Sony HX5 Super Macro Close-up

Every year this fellow stops over at our place for a short visit

same species, taken summer 2008 with a 7 MP Ricoh R6


Sony HX5 - personal log

Well the Olympus SZ-30MR proved again that technical data are just a guide line in the initial choice. I was very disappointed with the results an keep my HX5 happily for another year.


I stumbled today over an Olympus SZ-30MR today sitting next to a Canon SX230 for the same price of 329 Euro. For that price I thought I give it a test run and compare it with a 10 MP Sony HX5V and a 5 MP Canon S2
more at: http://sz30mr.blogspot.com/

I decided against buying a HX9V so this blog will be active again.



Removing dust from the sensor
I just found this post what to do if you find permanent blobs on your pictures in the same area.

Here is the procedure explained from Cy Cheze:
 I removed the bottom screws, took off the bottom and left (from behind) side bracket, and then removed the two screws under that panel. I then carefully pulled off the back panel, tugging it gently downward to get free of the upper strip or panel. I then carefully unfastened the control button panel and moved it to the right, being gentle with the connecting strip. I then lifted the LCD panel. Underneath, there is a coin-shaped panel covering the sensor and the lens section underneath. I removed the two screws and lifted the panel. The copper-colored CMOS is "easy" to lift without damage.
The dust particles were very tiny but also very evident and conformed to the pattern seen on zoom pictures. An air blower did not suffice to clean it, so I used a brand new lens cleaning cloth. The specs were stubborn, but did come off without ruining the sensor. Given their color and the rather isolated location, they seem more likely to be of internal origin.
There is no direct exposure to the other side of the lens glass or the lens turrent seams. When seated the sensor fits against a tiny gasket and plastic screen, which fit against the beginning of the lens section. I cleaned them too, just in case, but this can be tricky unless one has a non-scratch tweezers and immaculate settings. I then reassembled everything, which proved to be easier than I feared. The screw slots were no trouble to align.

Result: No more dust spots, so far. Honestly. I cross my fingers and hope not to see any new ones too soon. The cleaning job turns out to be slightly less challenging than fixing a leaky faucet, but with the proviso that the parts are much more tiny and delicate. The other hazard is if you introduce more dirt or have improper tools. A single finger print or scratch would be a problem.


Sony HX5 - Snap Shots

Since a few days something is different when I leave the house.
I have a hard bulge in my front pocket. When I see something exiting, I love to get my hand into my pocket and get the object of my desire out to play with it.
The result are moments frozen in time, some I find worth suspending on magnetic containment.
oh my, don´t you have a wicked mind...

Shots are resized and might be post processed to give you an idea what I saw when I took them.

I finally tracked down the Yodeling Stick Insect from the Garden of Five Surprises - click for full size


replacing the Sony HX5

A new year has begun and new cameras starting to emerge.

While the Sony HX7V has some nice new features, it failed to impress me.
This changed with the specs I dug out from the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX9V.

If you want to know if the HX9 will be a sure bet than head over to my HX9V blog and read:

Sony HX9V compared with the Sony HX5

In this post you will learn the ugly truth about the retarded Megapixel race and why even the HX5 with only 10 does not have so crisp pictures as we all hoped she would have.


Sony HX5 - does World´s Greatest Bodypainters

Since this post is one of the most viewed, I decided to dig through my pictures again and show you some other shots. Scroll all the way down.

Just in our neighborhood this weekend was a body painter exhibition, so I took the HX5 on to her first fun trip.

If you want a peek the the painting session the day before, here are from a local paper some impressions.

Happily I live in a country where women and man have the same right to go topless on the beach, you do not get arrested if you wear a string tanga as it will happen in certain parts of the USA. It is also normal for the little ones to run around naked on the beach and no body cares, but:
If you have problems with bare breasts or exposed nipples then I have to pull a Gandalf on you.


10 fps at the racetrack

We had some dirt road racing this weekend on the island and I always wanted to do some action shots of fast moving objects to see how well the HX5 is doing.
Shot with 10 fps, sports mode or P mode for a more dramatic blur (see exif).


SONY HX5V or rather SAMSUNG TL350 / WB2000


Well I made the right choice with the HX5, seeing this moving video and reading this profi review.
I just found 2 user reviews of the camera, so it seems since August the Samsung is available.

