Best superzoom camera

If you’re shopping for a superzoom camera, you’ve come to the right place! At Camera Labs I write in-depth reviews of cameras but understand you’re busy people who sometimes just want recommendations of the most outstanding products. So here I’ll cut to the chase and list the best superzoom cameras around right now. Note like my other guides they’re also listed by review date, not in order of preference.

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Best superzoom camera

Sony RX100 VI review

The Sony RX100 VI is a high-end compact camera aimed at pros, enthusiasts and vloggers. Successor to the RX100 V, it shares the same 20 Megapixel 1in sensor with confident phase-detect autofocus for stills and movies, 4k video, 24fps shooting with autofocus, and a wealth of slow motion video options at 240, 480 and 960fps. The small but sharp OLED viewfinder now pops-up and pushes back down in a single convenient motion, while the 3in screen can now angle both up by 180 degrees to face the subject or down by up to 90 degrees and finally gains touch sensitivity. There's also Bluetooth to complement the Wifi and a raft of pro video features, but the biggest upgrade is the lens range, up from the 24-70mm of the Marks III, IV and V to a new 24-200mm zoom in a body that's only 1.8mm thicker than before. There's an inevitable drop in aperture from the f1.8-2.8 of previous models to f2.8-4.5 here (not to mention the loss of the built-in ND filter), but the lens remains brighter than Panasonic's rival TZ100 / ZS200 or TZ200 / ZS200 models and while it lacks their longer telephoto reach, the optics are sharper and the focus tracking and burst shooting are more confident. Dedicated vloggers may remain better-served by the lens on the previous model (now mildly updated as the RX100 VA), but if you’re after a do-it-all pocket travel camera, the RX100 VI has taken the crown.

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Nikon COOLPIX P1000 review

The Nikon COOLPIX P1000 is undeniably the king of super-zooms. Its awesome 125x reach, extending from a 24mm wide angle to an eye-watering 3000mm, is unmatched and deserving of a new mega-zoom classification all of its own. Beyond the zoom it has more to offer, including a big bright viewfinder, a big articulated screen, Raw shooting, 4K filming, an external mic socket, in-camera battery charging and Wifi with Bluetooth. Its continuous shooting performance is a little lacklustre, so for sports and action photography it's not the best choice. And when zoomed in to 3000mm the f8 maximum aperture means shooting at higher ISOs unless the sun is shining. Even then, you'll either need very steady hands or some other support, such as a monopod, to stabilise the camera and keep your subject centred in the frame. Despite those reservations, the COOLPIX P1000 is a lot of fun. It allows you to capture shots that would literally be beyond the scope of any other SLR-styled super-zoom on the market. If you're into wildlife or sports, or you just like taking pictures of far off, inaccessible subjects, there really is nothing to beat the COOLPIX P1000. But if you're happy with a slightly shorter, more manageable zoom range, the COOLPIX P900, Canon PowerShot SX70 HS and Panasonic Lumix FZ80 / FZ82, all have plenty to offer at a fraction of the price.

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Panasonic Lumix TZ200 ZS200 review

Panasonic's Lumix TZ200 / ZS200 is the new top model in its enormously popular travel-zoom series. Successor to the TZ100 / ZS100, it inherits the 1in / 20 Megapixel sensor, built-in viewfinder, non-tilting touchscreen, 4k video and Wifi, but boosts the earlier 10x zoom range to 15x, increases the viewfinder detail, adds 1080 video at 120p for slow motion, and now includes Bluetooth for seamless connectivity and location-tagging. The literally big news though remains that new 15x zoom range, equivalent to 24-360mm and easily out-gunning not just its predecessor, but all rival 1in compacts with pocket bodies. The only compromise is an aperture that's become even dimmer at f3.3-6.4 versus the f2.8-5.9 of its predecessor, which in turn was already a lot dimmer than the f1.8-2.8 of rivals with shorter zooms. But that's the compromise you have to weigh-up. If you want a 1in sensor with a big zoom that's also bright, you'll need a much bigger body like the Sony RX10 or Lumix FZ2000. Ultimately for many photographers, the TZ200 / ZS200's combination of a big zoom and decent sensor in a pocket body is all they need to know: the lens range and feature-set are unbeatable in its class and like its predecessor it comes highly recommended.

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Sony RX10 Mark IV review

The RX10 IV updates Sony's high-end Bridge Super-zoom retaining its predecessor's 24-600mm / 25x zoom, weather-proof body and OLED EVF, but inheriting the RX100 V's sensor for phase-detect AF, 24fps bursts and 4k without binning. The fact the RX10 series inherits the latest RX100 sensor and imaging pipeline is no surprise, but having phase-detect AF with the longer 24-600mm range is so much more compelling. Coupled with the great quality video, touchscreen and Bluetooth location tagging, the RX10 Mark IV could become the ultimate all-rounder; check out my hands-on review-so-far!

