Canon Powershot SX50 HS – a second look

I have been fighting my cold / chest infection all week so I have not had a chance to give the SX50 a second whirl. However today I went for a walk into the local town and tried some more shots. These are certainly more challenging in the sense that I had no tripod so long zooms were tricky. However for posting on the web I think it is fine. If you want to print A2 size, use a tripod and shoot RAW as your starting point. these are all jpeg and in Program mode. Some have some exposure compensation dialed in.

Lets do the zoom test first. A shot of the harbour. Look carefully for the bird of prey.

Now lets zoom in. The first shot was wide open at 24mm and this was my next effort:

Now that is better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick in my humble opinion.

I did one more in black and white. I’m not sure why.

Now lets look at a much closer shot of a crab, awaiting its fate………. dish of the day in a seafood restaurant. Far too pretty to eat in my view – fabulous make-up. Love the blusher.

And how about a shoot from the hip portrait?

I really am getting to like the fold out screen but my loathing for the viewfinder knows no bounds. It is like looking through the bottom of a beer glass with the dregs still un-drunk. I find it is pretty easy to walk along looking down at the screen at waist level and keeping the zoom wide open you can shoot within a few feet of your subject without arousing interest. Whether you think that is ethical or not we shall leave for another day. I also found the auto focus missed quite a few times. It seems to want to cover too large an area so if you are trying to get the eyes sharp then its not guaranteed if the AF box covers such a large area. In the unlikely event that I ever read the manual I shall see if there is a solution to this. I also have to say that as a B&W junkie I am not too keen on the preset B&W jpeg. I played around with them in Lightroom but I think I will shoot in colour and convert in future. I do like the colour film option.

I used that for this shot of the bay.

Hmmm. Not bad but I hope I’d get better from my 5D3 and 24-70mm F2.8 monster.

Here are two final shots. I was smitten by the light over the hills as I walked home and wanted to see what the sensor would do with extremes of contrast. Well you can’t have everything.

Look along the hill line and it has not coped well – quite strong contrast fringing. It doesn’t look like the normal purple fringing of chromatic aberration but it still sucks at 100%. But as I said at the top, I don’t think you’d print A2 size from this camera, at least not from a jpeg – for uploading on to the web its acceptable. There is some noise in the shadows but it is no worse than I expected.

I wanted to see if it would look more dramatic in glorious monochrome.

Its not bad and I could probably play with it for another half hour and do a bit better but life’s too short. So, any other gripes? Well getting a nice bokeh like I do with my M9 and the Summilux 35mm ASPH is beyond this camera. But the price difference is about HK$100k 😉

So think “value for money” or “bang for your buck” and this is a really interesting product. I see this as another weapon in the armory rather than replacing my existing kit. We are going off to Korea in a week or so and Mrs. Ha has bagged this camera for the holiday. She likes it very much. I like its versatility and if I were hiking long distances I’d be very happy to put this round my neck for the day. As with any investment, do your own research. And remember, there will always be another temptation from the camera firms soon. I hope my willpower is stronger than the breaking strain of a KitKat.


3 thoughts on “Canon Powershot SX50 HS – a second look

  1. You know how to work a camera no matter what kind is in your hands. I liked all of the photos especially the bird of prey. The sun beam shining through the clouds that highlighted the hills was outstanding. I can’t really crituque in a pro manner. I just go with what is pleasant to my eyes. Thanks for for the lovely views.


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