Sony HX200V review

Sony's 18.2MP bridge camera offers a 30x optical zoom, Full HD movies and GPS

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First impressions are very favourable. The Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-HX200V feels commendably solid when gripped, weighing a junior DSLR-like 583g.

That's with a choice of SD or Memory Stick Pro Duo media plus lithium ion rechargeable battery inserted at the base.

As with Sony's entry-level Alpha DSLRs, there's just enough space here to curl three fingers around the rubberised handgrip, while the forefinger hovers above the raised shutter release at the top.

Sony Cyber Shot DSC HX200V review

This is itself encircled by a lever for operating the zoom, with the alternative being to manually twist the provided lens ring, which prompts a mechanised zoom in or out. Doing this with the left hand feels particularly comfortable if you're already steadying the camera in both hands.

Showing its enthusiast appeal, on the Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-HX200V we're blessed with the choice of a crystal clear tilt-up or angle down LCD display plus an electronic viewfinder (EVF); the latter ranged directly above the former on the backplate.

The EVF has a built-in eye sensor that activates the display when it detects the pupil of your eye, and turns it off - and the LCD below on - when you move away. There's also a dedicated button for manually switching between the two. For us the larger, higher resolution LCD (921k dots as opposed to 202k for the EVF) won out.

Sony Cyber Shot DSC HX200V review

The battery lasts longer, however, if using the EVF, enabling you to take 490 shots rather than 450. But both these stats are impressive, anyway.

With a ridged edge for easier purchase and commendably stiff action, a shooting mode dial is provided, showcasing the creative quartet of Program, Shutter Priority, Aperture Priority and Manual settings, along with two auto modes. These include the automatic exposure adjusting and image enhancing Superior Auto, plus a smattering of scene, 3D and panorama shooting options.

There's also a dedicated video mode setting on this top plate dial, with a small 'movie' record button adjacent to an equally teeny playback button on the backplate.

Sony Cyber Shot DSC HX200V review

Generally controls fall readily under finger or thumb and the layout, while busy, feels spacious enough. Additionally there's a DSLR-like command/jog dial situated where the thumb rests on the backplate - and this is how the user adjusts the likes of ISO, aperture and shutter settings.

Having said that, it required us to forage through the built-in help manual to discover that fact, and a dedicated ISO button would have been more helpful still.

Scrolling through the options using this dial and then implementing them with a full press is fiddly and eats up time.

Tech Specs

Product TypeBridge Camera
Battery Size SupportedProprietary Battery Size
Maximum Video Resolution1920 x 1080
TouchscreenNo
Effective Camera Resolution18.2 Megapixel
GPSYes
USBYes
HDMIYes
Wide AngleYes
PictBridgeNo
Product FamilyCyber-shot H
HD Movie ModeYes
Memory Card SupportedMemory Stick Duo, Memory Stick PRO Duo, Memory Stick PRO High Speed Duo, Memory Stick PRO-HG Duo, Memory Stick Micro, Memory Stick Micro (M2), Secure Digital (SD) Card, Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC) Card, Secure Digital Extended Capacity (SDXC), microSD Card, microSDHC Card, Eye-Fi Card
Image StabilizationOptical, Digital
ColourBlack
Optical Zoom30x
Digital Zoom120x
Brand NameSony
FeaturesLive View, Self-timer, Face Detection, Smile Detection, Continuous Shooting Mode, Orientation Sensor, 3D Panorama
Screen Size7.6 cm (3")
Video FormatsAVCHD, MPEG-4
Viewfinder TypeElectronic
Weight (Approximate)531 g
Image Sensor Size1/2.3" (6.16 mm x 4.62 mm)
Maximum Image Resolution4608 x 3456
Display Screen TypeLCD
Height86.6 mm
Width121.6 mm
Depth93.3 mm
Product SeriesH
Focal Length4.80 mm to 144 mm
Image FormatsJPEG
External FlashNo
Focus ModesAuto, Manual
ManufacturerSony Corporation
Product ModelDSC-HX200V
Product NameHX200V Digital Compact Camera
Product LineCyber-shot
Exposure Control
  • Program AE
  • Aperture Priority AE
  • Shutter Priority AE
  • Manual
Aspect Ratio16:9
Manufacturer Part NumberDSCHX200VB.CEH
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.sony.co.uk
Marketing InformationThe ultimate Cyber-shot experience

The flagship of the Cyber-shot range delivers extraordinary image quality with DSLR-like creative features, Extra High Sensitivity Technology and manual controls. Explore new shooting possibilities with ultra-powerful zoom range, Full HD 50p video, GPS and 3D shooting.

Package Contents
  • HX200V Digital Compact Camera
  • Rechargeable Battery Pack NP-FH50
  • AC Adapter AC-L200C/L200D
  • Micro USB
  • Shoulder Strap
  • Lens Cap
  • AC Cable
  • Instruction Manual
  • Lens Cap
  • Strap
Limited Warranty1 Year