HX1 tip and tricks

Started Jun 25, 2009 | Discussions
clie Forum Member • Posts: 90
HX1 tip and tricks

I've been reading all the HX1 threads where there have been many great tips to help less experienced users like myself get more out of our new camera. Unfortunately they're everywhere. I thought to start this thread where HX1 owners (and ex owners (like Steve) can share some tricks or overcome some of the image issues that some have experienced.

Many thanks to Steve M and Jerry S for sharing your findings.

I'll summarise what I've read so far:

1. use EV -3 to get better detail and colours due to over-exposure under default factory setting
2. For sharpest images, set image size to 5M (4:3) or 6M (16:9)

3. Set NR to -1 for sharper images due to Sony's aggresive noise algorithms. Then cleanup using some noise reduction software like Neat-Image
4. Set Sharpness to +1 as default.

5. Half depress shutter all the time to lock the focus before you fully press the trigger

6. Use "anti-motion blur" mode for night shots instead of "hand held twilight". Better results

7. Turn DRO to off unless you really want to use it. reduces geometric distortion when using full telephoto. I think it increases sharpness also (?)

Stephen McDonald
Stephen McDonald Forum Pro • Posts: 13,439
Re: HX1 tip and tricks

Well, mate, that's a pretty good list of tips. The only additions I can think to make, would be to turn on Smart Zoom when you use the 5-MP mode, as this reduces the number of encoding processes from two to one. You also get an original encoding of 5 bits-per-pixel and without Smart Zoom, the first process uses just 4 bits. Also, try using the 720p mode for HD video, as I found that it looks sharper than the 1080p video. I really like the widescreen look for photos, so the 6.7-MP mode for 16:9 photos, was my favorite. See my other current post about the HX1 and Canon SX1.
--
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Jerry Stevens Senior Member • Posts: 2,533
Re: HX1 tip and tricks

Thanks for the thread. I think this will be useful to new users. Of course, everyone will need to decide for themselves what best "fits" their intentions and photographic purposes, and will make varying adjustments to the HX1 parameters accordingly.
--
Jerry (Gerald L. Stevens)

T. L. Rutter Senior Member • Posts: 2,444
With Stephen's addition (Updated List)...

1. use EV -3 to get better detail and colours due to over-exposure under default factory setting

2. For sharpest images, set image size to 5M (4:3) or 6M (16:9)

3. Set NR to -1 for sharper images due to Sony's aggresive noise algorithms. Then cleanup using some noise reduction software like Neat-Image

4. Set Sharpness to +1 as default.

5. Half depress shutter all the time to lock the focus before you fully press the trigger

6. Use "anti-motion blur" mode for night shots instead of "hand held twilight". Better results

7. Turn DRO to off unless you really want to use it. reduces geometric distortion when using full telephoto. I think it increases sharpness also (?)

8. Turn on Smart Zoom when you use the 5-MP mode, as this reduces the number of encoding processes from two to one. You also get an original encoding of 5 bits-per-pixel and without Smart Zoom, the first process uses just 4 bits.

9. Use the 720p mode for HD video, as I found that it looks sharper than the 1080p video.

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OTD Forum Pro • Posts: 18,701
Talking cameras on STFs photo sharing forum?

Shame.
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Jerry Stevens Senior Member • Posts: 2,533
Re: Talking cameras on STFs photo sharing forum?

Ha! Yes, we have it all, don't we?
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Marti58
MOD Marti58 Forum Pro • Posts: 23,640
Hmm..

T. L. Rutter wrote:

1. use EV -3 to get better detail and colours due to over-exposure
under default factory setting

this is logic ( underexposing ) u can correct afterwards ...over exposure u cant' correct what u have lost.

2. For sharpest images, set image size to 5M (4:3) or 6M (16:9)

using a lower resolution to get better/sharper pics ..that would set me of.

3. Set NR to -1 for sharper images due to Sony's aggresive noise
algorithms. Then cleanup using some noise reduction software like
Neat-Image

i never used NR software to clean my 5 MP shots

4. Set Sharpness to +1 as default.

5. Half depress shutter all the time to lock the focus before you
fully press the trigger

6. Use "anti-motion blur" mode for night shots instead of "hand held
twilight". Better results

i thought twillight was ment to deliver the best night shots ?

7. Turn DRO to off unless you really want to use it. reduces
geometric distortion when using full telephoto. I think it increases
sharpness also (?)

