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Sony RX100 one of 50 'best inventions' of 2012 says TIME Magazine

By dpreview staff on Nov 2, 2012 at 23:36 GMT
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TIME Magazine has included the Sony Cyber-shot RX100 in its list of the 50 'best inventions' of 2012. TIME's Techland's blog called the RX100 a 'huge leap' in the trend towards smaller and more capable digital cameras, thanks to its 'innovative design and 1-in sensor'. The list of 50 inventions is organized by cost, from 'priceless' up to '2.5 billion' and also includes self-inflating tires, the Curiosity Mars rover, and LiquiGlide, a microscopic non-slip coating.  

Time Magazine has included the Sony Cyber-shot RX100 in its list of the 50 best inventions of 2012, due to its 'innovative design' and CX-format 1in sensor. Picture: Dan Forbes for TIME

TIME Magazine's full description, as posted on its Techlands blog is as follows:

'Digital cameras have been getting smaller and more capable every year, but that trend took a huge leap forward in 2012 with the Sony RX100, which bridges the gap between point-and-shoots and pro-quality digital SLRs. Sony’s innovative design and 1-in. (2.5 cm) sensor allow the camera to take flawless photos even though it’s 20% slimmer than your average digital SLR—small enough to fit in your pocket.'

When we reviewed the RX100, earlier this year, we were very impressed. What do you think of the RX100's inclusion in Time's list? Let us know in the comments. 

via PetaPixel

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Comments

Total comments: 578
1234
Jimmy jang Boo
By Jimmy jang Boo (Nov 4, 2012)

I was going to buy RX100 but I bought an Olympus XZ-1 instead. Not only was the XZ-1 $422 less than the RX100, but it also received the GOLD award while the Sony got Silver!

Why settle for silver at $650 when you can buy GOLD at $228?

Comment edited 35 seconds after posting
5 upvotes
shaocaholica
By shaocaholica (Nov 4, 2012)

Wow, this is the first time I've seen someone actually use DPR ratings to rag on a camera. Bravo?

6 upvotes
peevee1
By peevee1 (Nov 4, 2012)

See DPR, how your stupid "subjective" awards mess with ingorant consumers' perceptions, making them buy significantly worse cameras instead of the best?

Will the cunsumer still trust your site when his friend brings "Silver" RX100 to the same party and his shots will "miraculously" turn out worlds better?

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
5 upvotes
GaryJP
By GaryJP (Nov 4, 2012)

Depends if the friend is Daido Moriyama or Annie Leibovitz. Good shots are about more than a camera. But if party snaps are your only criteria .....

2 upvotes
danaceb
By danaceb (Nov 5, 2012)

if thats the criteria for buying a camera you value, you are better off with an XZ-1. The RX100 would be wasted on you.

2 upvotes
ET2
By ET2 (Nov 4, 2012)

cgarrard: "Every camera has a unique quality"

Sensor size is not just another "unique" quality. It's the most important part of of a digital camera. That's what makes the full-frame D600 different than the APSC D7000. That's what makes medium format hasselblad different from Nikon D800.

RX100 has a sensor that is 4 times larger than S100. That's a bigger difference than the difference between APSC vs FF, or the difference between FF vs medium format.

So RX100 is a new milestone in pocket cameras with zoom lenses. Time Magazine got it right.

Nikon 1 isn't a pocket cameras once you add a zoom lens to it. RX100 is smaller than J1 body-only.

As for other large sensor fixed lens cameras, they are either not pocket cameras or they have single focal length prime lens. The full-frame RX1 leads in that category.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 11 minutes after posting
14 upvotes
bobbarber
By bobbarber (Nov 4, 2012)

Wrong, wrong, wrong. WRONG! I hope I'm making my point.

THE LENS is the most important part of a digital camera.

Look at the RX-100 review comparison image. Look at the watch, hair next to the watch, or anything else within about a quarter-frame's width of the edge. The lens of the RX-100 sucks compared to the XZ-1, therefore the images of the RX-100 are inferior, despite the RX-100's having a superior sensor.

If the sensor were "the most important part of a digital camera", as you say, then I could put a $50 Phoenix 500mm f8 lens on a Nikon D800, and take superior images to an Olympus E5 mounted with an Olympus 300mm f2.8, right?

Hogwash.

3 upvotes
ET2
By ET2 (Nov 4, 2012)

The lens and sensor both are important part of a digital camera. You can put a million dollars lens on iPhone size sensor, but the dynamic range and noise will still be crap. The lens isn't going to improve the DR and lower the noise of a smaller sensor.

I looked at images on

http://www.imaging-resource.com/IMCOMP/COMPS01.HTM

and RX100 resolves more detail than XZ-1 at base ISO, everywhere,, and XZ-1 looks like crap compared to RX100 from ISO 800 and up

Thanks for proving my point.

Comment edited 9 minutes after posting
10 upvotes
bobbarber
By bobbarber (Nov 4, 2012)

Proving your point?

Either you're blind, or paid by Sony. Go to the image comparison tool, of this site, and look at the RX-100 versus the XZ-1 at base ISO. If you think the RX-100 is better, you're nuts. Look at the watch and the hair next to the watch. It's not even close. The lens on the XZ-1 is so much better than the lens on the RX-100 that if people looked at the image comparison, they might not buy the RX-100 at half the price.

2 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (Nov 4, 2012)

We get it, you love the RX100. That not everybody, including DPR agrees with you seems to be something that you aren't willing to accept judging by your seemingly indefatigable defense of this camera.

It has a good sensor, but a slow zoom lens that's soft wide open at the 24mm and f4.9 at full telephoto giving the 135 equivalent DOF of f13.4. So bokeh fans would do better with another camera. It lacks a built-in ND filter like the LX7 so running up against the max SS of 1/2000 is a problem without a solution as it doesn't take filters (crappy magnetic filters don't count).

No VF, no hot-shoe and slow menus and playback performance make it a but frustrating to use for anything but as a snapshot camera. Or for videos, which it's excellent for. For photography, there are a lot better choices.

All cameras are getting smaller, that doesn't mean they are inventions or deserve awards with each millimeter the vendor shaves off.

5 upvotes
ET2
By ET2 (Nov 4, 2012)

I went hhere
http://www.imaging-resource.com/IMCOMP/COMPS01.HTM

RX100 resolves more detail than XZ-1, plain and simple. It will make a larger print at base ISO. And XZ-1 looks like a sh*t at anything over base ISO.

Either you are blind or stupid.

5 upvotes
ET2
By ET2 (Nov 4, 2012)

marike6, how on earth do you know that DPR doesn't agree with me? They didn't give it a Gold award, but that doesn't mean they don't agree that RX100 doesn't have best image quality on pocket camera with a zoom lens.

Now are you self-appointed spokesman for DPreview? That's funny.

"No VF, no hot-shoe and slow menus and playback performance "

A hotshoe and viewfinder is not the point of RX100. It's a pocket camera like S100.

Comment edited 3 times, last edit 3 minutes after posting
5 upvotes
bobbarber
By bobbarber (Nov 4, 2012)

@ET2

I just compared pictures on that website that you looked at. I downloaded the pictures that were labeled "New Indoor 100" for each camera. Then I up-rezzed the XZ-1 photo to the same size.

The RX-100 does have more detail in the center of the frame. There are a lot of sharpening artifacts in the XZ-1 photo. I'm guessing that these are out of camera jpegs. The XZ-1 is known to have a poor jpeg engine. I'm guessing that the results would be different in raw.

At the edges of the frame, the XZ-1 is much better, just as is shown on the comparison tool here at dpreview. For example, look at the leaves in the upper right hand corner of the photo, or the portrait of the woman on the wall.

As far as high ISO goes, the RX-100 wins. That means that one camera is sharp across the frame at ISO 100, and one is not, but the camera that isn't sharp across the frame at ISO 100 is better at ISO 3200. I know which camera I would choose. I care little about yellow ISO 3200 photos, from any camera

0 upvotes
kucink132
By kucink132 (Nov 5, 2012)

"Wrong, wrong, wrong. WRONG! I hope I'm making my point.

THE LENS is the most important part of a digital camera."

no, you just point out how aggresive ignorant you are.

