Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H20

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H20 vs Canon PowerShot SX120 IS real-life detail


Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H20 results: Real-life resolution / High ISO Noise

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H20
 
Canon PowerShot SX120 IS
f8, 80 ISO
f4.5, 80 ISO
     
f8, 80 ISO
f4.5, 80 ISO
     
f8, 80 ISO
f4.5, 80 ISO
     
f8, 80 ISO
f4.5, 80 ISO


Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H20 results: Real-life resolution / High ISO Noise

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To compare real-life performance we shot this scene with the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H20 and Canon PowerShot SX120 IS, within a few moments of each other using their best quality jpeg settings, lowest ISO sensitivities and default processing options.

The lenses on each camera were set to approximate the same field of view and each was set to program or auto mode with manual ISO override.

 

The above image was taken with the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H20 set to 80 ISO. The lens was set to 6.3mm and the metering selected an exposure of 1/320 at f8. The original 3648 x 2736 pixel image measured 4.3MB.

The four crops are taken from the areas marked with the red squares and presented below at 100%.

The Cyber shot DSC-H20 crops show excellent overall image quality. The Program mode exposure has resulted in an image with a balanced histogram which shows no clipping of the shadows and highlights. The image detail is pin sharp without looking overly processed – there are no halos around contrasting edges and very fine image detail (for example the crosses on top of the chapel in the top crop) holds up well. This shot was taken with default standard sharpening which can be adjusted from the Cyber-Shot’s menu with both a sharper and a softer option.

The Cyber-shot crops show a little less colour saturation than those of the Canon PowerShot SX120 IS, but the colours are rich and natural-looking. The overall image contrast is quite high and, while this produces punchy, bright photos it does result in some loss of shadow detail. Compare the chimneys on the rooftops in the lighthouse crop and the area in shadow to the left of the house (above the TV aerial) in the bottom crop.

Compared with the results from the PowerShot SX120 IS the Sony Cyber-shot DSC H20 shows better fine image detail, crisper edges and higher image contrast, though less shadow detail. Overall we’d say the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H20 definitely has the edge over the Canon PowerShot SX120 IS in terms of overall image quality.

On other thing worth mentioning here is that in Program mode the PowerShot has opted for an aperture of f4.5, whereas the Cyber-shot has set a much smaller aperture of f8. Smaller apertures on compacts can result in reduced image quality due to diffraction. We also tested the Cybershot-DSC-H20 in manual mode setting an aperture of f3.5 to make a closer comparison and the results produced were an improvement on those displayed here.

Now head over to our Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H20 Noise results to see how it compares in terms of high sensitivities.

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