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Sony’s HX95 and HX99 are travel-friendly compacts with 30x optical zoom

Not to be outdone by Canon’s new Powershot SX740 travel zoom compact, Sony has released two new Cyber-shot rivals in the form of the HX95 and HX99, which both pack 30x optical zoom.

The two new compacts, which Sony claims are the “world’s smallest travel high zoom cameras”, are successors to the Sony HX90 and HX90V respectively and bring some welcome internal tweaks and features.

Chief among these is an updated Bionz X processor, which helps deliver new features including Eye AF (an autofocus mode that seeks out and locks onto your subject’s nearest eye) and support for shooting in the Raw format. This gives you more editing flexibility than smaller, compressed formats like JPEG.

The HX99 also now has touch focus and touch shutter functions, which let you choose a focus point on the screen while also looking through the electronic viewfinder. This and the ability to customise the control ring’s functions are the only features that separate the HX99 from the slightly cheaper HX95.

Related: Best compact cameras

Otherwise, both cameras have very similar specs to their predecessors, with a 18.2-megapixel, 1/2.3in CMOS sensors and a 24-720mm lenses, which gives you an equivalent 30x optical zoom (slightly shorter than the 40x zoom offered by the Canon Powershot SX740).

Like their Canon rival, both of Sony’s new Cyber-shots have built-in optical image stabilisation for steadying your long-range landscape shots and are able to rattle off 10fps in burst mode. They can also similarly shoot 4K video at 30fps.

Still, as Sony claims, one area where the HX95 and HX99 trump Canon’s compact is in size – both are just 35.5mm thick, which is 4.4mm thinner than Canon’s already slim Powershot. They’re also slightly shorter and narrower, making them a potentially good choice if you’re mostly going to be carrying them around in your pocket.

You’ll be able to pick up the HX95 and HX99 for £430 and £450 respectively from October 2018. We’ll bring you a full review soon to help you decide which travel zoom compact you should be flinging into your holiday suitcase.

What do you think, do you prefer the sound of Sony’s new Cyber-shots or Canon’s latest Powershot? Let us know over on Facebook or Twitter @TrustedReviews.

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