8. Turn on Smart Zoom when you use the 5-MP mode, as this reduces the
number of encoding processes from two to one. You also get an
original encoding of 5 bits-per-pixel and without Smart Zoom, the
first process uses just 4 bits.

9. Use the 720p mode for HD video, as I found that it looks sharper
than the 1080p video.

it sounds to me the today's camera's are not user friendly... to much factors involved for good images....to many so called helpfull features only adding to confusion os hassle.

imho camera's like these are intended for easy use.

i really dont understand today's MGF thinkin.

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yousaf Senior Member • Posts: 1,052
Re: HX1 tip and tricks

this is the kind of help we need here in these forums. Thanks everybody who helped with it
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OP clie Forum Member • Posts: 90
Re: With Stephen's addition (Updated List)...

A few more tips added from Jerry and Jogy

1. use EV -3 to get better detail and colours due to over-exposure under default factory setting

2. For sharpest images, set image size to 5M (4:3) or 6M (16:9)

3. Set NR to -1 for sharper images due to Sony's aggresive noise algorithms. Then cleanup using some noise reduction software like Neat-Image

4. Set Sharpness to +1 as default.

5. Half depress shutter all the time to lock the focus before you fully press the trigger

6. Use "anti-motion blur" mode for night shots instead of "hand held twilight". Better results

7. Turn DRO to off unless you really want to use it. reduces geometric distortion when using full telephoto. I think it increases sharpness also (?)

8. Turn on Smart Zoom when you use the 5-MP mode, as this reduces the number of encoding processes from two to one. You also get an original encoding of 5 bits-per-pixel and without Smart Zoom, the first process uses just 4 bits.

9. Use the 720p mode for HD video, as I found that it looks sharper than the 1080p video.

10. For night photos using handheld twilight, adjust EV by -0.7 to -2.0 to get better details. See Jerry's excellent comparison link here
http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1009&message=32187076

11. "Antimotion Blur” exposes exactly, "Handheld Twilight" must be corrected about +1,0 EV. Can be used in day time
see comparison link
http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1009&message=32253896

CoasterTim
CoasterTim Senior Member • Posts: 1,215
now we're talkin'

This is helpful, practical stuff. Gonna apply all this to my HX1 immediately...cause I just LOVE this camera! It's great, it's cool, it's my fave, it's fun...I've been using it more than my G1, LX3, or E620.

(OK, Schaeffer, enough gushing about the dang thing!)

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yousaf Senior Member • Posts: 1,052
Re: now we're talkin'

Yes it helps I have tried H20 in local Metro store, but it's controls where fiddly
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Jerry Stevens Senior Member • Posts: 2,533
Re: Hmm..

Marti58 wrote:

T. L. Rutter wrote:

2. For sharpest images, set image size to 5M (4:3) or 6M (16:9)

using a lower resolution to get better/sharper pics ..that would set me of.

Remember the general P&S crowd, Marti. They are not going to be doing 20x30 prints. The 5M will cover family photo albums, as well as the occasional wall 8x10. Still a nice word of advice for our typical HX1 users.

3. Set NR to -1 for sharper images due to Sony's aggresive noise
algorithms. Then cleanup using some noise reduction software like
Neat-Image

i never used NR software to clean my 5 MP shots

Season to taste; chef's discretion.

6. Use "anti-motion blur" mode for night shots instead of "hand held
twilight". Better results

i thought twillight was ment to deliver the best night shots ?

Depends on processing strategy. Twilight is choosing to let the camera itself work on the noise using its own aggressive processes. (Twilight is a noise coding venture). Antimotion Blur, on the other hand, is choosing to let the camera work on image acuity through multiple exposure stacking for sharper, properly exposed pictures (and more color accurate, I might add); with Antimotion Blur you still have the option to clean up noise yourself in PP.

7. Turn DRO to off unless you really want to use it. reduces
geometric distortion when using full telephoto. I think it increases
sharpness also (?)

it sounds to me the today's camera's are not user friendly... to much factors involved for good images....to many so called helpfull features only adding to confusion os hassle.

Strange, I actually have not heard the HX1 users themselves complaining about general confusion with the cam's features or use.

imho camera's like these are intended for easy use.

Remember that a bridge cam as P&S clearly is at the top of the complexity level of that genre. Thus, you have more options than with a typical pocketable P&S.

