Sony Cyber-shot RX10 Gordon Laing, February 2014
 
 

Sony RX10 vs Olympus STYLUS 1 vs Panasonic Lumix FZ200 quality at 28mm

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To compare real-life performance at wide angle, I shot this scene with the Sony Cyber-shot RX10, Olympus STYLUS 1 and Panasonic Lumix FZ200 within a few moments of each other using their base sensitivities and best quality JPEG settings. I tried every aperture setting and selected the sharpest result for the crops below.

For comparison here I attempted to match the vertical coverage as closely as possible on all three models. As luck would have it, 24mm on the RX10 delivered pretty much the same vertical coverage as the STYLUS 1 at 28mm (the extra coverage of the Sony is in its slightly wider frame). Meanwhile the FZ200 was zoomed-in one notch from its widest setting to match the vertical height of the others.

For my results at other focal lengths, noise and RAW comparisons, see the results index above right.

  Sony Cyber-shot RX10 results
1 Sony RX10 Quality at wide angle
2 Sony RX10 Quality at 50mm
3 Sony RX10 Quality at 100mm
4 Sony RX10 Quality at 200mm
5 Olympus STYLUS 1 Quality at 300mm
6 Panasonic FZ200 Quality at 600mm
7 Sony RX10 noise
8 Sony RX10 RAW noise


On this first results page I'll compare all three cameras at, or near to, their widest focal lengths. As mentioned above, I've aimed to match the vertical height of each image, which involved nudging the Lumix FZ200 in by a notch. As for the RX10, it may deliver a slightly wider field of view than the STYLUS 1, but due to differences in their aspect ratios, their vertical heights are already fairly well matched when both are zoomed-out to their widest settings. So to clarify below you're looking at the RX10 and STYLUS 1 at their widest focal lengths and the FZ200 zoomed-in a tad to match. The crops, as always, are taken from the areas indicated by the red rectangles and reproduced below at 100%. The STYLUS 1 and FZ200 crops show the same area as both share the same 12 Megapixel resolution, while the RX10 crops show a smaller area due to its higher 20 megapixel resolution.

I tested all three cameras at every aperture setting and at their widest focal lengths, found all delivered their crispest results at f4. Note at f2.8 the results sometimes delivered higher contrast and a slightly crisper centre, but f4 was the best all-round, especially at the edges.

And it's the edges where this first battle is fought. Of the three cameras, the STYLUS 1 is suffering the most at its edges, with visibly softer results than either the Lumix FZ200 or Sony RX10. Move away from the edges and the STYLUS 1 improves a lot, although the Lumix FZ200 manages to match it at this wide focal length. Meanwhile the higher resolution of the Sony RX10, coupled with a lens that's sharp to the edges at wide angle wins this first test.

It’s all very well comparing cameras at their widest focal lengths, but what happens as they zoom-in? To find out, I additionally tested the three cameras at 50, 100 and 200mm, followed by comparing the STYLUS 1 and FZ200 at 300mm and finally checking out how the FZ200 looks at 600mm. Find out how they compare in my 50mm comparison, 100mm comparison, 200mm comparison, 300mm comparison and 600mm comparison. Alternatively you can compare their performance at higher sensitivities in my noise results or check out what's happening behind the scenes in my RAW noise results. Or perhaps you'd like to check out my sample images or skip straight to my verdict on all three cameras!

 

Sony Cyber-shot RX10
 
Olympus STYLUS 1
 
Panasonic Lumix FZ200
f4, 125 ISO
f4, 100 ISO
f4, 100 ISO
f4, 125 ISO
f4, 100 ISO
f4, 100 ISO
f4, 125 ISO
f4, 100 ISO
f4, 100 ISO
         
f4, 125 ISO
f4, 100 ISO
f4, 100 ISO
         
f4, 125 ISO
f4, 100 ISO
f4, 100 ISO

Sony RX10 results : Quality / At 50mm / At 100mm / At 200mm / At 300mm / At 600mm / Noise / RAW Noise


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