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5 Best Compact P&S Cameras With Larger Sensor in 2016
Forget the MegaPixels. SENSOR SIZE is the new player
Modern digital cameras use light sensors to capture the images. The size of the sensor inside a camera determines how much light it captures and it eventually affects the overall quality of the image among other factors.
Large sensor cameras have superior image quality, improved low light performance, detailed pictures, less grainy images and it can also blur the background effectively.
The only cons of larger sized sensors are those cameras tend to be bigger and weigh more. But recent models from Sony and Canon have already proved the above statement to be wrong.
Lets take a look at the finest of larger sensor digital cameras.
#1 Sony RX100 III
Sony has made the impression already with their previous models of RX100 and with the new RX100 III, they have pushed the limits. Sony nailed the competition with the major line of upgrades to the predecessor RX100 II such as the brand new Superzoom lens and latest image processor BIONZ X. It comes in handy when you make use of the inbuilt HDR. It's got a 20.1 megapixel 1-inch sensor, and a 24-70mm f/1.8-2.8 lens.
The RX100 II was known for its back side illuminated image sensor which improved the quality of photographs amazingly. The design is same and elegant as the previous versions. A small matte black block of aluminum with large LCD screen and large lens on the front.
The major update from RX100 and the feature which made the third iteration of RX100 series the best among P&S cameras is the 1.44 million dot-electronic viewfinder. And it’s hidden when not in use. It gives you a real time sense of how your photograph gonna look like. For the viewfinder to get in position, Sony ditched the multi-interface shoe for attaching external flash, but its not a big deal.
The zoom range is less compared to RX100 II but the lens is faster now which lets you shoot at faster shutter speed in low light. Another cool thing is the 180 degree tiltable LCD to take selfies easily. The 3 inch display is enough to view your images at supreme quality instantly.
The device is small such that you can carry it in your pocket. It is lightweight also. The WiFi option is also good and fast.
Sony RX100 Pros
- Design- Small and Cute
- Electronic viewfinder which can be hidden away
- High ISO levels
- Superzoom lens and BIONZ X image processor
- WiFi enabled
- High resolution, crisp and clear images and video
- Very fast lens, amazing performance
Sony RX100 Cons
- The only drawback is the price. If you are willing to pay $800 for a perfect point and shoot camera, go for it.
Read User Reviews
#2 Canon PowerShot G7 X
Canon PowerShot G7 X, the one and only rival to Sony RX100 III. G7 X also possess 20MP 1″ sensor same type as with Sony’s. But the GX 7 X outperforms Sony in the 24-100mm equivalent zoom lens where Sony could come with 28-70mm equivalent lens only. This means Canon has got a better zoom range. But guess what, Canon does not have an electronic viewfinder to pop out. Both have got built in flash but no hot shoe.
Design is nearly same for both Sony and Canon. They are similar in dimensions and weight. Canon PowerShot G7 X also features a 3 inch 180 degree titable LCD screen which is equally good as Sony’s in outdoor performance. However, it doesn’t flip downwards, so that you will have to hold the camera upside down to take high angle photos. Sony RX100 III has the advantage over this as it can be flipped downwards also.
Image quality is better for Canon. It is great for taking stills, but the video quality and clarity is top notch for RX100 iii.
Unlike RX100 II, you will get a battery charger within the package so that you can charge extra batteries while shooting. RX100 III needs the camera to charge the battery.
Overall, Sony has better battery life, greater video quality and the integrated electronic viewfinder, while Canon has better zoom range, greater quality for stills and cost less.
Canon PoweShot G7 X Pros
- Great zoom range
- High quality photos
- Costs less than the competitors
Canon PowerShot G7 X Cons
- No viewfinder
- Video quality is not great
- Poor battery life than the competitors
Read User Reviews
Canon G7 vs Sony RX100 III
#3 Samsung Smart Camera WB350F
The WB350F is the cheapest compact camera with large sensor in the list. This can be classified as a travel zoom P&S camera. It is a 16MP compact digital camera with 1/ 2.3 inch BSI CMOS sensor featuring 21x zoom.
The design is cool overall with a leatherette appearance and the dust and moisture seals. The WB350F is available in many colors also. It is ergonomic and easy to use.
Speaking of the display, it has got a 3 inch TFT touch screen LCD monitor which is decent performing in outdoor conditions. It is bright, hue accurate and adjusts brightness automatically. But it suffers glare or reflections from outdoor lighting.
For the overall performance, the WB350F is above average in image quality and 1080p video recording. It can be used by anyone other than professionals. It has got WiFi and NFC too.
Samsung WB350F Pros
- 21x zoom
- Perfect for a beginner photographer
- Fast maximum aperture
Samsung WB350F Cons
- Glare LCD monitor
- Noise increases in high ISO levels
#4 Nikon Coolpix P7800
This is an advanced point and shoot camera with electronic viewfinder at a much lower price than Sony’s RX100 III. P7800 is the successor of Nikon’s hit P&S P7700 with some major updates.
First is the rubberized hand grip which gives you good grip. It is also made light weight consisting of solid metallic body colored black. There is a pop-up flash unit, an electronic viewfinder, an accessory port, mode dial, shutter button with a zoom lever and an exposure dial on the top. It also features a 3 inch 921-dot LCD screen which is tiltable and rotatable on a hinge.
Nikon Coolpix P7800 has got a 1/1.7 inch 12.2MP BSI CMOS sensor and an equivalent focal length of 28-200mm which gives 7.1x optical zoom. However low light photography is not quite as good as Sony RX100 III and Canon G7 X. It does not have a touch screen, manual focusing ring or WiFi.
Nikon offers quite a large range of ISO and the performance is good enough. Yet it gets little grainy at ISO 1600 onwards. The image quality in daylight is excellent though. Well, at this price point, it beats Canon PowerShot G7 X. But video shooting is a disappointment compared to the above high-end cameras.
The plus points for Nikon Coolpix P7800 are the viewfinder, large zoom range and lesser price than the competitors. Consider buying this only if you want these features at a lesser price. Otherwise choose G7 X or RX100 III.
Nikon P7800 Pros
- Electronic ViewFinder
- Longer zoom range
- Affordable price
- High quality stills
Nikon P7800 Cons
- No touch screen
- No WiFi
- No manual focus ring
Read User Reviews
#5 Canon PowerShot G1 X
The G1 X has got a large CMOS sensor, 14.3 MP 1.5 inch model sized much closer to Canon DSLRs. It also features 28 to 112mm focal range equivalent of 35mm which results in 4x stabilized optical zoom. You will love the telephoto quality of this camera.
The G1 X measures 4.6x3.17x2.55 inches and weighs about 17 pounds which is not so compact for your pockets. But it has got a bigger sensor too. The camera body has a matte black finish covering the metal build. It has prominent hand grip and great ergonomics.
Good news is the built in pop up electronic viewfinder similar to that of the Sony RX100 III or Nikon P7800. It is accompanied by the 3 inch 921k-dot LCD screen which delivers great outdoor performance. The monitor can swing 180 degree and rotate through 270 degree and has adjustable brightness levels.
The image quality is excellent and the video quality is quite good for Canon PowerShot G1 X. It has wide ISO range also.
Canon PowerShot G1 X pros
- High ISO performance is great
- Manual Controls are good
- Pop up electronic viewfinder
- High quality stills and videos
Canon PowerShot G1 X cons
- Slow autofocus acquisition time
- Only 77% coverage with viewfinder