Links on my Samsung blog.

The posting about the comparison got out of hand regarding the WB2000, so I decided she gets her own blog, visit her at: http://wb2000-insider.blogspot.com


Sony HX5 Super Macro ANTS

This summer the ants are taking over the kitchen and try to clean everything what is out just for a minute or so.
These little buggers are tiny, so I thought why not try to blow them up a bit with the HX5.
All shots are original size lossless crops unchanged in any way and taken with super macro 2.4 x and forced flash.

This clip, 1 cent ants, was shot in 1080 and then cropped to 720 to bring the action closer.
Sony HX5 in super macro mode (2.4 x zoom and 5cm=2" distance)


Sony HX5 - comparing video resolutions part II

2010-8-13 18.18
You find the first comparison between the 4 HD video modes at Sony HX5 - Video.

For this test I downloaded this and this test cart picture. I put the HX5 on a tripod and tried to get all of the full HD TV screen onto the HX5 display. WD TV was used to display the test cart pictures on the TV.

To compare full HD with the lower resolutions all non full HD screen grabs are resized to 1920 x 1080. Then a center crop of 640 x 640 is taken for fast and easy comparison.


HX5 video workflow

Sadly the Sony software to manipulate a video clip is very basic and likes only Sony video clips.
A clear case for the uninstall program. Hey Sony, how about a Vegas light for your customers!

Catching my local wildlife by looking like a clown while gorging the leftovers from the bakery is not too easy. But there is the super macro at 2.4 x zoom (see the posting about that) and a little pocket tripod and then just letting the camera run.

After 18 min and 45 seconds we have 9 minute 10 seconds of action in 3 installments and the rest is just nothing going on.
I prefer 720p since I did not find much more detail in the larger and full HD files so far (see posting).

First we need to cut the 841 MB AVCHD file.
The program of choice is the freeware AVIDEMUX what also has a good wiki about it´s functions in our case the cutting.
Marking the beginning and the end of the 4 non action parts I cut out 9 min and 35 seconds.

Video and Audio is set on copy and the Format is set to MP4, Save video and you are done.
Now drag and drop the 411 MB big file into HandBrake, setting as usual RF:25 and 128 Dolby Pro Logic II and a few minutes later I have a 45 MB small 9 minute video clip.
Setting the B-Frames to 16 results in a 42 MB small file.

Now why are these files so tiny? Because there is very little movement in the video and we are doing a quality based compression. Remember the comparison with the boats and the grasshopper? See - there you go.

Original file 411 MB


HX5v Reviews

2010-7-30 1.44
cd watch Japan with a google translated review

dpreview has travel zoom group test

EOSHD take on the HX5 part 1 part 2

Luminous Landscape reviews the HX5

dc watch Japan HX5VB review with lots of samples

digitalkamera.de HX5v review in German and translated in English

Photographybay has a short review of the HX5

HX5V Chasing the Cherry Blossom a Japanese review

dkamera has the first German HX5Vreviewtranslation

all the way from AustraliaHX5V review

DCResource also tried to review the HX5V, sadly Jeff did not understand the Exmor sensor at all

Trusted Reviews has also a HX5V review

DC Watch Japan has a HX5V review with comparison active mode vs steady shot

Camera Labs brings you a HX5V review all the way from New Zealand.

Imaging Resource with the HX5V review

The first HX5V review comes from quesabesde. In Spanish and the Google translation into English


Sony HX5 - Video Encoding

2010-7-19 15.21
Why would you want to re-compress you video files?
Well, I don´t know about you, but with the quality the HX5 gives me in videos, I find myself using the video function more and more. And that shows on my disc. Where before a DVD was enough to archive several years of picture memories including some clips, now a DVD would be filled in a matter of weeks.
So I need a way of keeping the videos I want but if I could get them smaller without loss of visible quality that would be perfect.

After spending several days work to try all kinds of programs and fiddle with the settings to get exactly the results the way I wanted it it is time to share that information with you. In one sentence: You can save 50 to 75% of space and keep a good quality.
If you have lots of movement over most of the screen, then re-compression might not save you much. This 3 min clip "Fiesta del Carmen Gran Canaria 2010 - Sony HX5.MP4" in the original is 150 Mb re-compressed with RF:25 (see below) brought the file down to 132 Mb. In a case like this you already got the best compression / quality ratio in the original file.

