Canon SX50 HS review at Camera Labs: The '50' part of the name stands for the zoom ratio, and that's a huge number. Everything else is nitpicking when you consider this kind of camera.

"With the PowerShot SX50 HS Canon clearly had one aim in sight - to outdo every other super-zoom manufacturer in the market with a longer zoom range. It has succeeded and then some. To put it in context the SX50 HS's 24-1200mm equivalent range gives it more scope in terms of available focal lengths than most DSLR owners have in their bulky and heavy camera bags. There's virtually no situation it doesn't equip you for.

The addition of RAW shooting is a smart, if belated move, Canon having finally woken up to the fact that its absence

was losing the company sales to Panasonic's FZ models. And there's the slightly bigger, higher resolution LCD screen, another improvement that was probably long overdue.

So, for jaw-dropping zoom range, the PowerShot SX50 HS is now the new gold standard. Anyone who's bought a new super-zoom primarily for its long telephoto reach now has a new goal to aspire to, but that desire might not be so widespread as you'd think. Sure, there are those who will trade in their 25x, 30x and 42x models simply because they must have the biggest, and also some because they genuinely need a 1200mm zoom. But if I was the owner of a PowerShot SX40 HS I don't think I'd be fretting too much. With probably the same, or a least a similar sensor, the same Digic 5 processor, movie modes, exposure modes, viewfinder and similar burst shooting, it's really mostly about the lens.

That argument also holds for first time buyers. Ask yourself how important the 840-1200mm section of the SX50's zoom range is to you, and whether you're likely to take advantage of RAW modes. If the answers to those questions are 'not that much' then the older SX40 HS may be a better buy, so long as you can find it at a suitably discounted price; see my Canon SX40 HS review for more details. Taking that one-step further, ask yourself how important the 600-1200mm range is, as if again it's not that critical, then Panasonic's FZ200 will cover the range up to 600mm with a brighter and constant f2.8 aperture, along with including a more detailed viewfinder and a microphone input to boot.

That said, we are talking about super-zooms here, and there's no arguing that the SX50 trumps everything else in terms of its epic range. That, plus the addition of RAW modes and other improvements add up to a highly capable and well balanced model highly deserving of the Cameralabs Highly Recommended award. As the latest version of a series of best-sellers, there may also already be some keen prices available."

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