I’ll start with why I like the Sony HX80 pocket point & shoot long zoom camera with a tiny sensor. It’s small and easy to carry and I own it. My problem has been that even though I love the size and utility of the camera, I have stopped using it multiple times due to the image quality.
After hauling my Fuji X-Pro2 with the 55-200mm lens around the other day while out walking, I decided (again) that I really can’t keep doing that just in case I see something to photograph. Thinking about that, I started looking at one-inch sensor cameras with long zoom lenses. I found them to be expensive and large and heavy and I wasn’t interested in spending that kind of money for something that large.
The only thing left for me to consider was either backing off from using long focal length lenses (again), or finding a way to integrate my processing with a small sensor (1/2.3”) to a type of image that I’m OK with. I think I can do it since I have some prints on my wall that I made with older P&S cameras that I used in Tunisia and Egypt that are acceptable. I would like to be able to make more, if only to prove to myself that I can do it.
The pictures above are my latest processing attempts of a range of images that are close, if not OK, for my continued use of the HX80 camera and long focal lengths. I took the above pictures and processed them this morning. They were all made in the lower early morning light. They are a mixture of images with some made at the extreme end of the zoom range, some through my window, and some taken outside. They were all taken hand-held.
I next need to take the HX80 for a walk in bright sunlight to see how the processing I did works under those conditions. I also want to take it on the streets of Hanover and see what I can do with it under those conditions. I may need to either tweak my settings or develop multiple presets for different lighting and locations.
I imagine that some of you are wondering, what about in color. I haven’t given up on color and expect color images under good lighting will work, but I’m concerned that they might not work as well. The biggest problem I have with the small sensor is squirrely images of distant subjects. By that I mean that when you look closely at the pixels they seem to be painterly with a swirl effect. I have done a lot of processing on the above images to minimize that effect. My use of the camera will require that I integrate the processing with the type of compositions and the conditions under which I make the images, as well as how I use them. I’m thinking print vs. digital web images.
If this works out; i.e. I can use the HX80 to make suitable images for my blog, I will go into the details of how I process them in another post. I will also think some more about how I can use them. I would be very happy to use my Fuji X-Pro2 for my Homewood photography and use my Sony HX80 for my personal photography, and blog about it. My remaining concern, assuming I like the images under enough conditions, is getting out and using the camera for other than testing it and developing processing techniques.