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Sony NEX-5R Hands-on Preview

August 2012 | By Lars Rehm, Richard Butler


Preview based on a pre-production NEX-5R with firmware 01

The Alpha NEX-5R is Sony's seventh NEX camera and the third in its '5' series that aims to appeal to a more demanding customer than the point-and-shoot-upgrader-friendly '3' cameras. The 5R is a subtle upgrade over the existing 5N but the changes wrought suggests Sony has a clearer idea of who each camera is aimed at.

The NEX-5R isn't a NEX-7 by any means, but it's finally added a couple of features that make it more attractive to keen photographers - namely a dedicated function button and control dial. These may essentially be an extension of the level of control that the 5N already offered, but devoting more space to external controls shows that Sony expects the users to actually use these functions.

The biggest technology advance on the NEX-5R is the addition of a modified sensor with pixels devoted to performing phase-detection to provide a hybrid autofocus system. The phase-detection pixels are used to determine depth information about the focus target, which means the camera has to perform less hunting. Sony is the fourth manufacturer (following Fujifilm, Nikon and Canon) to go down this route, with the potential of faster focus, improved continuous focus performance and better autofocus in movie shooting. How well these advantages might be realised in practice, though, is unclear from the pre-production example we've used for this preview.

The other big advance on the 5R is the addition of DNLA-compliant Wi-Fi and on-camera apps. Unlike Nikon's recently-announced Coolpix 800c, the NEX can only run Sony-made apps, but the couple included on the camera do increase its capabilities. The Wi-Fi and apps combine to mean that the 5R can push images to an iOS or Android smartphone, push images straight to Facebook or Sony's own PlayMemories site across a Wi-Fi network, or allow the use of a smartphone as a remote viewfinder/trigger.

Sony NEX-5R specification highlights

  • 16.1MP CMOS sensor
  • ISO 100-25600
  • Top-plate control dial
  • Dedicated Fn button
  • Wi-Fi for connection via Wi-Fi networks or to smartphones
  • Proprietary in-camera apps
  • Touch-screen display
  • Electronic First Curtain shutter
  • 1080p 60p HD movies in AVCHD (50p on PAL region models)

Compared to the NEX-5N

The NEX-5R's design shares a constancy with its predecessors that's becoming something of a tradition for the mid-range NEXs. Which is to say it looks essentially the same as the 5N and the 5 before it. The space taken up by the dial and the Fn button on the top plate mean the power switch now encircles the shutter button, NEX-7 style, but that's about all you get in terms of external clues.

Compared to NEX-5N

The NEX-5R is visually almost identical to its predecessor, the NEX-5N. There's no difference from the front...
...and on the back of the camera only the color of the buttons has changed from silver to black. The displays shown here also hint at another difference - the addition of proprietary camera apps.
However, when viewing the cameras from the top you can see that a new control dial has been added to the NEX-5R. The NEX-5N's on/off switch had to make space for it and has now been placed as a ring around the shutter button. The play and movie buttons had to be moved around a little as well to adapt to the new layout.


If you're new to digital photography you may wish to read the Digital Photography Glossary before diving into this article (it may help you understand some of the terms used).

Conclusion / Recommendation / Ratings are based on the opinion of the reviewer, you should read the ENTIRE review before coming to your own conclusions.

Images which can be viewed at a larger size have a small magnifying glass icon in the bottom right corner of the image, clicking on the image will display a larger (typically VGA) image in a new window.

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DPReview calibrate their monitors using Color Vision OptiCal at the (fairly well accepted) PC normal gamma 2.2, this means that on our monitors we can make out the difference between all of the (computer generated) grayscale blocks below. We recommend to make the most of this review you should be able to see the difference (at least) between X,Y and Z and ideally A,B and C.

This article is Copyright 2012 and may NOT in part or in whole be reproduced in any electronic or printed medium without prior permission from the author.

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Comments

Total comments: 145
12
Crysrae23
By Crysrae23 (3 months ago)

This camera takes wonderful photo's and is compact and easy for on the go. Small enough it is not cumbersome for vacation use.

Unfortunately Sony customer service is pretty inconvenient. I purchased this camera in April 2013, it mysteriously stopped working in February 2014. I took it to the Sony store, they are not equipped to handle camera's. They referred us to the technical support line. I had to mail the camera in, at which point I was told that the camera had physical damage and could be repaired for $800. My problem with the product is that the camera had never been dropped, any damage done I would deem as normal wear and tear. I feel the longevity and durability of the camera should have been better in this price point.

The Panorama feature on this camera was GREAT! Until is completely stopped functioning after four months of use. The photo's were too dark to discern anything.

0 upvotes
NorthYorker
By NorthYorker (5 months ago)

Any issues about the NEX-5R and the len?

