Sony HX90V vs HX99
The Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX90V and the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX99 are two digital cameras that were announced, respectively, in April 2015 and August 2018. Both the HX90V and the HX99 are fixed lens compact cameras that are equipped with a 1/2.3-inch sensor. Both cameras offer a resolution of 18 megapixels.
Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.
Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX90V and the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX99? Which one should you buy? Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their body size, their imaging sensors, their shooting features, their input-output connections, and their reception by expert reviewers.
An illustration of the physical size and weight of the Sony HX90V and the Sony HX99 is provided in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three successive views from the front, the top, and the rear are shown. All width, height and depth measures are rounded to the nearest millimeter.
In this particular case, the Sony HX90V and the Sony HX99 have exactly the same width and height, and, thus, have identically-sized bodies. However, the HX99 is slightly lighter (1 percent) than the HX90V. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the HX90V nor the HX99 are weather-sealed.
The battery packs of both cameras can be charged via USB, which can be very convenient when travelling.
The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the two cameras alongside a broader set of comparators. If you want to switch the focus of the display and review another camera pair, you can move across to the CAM-parator tool and choose from the broad selection of possible camera comparisons there.
|1.||Sony HX90V||102 mm||58 mm||36 mm||245 g||360||n||Apr 2015||429||ebay.com|
|2.||Sony HX99||102 mm||58 mm||36 mm||242 g||370||n||Aug 2018||449||amazon.com|
|3.||Canon SX730||110 mm||64 mm||40 mm||300 g||250||n||Apr 2017||399||ebay.com|
|4.||Canon SX720||110 mm||64 mm||36 mm||270 g||250||n||Feb 2016||379||ebay.com|
|5.||Kodak AZ901||139 mm||104 mm||119 mm||777 g||400||n||Jan 2016||499||amazon.com|
|6.||Sony HX95||102 mm||58 mm||36 mm||242 g||370||n||Aug 2018||429||amazon.com|
|7.||Sony WX800||102 mm||58 mm||36 mm||233 g||370||n||Oct 2018||399||ebay.com|
|8.||Sony RX100 V||102 mm||58 mm||41 mm||299 g||220||n||Oct 2016||999||ebay.com|
|9.||Sony HX80||102 mm||58 mm||36 mm||245 g||390||n||Mar 2016||349||ebay.com|
|10.||Sony HX350||130 mm||93 mm||103 mm||652 g||300||n||Dec 2016||449||ebay.com|
|11.||Sony RX100 IV||102 mm||58 mm||41 mm||298 g||280||n||Jun 2015||999||ebay.com|
|12.||Sony HX400V||130 mm||93 mm||103 mm||660 g||300||n||Feb 2014||499||ebay.com|
|Note: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.|
The price is, of course, an important factor in any camera decision. The retail prices at the time of the camera’s release place the model in the market relative to other models in the producer’s line-up and the competition. The HX90V was somewhat cheaper (by 4 percent) than the HX99 at launch, but both cameras fall into the same price category. Usually, retail prices stay at first close to the launch price, but after several months, discounts become available. Later in the product cycle and, in particular, when the replacement model is about to appear, further discounting and stock clearance sales often push the camera price considerably down.
The size of the imaging sensor is a crucial determinant of image quality. A large sensor will tend to have larger individual pixels that provide better low-light sensitivity, wider dynamic range, and richer color-depth than smaller pixel-units in a sensor of the same technological generation. Further, a large sensor camera will give the photographer additional creative options when using shallow depth-of-field to isolate a subject from its background. On the downside, larger sensors are more costly to manufacture and tend to lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.
Both cameras under consideration feature a 1/2.3-inch sensor and have a format factor (sometimes also referred to as "crop factor") of 5.6. Within the spectrum of camera sensors, this places the review cameras among the smaller-sensor digicams that favor affordability and compact design. Both cameras feature a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 4:3.
The two cameras under review do not only share the same sensor size, but also offer an identical resolution of 18 megapixels. This similarity in sensor specs implies that both the HX90V and the HX99 have the same pixel density, as well as the same pixel size. It should, however, be noted that the HX99 is much more recent (by 3 years and 4 months) than the HX90V, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that neither of the two cameras has an anti-alias filter installed, so they are able to capture all the detail the sensor resolves.
The Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX90V has a native sensitivity range from ISO 80 to ISO 3200, which can be extended to ISO 80-12800. The corresponding ISO settings for the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX99 are ISO 80 to ISO 3200, with the possibility to increase the ISO range to 80-6400.
In terms of underlying technology, the HX90V is build around a BSI-CMOS sensor, while the HX99 uses a CMOS imager. Both cameras use a Bayer filter for capturing RGB colors on a square grid of photosensors. This arrangement is found in most digital cameras.
Since 2007, DXO Mark has published sensor performance measurements that have been derived using a consistent methodology. This service determines an overall sensor rating, as well as sub-scores for low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and color depth ("DXO Portrait"). The following table provides an overview of the physical sensor characteristics, as well as the sensor quality measurements for a selection of comparators.
|8.||Sony RX100 V||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||22.8||12.4||586||70|
|11.||Sony RX100 IV||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||22.8||12.6||591||70|
|Note: DXO values in italics represent estimates based on sensor size and age.|
Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but also of capturing video footage. Both cameras under consideration have a sensor with sufficiently fast read-out times for moving pictures, but the HX99 provides a better video resolution than the HX90V. It can shoot movie footage at 4K/30p, while the HX90V is limited to 1080/60p.
Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The HX90V and the HX99 are similar in the sense that both feature an electronic viewfinder, which is helpful when framing images in bright sunlight. Moreover, their viewfinders offer an identical resolution of 638k dots. The following table reports on some other key feature differences and similarities of the Sony HX90V, the Sony HX99, and comparable cameras.
|1.||Sony HX90V||638||n||3.0 / 921||tilting||n||1/2000s||10.0/s||Y||Y|
|2.||Sony HX99||638||n||3.0 / 922||tilting||Y||1/2000s||10.0/s||Y||Y|
|3.||Canon SX730||none||n||3.0 / 922||tilting||n||1/3200s||5.9/s||Y||Y|
|4.||Canon SX720||none||n||3.0 / 922||fixed||n||1/3200s||5.9/s||Y||Y|
|5.||Kodak AZ901||202||n||3.0 / 920||swivel||n||1/2000s||5.0/s||Y||Y|
|6.||Sony HX95||638||n||3.0 / 922||tilting||n||1/2000s||10.0/s||Y||Y|
|7.||Sony WX800||none||n||3.0 / 922||tilting||Y||1/2000s||10.0/s||Y||Y|
|8.||Sony RX100 V||2359||n||3.0 / 1229||tilting||n||1/2000s||24.0/s||Y||Y|
|9.||Sony HX80||638||n||3.0 / 922||tilting||n||1/2000s||10.0/s||Y||Y|
|10.||Sony HX350||202||n||3.0 / 922||tilting||n||1/4000s||10.0/s||Y||Y|
|11.||Sony RX100 IV||2359||n||3.0 / 1228||tilting||n||1/2000s||16.0/s||Y||Y|
|12.||Sony HX400V||210||n||3.0 / 921||tilting||n||1/4000s||10.0/s||Y||Y|
|Notes: *) Information refers to the mechanical shutter, unless the camera only has an electronic one.|
One differentiating feature between the two cameras concerns the touch sensitivity of the rear screen. The HX99 has a touchscreen, while the HX90V has a conventional panel. Touch control can be particularly helpful, for example, for setting the focus point.Both cameras have an articulated rear screen that can be turned to be front-facing. This feature will be particularly appreciated by vloggers and photographers who are interested in taking selfies.
Both the HX90V and the HX99 have zoom lenses built in. Both optics share the same full frame equivalent focal length range (4.1-123mm) and have identical aperture specifications (f/3.5-6.4). Both cameras offer the same maximum aperture.
Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the HX90V and the HX99 write their files to SDXC or Memory Stick PRO Duo cards. Both cameras can use UHS-I cards, which provide for Ultra High Speed data transfer of up to 104 MB/s.
