Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX90V Review

Preview posted 04/13/2015 by William Chambers
Full review posted 07/12/2016 by Josh Fate

Quick Take
  • iAuto and Program shooting modes are accurate and easy in all situations
  • Dedicated Video Capture Button is always ready to record
  • 30x optical zoom lens is great for all shooting situations, near and far
  • Great overall image quality
  • 5-axis image stabilization goes a long way to help steady your handheld shots and videos
  • 3.0-inch, 921.6K dot Tilting LCD screen is sharp and produces excellent detail and color
  • Pop-up EVF gives the camera a unique feel at eye-level
  • Lens ring adds more versatility and control while shooting
  • Built-in GPS and WiFi are great features for adventuring
  • Good Battery Life
  • Competitively priced
  • Some noise in all sample images, common with an 18-Megapixel sensor of this size
  • Lower Resolution EVF doesn't give you the realistic feel that many of Sony's other EVFs do
  • Higher ISO images show very high levels of noise
  • Burst shooting stops at 10 images
  • Performance was a little slower than expected
Bottom Line
The Sony CyberShot HX90V is an incredibly versatile and compact digicam. A powerful processor and Zeiss 30x optical zoom lens are great compliments to the 18-Megapixel CMOS imaging sensor. Its versatility and great collection of features make it an awesome travel companion. Read more in our Full Conclusion.
In the Spring of 2015, Sony launched two new powerful Cyber-shot models, the DSC-HX90V and DSC-WX500, which at the time both shared the label of the world's "smallest 30x optical zoom compact camera" (as of 4/13/2015). Offering nearly identical specifications, these two new cameras boast a great deal of versatility, thanks to their impressive Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* 30x optical zoom lenses, 18.2-megapixel Exmor R CMOS image sensors, tilting 3.0-inch LCD screens, SteadyShot image stabilization, BIONZ X processors, et cetera . These features and more are packed into sleek black bodies, which measure just 2 x 7/8 x 2 1/4 inches.

So, what makes them different? Other than the model numbers, the HX90V adds several features over its WX sibling. These include a slightly enlarged hand grip, a retractable OLED viewfinder (more on that in a second), and built-in GPS functionality. These additional features will cost you about $100 over the WX500.

The retractable OLED viewfinder offers 638K dots of resolution, 100% frame coverage, 5 levels of brightness adjustment, and a built-in eye sensor. It retracts neatly inside the camera on the left hand side (as you're holding the camera), much like a small built-in flash.

Both models also sport Wi-Fi and NFC connectivity, which allows you to easily share photos and video via their free PlayMemories camera apps, as well as control the cameras remotely with your smart device.

For you video buffs, Sony has included their "broadcaster's quality" XAVC-S video format in both of these new models, which offers full HD video capture at 60fps or 24fps, at a bit rate of 50Mbps. You can also choose to shoot MP4 format video at 60 or 30fps.

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX90V Features;
  • 18.2-megapixel Exmor R CMOS image sensor (1/2.3")
  • 30x Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* zoom lens, covering 24-720mm (in 4:3 aspect)
  • BIONZ X processing engine
  • SteadyShot image stabilization (Optical + Electronic), including Intelligent Active mode
  • 3.0-inch tilting LCD screen with 922K dots
  • Retractable 638k dot OLED viewfinder
  • Full 1080/60p HD video capture using their XAVC S video format (MP4 also available)
  • Built-in Wi-Fi and NFC technologies
  • Built-in GPS
  • Card slot accepts Memory Stick Duo and SD/SDHC/SDXC type memory cards
  • Li-ion battery pack (record up to 390 shots)

The Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX90V is available in black, with a MSRP of $430. See our lowest price box at the top right of this page to see current online pricing.

What's in the box?:

  • DSC-HX90V Camera
  • Battery
  • USB Cable
  • AC Adapter
  • Wrist Strap
  • Manual

Additional Product Views


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