Best Superzoom 2014: 8 competitors, 2.5 clear winners
posted Saturday, October 25, 2014 at 2:57 PM EDT
[Editor's note: This in-depth analysis was done a few years ago, but most of the models featured here are still the current product offerings from the manufacturers, so the data is still very relevant today in 2018. Dive in below as there are so many places to explore in this shootout!]
Superzoom cameras are a lot of fun. In a package about the size of a small DSLR and at fairly modest prices, virtually any shooter at any level can have 1200mm eq. optical range (and even more on a few models) at their fingertips. From the other side of a lake to the near side of the moon, these 50x and longer models are bringing the distant world ever closer to your door step. To achieve the same range with a full-frame SLR, you'd need a truckload of money and a Sherpa to help carry the rig!
But there are a lot of choices out there at 50x zoom range and beyond... how to know which one to buy? You may find image quality examples for one model here and another model there, but that surely doesn't provide you with a consistent reference for overall image quality across all the models currently available.
Fear not, superzoom fans! We're here for you, and have no less than eight superzooms shot across five different test settings to unveil for you in our Best Superzoom 2014 shootout, including a comparison shot of a gorgeous October full moon. We'll also offer up our views of the controls and handling of each model, as well as discuss some of the special features we found valuable on each. In addition, our publisher Dave Etchells provides a fascinating glimpse into what the actual (real) focal length of each model really is.
In the running for this competition we have the Canon SX60, the Fujifilm S1, the Nikon P600, the Olympus SP-100, the Panasonic FZ70, the Samsung WB2200F, the Sony HX400V, and to round out the field we'll include the Canon SX50 from 2012 to make it an even eight models.
As mentioned, we cover as many bases for you as we can, but at the end of the day we're focusing this competition on overall image quality when zoomed out to max telephoto, as this after all is the primary function for which these models are built.
So who took home the top honors in our competition? Dive into our Best Superzoom shootout to discover all the details!