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Firmware update gives Sony QX-series cameras more manual control

By Jeff Keller on Dec 19, 2013 at 04:59 GMT

Sony has announced firmware upgrades that enhance the features of its QX-series 'lens-style' cameras, which clip on to the front of your smartphone. The update adds Full HD video recording and an expanded ISO range for both the QX10 and QX100, while the latter also receives a shutter priority mode. Version 4.0 of Sony's PlayMemories Mobile app has more seamless viewing of photos and also promises double the performance on iOS devices (an improved Android app will follow next year). The PMM 4.0 app is available for download now, while the firmware update will be released in January.

Press Release:

SONY ANNOUNCES SOFTWARE AND FIRMWARE UPDATES IMPROVING SPEED, FUNCTIONALITY OF CYBER-SHOT QX “LENS-STYLE” CAMERAS

SAN DIEGO, Dec. 18, 2013 – Sony Electronics has announced plans for a software and firmware update designed to improve the overall usability, speed and functionality of the Cyber-shot QX100 and QX10 “Lens-style” Cameras.

SOFTWARE UPDATE

The software update for the PlayMemories Mobile™ application – Version 4.0 – will work with all Sony Wi-Fi enabled cameras in addition to the Cyber-shot QX series, and will be available immediately in both Google Play™ and App Store™. The updated application will feature:

  • Embedded Photo Browser – A “Quick Viewer” photo browser has been added to the PlayMemories Mobile application, which will allow for seamless navigation between shooting images and viewing images in playback mode. 


  • Improved Speed and Functionality – The newest version of the application will have improved connectivity speed when linking to devices running the Apple iOS™ platform. More specifically, connection start up time will be approximately twice as fast compared to previous versions of the PlayMemories Mobile application.

Sony will be releasing another software update in Spring 2014 to improve connectivity speed with Android devices.

CAMERA FIRMWARE UPDATE

Additionally, there will be a firmware update for QX cameras in January which will add a variety of exciting capabilities including:

  • Full HD Movie Recording (QX100 and QX10): Both of the Cyber-shot QX Series cameras will have the ability to shoot Full HD 1080p video (1920x1080@30p in MP4) after the firmware update.


  • Shutter Priority (“S”) Mode (QX100 only): The Shutter Priority (“S”) mode will be added to the QX100 camera to allow direct access control to shutter speed.


  • Expanded ISO Shooting Range (QX100 and QX10): Each of the cameras will be able to shoot at higher ISO settings for greater versatility in low-light conditions. The QX10 camera will be expanded from max ISO 1600 to max ISO 3200. The QX100 camera will be expanded from max ISO 3200 to max ISO 12800.

  QX100QX10
Mode   Now After update Now After update
Program auto ISO  160 - 3200 160 - 12800 100 - 1600 100 - 3200
Aperture priority ISO 160 - 3200 160 - 12800 N/A N/A
Shutter priority ISO N/A 160 - 12800 N/A N/A
Shutter
speed
N/A 30 - 1/2000 s N/A N/A 
Movie
(MP4)
Image
size
1440x1080/30p 1920x1080/30p 1440x1080/30p 1920x1080/30p
 
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22
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3
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Sony Cyber-shot DSC-QX100

Comments

Total comments: 21
domina
By domina (4 months ago)

I want a QX100 and a QX10 for street photography, as well as for photography in shops, supermarkets, malls etc, but I need to be able to have full manual control for shutter, aperture, and ISO both in photography and in video. Without full manual control (especially for shutter speed), they're useless. It's good the new firmware will add shutter-priority mode to QX100, but why don't they add it to the QX10 too? QX10 has a 25mm-equivalent lens while the QX100 is only 28mm, and the wider it is the better it is for taking pictures of strangers without them noticing.

1 upvote
bluevellet
By bluevellet (4 months ago)

Sony: Make Believe It Works.

1 upvote
offertonhatter
By offertonhatter (4 months ago)

I have just bought a QX10, today.
Why? Well why not? It is going to be fun to use. :-)
As for talking to my iPhone 4GS and iPad 1, installed the software, put the wireless password in and no problem at all.