For some imaging applications, the extent to which a camera can communicate with its environment can be an important aspect in the camera decision process. The table below provides an overview of the connectivity of the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX90V and Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX99 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
Mic / Speaker
|1.||Sony HX90V||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|2.||Sony HX99||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||Y|
|3.||Canon SX730||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||Y|
|4.||Canon SX720||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|5.||Kodak AZ901||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
|6.||Sony HX95||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||Y|
|7.||Sony WX800||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|8.||Sony RX100 V||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|9.||Sony HX80||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|10.||Sony HX350||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||-||-||-|
|11.||Sony RX100 IV||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|12.||Sony HX400V||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
Travel and landscape photographers will find it useful that the HX90V has an internal geolocalization sensor and can record GPS coordinates in its EXIF data.
The HX99 is a recent model that features in the current product line-up of Sony. In contrast, the HX90V has been discontinued (but can be found pre-owned on ebay). As a replacement in the same line of cameras, the HX90V was succeeded by the Sony HX99. Further information on the features and operation of the HX90V and HX99 can be found, respectively, in the Sony HX90V Manual (free pdf) or the online Sony HX99 Manual.
So what conclusions can be drawn? Which of the two cameras – the Sony HX90V or the Sony HX99 – has the upper hand? Is one clearly better than the other? Below is a summary of the relative strengths of each of the two contestants.
Arguments in favor of the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX90V:
- Easier geotagging: Features an internal GPS sensor to log localization data.
- More heavily discounted: Has been available for much longer (launched in April 2015).
Reasons to prefer the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX99:
- Better video: Provides higher definition movie capture (4K/30p vs 1080/60p).
- Fewer buttons to press: Has a touchscreen to facilitate handling and shooting adjustments.
- Easier wireless transfer: Supports Bluetooth for image sharing without cables.
- More modern: Reflects 3 years and 4 months of technical progress since the HX90V launch.
If the count of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a measure, the HX99 emerges as the winner of the match-up (4 : 2 points). However, the relative importance of the various individual camera aspects will vary according to personal preferences and needs, so that you might like to apply corresponding weights to the particular features before making a decision on a new camera. A professional wedding photographer will view the differences between cameras in a way that diverges from the perspective of a travel photog, and a person interested in cityscapes has distinct needs from a macro shooter. Hence, the decision which camera is best and worth buying is often a very personal one.
How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Sony HX90V and the Sony HX99 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Superzoom Camera listing whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.
In any case, while the comparison of the spec-sheets of cameras can offer a general idea of their imaging potential, it remains incomplete and does no justice, for example, to the way the HX90V or the HX99 perform in practice. User reviews that are available, for instance, at amazon can sometimes shed light on these issues, but such feedback is all too often partial, inconsistent, and inaccurate.
This is why expert reviews are important. The following table reports the overall ratings of the cameras as published by some of the major camera review sites (amateurphotographer [AP], cameralabs [CL], digitalcameraworld [DCW], dpreview [DPR], ephotozine [EPZ], photographyblog [PB]). As can be seen, the professional reviewers agree in many cases on the quality of different cameras, but sometimes their assessments diverge, reinforcing the earlier point that a camera decision is often a very personal choice.
|1.||Sony HX90V||4/5||+ +||..||..||4/5||4.5/5||Apr 2015||429||ebay.com|
|2.||Sony HX99||..||..||..||..||4/5||4.5/5||Aug 2018||449||amazon.com|
|3.||Canon SX730||..||+||..||..||4/5||4/5||Apr 2017||399||ebay.com|
|4.||Canon SX720||..||+||..||..||4/5||4.5/5||Feb 2016||379||ebay.com|
|5.||Kodak AZ901||..||..||..||..||3.5/5||3/5||Jan 2016||499||amazon.com|
|6.||Sony HX95||..||..||..||..||..||..||Aug 2018||429||amazon.com|
|7.||Sony WX800||..||..||..||..||..||..||Oct 2018||399||ebay.com|
|8.||Sony RX100 V||4.5/5||+ +||..||83/100||4/5||4.5/5||Oct 2016||999||ebay.com|
|9.||Sony HX80||..||..||..||..||..||..||Mar 2016||349||ebay.com|
|10.||Sony HX350||..||..||..||..||..||4/5||Dec 2016||449||ebay.com|
|11.||Sony RX100 IV||4.5/5||+ +||..||85/100||4/5||4.5/5||Jun 2015||999||ebay.com|
|12.||Sony HX400V||4/5||+ +||..||..||4/5||4/5||Feb 2014||499||ebay.com|
|Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.|
The above review scores should be interpreted with care, though. The assessments were made in relation to similar cameras of the same technological generation. A score, therefore, has to be seen in close connection to the price and market introduction time of the camera, and rating-comparisons among cameras that span long time periods or concern very differently equipped models make little sense. It should also be noted that some of the review sites have over time altered the way they render their verdicts.
