great result at iso 3200 under bright lights as in reality you won't be using iso 3200 under bright lights

2 upvotes
Henry M. Hertz
By Henry M. Hertz (Jan 16, 2013)

where is the 6D review.. or the 1DX review or the D4 review?

instead such a boring camera review?

you guys focus on the wrong things....

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
4 upvotes
AbrasiveReducer
By AbrasiveReducer (Jan 16, 2013)

You've already stated that Canon sensors are mediocre and have not improved much, if at all. So, having already passed judgement (and correctly, I think) why complain that there is no review of the 6D?

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
0 upvotes
Gothmoth
By Gothmoth (Jan 16, 2013)

to have prove genius....

0 upvotes
Tape5
By Tape5 (Jan 16, 2013)

There is a lot inside a name and our perception depends very much on what we choose to call something.

Think of this 'thing' as a monocular with a sensor and everything else added around its zoom capability and suddenly you feel more relaxed.

Think of it as a digital camera with a nutty zoom and it immediately becomes bin material.

1 upvote
zinedi
By zinedi (Jan 16, 2013)

Ridiculous zoom with ridiculous speed 3.4 - 6.5,
ridiculous EVF - 202.000 coloured fuzzy spots,
ridiculous tiny sensor crammed with 12 million hopelessly squeezed pixels trying to catch a one foton,
ridiculous massive force of software necessary to fabricate from this hardware mess some digestible image,
ridiculous plastic fuzzy pictures good to watch on the mobile phone display.

Victory of Vanity Fair over good reason, victory of marketing races over science and technology.

5 upvotes
Steen Bay
By Steen Bay (Jan 16, 2013)

Take a look at DxO's test of the SX50 if you want to see what the "ridiculous tiny sensor" is capable of.

2 upvotes
zinedi
By zinedi (Jan 16, 2013)

I have taken the look.

0 upvotes
john Clinch
By john Clinch (Jan 16, 2013)

Zinedi why do you think you know more about sensor design than those who do it for a living? Why do you repeat tired internet theory that never agrees with reality. I can think of 2 examples where where more pixels has meant more noise. In every other case it means less noise.

This may be a poor camera, I've no idea, but lets try and be accurate in our basic understanding

1 upvote
Steen Bay
By Steen Bay (Jan 16, 2013)

Take a look at Michael Reichmann's review of the SX50 on Luminous Landscape Too. According to him "This camera is quite capable of taking quite acceptable images up to 800 and at all focal lengths, even the widest and longest".

6 upvotes
wakaba
By wakaba (Jan 16, 2013)

Yep, agree. Stinks. Bad for Canon - looks like they try to compete with Sonycrap. Not worth a single penny.

0 upvotes
zinedi
By zinedi (Jan 16, 2013)

".. where more pixels has meant more noise. In every other case it means less noise."
I am not interested in numbers (whether they mean zoom reach or noise level) without direct and relevant feed-back to image quality. All these new "less noisy" tiny sensors (and "corrected" lenses too) are examples of the victory of software over hardware, money over technology (software is allways cheaper than good hardware). The result of these sw-made "noise-free" images is detail-free plasticky virtual reality.

The term "quite acceptable" (it means whatever one wants to imagine) is a victory of diplomacy and emptiness over the raw reality.

0 upvotes
G Davidson
By G Davidson (Jan 16, 2013)

I'm surprised at the vitrol over the attention this camera is getting, but think for a moment. Is there any ither realistic way to get such a large zoom range than use a small sensor? I just got a Nikon P510 for birding and am finding the range fascinating for other uses too, though I'll admit, it, like this is a 'good light' camera and not an 'low light' camera.

I dismissed these bridge cameras too, but in use they are a liberating experience.

0 upvotes
Lee Jay
By Lee Jay (Jan 16, 2013)

How about a comparison to a Rebel T2i + 100-400L with 1.4x teleconverter, tripod, mirror lockup, remote release:

http://photos.imageevent.com/sipphoto/samplepictures/1200mm%20comparison.jpg

I'd say that's pretty amazing performance for a little compact superzoom. This image was taken from over 800 meters (half a mile).

0 upvotes
Oldvic
By Oldvic (Jan 16, 2013)

As I read the news about this camera (and its future competitors) a few thoughts came to mind.
This won't be replacing my DSLR gear, but it may well be the ultimate image-stabilized, autofocusing, picture and video capable small telescope (50x optically, 200x digitally).
I'll probably wait a bit for the dust to settle and for its competitors to come out, and then I may well get one for that purpose: extreme magnification with side benefits.

2 upvotes
Lea5
By Lea5 (Jan 16, 2013)

Nice, BUT where is the 1DX/D4 review?

2 upvotes
GeorgeZ
By GeorgeZ (Jan 16, 2013)

Oh good, the first camera review of the new year, after 2 weeks, is another recycled Jeff-review. Can't wait for him to start here as there are so many new cameras that are actually exciting waiting to be reviewed.

1 upvote
eilivk
By eilivk (Jan 16, 2013)

Specifications: Viewfinder type: Electronic
Yes, we know that! Maybe too embarrassing to mention the 202.000? Far behind the competition. My SX20 got 235.000.

3 upvotes
gl2k
By gl2k (Jan 16, 2013)

A "Lance Armstrong" P&S. It pretends to be more than it actually is.
But so what. It's definitely not what any serious photographer would ever use but if you are a paparazzo on budget this is for your.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
1 upvote
Steen Bay
By Steen Bay (Jan 16, 2013)

Well, Michael Reichmann seems to like his SX50. Maybe you would like it too if you tried one.