Smaller sensor makes lens design for similiar result more difficult and even impossible. In sharpness: Smaller sensor->raise pixel per inch->more lens sharpness required to project details to every pixel. Bokeh: smaller sensor->smaller capture area->need ultimate huge aperture to match bigger sensor and i hope you aware the difficulty designing lens that both wide aperture and sharp.

big sensor answer the question but but, the overall size usually got bigger and more expensive(more sensor area=more expensive). and thats where RX100 comes, big sensor, small body, well priced

4 upvotes
bobbarber
By bobbarber (Nov 5, 2012)

@ET2,

You ignore the fact that the XZ-1 is SHARPER than the RX-100 across the frame. It is also MUCH FASTER at the zoom end, which means that the RX-100 LOSES its high ISO advantage.

The RX-100 lens is clearly inferior to the XZ-1 lens (a last generation camera). Is it possible that Sony built an INFERIOR lens, even though according to you, it should have been much EASIER to build a good lens with a large-sensor camera?

I don't think so. Sony could have made a lens as good as the XZ-1, but then the RX-100 would not have been compact anymore.

Bigger sensor = bigger lens needed for similar result. You would think a guy that pretends to be smart like you would know that!

The RX-100 is a nice camera. Now, with the XZ-1 at $200, I wouldn't pay more than $200 for the RX-100 though.

0 upvotes
Itai42
By Itai42 (Nov 4, 2012)

The design innovation was brought back by Fuji (or arguably by Leica) - but they just went retro - so I don't think it deserved to be half an argument for innovation of the year...
The 1" sensor is not as innovative as others this year - again fuji springs to mind with another innovative sensor (this time instead of going crazy geometrically they went with a modified color-filter-array) - and sony themselves released some great sensors this year - much better then the 1" on the RX100 (Including the sensor on my own camera)
This is just a pointless award that smells more of product placement then of rightfully earned place in the list of top innovators or maybe something else - but that's just a great cam - not the most innovative nor the best this year!

5 upvotes
argieramos
By argieramos (Nov 4, 2012)

1" sensor, design, and small body that can be put inside the pocket of RX100 are not innovative if you are looking at them seperately. Together, tell me what cameras are like that? Only the RX100. That is the reason why it gets award of one of the good innovation. You gotta think harder next time.

"not the most innovative nor the best this year!"
Nobody is saying rx100 is the most innovative. That's why it only got the SILVER award. Do you even know the issue here?

8 upvotes
peppermill
By peppermill (Nov 4, 2012)

RE:"Do you even know the issue here?"

Do you not recognise that there's other's issues & opinions being voiced here besides your own?...
...like perhaps many here feel that there isn't ANY commercial camera from ANY manufacturer (at least none that's available to
the civilian public aside from the medical profession) that deserves being heralded as one of the BEST INVENTIONS of the Year.

Much of the juvenile, over-the-top, fanboyism that i've been reading in this thread is almost enuf to make me embarrassed to own an RX100.

:(

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 2 minutes after posting
2 upvotes
Roland Karlsson
By Roland Karlsson (Nov 4, 2012)

The indoor cloud is cool. Thats an INVENTION! Me likes!

But - the cameras is an inventive product.

2 upvotes
brn
By brn (Nov 4, 2012)

People have been making small indoor clouds for decades. The guy used a fog machine.

Cool, yes. Invention, no.

1 upvote
argieramos
By argieramos (Nov 4, 2012)

Those people who talks trash about the rx100 are butthurt that don't know anything about it, and possibly little knowledge about photography as well.

It is a P&S camera that produce a DSLR-like quality pictures that fits inside your jeans. Try doing that with any mirrorless with kit lens attached. RX100 is the FIRST camera that does that. People who thinks that is not revolutionary are hopeless and better stop doing photography.

"in low ISO, 1 full stop down out resolve a 21mp ff camera" (canon 5DII?) -photoclubalpha-

Now that is revolutionary lol

Comment edited 4 times, last edit 11 minutes after posting
11 upvotes
Itai42
By Itai42 (Nov 4, 2012)

It doesn't outmatch some of it's peers in it's own price-point and it even looses the high-ISO IQ to some cameras cheaper and smaller (though it's MP count is quite high - but MP count isn't the measure to go by)

4 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (Nov 4, 2012)

Let me understand you, people should stop doing photography because they aren't as in love with the RX100 as you?

What's to love about f13.4 DOF at 100mm? Since that's the range most will shoot portraits in, not a lot.

Most DSLR users here don't shoot with the kit lens, so comparisons with a DSLR and a kit lens are meaningless.

2 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Nov 4, 2012)

Okay, so if I follow argieramos' point, anyone NOT shooting with a Sony RX100 exclusively is not worth carrying the label 'human being,' or what?

2 upvotes
GaryJP
By GaryJP (Nov 4, 2012)

" DSLR-like quality pictures" Only with a VERY liberal interpretation.

3 upvotes
argieramos
By argieramos (Nov 5, 2012)

GaryJP, you still commenting here? Learn how to shoot RAW first before you talk to me. lol
As a matter of fact, in low ISO, stopping down one full stop the RX100 can outresolve a 21mp FF camera. Lets see.if your G1X can do that. lol

Comment edited 9 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
GaryJP
By GaryJP (Nov 5, 2012)

Once again, you show your ignorance and your total cluelessness of the people with whom you interact. Never mind.

1 upvote
Jun2
By Jun2 (Nov 4, 2012)

I guess there are not too many inventions in 2012. It's a digital camera not too much different from others. I have been using M4/3 cameras for a few years. Yes this SONY is slightly smaller.

DSLR, I have been off that for 3 years.

2 upvotes
argieramos
By argieramos (Nov 4, 2012)

Which camera are you comparing with the RX100 that is not much different?

4 upvotes
peevee1
By peevee1 (Nov 4, 2012)

To dissuade some misconceptions. APS-C sensors ARE NOT 4 times the size of RX100 sensor, and as such DO NOT get 2 stops advantage at the same f-number. For example, the sensor in Canon T4i (22.3 x 14.9 mm) is only 2.86 times as big as the one in RX100 (13.2 x 8.8 mm). So f/1.8 in RX100 compared to f/3.5 in APS-C kits actually provides bigger advantage than the sensor size in the Rebel (not to mention that the Canon APS-C sensors use ancient technology and not as efficient per sq mm as new Sony sensors).

2 upvotes
Mike99999
By Mike99999 (Nov 5, 2012)

You are just exposing how crappy Canon APS-C sensors are.

It really doesn't take much to outperform a Rebel with kit lens. That is hardly a benchmark. Since when does Rebel + kit lens constitute DSLR quality?

0 upvotes
peevee1
By peevee1 (Nov 6, 2012)

Since the Rebels (and as bad Nikon D3100, Nikon D5000, Sony A37/57 etc) took the biggest market share. If you think a huge FF DSLR is a mass-market consumer product, you are wrong.

0 upvotes
Danel
By Danel (Nov 4, 2012)

It seems like a terrific little pocket camera. Whether or not putting a larger sensor into a high quality, tiny little camera is one of the 50 best inventions is an open question. Certainly it breaks some new ground, I'll give it that.

Fifty is a large number when someone is trying to list "the best" inventions. Fifty means one has to start reaching down to some products that are merely better than their predecessors or peers rather than being truly revolutionary.

13 upvotes
Hans Bolte
By Hans Bolte (Nov 4, 2012)

All I can say is that I'm very happy with mine! Don't really care what the fanboys or haters say. The camera speaks for itself...

8 upvotes
Greynerd
By Greynerd (Nov 4, 2012)

I bet Time magazine never realised what hysteria they would cause in certain circles by this announcement. Do not forget that the Time people like most are not really interested how the camera works, but in their opinion, think it does perform a lot better for its size than anything they have seen before.

Posterity proves the worth of things and these contemporary awards will be forgotten next year and are often primarily driven by the vanity of the people handing them out.

2 upvotes
kennyv9000
By kennyv9000 (Nov 4, 2012)

On Monday morning regular meeting...
From Canon office,
A: Did you guys saw what ours fanboy comment about Sony rx100 in stupid DP?
B: Ya, they don't like it. And they said ours G and S series still the best! rx is just rubbish!
A: Ya, so now we can hold for couple of years first.
B: So what is our next move? A pink G16 or G1x new facelift?
A: Nah, take it easy, lets have some coffee first...

From Nikon office,
A: See! Our fanboy said ours Nikon 1 have more powerful sensor, rx100 was completely beaten by ours 1 series, and it can't changing lens.
B: Correct, so do we still continue our big sensor compact camera project?
A: Nah hold it first, p7700 is enough for them...