Other camera comparisons
Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? In case you would like to check on the differences and similarities of other camera models, just use the search menu below. Alternatively, you can follow any of the listed hyperlinks for comparisons that others found interesting.
Specifications: Sony HX90V vs Sony HX99
Below is a side-by-side comparison of the specs of the two cameras to facilitate a quick review of their differences and common features.
|Camera Model||Sony HX90V||Sony HX99|
|Camera Type||Fixed lens compact camera||Fixed lens compact camera|
|Camera Lens||24-720mm f/3.5-6.4||24-720mm f/3.5-6.4|
|Launch Date||April 2015||August 2018|
|Launch Price||USD 429||USD 449|
|Sensor Specs||Sony HX90V||Sony HX99|
|Sensor Format||1/2.3" Sensor||1/2.3" Sensor|
|Sensor Size||6.17 x 4.55 mm||6.17 x 4.55 mm|
|Sensor Area||28.0735 mm2||28.0735 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||7.7 mm||7.7 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||18 Megapixels||18 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||4896 x 3672 pixels||4896 x 3672 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||1.25 μm||1.25 μm|
|Pixel Density||64.04 MP/cm2||64.04 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||no AA filter||no AA filter|
|Movie Capability||1080/60p Video||4K/30p Video|
|ISO Setting||80 - 3,200 ISO||80 - 3,200 ISO|
|ISO Boost||80 - 12,800 ISO||80 - 6,400 ISO|
|Image Processor||BIONZ X||BIONZ X|
|Screen Specs||Sony HX90V||Sony HX99|
|Viewfinder Type||Electronic viewfinder||Electronic viewfinder|
|Viewfinder Field of View||100%||100%|
|Viewfinder Resolution||638k dots||638k dots|
|LCD Framing||Live View||Live View|
|Rear LCD Size||3.0inch||3.0inch|
|LCD Resolution||921k dots||922k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Tilting screen||Tilting screen|
|Touch Input||no Touchscreen||Touchscreen|
|Shooting Specs||Sony HX90V||Sony HX99|
|Focus System||Contrast-detect AF||Contrast-detect AF|
|Manual Focusing Aid||Focus Peaking||no Peaking Feature|
|Continuous Shooting||10 shutter flaps/s||10 shutter flaps/s|
|Fill Flash||Built-in Flash||Built-in Flash|
|Storage Medium||MS or SDXC cards||MS or SDXC cards|
|Single or Dual Card Slots||Single card slot||Single card slot|
|UHS card support||UHS-I||UHS-I|
|Connectivity Specs||Sony HX90V||Sony HX99|
|External Flash||no Hotshoe||no Hotshoe|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||micro HDMI||micro HDMI|
|Wifi Support||Wifi built-in||Wifi built-in|
|Near-Field Communication||NFC built-in||NFC built-in|
|Bluetooth Support||no Bluetooth||Bluetooth built-in|
|Geotagging||GPS built-in||no internal GPS|
|Body Specs||Sony HX90V||Sony HX99|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||360 shots per charge||370 shots per charge|
|In-Camera Charging||USB charging||USB charging|
102 x 58 x 36 mm
(4.0 x 2.3 x 1.4 in)
102 x 58 x 36 mm
(4.0 x 2.3 x 1.4 in)
|Camera Weight||245 g (8.6 oz)||242 g (8.5 oz)|
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