However, I have tried the "intelligent automatic" mode on the HX1, which chooses all imaging parameters including scene settings, and found that in 20 shots, the HX1 in this fully automatic mode only missed the scene setting 2 times--but even in both those instances, while the scene mode chosen was off from the actual scene of the image, the cam still did not miss the shot, generating good exposure and colors. Pretty impressive. I could give the cam to my neighbor's 13 year kid in iAuto mode, and he would be getting good shots almost all the time.

i really dont understand today's MGF thinkin.

Well, we can be reductionist and pragmatic and just observe that the HX1 has been flying off the shelves. Sales volumes are really good, especially when considering that the competition is both crowded and strong, as with the Canon SX1.

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Jerry (Gerald L. Stevens)

Marti58
MOD Marti58 Forum Pro • Posts: 23,640
Jerry..i think it is a nice camera...

Jerry Stevens wrote:

Marti58 wrote:

T. L. Rutter wrote:

2. For sharpest images, set image size to 5M (4:3) or 6M (16:9)

using a lower resolution to get better/sharper pics ..that would set me of.

Remember the general P&S crowd, Marti. They are not going to be doing 20x30 prints. The 5M will cover family photo albums, as well as the occasional wall 8x10. Still a nice word of advice for our typical HX1 users.

3. Set NR to -1 for sharper images due to Sony's aggresive noise
algorithms. Then cleanup using some noise reduction software like
Neat-Image

i never used NR software to clean my 5 MP shots

Season to taste; chef's discretion.

6. Use "anti-motion blur" mode for night shots instead of "hand held
twilight". Better results

i thought twillight was ment to deliver the best night shots ?

Depends on processing strategy. Twilight is choosing to let the camera itself work on the noise using its own aggressive processes. (Twilight is a noise coding venture). Antimotion Blur, on the other hand, is choosing to let the camera work on image acuity through multiple exposure stacking for sharper, properly exposed pictures (and more color accurate, I might add); with Antimotion Blur you still have the option to clean up noise yourself in PP.

7. Turn DRO to off unless you really want to use it. reduces
geometric distortion when using full telephoto. I think it increases
sharpness also (?)

it sounds to me the today's camera's are not user friendly... to much factors involved for good images....to many so called helpfull features only adding to confusion os hassle.

Strange, I actually have not heard the HX1 users themselves complaining about general confusion with the cam's features or use.

imho camera's like these are intended for easy use.

Remember that a bridge cam as P&S clearly is at the top of the complexity level of that genre. Thus, you have more options than with a typical pocketable P&S.

However, I have tried the "intelligent automatic" mode on the HX1, which chooses all imaging parameters including scene settings, and found that in 20 shots, the HX1 in this fully automatic mode only missed the scene setting 2 times--but even in both those instances, while the scene mode chosen was off from the actual scene of the image, the cam still did not miss the shot, generating good exposure and colors. Pretty impressive. I could give the cam to my neighbor's 13 year kid in iAuto mode, and he would be getting good shots almost all the time.

i really dont understand today's MGF thinkin.

Well, we can be reductionist and pragmatic and just observe that the HX1 has been flying off the shelves. Sales volumes are really good, especially when considering that the competition is both crowded and strong, as with the Canon SX1.

sure it will work i dont doubt that and yes it will serve the intended market group.

based on what do u say it fly of the shelves, maybe in holland things are different then elsewhere.

yesterday i was on a very huge Pop event and i have looked around to see what camera's popped up mostly ....well i saw some Sony's but i could have counted them on one hand ....most people where using camera's like the W series i noticed some megazooms ....and mostly DSLR's from lets say the two Brands entry level up to Pro ones.

if i pop into stores in Holland ( several places ) its easy to get a HX1 as they dont seem to fly of the shelfs.

it will have a audience and thats good .....but i still stick to my feelings about older camera's.
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http://www.flickr.com/groups/worldwidefriendship/

 Marti58's gear list:Marti58's gear list
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Jerry Stevens Senior Member • Posts: 2,533
Re: Jerry..i think it is a nice camera...

Marti58 wrote:

if i pop into stores in Holland ( several places ) its easy to get a HX1 as they dont seem to fly of the shelfs.

it will have a audience and thats good .....but i still stick to my feelings about older camera's.

Well, they have sold well here in the States.

