Mid-range Mirrorless camera roundup (2013)
Sony Alpha NEX-5T
16MP CMOS sensor | 180 degree tilting LCD | Wi-Fi with NFC
What we like:
- Image quality
- Flip-up LCD
- Wi-Fi implementation
What we don't:
- JPEGs could be better
- Awkward user interface
- No built-in flash
The Alpha NEX-5T is an APS-C mirrorrless camera, sitting above the entry-level NEX-3N and just below the NEX-6. It features Sony's familiar 16MP CMOS sensor with on-chip phase detection, which touts responsive focusing and burst shooting at 10 fps with continuous AF.
"The NEX-5T is feature-packed, though it's worth trying out the camera to see if the interface is for you"
The images produced by the camera (and its siblings, which use the same sensor) have always impressed us, though fine details will look smudged when viewing images at 100%. The kit lens for the NEX-5T is a 16-50mm F3.5-5.6 power zoom, which takes up very little space when powered off. Raw image quality is excellent, with plenty of scope for processing.
There aren't a whole lot of buttons on the camera, meaning most things are adjusted via the camera's torturous menu system. While Sony has made some progress in bringing settings to the surface, it still requires a lot of scrolling and clicking to find the options you want. The 5T includes twin control dials but doesn't always make great use of them. The camera's LCD can flip upward by 180°, allowing for easy self-portraits, and it also offers built-in Wi-Fi with NFC, for sharing photos and videos.
Overall, the NEX-5T is a feature-packed camera, though it's worth trying out the camera to see if the interface is for you. For many, stepping up to the NEX-6 for the additional controls (not to mention built-in flash), is worth the extra money.