Sony was quite late to the megazoom parade with its Cyber-shot DSC-H1, but this follow-up model is more in step with the rest of the marchers. The Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H2's 12x zoom lens now carries the Carl Zeiss moniker, resolution has been bumped up to 6 megapixels and sensitivity has been stretched all the way out to ISO 1,000. Football dads -- who might not want the hassle of an interchangeable lens -- should find the H2 appealing for its massive zoom range, its pleasing image quality, and its broad array of both automatic and manual exposure controls. But advanced amateurs who need low noise at higher ISOs might want to look elsewhere.
The H2 builds on the strengths of its predecessor with a 12x 36mm-to-432mm (35mm equivalent) image-stabilised Carl Zeiss Vario-Tessar lens, a 6-megapixel Super HAD CCD sensor, and a 51mm (2-inch) LCD in a body that's small enough to fit in a bumbag, should you be so fashion unconscious as to wear one. Slightly smaller than the littlest dSLRs, such as Pentax's *ist DL, the H2's 450g body is logically designed.
For those keeping score, that makes this screen 13mm smaller than the H1's. The Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H2 is mostly comfortable to use, but we accidentally hit the menu button a number of times during field tests, and the raised dots that add grip for your thumb irritated after prolonged use.