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Best Superzoom Digital Cameras 2014: Top Selling Bridge Cameras
Superzoom Digital Cameras
For all their advantages, point-and-shoots suffer from a universal limitation: affixed lenses that restrict utility in certain situations - especially those in which subjects are further than a few meters away. Hence, the rise in popularity of the superzoom compact cameras the lenses of which offer telephoto properties one wouldn't normally expect in the point-and-shoot category.
Nearly every manufacturer has one or two of these larger-sized shooters in their stable.
Here are a few worth checking out.
Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-HX100V
Excellent combination of quality and features!
With its versatile Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonar T lens, which offers 30x optical linear zoom, close focus functionality to capture subjects a centimeter away, and 27 mm equivalency for wide-angle group shots, the 16-megapixel HX100V strives to deliver a solution for nearly any situation in a single lens.
Throw in 1080p video capture, 3-D stills for those taken with modern stereoscopic imagery and amateur-friendly features - such as the self-explanatory "background defocus" mode - and you have an all-around DSLR alternative suitable for just about anyone.
Canon Powershot SX40 HS
A camera for demanding photographers
That rare non-interchangeable-lens camera with a swivel display, the PowerShot SX40 HS shows its versatility with a powerful 35x wide-angle optical zoom and high-speed burst shooting. 12.1-megapixel stills are worked on by Canon's new DIGIC 5 image processor in conjunction with a proprietary high-sensitivity system designed to improve low-light performance.
More than 30 pre-defined scenes make this super-zoom suitable for rookie shooters, while videographers will appreciate support for full-HD movie recording.
Fujifilm FinePix HS20 EXR
Stunning detail, many features!
Fujifilm's latest megazoom offering has a wide-angle Fujinon lens with 30x manual zoom that specialized not just in capturing distant subjects but also those as close as a single centimetre. Full manual controls mean advanced users can shoot in Raw format with shutter or aperture priority, while auto mode will detect more than two dozen different scene types and adjust settings appropriately.
A BSI-CMOS sensor captures 16-megapixel stills as well as 1080p video at up to 320 frames per second in slow-motion mode.
Nikon COOLPIX P500
A very well engineered camera
An impressive focal range of 22.5 to 810 mm makes the moderately sized Coolpix P500 extremely flexible. Its 36x wide-angle optical zoom lens reaches out to both far-off and up-close subjects with equal ease, and a side-mounted zoom control cuts down on jitter when making the most of the lens's telephoto capabilities.
Speedy start-up and 120-fps rapid fire shooting (at minimum resolution) increase the odds of capturing fleeting moments. A 2.1-megapixel CMOS sensor supported by a dual image processor captures 1080p movies in addition to stills.
Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ150
Photography is fun again
This nearly DSLR-sized brute strains the definition of compact, but it's still a little smaller and more portable than most interchangeable-lens cameras. Featuring a 24x optical zoom 25-600 mm lens matched with a 12-megapixel high-speed CCD sensor, it does a fine job of pulling in far off subjects and scenes. Extras include a 3D photo mode, 1080i video and variable-tilt 3-inch LCD screen.
The 12.1-MP Panasonic Lumix FZ150 with a 25-600 mm stabilized zoom is well-equipped and even includes a 3D photo and a 1080p AVCHD 2.0 video mode.
Olympus SP-810 Ultra Zoom
Easy to use and takes great pictures
A beautiful 36x zoom, wide-angle (24-864 mm equivalent) lens lets this powerful point-and-shoot reach out and touch distant subjects in impressive fashion. Autofocus tracking and dual image stabilization help ensure those subjects appear clear and detailed.
Its 3-inch LCD makes capturing both 14-megapixel photographs and 720p movies a pleasure, while support for HDMI Control means you can surf through your images on a TV using a standard remote. Stereoscopic stills and a fun "reflection" effect are the sugar on top.
Boasting a 24-864 mm stabilized zoom, the 14-MP Olympus SP-810 is quite compact and offers many functions, including 3D photo mode and art filters.
Good Point-and-Shoot Digital for Day-to-Day
Coming in at the lower end of the zoom category, Samsung's 14-megapixel WB210 sports a 21-mm Schneider-Kreuznach lens with optical image stabilization that Samsung describes as an "ultra-wide 12x super-zoom." It's suitable for both extreme close-ups and shooting at moderate distance.
An enormous 3.5-inch touch screen takes up the entire back side of the camera and provides a tile-based interface not dissimilar to that of a smartphone, making tinkering with the many on-board art filters a snap.
Great Features in a Compact Camera
Among the smaller superior zoom compacts you're likely to see, the SZ-30MR has a slim body more reminiscent of a traditional compact than a DSLR, though its complicated 24x optical zoom lens with 25mm wide-angle functionality juts out a fair distance when fully extended.
Its Dual TruePic image processor facilitates the simultaneous capture of full resolution 16-megapixel still images and 1080p movies, which can be shot in both wide-angle and telephoto mode. Instant art filters and 3-D imaging add to the fun.