Sony’s Cyber-shot DSC-HX90V benefits from a radical design overhaul compared to its HX60V predecessor. Does this make it one of the best travel zooms ever? Callum McInerney-Riley finds out
Given that it sports a range of features that should appeal to many discerning enthusiast photographers, it’s an unusual step for Sony not to include raw shooting in the HX90V. It’s something that may be a deal breaker for many people and edge them towards the Panasonic TZ70. However, thanks to Sony’s new in-camera noise reduction, the smoothing of noisy areas isn’t anywhere near as extreme as it was on the HX60, which has resulted in great improvements to JPEG image quality. When viewing files at pixel level there is more luminance noise, but there is also far more texture and detail that results in better-looking images.
The structural overhaul of the HX90V has both good and bad points. There is no hotshoe and no exposure-compensation dial, and users have to dive into a menu to change many of the settings, which may be off-putting to some. However, the type of user who is likely to buy this camera will think this is a worthy trade-off for the reduction in size and weight of the new model. The HX90V is now truly pocketable and will go practically unnoticed inside a trouser pocket, which is a big advantage over both the HX60V and other travel compacts on the market.
While the HX90V is not perfect, if I were in the market for a travel compact to take on holiday with me right now, this is the one I would choose.