If you have a mostly static scene like on this 32 second clip a small grasshopper drinking, you can archive a compression from the original 24 Mb to 3.3 Mb at setting RF:25 what is quite a lot for nearly the same quality. This clip was taken to test if the HX5 macro sweet spot from 2.4 x works also in video mode. And yes it does very well, our grasshopper here is roughly 1 inch = 2,5 cm long. Focus was set to spot.


Sony HX5 - canceling the wind noise

2010-7-16 2.36 

...by now you have seen that funky "hat" my HX5 has.
Let me tell you about that. I did some research with different materials to check what works easy and effective on my Sony HX1. See my post: SONY HX1 - Silence, I kill you

I read a bit around how other people tackle that problem. I want an eye pleasing - but worst case - a not too disturbing look.


Sony HX5 - Photo Samples

2010-6-8 10.7

Here you will find fotos who impressed me, straight out of the camera.
Due to the 1600 pixel limitation of Picasa (the way Blogger saves the images), I will upload the original fotos to Image Shack. The link will be below the fotos.
If I post a crop, it will be lossless so you can see the original quality.
No post processing will be done on any picture if not stated.

4 kids on a float in traditional cloth
original here
I tried several time to improve the picture above, but even a slight sharpening takes away from the mood the picture is setting. For my taste this came out perfect.


Sony HX5 vs Sony HX1

2010-6-1 17.10
The battle of the Xes

macro close up both in AI mode, the HX5 (always the left picture) used the macro sweet spot at 2.4 x.
The sweet spot from the HX1 is 1.5 x, what does not give you more magnification on the contrary to the HX5 but gives you some more distance from the object what otherwise nearly would touch the lens (see more details on my HX1 blog also with the skeleton watch close ups).
The crops are lossless, that means you see the original quality.
As you can see the HX5 has a wider depth of field (DOF).
Cameras were sitting on the table.


Sony HX5 - advanced Image manipulation

2010-5-28 15.13

I guess by now a few of you have read my post under Tips and Tricks how with the free Faststone Image Viewer it is easy and fast to improve your fotos.

I would like to take you a step further today.
The main problem with a lot of pictures it the things that lurk lost in the shadow.
How to enhance these hidden parts without messing up the picture.

Let´s get a copy of LightBox Free Image Editor and I show you how you can easy and fast get results like this.

Download the before foto from below and open in LightBox.


Sony HX5 - HDR mode

2010-5-27 23.28

When I took these 3 shots to see how good HDR would work out, I noticed that the HDR mode takes brilliance and contrast away.
I love that blue sky in HDR mode but the little stone wall on the left, what happened to the contrast?

If you want to get the most range out of your HDR shot, aim to the brightest area and lock the exposure (half press the shutter and hold) and then frame what you want to capture.



Sony HX5 - Battery test

2010-5-26 15.15

How long does the HX5 battery last?

How much faster will the activated GPS drain the battery?

Let´s find out.

We start with a freshly charged battery,
The display is set to bright, GPS is off.
The test cycle is:


Sony HX5 - Macro Zoom

2010-5-21 16.16

To get close to an object you just leave the camera on wide angle  and this is the closest you can get, right?
Let´s find out.

25 mm no zoom


Sony HX5 - Audio

I had the pleasure to video a rehearsal for a concert and was not too happy with the dynamic of the sound and clever as I was I left my new wind filter at home. The active mode image stabilisation worked very well with the 10 x zoom and holding the camera still for several minutes.


Sony HX5 - Street Shooting

2010-5-6 21.14

Welcome to the fascinating world of Street Photography. There are different techniques from big equipment in your face photography to the hidden spycam approach. To get an idea, read here, here and here. You are also welcome to see my approach to street shooting with the HX1

self portrait in my usual street shooting position.

In a time where most people are highly sensitive of photography and you get into trouble just snapping some shots of buildings I think it is the easiest way to just be casual and unobtrusive.