From Panasonic office,
A: I told you guys before, fanboy just need bright lens, rx100 sensor size and high ISO is nothing to them, who need it?
B: Ya, lets just make a f1.2 lens for our next LX8, sure sell like hot cake!
A: Ya, lets do it!

to be continue...

6 upvotes
GaryJP
By GaryJP (Nov 4, 2012)

From Sony Office:

A: See? Told you? Stick in a biggish sensor, tell people it's an inch because that's a nice round number, an average zoom lens, give it strong noise reduction to get rid of noise, make it small enough to let people stick it in their pocket, and suckers will think it's a new invention!

Many of us aren't knocking the camera. We're knocking the hype.

Oh, anyone want to say "game changer" now?

Comment edited 3 times, last edit 10 minutes after posting
6 upvotes
kennyv9000
By kennyv9000 (Nov 4, 2012)

From Olympus office,
A: Who care about rx100? We got bigger m43 sensor camera, and ours xz2 got very bright lens, they can just buy a m43 if want big sensor and high ISO!
B: But now Sony is our big boss... how?
A: No problem, as long as our camera brand is Olympus! Fanboy are not that smart...

From Leica office,
A: Sony is not our concern, they cant sell as much higher price like us.
B: Ya, lets carry on our titanium MM and made ours M look more like DSLR...

From Ricoh Pentax office,
A: I think we should learn more from Sony...
B: Ya, lets mock up a fullframe GRD...

From Sony office,
A: Stupid DP not given ours rx100 a gold award!
B: Never mind, we will keep doing the best, listen to what they need and we build one.
A: Ya right, we can lose billion of$ but can not lose their faith on us!

4 upvotes
kennyv9000
By kennyv9000 (Nov 4, 2012)

To GaryJP.
I know rx100 is not made by your favorite camera brand and you hate it so much. Well, you can just hire some lawyer and suing TIME! Better than waste you time here...

PS: And seeing like you didn't know how to shoot in RAW...LOL

8 upvotes
GaryJP
By GaryJP (Nov 4, 2012)

Given that I have almost every camera brand out there, including Sony, you appear to be talking out of a nether region.

And you seem rather confused about my awareness of RAW. I practically never shoot anything else.

Still, I guess you got your name right.

Comment edited 17 seconds after posting
1 upvote
cgarrard
By cgarrard (Nov 4, 2012)

"Still, I guess you got your name right." OH man that's billiant, HHAHAHAHAAHA!! I'll have to remember that one. Great shot Gary and I agree with you.

C

0 upvotes
beautyintheeyes
By beautyintheeyes (Nov 4, 2012)

The guys at Hasselblad must be eying up a wooden makeover for the RX100. Watch out for the Hasselblad Solar.

1 upvote
argieramos
By argieramos (Nov 4, 2012)

GaryJP "give it strong noise reduction to get rid of noise"
Don't fool yourself. You do not own the RX100. And you better learn to use RAW! lol

"Given that I have almost every camera brand out there"
You must be stupid for buying lots of camera. You don't even know which camera will work best for you. lol

2 upvotes
Itai42
By Itai42 (Nov 4, 2012)

If you think that these things are decided in a meeting of this sorts then you have no idea about R&D and the complexity of developing cameras and imaging platforms at the rate things are evolving thesedays... pushing performance and integrating new technologies in tome for the next release date. It is truely difficult and some do better then others.
Sony do VERY well - both as a supplier to other manufacturers and as a great camera-maker (though I don't think their best innovation this year is this camera).
Camera manufacturers are putting in huge efforts to create products that speak to their customers as much as they can with a set target price...
They have to do a lot of guess-work as to what will speak better to customers and sometimes I find myself very surprised at what actually worked. I never thought the Fuji X100 will make sense - but it even makes some sense to me now (not that it's my cup of tea - but I see the point)

0 upvotes
GaryJP
By GaryJP (Nov 4, 2012)

"You do not own the RX100. And you better learn to use RAW!" Wrong on both counts. And yes, the JPEG noise reduction is excessive. Compared with which, there was no decent RAW support when the camera was first released, and even now there isn't adequate lens correction with most RAW converters.

And the reason I have more than one camera is that different cameras keep coming out and they excel at different purposes. I just haven't got round to selling off the older models yet, and will probably drop out of micro four-thirds completely.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
2 upvotes
SKPhoto12
By SKPhoto12 (Nov 4, 2012)

This is Time's problem, not Sony's. It just shows how little journalists in general know about photography and the equipment it uses. There is nothing revolutionary about this camera.

4 upvotes
ET2
By ET2 (Nov 4, 2012)

"There is nothing revolutionary about this camera."

Aside from the fact that it has the largest sensor in pocket camera with a zoom lens ...

9 upvotes
cgarrard
By cgarrard (Nov 4, 2012)

Every camera has a unique quality, so that makes them one of the best inventions every year??? C'MON!!! It's not even an invention.. what Sony invented the large sensor compact class camera? Nope.com

1 upvote
zxaar
By zxaar (Nov 4, 2012)

@Carl, your opinion count nada , zero, zilch. Who gives rats A to what you think. TIME's opinion counts around the world. They expressed their opinion and it is a news here. Further you are NO-ONE to decide what camera has what.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
4 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (Nov 4, 2012)

The is nothing revolutionary about miniaturization when almost all camera makers are doing it to varying degrees. Wake me up when Sony figures out how to make small, and sharp E-mount lenses. Until then I use my XPro1 for the better IQ or m43 for the better, smaller glass.

Small size and good IQ doesn't make the RX100 revolutionary, and I suspect the Time selection is more about business than than anything else.

4 upvotes
argieramos
By argieramos (Nov 4, 2012)

You probably wont wake up at all because you have no clue of what you are talking about

1 upvote
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Nov 4, 2012)

@ argieramos: Looking over the comments posted here.... seems like approximately nine out of 10 folks commenting on the Sony RX100 do not seem to think much about the camera, and that's to put it mildly. So glad to hear you adore yours.

0 upvotes
ET2
By ET2 (Nov 4, 2012)

9 out of 10?

More hot blowing out of Francis Carver's ass ... He seems to be expert in that, at least.

2 upvotes
ET2
By ET2 (Nov 4, 2012)

cgarrad: "Every camera has a unique quality"

Sensor size is not just another "unique" thing. It's the most important thing in a digital camera. That's what makes full-frame D600 different than APSC D7000. That's what makes medium format hasselblad different from Nikon D800.

RX100 has a sensor that is 4 times larger than S100. That's bigger difference than the difference between APSC vs FF, or the difference between FF vs medium format.

So yes, RX100 is new milestone in pocket cameras with zoom lenses.

2 upvotes
cgarrard
By cgarrard (Nov 7, 2012)

"@Carl, your opinion count nada , zero, zilch. Who gives rats A to what you think. TIME's opinion counts around the world. They expressed their opinion and it is a news here. Further you are NO-ONE to decide what camera has what."

Apparently you do. If you truly didn't care, you wouldn't follow me around saying that over and over.

Straight jacket is too tight you're going to pop.

C

0 upvotes
gadgets
By gadgets (Nov 4, 2012)

I demand that TIME magazine show us some pixel-peeping comparison tests as their supporting evidence. And whether they are reviewing the Made in Japan or the Made in China version.

1 upvote
bobbarber
By bobbarber (Nov 4, 2012)

Time didn't pixel peep. If you read Time's blurb, it says in part, "Sony’s innovative design and 1-in. (2.5 cm) sensor allow the camera to take FLAWLESS PHOTOS" (caps mine).

A quick look at the comparison tool in the review shows that RX-100 IQ is far from flawless. The XZ-1 blows it away at low ISOs, especially at anything like the outer quarter of the frame.

1 upvote
LaFonte
By LaFonte (Nov 4, 2012)

Interesting wording and I think a bit of hyperbole - huge leap ???
It is miniaturization at its best but where is the huge leap - it is still P&S camera with an improved sensor. There are similar cameras made for some time that offer great image quality in small size. Maybe not as good IQ, but again the IQ improves every year so RX100 is expected evolution. Next year the IQ will be again improved - another huge leap then? Soon we will be leaping at the edge of galaxy.

