Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H1 - Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H1

Score

Other options include manually adjustable contrast, sharpness and saturation, auto bracketing, spot metering, movable focus point and adjustable flash level. One option that is missing is a RAW or TIFF mode, surprising considering the rest of the specification.


I’ve not been able to find out much information about Sony’s proprietary Super SteadyShot anti-shake technology, apart from the fact that it’s an optical system that works by moving an element in the lens system. However it works it seems to be quite effective. It is set to ‘on’ as default, and allows shake-free hand-held shooting down to about 1/100th of a second at full zoom, and 1/15th at wide angle. This is quite respectable, and compare well with other technically advanced systems such as Konica Minolta’s moving sensor system. It doesn’t mean you can leave the tripod at home, but does allow a bit more versatility.


So handling, performance and specification are up to scratch; what about picture quality? A day out on Dartmoor provided some excellent shots, the H1 coping well with the harsh low-angle lighting at this time of year. Colour rendition and exposure were accurate, and the superb lens provides edge-to-edge sharpness. There was some evidence of over-sharpening on the default setting, but turning it down a notch improved this. Image noise was visible on some shots, but wasn’t really a problem below 200 ISO. My only real complaint was some fairly major purple fringing on a couple of shots, but only on extremely high contrast edges shooting into the light. All in all and excellent performance.


”’Verdict”’


Sony’s first SLR-style super-zoom camera is a real winner, and a bargain at the price. Excellent handling, a good list of features and superior picture quality, combined with a 12x image-stabilised lens make this a good all-rounder and a superb enthusiasts camera.