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
CJ Lan
By CJ Lan (9 months ago)

When will the review on 5R be completed? I am waiting to see if the high ISO/low light performance of 5R is comparable with or better than 5N. Could Lars or Richard publish at least the studio test shots? The high ISO of 5N seems better than 6 and 7 and, if 5R is comparable or better, I will go for 5R because of its hybrid focusing and other features. Does it make sense?

1 upvote
Pacecargirl01
By Pacecargirl01 (Jul 17, 2013)

Ok so I've been looking to buy a Sony nex for sometime now and am caught between the 3 n and the 5 r ( so nice ) I'm looking for a good step up from my Olympus sp 800 uz
I'll be taking lots of concert photos ( usually from against the stage ) going on cruises and photos of my daughters and granddaughter due any day now
Any thoughts and will the lens from the 3 n work on the 5 r or is there another suggestion when a smaller lens would be helpful ?
Thanks Michelle

0 upvotes
BBsLX5
By BBsLX5 (Apr 20, 2013)

Will a complete review of the NEX-5R ever be posted by DP Review, or are the owners of the NEX-5R going to simply have to be content w/ only the preview posted, and simply assume that the aspects not covered in depth there are to be taken as simply exact duplicates of the results obtained in the NEX-6 in-depth complete review?

2 upvotes
Timmbits
By Timmbits (Jun 29, 2013)

hmmm...
check out the Fuji XM1 and the Samsung NX300...
both available with very good lenses! ;-p

0 upvotes
Thisis0b
By Thisis0b (Jul 20, 2013)

Dear Timmbits,
I read many of your comments, althouogh its my first time ever posting... I am really struggling between X M-1 and NX300.
X M1 seems like a perfect piece for me, except that Fuji has very poor after service. On the other hand NX has superb specifications, good servicce centres, and it's cheap!!!
But I know it ain't about them spec....
Samsung made a huge leap with NX300 and NX2000, but I don't think they are "in the game" yet..Maybe their next generation NX lines will really catch some attentions.
Anways...back to my first mirrorless...do you have any idea about any new releases? I mean like Fuji X A-1, X30...or any other brand??

1 upvote
NorthYorker
By NorthYorker (5 months ago)

Hi, Thisis0b,
could you tell me what is your final decision? and why do you make that decision? I am in the same situation now. I can't decide Sony NEX-5R/N or Fuji X M1?
I don't think Samsung is good one, especial the len is really bad. my friend complain it. It is not worth.

0 upvotes
maduru
By maduru (Feb 9, 2013)

Since camera has both Phase and Contrast detect, is it usable with LA-EA2 adapter? anyone?

1 upvote
sp33dy100
By sp33dy100 (Apr 20, 2013)

Yes useable with LAEA2. In sensor phase good for tracking moving objects, LAEA2 uses SLT mirror system for superior continous autofocus while tracking moving objects.

1 upvote
captura
By captura (Dec 29, 2012)

C'mon, DP Review, can you give us a full review, please?

6 upvotes
BetterNEXtime
By BetterNEXtime (Dec 3, 2012)

DPReview please add to Spec Charts and Comparisons, under HDMI Connectivity, mention of whether Display Info can be toggled off completely during Video Record. this would help buyers.

SONY ALPHA NEX Menu's CAMERA > DISP BUTTON (MONITOR) option called NO DISP. INFO *should* do precisely what an NEX 5n, 5r, 6 & 7 user would expect the setting to do:
-> Clear the viewscreen's picture area, and any HDMI-connected monitor of ALL display data during a video and photo shoot.

Despite Pop-up Help box's assuring us otherwise, CAMERA > DISPLAY BUTTON (MONITOR) > NO DISP. INFO selected in Menu, leaves display data onscreen and at HDMI OUTPUT during video shoots.

"NO DISP. INFO:
TURNS OFF DISPLAY INFORMATION FOR THE SHOOTING SCREEN."

Providing readers pertinent info re: whether or not HDMI OUT can be made "clean" may encourage Sony and others to stop game hobbling the live video HDMI output on these cams. Thank you.

Peter G.
NEX5n & NEX5r

0 upvotes
BetterNEXtime
By BetterNEXtime (Dec 3, 2012)

DPReview please add CLEAN PHOTO & VIDEO DISPLAY OPTION DURING ON HDMI OUT: Yes or No in cam evaluations?

SONY ALPHA NEX Menu's CAMERA > DISP BUTTON (MONITOR) option called NO DISP. INFO *should* do precisely what an NEX 5n, 5r, 6 & 7 user would expect the setting to do:
-> Clear the viewscreen's picture area, and any HDMI-connected monitor of ALL display data during a video and photo shoot.

