Enthusiast compact camera roundup (2013)
Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 II
1" 20MP BSI-CMOS sensor | 28-100mm equivalent F1.8-4.9 lens | NFC mediated Wi-Fi
What we like:
- Large sensor in small body
- Useful lens range
What we don't:
- Unengaging shooting experience
- Relatively high price
- JPEG color
Following up on the heels of the well-received Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100, the RX100 II promises better low light performance, faster AF, and the option to add a viewfinder/flash/remote trigger via the hotshoe mount. NFC-enabled, built-in Wi-Fi is also a nice addition to transfer images.
"For anyone looking for the best image quality from a compact, the RX100 II is the answer"
The RX100 II's relatively large 1"-type sensor produces superbly detailed JPEGs, albeit with slightly underwhelming color. When comparing image quality to other compact-sized cameras, it's peerless. However when comparing to Micro Four Thirds and APS-C sensor cameras at its price point, the RX100 II starts to fall short in high ISO and dynamic range performance.
The appeal to camera enthusiasts is boosted by the addition of the Multi-Interface hot shoe (which allows use of external flashes and an electronic viewfinder), and a rear LCD screen that now tilts up and down. Sadly it retains the RX100's clickless wheel, and an interface that can leave the user feeling rather disconnected from the shooting experience.
For anyone simply looking for the best image quality from a compact, the RX100 II is the answer, but the experience of shooting with the camera can be vague, thanks to the lack of feedback from the controls - which is the only thing stopping us declaring the RX100 II a classic.