4 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (Jan 16, 2013)

I've never considered a super-zoom bridge camera, although the Panasonic FZ200 is of moderate interest because of the lens, and the good video quality. I'd rather save for a proper telephoto prime for my DSLR to get more than just reach, but superb IQ and reach.

But thanks for the review. I always enjoy reading DPR camera reviews.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
2 upvotes
thx1138
By thx1138 (Jan 16, 2013)

It's getting horrible even at ISO 400 in RAW. That is upper limit and preferably you stay at ISO 80-200.

Can't wait for the 24-1400 next year.

1 upvote
Lee Jay
By Lee Jay (Jan 16, 2013)

In reality, it's perfectly fine for web or small print use up to ISO 1600. And, yes I do have one.

0 upvotes
thx1138
By thx1138 (Jan 16, 2013)

Yeah, that's why I'd buy a camera like this, just to make webpegs.
Well yeah, if I stay at 64 x 48 pixels it might even look good at ISO 12800

0 upvotes
Lee Jay
By Lee Jay (Jan 16, 2013)

ISO 1600 is fine for images up to 2000 horizontal pixels or even a bit more. And, yes, it's a compact so you normally wouldn't buy it for making 20x30s at ISO 1600.

2 upvotes
CameraLabTester
By CameraLabTester (Jan 16, 2013)

1/2.3" CMOS sensor

12Mp

1200mm

*sigh*

.

3 upvotes
Lee Jay
By Lee Jay (Jan 16, 2013)

It's quite ideal in many cases as it is capable of focusing at the diffraction limit, which dSLRs can't do.

2 upvotes
Richard Murdey
By Richard Murdey (Jan 16, 2013)

Why not. If people want it, make it. Props to Canon for doing a good job.

Still though, looking at image 2391783, where plants on the cliff face have been blurred by the NR circuitry to a 1 cm square, 10,000 pixel solid green blob on my monitor, and checking that the ISO is set at 80... I get depressed. I can't help myself.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
1 upvote
Erik Magnuson
By Erik Magnuson (Jan 16, 2013)

The center is not bad considering the atmospheric conditions. The lower right is pretty bad but that looks more like a lens issue.

1 upvote
Aleo Veuliah
By Aleo Veuliah (Jan 16, 2013)

These two cameras, Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ200 and Canon PowerShot SX50 HS, are the best bridge cameras on the market.

3 upvotes
jcmarfilph
By jcmarfilph (Jan 16, 2013)

And why is that?

2 upvotes
Draggon
By Draggon (Jan 16, 2013)

And how about Nikon P510?

Comment edited 24 seconds after posting
1 upvote
G Davidson
By G Davidson (Jan 16, 2013)

I'm wondering that. Wouldn't this be the most apt comparison, as they both have such a long zoom range? Presumably, the Panasonic can only have such a bright lens because it's around have the length. Also, the P510 got a silver award but this didn't, is this just because of a changed environment, or is it still considered the better camera here?

0 upvotes
Steen Bay
By Steen Bay (Jan 16, 2013)

Overall a fine/fair review, but can't agree that a tripod almost is a necessity when shooting at full zoom. The IS is so effective that you most often will get sharp images (of at steady subject) at 1/125 sec or so at 1200mm (equivalent), or even at even slower shutterspeeds with a bit of luck. So in good light it's perfectly possible to shoot handheld at base ISO at full zoom.

3 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (Jan 16, 2013)

You don't think a tripod is needed for a 1200mm lens? At 300mm I'm already thinking tripod on most cameras. And the problem is that bright sun doesn't make for very interesting images, usually. What's worse is the lens on this camera is pretty slow at f6.5 at full telephoto.

But honestly, I don't know why some people seem adverse to carrying tripods. My Benro Travel Angel is around 3.8 lbs (1.7 kg) and it's worth the minor effort to bring it with me. It means I can shoot base ISO at any aperture that the subject requires.
One hears tripods talked about like going to the dentist, as if they were some burdensome photography accessory that are best avoided like the plague. If you spend this much time and money to get high quality images, isn't it worth it to use a tripod whenever possible?

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
3 upvotes
Lee Jay
By Lee Jay (Jan 16, 2013)

If you shoot moving subjects much a tripod even with a fluid head isn't very much help and also if you go many places were tripods are banned tripods can be completely useless. Tripods are a pain to carry and slow to set up as well, causing many missed shots. And I have 7 of them!

2 upvotes
iudex
By iudex (Jan 16, 2013)

On one hand I agree that it is not easy to shoot at long focal lenghts hand-held and with my 55-300mm I see the pictures are not sharp enough at 300mm; so I do think a tripod is a must for sharp pictures at 300mm+. However looking at pictures I took with 300 mm there are mostly animals that were not waiting for me to set a tripod; they just run away.

0 upvotes
G Davidson
By G Davidson (Jan 16, 2013)

The great depth of field produced by a small sensor makes for less obvious camera shake, or mis-focus. I don't think you could do this on a DSLR.

0 upvotes
Rachotilko
By Rachotilko (Jan 16, 2013)

Mistake spotted:

in high-ISO studio comparison, SX50 shot is ISO800, while other cameras have ISO1600 selected. I doubt it was intended.

1 upvote
Richard Butler
By Richard Butler (Jan 16, 2013)

That should be fixed, if you re-load the page. Thanks for pointing it out.

1 upvote
Total comments: 165
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