2 upvotes
ET2
By ET2 (Nov 4, 2012)

Sory but wrong. Compact/fixed lens cameras (with zoom lenses) have been using 1/2.3" inch sensor for many years. A few of them that were more expensive used a larger 1/1.17" sensor and a few 2/3 sensor.

The image quality has not been improving that much. S90 with 1/1.7" sensor was released in 2009. S110 with the same size sensor in 2012. Both are pretty close on dxomark. No progress in sensor size.

RX100's sensor is 4 times larger, but yet, it still retains almost the same size as S90/S110

So yes, RX100 is a huge leap when it comes to sensor size in a pocket camera with a zoom lens.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 3 minutes after posting
12 upvotes
cgarrard
By cgarrard (Nov 4, 2012)

" RX100 is a huge leap" No, it's not. It's a moderate step forward the rest is all hype. Some see that, some don't you fall in the latter category. Another victim of marketing.

Carl

3 upvotes
tbcass
By tbcass (Nov 4, 2012)

While the RX100 may not be a huge leap it certainly struck the right chord with me. It is the first compact pocket-able that has IQ and performance good enough for me to buy it. I have been completely satisfied with it. As far as marketing hype, Sony didn't seem to hype it any more than any other manufacturer does with a new product. Sony are amateurs when it comes to hype compared to a company like Apple who claim that every new product is the second coming. I never pay any attention to product hype. Most of the "hype" I saw came from independent reviewers who liked the product.

0 upvotes
Revenant
By Revenant (Nov 4, 2012)

Yes, RX100 is the first pocketable zoom lens compact with a (relatively) large sensor. But revolutionary? Huge leap? A new invention? Replacing film with a sensor was arguably a new invention. Just changing the size of the sensor is not a new invention, it's an improvement of an old invention.

4 upvotes
ET2
By ET2 (Nov 4, 2012)

"While the RX100 may not be a huge leap"

RX100 is a huge leap in sensor size for a pocket camera. It scores like 16 points more for than S100 on Dxomark, while retaining the same size as S100. Forget cgarrard. That's a conspiracy nut. His prediction "too little too late" fell on it's face.

Comment edited 5 minutes after posting
3 upvotes
sanchil
By sanchil (Nov 4, 2012)

mayb if they are able to record the photons without the use of lenses ... mayb if they are able to use multiple tiny lenses and multiple sensors and then extrapolate the image ... well u could create superb high dynamic range images with that technique ... i think they use that in astronomy to reduce the size of the mirrors though i'm not too sure .... well mayb one day we may have better instruments that warrant the invention title ... i'm sure ....

Comment edited 37 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
sanchil
By sanchil (Nov 4, 2012)

i would think getting rid of the flapping mirror and creating an interchangeable lens camera was a far better innovation in fotography in the recent times ... oly and panny have really done a good job in creating a new category in cameras ...

0 upvotes
pomoville
By pomoville (Nov 4, 2012)

Sure, but that didn't happen in 2012.

1 upvote
sanchil
By sanchil (Nov 4, 2012)

yea right ... sorry i didn't chk ... thnx for the correction ...somehow i presumed it was for the decade ... great inventions usually don't happen every year ....

1 upvote
lancespring
By lancespring (Nov 4, 2012)

If you are a photographer and don't own a Sony RX100, you are most definitely NOT cool ........

The RX100 is the iPhone of compact cameras.

3 upvotes
sanchil
By sanchil (Nov 4, 2012)

hmmm .... iPhone is it .... then tis even more scarier than i thought ... ;p

0 upvotes
Jun2
By Jun2 (Nov 4, 2012)

It's just a camera.

1 upvote
sanchil
By sanchil (Nov 4, 2012)

i would luv to see a shoot out comparision between the sony rx-100, oly xz2, pan lx-7, fuji xf1 and nokia pureview 808. i wanna know which one of these is the best pocketable camera with great iq of course. i willing to lay my bets on the nokia pureview 808 actually ... :)

3 upvotes
tbcass
By tbcass (Nov 4, 2012)

If you take a look at the mediocre samples that I've seen posted you will change your mind about the Nokia. It isn't even as good as a $300 P&S.

2 upvotes
peevee1
By peevee1 (Nov 4, 2012)

RX100 is at least 1 stop ahead of XF1 and even further ahead of the rest at their best.

0 upvotes
fat32
By fat32 (Nov 16, 2012)

OK ...and Nokia 808 way ahead in grams and millimeters :)
IMO, Nokia 808 PureView is way more innovative product than the rest in the list.

0 upvotes
RobG67
By RobG67 (Nov 4, 2012)

Which just goes to show that Time have no clue...

A digital camera that goes to market now IS NOT an 'invention'. Digital cameras have already been invented and have been around for 30 years or more. The RX100 is certainly an improvement on what has come before, but an 'invention'? Hardly. Maybe they need to learn about dictionaries and definitions of words.

Bloody drongoes in the Time office.

0 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Nov 4, 2012)

Yeah, who's reading that old relic still, anyhow? Photography has been invented in the 19th Century, and digital photography and digital photo cameras in the 20th. And 1-inch sensors have been sued before, case in point the Nikon 1-series.

Looks like Sony paid a chunk of baksheesh for this "unbiased ranking" of their RX100 P&S. What a shame, for both companies, really. But hey -- maybe Sony now owns Time Magazine, that could be it, too, right?

1 upvote
GaryJP
By GaryJP (Nov 4, 2012)

They don't own them. They have had a "strategic relationship:" since 2001.

0 upvotes
ET2
By ET2 (Nov 4, 2012)

Francis Carver "Looks like Sony paid a chunk of baksheesh for this "unbiased ranking" of their RX100 P&S."

Of course you don't have a shred of evidence for that claim. You are just blowing hot air out of your ass.

Francis Carver "And 1-inch sensors have been sued before, case in point the Nikon 1-series."

Nikon 1 is not a pocket camera once you put a zoom lens on it.

And no, 1" sensor has never been used in a pocket camera with a zoom lens before RX100.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
5 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Nov 4, 2012)

It is indeed revolutionary how Sony was able to unload as many copies of the RX100 as they did. That deserves a "Cleverest Marketing Award" of some sort, hmmm?

1 upvote
GaryJP
By GaryJP (Nov 4, 2012)

Time magazine on revolutionary new camera technology 1982.

"The country may have gone camera crazy, all decked out in snouty lenses, fancy light meters and the designer bags needed to pack the paraphernalia. But amateur photographers using amateur equipment still get all too many amateur results. Underexposed or blurry pictures, for example, that never show up in those happy photo-equipment advertisements.

Last week Eastman Kodak Co., the world's largest supplier of photographic equipment to the multibillion dollar amateur market, took a giant step toward the elimination of misbegotten pictures. The company's solution is a compact new camera called the Disc Camera."

6 upvotes
cgarrard
By cgarrard (Nov 4, 2012)

Bravo. No improvement since 1982 in Time magazine. Just an ad disguised as hype disguised as a genuine discovery.

C

2 upvotes
John Koch
By John Koch (Nov 4, 2012)

Time overrates the RX100, obviously. Had they read DPR, they would know that it pales in comparison to the mighty D800E or the 5D Miii, whose "gold" awards and 84% and 82% ratings make them more worthy than the RX100's "silver" and 78% score. Micro-advances in bulky system cameras constitute a higher realm of "innovation" than some maverick attempt to put a bigger sensor in a camera that fits in a pocket. The RX100 is a mere end-run to pander to the "soccer moms" so abhored by "true photographers" who find their manly mojo only with huevón class FF weapons.

3 upvotes
GaryJP
By GaryJP (Nov 4, 2012)

Wonder how many Sony ads in Time magazine this month.

I assume that many here DO know Time Warner and Sony are in partnership now, particularly on the TV front, and have been since at least 2001.

Comment edited 12 minutes after posting
5 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Nov 4, 2012)

Pretty disgusting, quite frankly. The Sony fools aim to own the world, it seems. I had thought Apple already does that.

1 upvote
Antony John
By Antony John (Nov 4, 2012)

John, I think your irony got lost somewhere in the aether.

4 upvotes
ET2
By ET2 (Nov 4, 2012)

Sarcasm is usually above the grasp of many DPR posters. The two responses by Francis Carver and GaryJP are perfect examples.

4 upvotes
cgarrard
By cgarrard (Nov 4, 2012)

Apparently you know everyone here if you're able to make that judgment. Narcissism too is above the grasp of, well, you apparently?

