Sony's RX100 gets glowing write-up

Sony's RX100 is no larger than Canon's popular S100, but has a far larger image sensor. What this means is simple: better photos with greater depth of field and superior low-light performance. David Pogue is among the first to review it , and finds himself impressed by a point-and-shoot camera that approaches DSLR image quality: "If you care at all about your photography, you’ll thank Sony for giving the camera industry a good hard shove into the future."

The caveat, of course, is that you will pay $650 for it. Apart from the minimalist looks and 1" Exmor CMOS sensor, that gets you 20.2 megapixels, an F1.8 Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* lens, 3.6x zoom, RAW image capture, and full HD 1080 video at 60p video with manual control (alas, no 24p).

Sony DSC-RX100 [Amazon referrer link]


  1. “And you will pay $650 for it.”

    Rob typed the price in italics, because, as anyone knows, a very small camera cannot possibly rival a DSLR, or for that matter a mirrorless system camera, which is also larger and therefore better.

    Incidentally, a Nikon 1 with zoom lens and the very same sensor costs more.

    p.s. post may contain traces of sarcasm

  2. I’m not really feeling the outrage at this price. It’s not something I’d buy, but reading that review, the thing is an astonishing camera regardless of form factor.

    The SLR form factor is a holdover from 35mm days (although lens compatibility s obviously a huge advantage). It’s nice to see serious tech taking other forms. Who knows what the ideal digital form factor is? It may even be something like Nokia’s impossibly high resolution sensor with a locked, ultra high-quality prime.

      1.  No, the mirror mechanism is a holdover from requiring an optical viewfinder that sees through the lens. A properly designed digital viewfinder gives a more reliable indicator of a digital shot’s outcome, no mirror required, and possible a simpler, faster lens structure too.

        1.  What I meant is that you can only have so much “impossibly high resolution”, etc with a size of lens that reasonably fits in a pocket. And making the body hugely disproportional to the lens… well, dunno how that works out.

          1.  My point is that now we are free to find out, because we are no longer absolutely wedded to the 35mm SLR format. Sensor size, well obviously the bigger the better, but who knows what can be done with lenses now that a huge, clunky, slow part of the mechanism can be truly eliminated.

  3. Yum. Well, I don’t really need a car. Or a job. I’ll just get one of these and spend my days taking awesome pictures. That’s the life.

  4. Wow, I think Mr. Pogue needs  to sit down and get a hold of himself for a few minutes! It’s pretty good for a compact camera, this is true, but the reality is that my old Canon 350D and Canon’s nifty fifty blow this out of the water for low light performance. That’s a £200 spend for the camera and lens. It’ll give you much better autofocus too. Oh, and it has a hotshoe for off camera flash. As for macro, a £20 lens reversed will give better results than the Sony too. Like background blur? That will be loads better from the old Canon too. 

    The sony is good for it’s size, but it’s still not matching DSLRs from yesteryear (I bought my 350D in 2006, that’s like a hundred years ago in tech advancement!). The review gives the impression it’s amazing full stop. I’d say it’s amazing for a compact camera. The DSLR is still a good chunk better. If size is your priority then this wins, if it’s image quality, the DSLR is still worth lugging around.

    I actually use my iPhone when I can’t be bothered to lug the DSLR around (I have a 40D now, and that’s even bigger than the 350D). I can’t see this sony replacing it and the reason is the interface and the amount of editing I can do on my phone compared to this camera.

    1. Six years is a long time in sensor development. I predict the (good) 350D to fare worse. Try to compare a Nikon D200 to a Nikon 1. Same relative sensor sizes and age difference. You will be disappointed.

  5. Nice and small compared to Canon’s effort with the G1X. Or is that GX1? X100? GXR? Fuck it….

    I’d rather have a small Pen myself. Maybe not this generation by the soon to come next. 

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