Build quality and ergonomics
The SX50 HS is a good-looker, but you’ll be disappointed with the build quality. The all-black shell sports a matte finish, but the entire body feels plasticky instead of giving a rugged feel. It seems like Canon has compromised on the build quality to bring down the cost of the camera. Also, there’s no rubber grip for fingers and thumb. Although the camera feels quite secure and sturdy when held, rubber grip would have inspired even more confidence. Thankfully, the buttons and dials are placed in a way to make them accessible with the thumb and index finger. This makes it easy to operate the SX50 HS singlehandedly. The control panel to the right of the LCD display comprises a dedicated button for video recording, playback button, 5-way D-pad with jog dial, Display Information button and Menu button. The D-pad offers one-touch access to EV, self-timer, ISO and Macro. The user interface is very intuitive and typical of Canon PowerShot cameras. You press the Func. Set button in the centre of the D-pad to bring up the stack of parameters on the left and then use the D-pad or the directional buttons to apply the selected value/setting. Other less used options such as IS mode, AF type, flash options and so on, are present in the main menu. If you’re well-versed with digital cameras, it shouldn’t take more than a few minutes to get comfortable with the functions and the controls.
The stellar performance of the SX50 HS makes up for its flaws. What we liked best was shooting at full zoom. Keep the lock button pressed and you can actually feel the IS mechanism kicking in and trying to stabilise the frame. This makes it very easy to take handheld shots. Another notable aspect is the excellent noise handling. Even at ISO 800, the noise is minimal and that too in the form of luminance type, which can be easily reduced to a large extent in photo editing applications. The colour deviation was negligible because there was hardly any colour noise. The amount of grains increase a lot after ISO 1600, but such high values should be resorted to only in very low light conditions.
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