C

1 upvote
argieramos
By argieramos (Nov 4, 2012)

"Wonder how many Sony ads in Time magazine this month."

I wonder how many people from sony who gang bang you. lol

1 upvote
GaryJP
By GaryJP (Nov 5, 2012)

Doubt they'd need to, with the likes of you servicing them for free.

1 upvote
waxwaine
By waxwaine (Nov 4, 2012)

Good for Sony!
But Time Magazine is not the Nobel, or a scientific art philosophic High level institution. It's just a private company who sells magazines and pay bills with payed advisers(publicity). No more no less.

4 upvotes
TxCamFan
By TxCamFan (Nov 4, 2012)

I think it should have received the Gold award here, as many others have mentioned, and I think it deserves its recognition as one of the best inventions of 2012. Congrats to Sony for a great, innovative, camera that is fun to use and can produce excellent results - and fits in your pocket.

5 upvotes
57even
By 57even (Nov 4, 2012)

The reviewers are entitled to their opinion. If you don't like it, no-one cares. They review many more cameras than you and probably have more perspective.

Start your own review site and see how many people agree with you.

5 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Nov 4, 2012)

@ TxCamFan: As an obvious salaries employee of Sony Corporation, maybe you should have sat this one out, hmmm?

1 upvote
limlh
By limlh (Nov 4, 2012)

If you consider the invention of digital photography and all the so-called digital cameras made so far, I agree that the Sony RX-100 is truly representative.

0 upvotes
AbrasiveReducer
By AbrasiveReducer (Nov 4, 2012)

Hard to reconcile this alongside Sony's other inventions like DVDs and portable digital recorders. The RX-100 might be more like the Elcassette--like putting an 8-cylinder engine in a car that normally comes with a 6. (I'm not saying the camera is bad. I wasn't that impressed with mine but it was definitely better than cameras with smaller sensors).

1 upvote
Gunnlaugur Gudmundsson
By Gunnlaugur Gudmundsson (Nov 4, 2012)

Ok I get it.The Gold award is about Love. Good to know. We talk about science, technology and measurements, but - at the end of the day - the final score boils down to love.

To quote DPreview, Barney Britton: "..it's perfectly sensible for us to withhold a gold award from the RX100, despite its excellent performance. It's the difference between being impressed by and having respect for someone's abilities, and loving them. Gold/Silver awards are *subjective*. We've said it a million times."

Now I know - finally - where I stand, when looking at camera scores.. Love...

I'm not being sarcastic .. I understand that technology can be good, but not soul inspiring...

What originally confused me was this DPreview comment: "Scoring is relative only to the other cameras in the same category."

That started me thinking: If RX100 is the best in the compact category, does no camera deserve a Gold award? Or...?

Comment edited 11 minutes after posting
3 upvotes
GaryJP
By GaryJP (Nov 4, 2012)

You may find some knowledgeable reviewers did not love "Titanic" for example, as much as you did either.

That's life.

2 upvotes
Gunnlaugur Gudmundsson
By Gunnlaugur Gudmundsson (Nov 4, 2012)

I love the DPReview website. I'm thankful that it does exist. I'm trying to learn - to communicate - I am a student/novice in this area.

I've been reading this website since 2005.. I got used to Highly Recommended and Recommended.. then this Gold / Silver ...

and for a long time I have been pondering "this scoring is relative to other cameras in the same category.." (I admit that I can be very slow in the uptake..)

Anyway, to my mind something is wrong, "there is something rotten in the state of Denmark"... I can't put my finger on it, and I am not going to argue about it... I'll just say what I feel and then leave... I don't have stocks in any of the companies in question.. it's just my sense of right and wrong..

and my feeling is that the wonderful DPReview website needs to do something about presenting the conclusion the their excellent camera reviews..

if you guys don't agree, fine...

best regards
from 'icy and volcanic' Iceland

3 upvotes
Nishi Drew
By Nishi Drew (Nov 4, 2012)

Titanic was a long and boring movie

3 upvotes
GaryJP
By GaryJP (Nov 4, 2012)

Nishi, on that we can agree :-)

1 upvote
John Koch
By John Koch (Nov 4, 2012)

"Titanic" earned a lot of money. Were any camera to do as well, even before the advent of smart phones, would be remarkable. To do so now would be a stupendous, nay titanic, achievement.

0 upvotes
GaryJP
By GaryJP (Nov 4, 2012)

Yeah, and money ALWAYS means quality. That's why Lady Gaga is the best musician.

3 upvotes
Revenant
By Revenant (Nov 4, 2012)

@Gunnlaugur: You're still confusing the final score and the award. As DPR has explained many times, they aren't connected. The final score is a weighted sum of the scores in the different categories (IQ, handling, build quality etc.), and these scores are relative to other cameras in the same category at the time of the review.
The award is the reviewer's personal, subjective opinion on the camera as a whole, and could very well be more or less than the sum of the individual parts. For example, if the ergonomics of a camera doesn't suit my hands and my shooting technique, I would never give an award to that camera, no matter how great its IQ and features. Another person, who likes the ergonomics, may not agree and perhaps even give the same camera a gold award. That's no cause for concern, because subjective opinions are just that, subjective.

0 upvotes
jhinkey
By jhinkey (Nov 4, 2012)

Don't confuse criticizing Time with bashing the RX100. I, and many others here, have no qualms about the RX100, just it's inclusion on a list on which it does not belong.

2 upvotes
BMWX5
By BMWX5 (Nov 4, 2012)

It is just unbelievable there are so many Sony haters here without even trying or owning this camera.

I am sure if it is a Nikon or Canon, there will be less negative or nasty postings on this article.

I think Sony is a very innovative company. Just look at RX1 and Sony A99. I think it is great that we have many choices and it will push other companies to design a better camera.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
6 upvotes
GaryJP
By GaryJP (Nov 4, 2012)

Own it, shoot with it, don't hate it, love it in certain circumstances, but am allergic to hype.

3 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Nov 4, 2012)

@ BMWX5: Yeah, and in looking at the Sony SLT Alpha 99.... I see a Sony SLT Alpha 77 with a larger sensor. Why, what do you see? And the RX1? Strictly reserved for anesthesiologists a gynecologists whose practice is in the doldrums and thus they cannot afford to go with Leica.

1 upvote
cgarrard
By cgarrard (Nov 4, 2012)

On these forums, the new "Hater" is anyone who doesn't blindly and fully endorse a product and defend it at every corner and circumstance.... apparently.

The only haters on forums are those who criticize others for having an honest opinion of an inanimate object.

The RX100 is good camera, but a great invention it's not. It doesn't even qualify as the mere definition of the word.

C

2 upvotes
jhinkey
By jhinkey (Nov 3, 2012)

The RX100 is hardly classifies as an invention in my mind. It's just an application of existing technologies put together in an attractive way (NOT in an innovative way). Jury still out on the lens IQ.
Time is showing their lack of knowledge including things like this in an inventions list.

Comment edited 38 seconds after posting
1 upvote
John Koch
By John Koch (Nov 4, 2012)

"Application of existing technologies put together in an attractive way..."

That's exactly what the founders of Ford, Microsoft, and Apple did.

Have you purchased a plenoptic or foveon camera lately?

2 upvotes
skyfotos
By skyfotos (Nov 3, 2012)

Why does the camera dubbed " the best invention of the year" not have a viewfinder?

2 upvotes
GaryJP
By GaryJP (Nov 3, 2012)

Nice sensor. Too much noise reduction on JPEGS. Not a great lens. I don't buy an f1.8 in order to have to reduce it to f5.6 to get sharp images.

Overall my G1X (even bigger sensor and better optics) gives me better pictures.

And I think it's worth the effort of carrying it around to get them. You see, I actually LIKE photography.

I had a dream once that Time magazine spent as much on journalism as they do on marketing and trying to drum up subscriptions.

Comment edited 4 times, last edit 11 minutes after posting
4 upvotes
Lucas_
By Lucas_ (Nov 4, 2012)

Have you tried the Sony?

4 upvotes
Burgerwhich
By Burgerwhich (Nov 4, 2012)

Overall my M9, D800E, Nex-7, E-m5, Xpro-1, X100 (even bigger sensor and better optics) gives me better pictures.

And I think it's worth the effort of carrying it around to get them. You see, I actually LIKE photography.

Get it?

1 upvote
GaryJP
By GaryJP (Nov 4, 2012)

Yes, as I've said before.