CAMERA > DISPLAY BUTTON (MONITOR) > NO DISP. INFO, indeed leaves display data onscreen and HDMI OUT during a video shoot despite what the enduser reads in the help guide that will pop-up for the selection:

"NO DISP. INFO:
TURNS OFF DISPLAY INFORMATION FOR THE SHOOTING SCREEN."

How do reviewers let Sony get away with this? If NO DISPLAY INFO AT HDMI OUT option Y or N? is adopted by industry reviewers and pundits, in their product evaluations, this deceptive game of hobbling the live video output, might have hope of fading away by Sony and other camera makers.

Peter G.
NEX5n & NEX5r

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 7 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
DrakeGinza
By DrakeGinza (Nov 3, 2012)

I am usually a dedicated Canon user, as such my main unit was the Canon T3i. Problem is that I need to be able to record 1080p 60p (60fps). Almost all Canon DSLR's are incapable of doing this simple task, as well as Nikon's.

I've found that most Sony DSLR's do... but I also travel to Tokyo often, and needed something a little more portable. I originally planned to get this cam for my fiance'.. but once I tested it out for myself, it was perfect.

The stills are awesome, and the camera is very compatible with my Mac, and editing software such as Aperture, Final Cut, and Adobe Photoshop and Premiere Pro. Also Lightroom.

The articulated touch screen is a HUGE plus. With the fact that I can also mount Sony DSLR lens to this unit with optional adapter was a huge selling point for me. The auto focus on this thing is phenomenal!

I've actually uploaded a video of 1080p 60p on YouTube... check it out

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r8z8HXJxBcE

0 upvotes
Thisis0b
By Thisis0b (Jul 20, 2013)

hmm...never wondered about recording capabilities of Canon & Nikon. I guess they want to draw a clear line between "Camemra Company" and "Electronic Company"?

0 upvotes
flashzoom
By flashzoom (Oct 24, 2012)

just wanted to give everyone my 2 cents, I loved the 5N that I got 4 months ago. once I heard about the 5R with some new features, i couldn't wait to try it. after getting it, this is what I have discovered.
1. the LCD is not the same, 5N is a capacitive touch screen (like iPhone), but 5R is a resistive.
2. the Camera sensor is different as well. i took pix with 5N and 5R side by side, with exact same settings, the 5N is more vivid in color, and 5R is a shade washed out.
3. when u have 5N set on single shot drive w/ 2 second review, at any time if you press the shutter, the review will stop, and allow you to take the next shot. but not with the 5N, you actually have to wait for the review to end, before you can take the next image.
4. 5N has the auto brightness setting for the LCD, but with 5R its all manual.

so far that's what I have found, its very disappointing to find a newer model and more expensive model, loss some of the very basic setting. Kinda sad!

3 upvotes
GerryWirth
By GerryWirth (11 months ago)

To #3: I tried it on my 5R and I can stop the review by releasing the shutter button and then press it again, it immediately is showing the live picture and you can immediately shoot the next one.
I cannot compare it to the 5N because I don't own one.

0 upvotes
keepreal
By keepreal (Sep 20, 2012)

My comment pertains to NEX and the best of other mirrorless compacts using APS-C or similar. I write here because this is a recent thread.

I can get weary lugging around my Nikon D300 plus three heavy zoom lenses where a good mirrorless with 2 or 3 lenses would be far more compact and only weigh about 40%. But I do like an accurate viewfinder I can see through in all light and being able to steady the camera against my body.

So finally I had a look at the NEX-7 as I am sure that if lenses were
available for it equal to those I already have, the results would be as good. However, one serious concern is excessive barrel distortion which from RAW would not be corrected in SONY lenses when I use my chosen RAW developer which I insist upon because of the quality of its tone-mapping.

However, as I expected, the EVF on the NEX is quite dreadful compared to a DSLR and no viewfinder on other models just is not on. Finally, any interest I had in mirrorless or Four-Thirds is dead and buried.

0 upvotes
peevee1
By peevee1 (Sep 11, 2012)

How the display on this camera tilts down (for overhead shooting)?

0 upvotes
MarkNWGS
By MarkNWGS (Sep 4, 2012)

GPS uses a lot of battery to function. There are apps for smartphones that allow you to tag your photos, or you can purchase a small unit to accomplish the same purpose. In an ideal world there would be no cost (battery life, bulk, monetary) to having GPS in a camera, but there are practical workarounds today and I wouldn't let the lack of GPS put me off of a camera.

2 upvotes
Geir Ove
By Geir Ove (Sep 2, 2012)

Interesting, as I am looking to replace my oversized Canon Gear.