You know I wouldn't try to move you off your opinion on the older cameras. I can empathize.
--
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OP clie Forum Member • Posts: 90
Re: more tips added (Updated List 3)...

added a link to a whiitepaper on how to use the Sony H series...

1. use EV -3 to get better detail and colours due to over-exposure under default factory setting
2. For sharpest images, set image size to 5M (4:3) or 6M (16:9)

3. Set NR to -1 for sharper images due to Sony's aggresive noise algorithms. Then cleanup using some noise reduction software like Neat-Image
4. Set Sharpness to +1 as default.

5. Half depress shutter all the time to lock the focus before you fully press the trigger

6. Use "anti-motion blur" mode for night shots instead of "hand held twilight". Better results

7. Turn DRO to off unless you really want to use it. reduces geometric distortion when using full telephoto. I think it increases sharpness also (?)

8. Turn on Smart Zoom when you use the 5-MP mode, as this reduces the number of encoding processes from two to one. You also get an original encoding of 5 bits-per-pixel and without Smart Zoom, the first process uses just 4 bits.

9. Use the 720p mode for HD video, as I found that it looks sharper than the 1080p video.

10. For night photos using handheld twilight, adjust EV by -0.7 to -2.0 to get better details. See Jerry's excellent comparison link here
http://forums.dpreview.com/...forums/read.asp?forum=1009&message=32187076

11. "Antimotion Blur” exposes exactly, "Handheld Twilight" must be corrected about +1,0 EV. Can be used in day time
see comparison link
http://forums.dpreview.com/...forums/read.asp?forum=1009&message=32253896

12. White paper with lots of tips on the H series http://www.aakatz.com/whitepaper/whitepaper/index.htm

13. Avoid zoom extremes - more distortion at extreme ends. If you have to use it, set max zoom then pull back slightly (refer 12. above)

GeraldW Veteran Member • Posts: 7,746
Re: Whoa!

Your tip to set exposure compensation to -3. Help me here. In other cameras that's 3 stops. Did you mean 0.3? That's 1/3 stop and much more reasonable.

I don't mean to be critical, I just stopped by to see if I could find some data on the HX1 as an alternative to my aging Canon superzoom. The Camera labs tests looked very interesting.
--
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pfou Forum Member • Posts: 55
it's 0.3

dn

Jerry Stevens Senior Member • Posts: 2,533
Correction . . .

Errata--that should be MINUS, not plus, as in -1.0 EV. Twilight tends to overexpose, so you have to compensate by stopping down the EV.
--
Jerry (Gerald L. Stevens)

Jerry Stevens Senior Member • Posts: 2,533
Re: Correction . . .

Talking about #11. Sorry. Did not make that clear.
--
Jerry (Gerald L. Stevens)

OP clie Forum Member • Posts: 90
Re: More tips - some corrections . . .

corrected some typo mistakes (pt 1 and 11).

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1. use EV -0.3 to get better detail and colours due to over-exposure under default factory setting
2. For sharpest images, set image size to 5M (4:3) or 6M (16:9)

3. Set NR to -1 for sharper images due to Sony's aggresive noise algorithms. Then cleanup using some noise reduction software like Neat-Image
4. Set Sharpness to +1 as default.

5. Half depress shutter all the time to lock the focus before you fully press the trigger

6. Use "anti-motion blur" mode for night shots instead of "hand held twilight". Better results

7. Turn DRO to off unless you really want to use it. reduces geometric distortion when using full telephoto. I think it increases sharpness also (?)

8. Turn on Smart Zoom when you use the 5-MP mode, as this reduces the number of encoding processes from two to one. You also get an original encoding of 5 bits-per-pixel and without Smart Zoom, the first process uses just 4 bits.

9. Use the 720p mode for HD video, as I found that it looks sharper than the 1080p video.

10. For night photos using handheld twilight, adjust EV by -0.7 to -2.0 to get better details. See Jerry's excellent comparison link here
http://forums.dpreview.com/...forums/read.asp?forum=1009&message=32187076

11. "Antimotion Blur” exposes exactly, "Handheld Twilight" must be corrected about -1.0 EV. Can be used in day time
see comparison link
http://forums.dpreview.com/...forums/read.asp?forum=1009&message=32253896

12. White paper with lots of tips on the H series http://www.aakatz.com/whitepaper/whitepaper/index.htm

13. Avoid zoom extremes - more distortion at extreme ends. If you have to use it, set max zoom then pull back slightly (refer 12. above)

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