I own it, and like it for what it is. Forget the hype.

Oh, and Burdgerwhich, I own and shoot with 1D MkIII, a 5D MkIII, 60D, a 550D, Lumix GX1 and micro four thirds system, the G1X, several others in the G range, the Fuji X10, and the RX100. Yes, I do need to sell some.

For me, the best balance between portability and image quality is the G1 X. No doubt about it.

So I guess we BOTH like photography ... quite a lot.

Comment edited 4 times, last edit 12 minutes after posting
1 upvote
argieramos
By argieramos (Nov 4, 2012)

"Overall my G1X (even bigger sensor and better optics) gives me better pictures"

All the test of rx100 vs the g1x say otherwise.

1 upvote
GaryJP
By GaryJP (Nov 4, 2012)

In the real world the rest of us live in, almost none of them do.

2 upvotes
Lift Off
By Lift Off (Nov 3, 2012)

I'm sure they meant Sony RX1.

Comment edited 21 seconds after posting
4 upvotes
bobbarber
By bobbarber (Nov 3, 2012)

Guys, I made a "negative" comment further down. I'm going to defend it.

Sony deserves a lot of credit for being innovative. They are one of the most innovative camera companies currently, and I think it is a lot of fun even for those of us who aren't Sony owners to see what they'll come up with next.

The flaw in this camera is the lens. It sucks compared to the lens in the XZ-1, and a few other compacts. Look at the comparison tool. Go to the watch, the hair next to the watch, or anything else sort of near the edges. This lens sucks.

THE QUALITY OF THE LENS IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN SENSOR SIZE. YOU CAN NOT PUT A $50 F8 500MM LENS IN FRONT OF A NIKON D800 SENSOR, AND EXPECT BETTER PHOTOS THAN YOU GET OUT OF A PANASONIC FZ150, FOR EXAMPLE, JUST BECAUSE THE SENSOR IS BIGGER.

Sorry to shout, but Good God, people are talking about the size of the sensor as if it absolutely, positively is the one spec that most defines image quality, and it absolutely, positively IS NOT, the LENS IS.

4 upvotes
skiphunt13
By skiphunt13 (Nov 3, 2012)

Bob Barber, go to ISO3200 on the same image and then compare. I see what you're saying at ISO100 but ISO3200 is another kettle of large sensor fish.

5 upvotes
bobbarber
By bobbarber (Nov 4, 2012)

@skiphunt13

Well, of course you're right, the RX-100 is better at ISO 3200.

So you're left with a choice between a camera that takes better shots at ISO 100, or one that takes better shots at ISO 3200. I know which ISO I shoot at most of the time, and I know which camera I would choose.

Unfortunately, I bet a lot of people who mostly shoot at ISO 100 will choose this camera because "the bigger sensor is better".

There's no free lunch. Large sensor + small fixed lens = middling lens quality. Sony could build a lens as sharp as the XZ-1 lens to put on this camera, but it would have to be a BIG lens because of the sensor size, and there goes the pocketability buzzword.

There ARE advantages to small sensor size, despite what you read on these forums. Cameras like the XZ-1 will also be better for macro work, because of greater DOF.

0 upvotes
Lucas_
By Lucas_ (Nov 4, 2012)

The Sony RX-100 has a Zoom lens, when you say "fixed" you mean "non-interchangeable" or "prime"?

1 upvote
bobbarber
By bobbarber (Nov 4, 2012)

@Lucas_

I mean "non-interchangeable".

This lens would have been sharper wide open as a prime.

I see the purpose of the camera, but ISO 3200 performance is not a selling point to me, and it certainly doesn't merit this award, not when there are compacts that perform better at the lower ISOs that most people shoot at most of the time.

Sony sacrificed lens quality for pocketability.

One combination I shoot is a GH2 + Oly 11-22mm. It's heavy, ugly, and looks like a Rube-Goldberg apparatus, but it blows the image quality of this camera away. If I wanted a compact that gave me something like the image quality I'm used to getting, I would choose the XZ-1 and shoot at low ISO. I don't care much if my high ISO photos are slightly less yellow and rotten than the next guy's. I try to avoid shooting in those conditions if possible.

0 upvotes
kucink132
By kucink132 (Nov 4, 2012)

funny,with bigger sensor size even the mediocre lens will gives you better result. sharpness, dynamic range, so on. bigger sensor=more money to make it.

the smaller the sensor, the more difficult to build lens with similiar performance that is sharpness, bokeh, and so on. easy math

0 upvotes
bobbarber
By bobbarber (Nov 4, 2012)

@kuckink132

Except that this lens DOES NOT perform as well as the lenses in the XZ-1, LX5, etc.

Use the comparison tool, please.

0 upvotes
kucink132
By kucink132 (Nov 5, 2012)

yes, i can agree about the lens, but i just want to comment your statement that "the quality of lens is more important", at some degree it's true but remember that bigger sensor is the reason behind SLR's sharpness, dynamic range, and ultimately, bokeh. It's very hard to match result from APS-C + 50mm 1.4 lens with sensor with only 1' sensor size. Technically speaking, smaller sensor raise pixel-per-inch in sensor's capture area, so require the lens to be ultimately sharp enough to project the image to every pixel. As for bokeh, its require 28mm f/0.78 to match APS-C 50mm 1.8

compared to XZ-1, LX5, RX100 have pros and cons. I dont like sony's 'plastic' color either.

0 upvotes
Slanicka Tomas
By Slanicka Tomas (Nov 3, 2012)

Everything is question of money.

0 upvotes
John Koch
By John Koch (Nov 4, 2012)

Is that a bankable remark?

0 upvotes
martin11
By martin11 (Nov 3, 2012)

" the Sony RX100, which bridges the gap between point-and-shoots and pro-quality digital SLRs."

"bridges" LOL

0 upvotes
Octane
By Octane (Nov 3, 2012)

Time Magazine is so much better and more knowledgeable than DPReview, DxO Labs and experiences photographers combined. LOL

2 upvotes
Burgerwhich
By Burgerwhich (Nov 4, 2012)

LOL What? Have you seen some of the work by the Time magazine photography staff over the decades? WTH do you even mean by Dpreview,dxo, and experiences (experienced?) photographer? Are they a cult of something that I am not aware of? Now if you were going to say something about the article and its writer, that is different.

2 upvotes
GaryJP
By GaryJP (Nov 4, 2012)

... and all of it shot on the RX100.

1 upvote
Octane
By Octane (Nov 5, 2012)

@Burgerwhich Let's see how many of their photographers switch to that camera. As others have pointed out, this camera is a fine camera, but it's not an invention nor groundbreaking. It's a nice step forward, nothing more. And you know very well that all Time Magazine's photographers didn't pick the camera. It's clearly product placement.

0 upvotes
Digital Suicide
By Digital Suicide (Nov 3, 2012)

I think many people know Sony better for TVs, walkmans, or other electronics.
But look at the NEX series, RX100, then RX1... At least Sony is reading your moans and is trying to make cameras of your dreams. Guys from Fujifilm as well.
Yes, they are still not perfect and pricey, but they are not cheap to make. And at this price point, you can't expect it to be best-seller.
Look at Canon and Nikon, still playing market leaders and trying to convince you with crap cameras. Actually, they are doing nothing now.
Big up for Sony.

20 upvotes
GaryJP
By GaryJP (Nov 3, 2012)

Owning Canon, Fuji, the Sony RX100, and Panasonic, have to say I don't agree with your assessment at all. Overall my Canons have the best IQ, and I don't give a toot if they don't fit in my tight jeans.

5 upvotes
Lucas_
By Lucas_ (Nov 4, 2012)

At least Nikon is doing something, they're buying sensors from Sony!

1 upvote
kucink132
By kucink132 (Nov 4, 2012)

in sum, sony gives you small body, big sensor, and moderate-value cameras. while IQ might arguably not the best out there, but at least one of the tops.

nikon? nah, they gives us mirrorless that neither gives great result, small size, and good starting price. Nikon seems dont want to mess with their well-established DSLR market.

So I am agree, sony deserves some awards

3 upvotes
fox-orian
By fox-orian (Nov 11, 2012)

@ GaryJP: Different needs to different people! Many enjoy GREAT (not perfect) quality from a small camera they can discretely keep on them in contrast to their large bulky DSLR system. For many, sheer critical IQ isn't the do-all-end-all. It's the usability and experience you captured with it as well.