It is not for everyone, I know, but personally I can see the fun aspect of using one.
I did consider the QX100, but could not justify the price and size, even if the IQ is a lot better, better even than my much loved LX-5.
Still it was cheap, and I know I will enjoy using it.

Comment edited 12 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
MarkByland
By MarkByland (4 months ago)

Tried 6 times, unsuccessfully, to pair with the iPhone 5.

I gave up.

Worse thing is, this happened in front of a customer who was looking to purchase ...

1 upvote
oginome
By oginome (3 months ago)

tried qx10 with iPhone 5s. very easy to connect and much faster than with xperia z and z1.

0 upvotes
birket
By birket (4 months ago)

The concept for these is pretty good, and being in the market for a camcorder, I ordered the QX100 a few weeks ago. I had it about an hour before sending it back. The connection between it and my Samsung Galaxy S3 was awful. I wonder if these updates will resolve connection issues?

1 upvote
banpreso
By banpreso (4 months ago)

I played with this camera at the sony store and experienced the same problem. It took them a while to get it paired with a sony smart phone, and afterwards the viewfinder (phone's screen) refresh rate was absolutely terriable. It was unuseable.

I love SONY's recent innovations, and I probably will buy a A7. I wish them all the best! Just hope they don't burn through their budget too quickly and somebody upstairs decides they should exit when the innovactions aren't translating to quarterly results.

And yes, Canikon have been very boring as of late.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
0 upvotes
rpm40
By rpm40 (4 months ago)

You couldn't even control shutter speed before? Holy crap. I knew the design was weird, but didn't realize the interface was so limited. I would have thought they would give similar controls and interface to one of their stand alone cameras to help better differentiate it from the camera ALREADY ATTACHED 2 INCHES AWAY.

I would assume most people who buy these as an add on for a device that already has a camera care a little more about their photography, and would want basic controls like shutter speed.

2 upvotes
silver knight
By silver knight (4 months ago)

This device is meant to replace the camera on your phone. Does your phone allow you to control shutter speed?

3 upvotes
fishywishy
By fishywishy (4 months ago)

i wish they made one with a non-protruding lens like the tx100

0 upvotes
Jogger
By Jogger (4 months ago)

I would be down for a QX100 in a slimmer body with a fixed lens wide angle..actually, that would be a pretty good action cam.

1 upvote
joexu
By joexu (4 months ago)

I find it odd the QX10 have 1920X1080 30p MP4 and their A7 or RX10 does not.

0 upvotes
sdchew
By sdchew (4 months ago)

No camera RAW to SDCard? :(

2 upvotes
CameraLabTester
By CameraLabTester (4 months ago)

No amount of firmware will rescue a design that is originally flawed.

.

3 upvotes
ryansholl
By ryansholl (4 months ago)

Well, at the very least they tried something different. Sales numbers will tell the tale.

Meanwhile Canikon churns out another iteration of the same. Which works, don't get me wrong, but is awfully boring.

10 upvotes
Revenant
By Revenant (4 months ago)

Sure, Canikon mostly stick to their usual designs and established technologies, but they do come up with some new things too.
Nikon AW1 is the first digital system camera that is actually waterproof and submergible, and not just weather resistant.
Canon's "Dual Pixel AF" is a major innovation, and superior to any other implementation of on-sensor PDAF, including Sony's.
The PowerShot N, which is basically just a P&S, nevertheless is also an attempt to try something different design-wise.

It seems the "Canon and Nikon never innovate" mantra is throwed around a lot, no matter what products they release.

2 upvotes
D 503
By D 503 (4 months ago)

I have updated.

1 upvote
Tonkotsu Ramen
By Tonkotsu Ramen (4 months ago)

now how about firmware updates for all your other products sony?

7 upvotes
leonche64
By leonche64 (4 months ago)

In your opinion, which products require a firmware update?

7 upvotes
ryansholl
By ryansholl (4 months ago)

Actually- almost all of them. Unless there's a good hardware-related reason the newer jpeg engine can't be rolled out to some (at least recent) cameras.

3 upvotes
Tonkotsu Ramen
By Tonkotsu Ramen (4 months ago)

at minimum, any product that doesn't have auto iso in M and any product that has poor jpg processing (most of them)

3 upvotes
Total comments: 21