Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX100V Digital Camera Review$449.99
The HX100V is equipped with a full-featured mode dial, complete with PASM shooting, a custom mode, 3D mode, and dedicated movie and panorama modes. There are two automatic modes as well: Intelligent Auto, which automates settings but allows exposure adjustment, and Superior Auto, which takes complete control over most shooting variables including noise reduction and sharpness enhancement.
16 individual scene modes are available ranging from the mundane to the very useful. All of the most typical options are there, including Snow, Beach, Fireworks, and Soft Skin. But our favorites were the ones that assisted with advanced techniques, such as Anti Motion Blur and Backlight Correction HDR, both of which actually do work as intended. This is one of the first cameras with which we would legitimately consider using a scene mode in day to day shooting.
Picture effects are entirely absent from the HX100V, however the camera does include a few tweaks that get scored here. The main shooting menu features a couple rudimentary sliders capable of adjusting saturation, contrast, or sharpness; and there's even an option to apply an artificial neutral density filter.
The HX100V's manual controls were a let down for us. There's a grooved manual ring surrounding the lens enclosure, and we were expecting it to work similarly to the ones found on Fujifilm's HS20EXR. But disappointingly, the ring is electronic, not mechanical, so one-to-one physical control just isn't there. By toggling a switch on the left side of the lens, the ring's functionality can be swapped to manual focus, but this is just as imprecise. Ultimately we gave up entirely on the manual ring, opting instead for this camera's zoom lever and excellent autofocus system.
Four self-timer settings are available: ten second, two second, and one or two person self-portraits which automatically trigger the countdown once faces are detected. As for burst settings, they come in only two flavors: high speed and low speed.
Shot to Shot ()
At the low speed setting, the HX100V captures only two exposures per second. However, cranking it up to high unlocks speeds even higher than Sony's claim, as much as 10.8 frames per second in our test. Both modes are locked in at a maximum capacity of 10 shots however, and there's a 12 second writing delay after each burst.