Sometimes with my large DSLR, I feel like I'm more documenting an event for others rather than experiencing it for myself. A small camera like the RX100 allows you to have fun yourself, but still capture what you're doing as well. This is why GoPro's are so popular, and people look like their having so much fun while using them.

0 upvotes
GaryJP
By GaryJP (Nov 11, 2012)

Fox-orion, I don't disagree with that, although my preferred IQ / Convenience balance lies at a different part on the spectrum. I have clearly said this is the best camera "of its size", but that is not enough for the most determined true believers here. They want to talk nonsense about how - on IQ alone - it bests larger cameras. It does not.

I have fun with mine too, but not as much fun when I get back to the computer and begin processing the RAWs. I find that the noise pattern, in Lightroom at least, begins to create an almost reticulation pattern very easily.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
1 upvote
DotCom Editor
By DotCom Editor (Nov 3, 2012)

Does it cure cancer? Does it end war? Or famine? No? Hmm, it ain't one of 50 best inventions of 2012. It's -- wait for it, wait for it -- it's a camera.

6 upvotes
kadardr
By kadardr (Nov 3, 2012)

And what about "The Motion-Activated Screwdriver" or the "Indoor Cloud"? They are on that list...

4 upvotes
57even
By 57even (Nov 3, 2012)

At least they are "new". When was the camera invented....?

1 upvote
kadardr
By kadardr (Nov 3, 2012)

Screwdriver?

0 upvotes
Boerseuntjie
By Boerseuntjie (Nov 3, 2012)

You might want to look up the word innovation and what it means.
Lets see ...Innovation is the development of new customers value through solutions that meet new needs, inarticulate needs, or old customer and market needs in new ways.
So yes this is Innovation and not world peace / cure for cancer.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 2 minutes after posting
5 upvotes
Boerseuntjie
By Boerseuntjie (Nov 3, 2012)

Thanks for pointing out that it's a camera I would have never known

1 upvote
57even
By 57even (Nov 4, 2012)

You can make an improvement to an existing object using existing technology by packaging it better - that would classify as innovation, but not invention. If it introduced a new piece of previously unseen technology that would be invention.

Time clearly are neither scientists nor engineers and don't understand the difference.

0 upvotes
57even
By 57even (Nov 3, 2012)

It's no doubt a great little camera, but isn't this overstating things a bit? After all no new technology here, just good packaging. One of the best cameras of 2012 perhaps, but best "inventions"?

1 upvote
Boerseuntjie
By Boerseuntjie (Nov 3, 2012)

Sony should make the list.
Yes they are pushing the industry all the time and it's only good for consumers because it forces all camera makers to step up to the plate, I would say if it was not for Sony pushing the industry we would not have all these incredible cameras like the Nikon D800 or Canon 5D MKIII and a99 at prices that's affordable to the masses.

Comment edited 49 seconds after posting
4 upvotes
pait
By pait (Nov 3, 2012)

Sounds like a joke. May be a fine camera, but an "invention"?

5 upvotes
John Koch
By John Koch (Nov 4, 2012)

There is no "invention" other than something which combines prior ideas or tools in a new way, which is precisely what the RX100 does.

Edison did not "invent" the light bulb, but merely found a filament material that lasted longer than earlier materials. No single person or firm "invented" the computer, which was an agglomeration of multiple efforts and things. On the other hand, Newton and Einstein originated great ideas, but invented nothing. At root, to invent means to put wind or life into something, which Sony certainly did, even if the elements and concepts of the RX100 preceded its creation.

1 upvote
Tape5
By Tape5 (Nov 3, 2012)

RX100 is so incredibly capable and sexy it makes me take ten times as many photos with it as my other two cameras, both DSLRs. I am having a complete love affair with this unobtrusive beauty.

These days I think if a shot cannot be taken with my RX100, I don't want it at all. Wide at 1.8 or with a tiny zoom to still keep it open at around 4.0, I am taking pictures I can crop and enlarge to crazy levels.

Who needs a zoom better than 20 million super sharp pixels?

If there is one camera that heralds the end of chunky ugly DSLRs, it is this one. Sony is certainly here to change things and they are experimenting with RX1 as well. And all the while they are doing this, they are making RED bleed at the other front with their video machines. Insane.

12 upvotes
AmateurSnaps
By AmateurSnaps (Nov 3, 2012)

what a load of bull. its right for you but saying such a camera is the end of dslrs is the height of stupidity. nice camera, not really innovative, just a slight change of, read good, direction to take. for most dslr users its a companion camera or something to take out for a change.

3 upvotes
bartjeej
By bartjeej (Nov 3, 2012)

I think this is the first compact camera that, for the majority of consumers, will be able to do everything they want from a DSLR. That is, the very large group of (potential) DSLR buyers that just wants consistently good image quality in all situations and fast performance, and isn't interested in buying anything other than the kit lens.

So yes, in that sense, the RX100 can be considered the end of DSLRs' ubiquity, or at least the entry level DSLRs. And for most of the (potential) DSLR buyers who are interested in chancing lenses, CSCs are, or will soon be, able to fulfill their needs as well.

1 upvote
GaryJP
By GaryJP (Nov 3, 2012)

"If there is one camera that heralds the end of chunky ugly DSLRs, it is this one."

There isn't.

Including this one. At least not to those serious about photography.

2 upvotes
bartjeej
By bartjeej (Nov 4, 2012)

so GaryJP, you're saying that "those serious about photography" need to have a DSLR? in the words of AmateurSnaps above: what a load of bull.

4 upvotes
GaryJP
By GaryJP (Nov 4, 2012)

No, I'm saying what I said, and it isn't hard to understand: that to those serious about photography the idea that the DSLR is rendered obsolescent by ANY compact is bull.

You know what they say about ASSuming.

3 upvotes
John Koch
By John Koch (Nov 4, 2012)

Anyone who has sunk a lot of cash and pride into a DSLR system can be expected to defend their choice and bear the (hefty) weight too. Via crucis.

Anyone who cares not to share their suffering, but take nice pictures, can buy an RX100 or the competitors that are sure to appear soon.

Comment edited 59 seconds after posting
1 upvote
GaryJP
By GaryJP (Nov 4, 2012)

Yeah, it can take "nice" pictures. But anyone who thinks it seriously renders the D800 or 5D MkIII obsolescent must be keeping it next to their white stick.

Despite the claims of the cheerleaders, I note Time magazine itself is actually NOT encouraging its contributing photographers (of whom I am acquainted with a couple) to go out into the field and shoot with the RX100 instead of their DSLRs.

Comment edited 10 minutes after posting
3 upvotes
bartjeej
By bartjeej (Nov 4, 2012)

I'll agree that cameras like the one you listed are currently out of the reach of non-DSLRs in terms of capability, but I think that won't last very long.

Having said that, I'm sure you'll agree that many people who are serious about their photography have no need whatsoever for a heavy bulky beast, when smaller cameras can get image quality that meets just about anyone's criteria in the vast, vast majority of situations (and remember, we were talking about camera's, not just compacts; so CSCs / mirrorless cameras should also be taken into consideration). So for lots serious photographers, there are non-DSLRs that do indeed render DSLRs obsolete.

0 upvotes
Rooru S
By Rooru S (Nov 3, 2012)

Why so many negative comments? To me, seems like a very good camera, and people is buying it (3rd spot overall on P&S section, Amazon USA) even if that camera is priced way much higher than 1st and 2nd spot. Large 1.0 Type Sensor, 28mm at f/1.8 (although I don't like the long end aperture) and many customizable buttons and dial, and even 1080p60 with manual control. All This in a pocketable camera good enough for most situations where I can't get to use a large sensored camera.

The bad thing about being included in the 50 best inventions of 2012 is because it's a Sony? Wondering what could happen if it had another label.

14 upvotes
tbcass
By tbcass (Nov 3, 2012)

The negative comments come from fanboys of other brands. DPR is full of them and Sony has their own share as well. It seems that many photo enthusiasts are among some of the most emotionally charged irrational people around.

16 upvotes
Midnighter
By Midnighter (Nov 3, 2012)

Its an amazing camera, it deserved a gold award, but the negative comments are about Time magazine. I went through their list of 'inventions'. Some are worthy of the title, many look tossed in there to get the number up to 50. But 50 is more impressive than 20 isn't it? They could have run 30 Best Products and 20 Great Inventions. That would have been more meaningful. By doing it the way they did...tsk... its not about the Sony camera at all.

