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Hybrid Digital Cameras Guide

Posted by [email protected] on May 5, 2016 at 1:15 AM


The choice of the lens on a compact

Halfway between compact and SLR, not quite either of the bridges, "hybrids" are the latest development in digital cameras. They have been specially designed for those looking for a quality close to that of reflex associated with compact maneuverability . After sluggish start , they now face a real success.

Hybrid combine the advantages of both technologies. Thanks to their housing similar to those of compact cameras, they have a space and weight limitations. But as the SLR, they offer the ability to change lenses to get a good picture quality and the ability to adapt shooting each situation. Finally, the hybrid models are particularly aimed at lovers of beautiful photos that do not want too much clutter.


More or less compact models

All members of the family of hybrids are not alike. Some manufacturers seek above all to make their devices as compact as possible. But in this case, certain elements may be sacrificed, as the viewfinder. Others play more on the similarity with reflex. They are usually a little more impressive. In each choice.


The image quality at the rendezvous

With their hybrids, manufacturers promise a similar image quality to that of SLR, thanks to components of good quality and large size sensors. The models we have tested to date attest: the picture quality is overall at the rendezvous. Images are generally sharp and bright and most hybrid of performance does not blush to those of some reflex. In video mode, the hybrids seem to be as good as SLR cameras (laboratory results are comparable), at least when lighting conditions are good. In low light, the hybrid may experience a bit more difficult. Finally, usability side, nothing to say. If hybrids all have powerful automatic modes, they also offer easy access to many manual settings.

With or without Viewfinder?

Considered by some as a handicap, the electronic viewfinder has a big advantage: it helps to have a pretty good idea of ​​the layout according to the settings before taking the picture, which does not allow a reflex sight. In addition, manufacturers have improved the definition and limited the lag effect making it difficult framing moving subjects. Our tests show that finally trigger times are generally shorter when the framing is done through the viewfinder than the screen (Live View mode). However, it remains less precise than the optical viewfinder to own reflex, and for reasons of size or price, some hybrids prefer to make or propose the optional (180 € Sony, Panasonic € 200 for example).


Connectivity galore

NFC, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth ... hybrids are all hyper-connected. With these wireless link protocols, can usually send your photos by email or on social networks directly from the camera, or connect the camera to a smartphone in order to change settings or run from triggering an app. Not essential, but frankly practice. however be careful because all connected cameras do not offer the same services or even the ergonomics.


A wide range of objectives

fixed focal length, telephoto, wide angle ... manufacturers now offer a wide optical range for all situations. They have even developed motorized zoom, integrated optical stabilization, designed optical brighter ... In addition, like the housings, optical hybrids are more compact and lighter than the SLR.


You already have SLR goals? By default, they are inconsistent with the hybrid models. Indeed, the appliances mounts differ from brand to brand and from a family of aircraft to another. To keep their customers, manufacturers have however developed rings that allow new mounts adapt to old objectives. Just find the right jungle manufacturers and formats. The problem of these rings is that they are expensive and do not always retain some features (AF or zoom motor, for example, are sometimes unavailable). Above all, the objectives of SLR cameras are much larger and heavier than those designed specifically for hybrids. This solution is not viable in the long term.


A price which is not compact

One downside: the price of these devices. Be equipped with a hybrid expensive, between 500 and € 1,300. What wonder whether it is not better to buy a good compact wide zoom range (a bigger zoom), for which a budget of € 300 is enough, or a true SLR, even entry. Especially since, if they come with an optical "boilerplate" (14-42 mm or 18-55 mm), hybrids, to be used fully, must be accompanied by complementary objectives. The costs are far from negligible: from 300 to € 1,300 each!

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