The camera on the left sure would get you into trouble these days.
(was thinking of Stephen McDonald´s HX1 gun when I took this shot)


Sony HX5 - Mode Comparison

So what is the difference between the scene modes and IAuto, P and HDR?

High Iso


SONY Cyber-shot DSC HX5V on the web

last edit 10-5-24 10:47

Pictures, Videos and Links of the SONY HX5v

If you want to compare the HX5 with the NEX5, some first impressions
Digital Photography Tutorial Index
You want all the bells and whistles from the HX5 but a much better picture quality? No problem take a look at the Sony NEX-5 (want also more knobs and dials how about the NEX-7)
Sony inside: Teardown of the Casio Exilim EX-FH100
HX5 gets scorched by H.Paul Moon: Pacaya Volcano, Guatemala
Miniatur Wunderland HX5 video in low light
Gordon from Camera Labs updated his HX5 review with comparison HHT and AMB vs. P mode. Well done Gordon!


Sony HX5 - Panorama Mode

2010-5-4 16.16
Start with my HX1 post: I can show you the world

Now that you have some basic understanding, let´s see what the HX5 can do.
You have 4 sizes to shoot panoramas:
2 landscape and 2 portrait sizes

my favorite mode is portrait large

5 x 2 k pixel gives you a nice 10 MP picture
This is like having a 180 degree fisheye lens all time with you!


Sony HX5 - Pluto explains the Super Magic Mirror

2010-5-1 11.11

Well, sure it protects the screen when closed but what else can it do?

use it as a tripod to shoot upwards


Sony HX5 - low light video

Is the HX5 video performance bad in low light? Let´s find out.

ISO 400 1/2 second NO TRIPOD!


Sony HX5v User Impressions

10-04-29 14:12

Over the past year, I have traded away a ZS3, sold an SX200, returned an SX210 (yes, the big news for today), and also returned a Samsung HZ30W. And the camera I'm actually keeping in this segment is the Sony HX5. Let me give you some thoughts about each of these cameras:

Sony HX5 - Video

Short breakdown of my tests so far.
  • The simple 720p mode records roughly in the high 80% of the maximum possible resolution.

    original video screen grab (full size 720x1280)
    To better compare the quality as you see them on the big screen TV all clips have been resized with maximum quality to full HD resolution.


Sony HX5 - Screen Protector

Here you see a shot with the unprotected screen. I wish Sony would get rid of the high gloss screen and we all would go back to non glossy screens for notebooks and cameras (as the most HD tv´s are doing so already)

I had another screen protector foil laying around what I used on a 3.5" pocket PC and it worked quite well on my MIO 168 but the result on the Sony HX5 screen was less then satisfactory.


Sony HX5 - Flash

I read in a forum post that the HX5 would have some problems in throttling down the flash output.
So lets check the truth.

8 cm (3") distance no zoom

that is nearly as close as you can get and the flash did not blow out the white parts, the colors are right on target.


HX5 problems and solutions

moved to: HX5 - TIPS & TRICKS


HELP WANTED test your EXMOR against a CCD in low light video

10-4-19 15:45
I need your help in analysing a problem I stumbled over.
Well to be honest other people did the stumbling over , I just like to get to the bottom of it.


If I may play Devil´s Advocate

10-04-15 21:16
forum post for this entry also look here

For everybody who is not familiar with the meaning of the headline, you slip in the role of your opposite and argue from his point of view.

So far I have been quite impressed with the Sony Hx5. All the pictures, videos, information from users and reviews.
Every time something was a bit not so right I have looked for a solution or if no solution was possible for an excuse why this feature was not so important for me.

... if you already have a HX5 you might want to read no further ...


let´s compare the SONY HX5v with ...

last edit 10-03-30 21:12
You got to be kidding
Checking the reviews from the Canon SX210, Panasonic TZ10 and the Sony HX5V I stumbled over a couple head scratchers.


SONY HX5v Highlights

Let me give you an idea what the HX5v will be capable of.
last edit 10-3-13 19:02

How good is the Active Mode?


SONY HX5v Speculations

Questions and soon hopefully the answers
last edit 10-3-13 20:19


SONY HX5 understanding the specifications

last edit 10- 02-11 00:20

Backlight Correction HDR

Shooting high-contrast scenes can often lead to washed out backgrounds and details lost in shadow.