3 upvotes
BruinBlue
By BruinBlue (Nov 3, 2012)

Probably a mixture of fanboyism and elitism from those who don't like Sony's photographic heritage. I think if Pentax, Olympus, or Fuji released the RX100, it would be praised much more.

Sony deserves credit for pushing the P&S market forward and away from the threat from smartphones.

6 upvotes
misha
By misha (Nov 3, 2012)

No, it's not fanboyism. I think the reaction would have been the same if Time had picked the Canon G1x or Panasonic LX7 or Nikon V1 - they are fine innovative and evolutionary products, but hardly ground-breaking inventions. I don't see people claiming that any camera by another maker this year should be among the top *inventions*.

Comment edited 5 minutes after posting
4 upvotes
Roland Karlsson
By Roland Karlsson (Nov 3, 2012)

@tbcass - you are just making that up, inventing it :)

It seems like those complaining about the camera getting the price, says that a camera, independent how good it is, is not an invention.

How you can get that to be an attack on Sony I dont know really.

4 upvotes
GaryJP
By GaryJP (Nov 3, 2012)

Because HE is the fanboy he decries.

1 upvote
kodachromeguy
By kodachromeguy (Nov 3, 2012)

Impressive engineering, but I think the designers omitted a crucial item: the ability to mount filters and hoods. I know most users will never care, but this is an expensive camera presumably aimed at a more serious level of users, so no way to add a hood?

0 upvotes
ET2
By ET2 (Nov 3, 2012)

You can get the magnetic filters from third part sellers. See this

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FejSR_k37Gc

The point of RX100 was to make a pocket camera, and that means no lens caps needed, like LX7 and EX2 for example, that requires you to carry a lens cap with you.

RX100 doesn't require a lens cap. RX100 should be compared to S95, with the difference that the sensor in RX100 is 4 times larger.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 6 minutes after posting
10 upvotes
dutch3dmaster
By dutch3dmaster (Nov 3, 2012)

As an owner of dozens of digital cameras (no joke) I only took the RX100 on my trip to Rome. And so did my Sister. And so did my 84 year old Mother. It is a GEM! Actually, I already own two. For 3D shoots with "special effects".

7 upvotes
marctr6
By marctr6 (Nov 3, 2012)

Agree with the RX100 inclusion in the list. The inventivity is in the mechanical complexity of the two stage tubular lens barrel IN which lenses line up, a 1"sensor is housed, OSS is cramped in... All sliding back into the flatness, about 25 mm, of the very compact body when turned off. The precision of the parts is Swiss watch like. Of course the RX100 is not perfect, no industrial design is, but the goal of near APS-C image quality in a pocketable body has been achieved.

15 upvotes
Streetutopia
By Streetutopia (Nov 3, 2012)

I have read through comments on this board several times before and it is alway so negative, grumpy and not too helpful. I get the feeling that everyone who posts on this site is a grear head and is stuck on tech specs and not on the actual art creating part of photography.

I happen to like the Sony RX100 as I am someone who always has a camera with me but can't stand DSLR's (too big, heavy,). The Sony IQ is great and is helped along by using DXO software that corrects for lens deficiencies.

I know, I know, you all hate DXO , Sony, blah blah blah.

11 upvotes
SeeRoy
By SeeRoy (Nov 3, 2012)

There are dozens of cameras essentially similar to this one. No doubt it's a fine example of the breed and maybe even the best, depending on how "the best" is to be defined.
"One of the 50 greatest inventions" of the last year it absolutely isn't. Time Magazine... I remember Time Magazine. So it's still around?

0 upvotes
ET2
By ET2 (Nov 3, 2012)

"There are dozens of cameras essentially similar to this one. "

No, there aren't. As I asked before, name a camera with

(1) large sensor,
(2) bright large zoom
(3) fits in normal pocket

No other such camera exists.

Comment edited 11 minutes after posting
18 upvotes
Calvin Chann
By Calvin Chann (Nov 3, 2012)

Go on then. Name one dozen. Shouldn't be difficult given that there are several!

1 upvote
SDPharm
By SDPharm (Nov 3, 2012)

> ET2: No, there aren't. As I asked before, name a camera with (1) large sensor, (2) bright large zoom (3) fits in normal pocket <

I think SeeRoy meant there are plenty of small cameras that have bright lenses and can take good pictures. Canon S110, Panasonic LX7 for example. I'm not sure there are 'dozens' but half a dozen is probably not far from reality.

By good pictures, I mean if you take the same picture using each of these camera, print them out to 24" size, hang them on the wall and let people choose which is taken by RX100. I don't think anyone can reliably pick the correct picture (or for fun you can throw in the Nikon D800 or D600).

0 upvotes
MrTaikitso
By MrTaikitso (Nov 3, 2012)

Photographers are by their nature grumpy. And in the 70s and 80s would be thin, smoke and wear black shirts. Some even had a labrador back home. Today, we are older, fatter and still as cynical! :D

Seriously, my only problem with the RX100 is that I like larger controls and cannot survive without a flip out display. Other than that, it is what Sony do best, small and beautifully engineered. It is the (black) iPhone 5 of cameras! (Steve Jobs worshipped Sony & almost destroyed them with the iPod.)

2 upvotes
tbcass
By tbcass (Nov 3, 2012)

SDPharm I guarantee I can tell the difference between the RX100 and any small sensor camera on a 24" print. This is especially true at iso400 and above and yes, most of my photos are taken at iso 400 +/-.

2 upvotes
SDPharm
By SDPharm (Nov 3, 2012)

> I guarantee I can tell the difference between the RX100 and any small sensor camera on a 24" print.

Good for you. I'm sure you know what you are looking for, sure you might see specific differences.

I typically look at a 24" print from at least 24" away. At that distance, when color etc. are adjusted, I'm not so sure most people can tell, or care, what the differences are. By that definition, these cameras are 'similar.'

0 upvotes
Joel Benford
By Joel Benford (Nov 3, 2012)

Adequate camera, with excellent image quality for the size.

11 upvotes
Ray Sachs
By Ray Sachs (Nov 3, 2012)

Big step forward, but evolutionary, not revolutionary. I had one and hated the handling and slow lens enough to get rid of it for an X-10. If pocketable is your only criteria, its pretty amazing, but if you like a slightly larger camera, its very very good but far from an "invention".

4 upvotes
cgarrard
By cgarrard (Nov 3, 2012)

Exactly Ray. Hype seems to know no bounds these days. Irritating to say the least.

Carl

0 upvotes
Burgerwhich
By Burgerwhich (Nov 4, 2012)

1) "Big step forward, but evolutionary, not revolutionary." Agreed, personally I would of picked the Sony RX1 instead, for ushering in a new FF compact era.
2) "I had one and hated the handling and slow lens enough to get rid of it for an X-10." That is great, but doesn't mean nothing, don't care.
3) " If pocketable is your only criteria..." Following that logic I would stick with my 1995 Nokia cell phone with back camera. It is SOOO small!! Obviously rx100 got other things going for it.
4) Far from a invention?? Hun? you mean it is a evolutionary invention not a revolutionary one right? but still a invention...stay consistent.

0 upvotes
EssexAsh
By EssexAsh (Nov 3, 2012)

awesome bit of kit but hardly an invention. I think people have been using camera's a little before 2012.

1 upvote
nofumble
By nofumble (Nov 3, 2012)

Garbage. Nokia smartphone camera is more deserved than this Sony for sure.

6 upvotes
Paradigm Changer
By Paradigm Changer (Nov 3, 2012)

Very true. Certainly the RX100's sensor size doesn't stand out more than the Panasonic FZ200's constant f2.8, or Fuji's novel sensor array (okay, that was a little while ago, but did they get a major award for that?).

3 upvotes
tbcass
By tbcass (Nov 3, 2012)

The RX100 is easily deserving of this recognition. Of course the "FANBOYS" of other brands won't agree. People with an unbiased point of view recognize that this is a breakthrough for a pocketable camera. It's really amusing how threatened the non Sony fanboys are by the camera.

12 upvotes
Paradigm Changer
By Paradigm Changer (Nov 4, 2012)

That's one of the less compelling versions of the fanboy argument I've read of late, especially as the writer seems to reveal himself to be equally afflicted, in his closing statement.

1 upvote
Total comments: 578
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