Sanyo Xacti CA100 Full-HD Dual Camera
A full-HD video and 14mp camera that operates year-round in all kinds of outdoor conditions.
This Sanyo seems to cover every high-spec aspect an amateur could want – high quality 14mp photos, full-HD video recording with 60fps at 720p, a 12x double range zoom with 38mm wide angle and it’s even waterproof to a depth of 3m.
At first glance of this jaw dropping list, it looks like the most versatile handy-cam around. While it’s a very impressive piece of kit, it didn’t quite get a perfect rating.
The first thing you will discover when you cast the instruction booklet aside and start pressing buttons is the not-so-user friendly design. As you can see from the picture above, the screen is perpendicular to the controls, creating a rather fiddly user experience. The buttons themselves are small and close together, producing further frustrations for fat fingers while one eye looks at them and the other is on the display.
It may be a small price to pay, but you can find yourself skipping features or neglecting the preferred recording option simply to save yourself the hassle.
The large zoom like all cameras can be tricky, shake becomes a real problem without a tripod, add some gales or heavy breathing and you may not get the results you hope for – though having your subject fill the frame from a distance is well worth the extra care in holding steady.
The 14mp stills were never going to be the quality of a genuine compact camera and the one button hold, wait, keep holding and shoot takes some getting used to –the delay can often miss whatever it was you were trying to capture and zoom has to be set before you start holding down buttons. Nevertheless, the CA100 still produces some of the best quality stills for a multi-purpose camera.
With a tough and compact design I did miss having a lens cover. You can throw the camera in your bag with no worries, but wiping down the lens each time you want a clean shot is not ideal. Despite all the Xacti’s idiosyncrasies, outdoor enthusiasts will enjoy recording some excellent quality footage on their travels with the CA100. If it’s the odd full-HD video you want in a compact handheld without any weather worries, then this is the camera for you.