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Canon PowerShot SX730 HS review

Canon's PowerShot SX730 HS is the company's flagship pocket super-zoom camera. It shares the 20 Megapixel resolution, 1080p movies and 40x optical zoom range of its predecessor, all packed into a surprisingly small body. Canon's added a tilting screen and Bluetooth for easier connectivity and effortless GPS tagging, but it faces tough competition from Panasonic's Lumix TZ90 / ZS70 which also offers a viewfinder, 4k video and a touch-screen, albeit with a shorter 30x zoom range.

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Panasonic Lumix TZ90 / ZS70 review

On the face of it, Panasonic’s Lumix TZ90 / ZS70 doesn’t add a lot to the earlier TZ80 / ZS70. The touch screen flips up and over and there’s a new 20 Megapixel sensor which delivers better quality 4k UHD video. However, with a 30x optical zoom, built-in viewfinder, great continuous shooting, 4k UHD video with PASM exposure control, 4k photo modes, RAW recording, and a wealth of other features, it remains one of the most powerful pocket super-zooms around and comes Highly Recommended. But if you can live without the flip-up screen the earlier TZ80 / ZS60 is well worth keeping in mind.

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Panasonic Lumix FZ80 / FZ82 review

The Panasonic Lumix FZ80 / FZ82 is a bridge super-zoom with a 60x optical range. It updates the Lumix FZ70 / FZ72, retaining the older model's 20-1200mm lens, but with a new 18 Megapixel sensor, an upgraded 3 inch 1040k dot fixed touch screen, and a more detailed 0.2in 1.7 Million dot EVF. Also new are 4K video and 4K Photo modes, excellent Wifi for wireless shooting and image transfer, faster continuous shooting, improved AF with Panasonic's Depth from Defocus technology and USB charging. It's got just about everything you could wish for in a bridge camera at this price bar an articulated screen, so comes highly recommended.

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Nikon COOLPIX B700 review

The COOLPX B700 offers a pretty compelling all-round package. With the combination of the 60x zoom, Raw shooting and 4K movies together with the seamless connectivity provided by Snapbridge, there's very little that compares with the B700 at this price point. Ultimately though, it mostly comes down to the 60x zoom range and SnapBridge, which will allow you to share you photos with minimal effort. 4K UHD movies and RAW shooting sound impressive, but some might question just how much extra quality they'll provide in practice given the limitations of the compact sensor. All the same, they're great features to have and are backed up with manual exposure control and loads of feature modes. There's a also the excellent viewfinder and articulated screen to factor in, though these remain unchanged from the earlier COOLPIX P610, which may be available at a lower price.

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Panasonic Lumix FZ2000 / FZ2500 review

Panasonic's FZ2000 / FZ2500 is the company's best bridge super-zoom camera to date. Everyone benefits from the 20x / 24-480mm zoom range, larger viewfinder and articulated touchscreen, but movie shooters will adore having unlimited 4k recording, 10-bit HDMI output, smooth internal zooming and a built-in ND filter adjustable by 2, 4 or 6 stops. With so many enhancements and improvements over its predecessor, it's hard not to enthuse over the Lumix FZ2000 / FZ2500 which packs in a huge range of features at a very competitive price. As a high-end camera I do wish it had weather-sealing, but it doesn't hold it back from earning a Recommended award. Compare closely with the Sony RX10 series.

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Nikon COOLPIX B500 review

The Nikon COOLPIX B500 is a very attractive proposition for novice photographers moving up from a phone or small compact and looking for a long zoom range in an SLR style body without the expense and complexity of a camera with interchangeable lenses. But if you can afford to spend more, compare closely with the higher-end B700 which gives you a longer zoom, higher resolution sensor, RAW mode, a more versatile screen, electronic viewfinder, more exposure modes, and 4K movies.

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Panasonic Lumix FZ330 / FZ300 review

The Lumix FZ330 / FZ300 keeps the earlier FZ200's 24x / f2.8 lens and 12 Megapixel MOS sensor, but upgrades the image processor, viewfinder and screen, along with adding support for 4k video and sealing the body against dust and moisture. There's no question the FZ330 / FZ300 will be an attractive proposition for anyone looking for a higher-end super-zoom without breaking the bank. But also consider stepping that bit further to the Lumix FZ1000 which quadruples the sensor size to a 1in type for much better quality.

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