However, I bought a Nokia 808 with GPS, and the convenience of GPS tagging has really sold me on this feature: No more "Where was this picture taken".... And, displaying the pictures on a Map adds a new dimension to the joy of photography

Thus, I am amazed at all the new gear with all kinds of bells and whistles, but NO GPS ???

I will NOT buy any camera in the future that does NOT include a GPS !

Geir Ove

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
1 upvote
ckm5
By ckm5 (Sep 7, 2012)

You can get an Eye-Fi card for less than $100 that will mostly do the same thing and work in a variety of cameras. Personally, I'd rather not have WiFi, apps or GPS in my camera - I'd rather Sony focus on releasing new lenses, particular on a very good (Zeiss?) wide fast prime.

I can already take geo-tagged photos through a crappy lens with my phone, as well as upload them and 'app' them... I don't need another expensive device to do these things.

Personally, I'd also like to see Sony release a cheaper rangefinder format NEX, a $500 (body) competitor to the new Fuji X-E1 with some great new prime lenses....

1 upvote
Cy Cheze
By Cy Cheze (Sep 19, 2012)

Erikson din't need GPS. Amundsen didn't either. They wouldn't have liked camera GPS anyway. It takes too long to lock in, sometimes several minutes, which wears down the battery. If you want to shoot a quick shot, it gets stamped with a stale coordinate.

0 upvotes
dz1
By dz1 (Jan 8, 2013)

My Sony A55 has geotagging and it's a brilliant feature for travel. If they included it on Sony's mirrorless cameras i would "upgrade".

Someone mentioned you can do the same thing if you get an Eye-Fi Pro X2 memory card. This is not true because you have to be near a wifi hotspot for geotagging to work with the Eye-Fi, so totally crap unless you only take photos in cities.

Comment edited 13 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
msusic
By msusic (Sep 1, 2012)

Good, this means Olympus PDAF m43 is on the way and that's interesting, not this Sony :)

0 upvotes
Dan Tong
By Dan Tong (Aug 30, 2012)

This is a nice follow up to the 5N. Can the flash accessory port be used with external flash, or any wireless flash controllers (other than Sony) ? For video purposes it's too bad there is no 720p video resolution, and of course we're all hoping that the hybrid focus system lives up to our expectations.

0 upvotes
chrisnfolsom
By chrisnfolsom (Aug 30, 2012)

It still seems like with such a powerful camera they could allow for some kind of external flash mount - I know the camera is so thin... I guess you could add something to the tripod mount.
My other peeve is no external mic connection - really makes a difference. The camera has some great video capabilities.
So much of the conversation here is crap - disappointing, let's talk about the camera, plus/minus - minus the ego - it's a freaking camera and there are many others - and will be many more and none will work for all.

4 upvotes
Leiduowen
By Leiduowen (Oct 7, 2012)

What a wonderful summary :D

0 upvotes
olddutch
By olddutch (Aug 30, 2012)

The Nex-5N is a marvelous small camera, easy to use and handle. Can make excellent pictures, but not with its standard 18-55mm kitlens. That lens adds an gray haze to all pictures I made with it, and that haze appears very difficult to remove. Therefor I bought a FD-Nex lens adaptor from a china site and now have my first Canon 50mm F1.8 (!) kitlens, a prime from 1976, mounted on the Nex-5N body. The Nex-5N is very well equipped to manually focus this odd combination, which I call my Casonyon camera. The resulting pictures are marvelous and more important: without a haze!
Sony should learn how to make quality lenzes for its Nex camera's!

1 upvote
Claudio NC
By Claudio NC (Aug 30, 2012)

Take a Canon FD 50/1.4 which is much better than the f /1.8.

The haze you say is not normal, something in your Sony lens is defective.
Take a look if there is haze in the optic using the narrow beam of a strong flashlight.
Look from the front, put the light on the back, close to the lens mount.

Surely Sony will soon learn to make quality lenses, because Zeiss will ask for your precious consultation.

0 upvotes
ChrisKramer1
By ChrisKramer1 (Aug 30, 2012)

The kit lens is absolute pants. I used it once and was horrified by the results... Fortunately, Sigma stepped in with their cheap, cheerful and rather good 19mm and 30mm primes. How embarrassing though, that it took a third party to realise the potential of the NEX system...

0 upvotes
ronniet
By ronniet (Sep 4, 2012)

There must be a bit of variation in this lens, as the copy I have is very good and at its optimum focal length it's the equal in resolution, colour and contrast to a variety of Minolta, Canon and Olympus lenses I've tried, with the result that I now only use longer focal length manual focus lenses on my C-3, and a 50mm f1.4 for when I need to make differential focus effects.

1 upvote
marike6
By marike6 (Oct 14, 2012)

Why do people always recommend those god awful breach mount Canon FD lenses (some require toothpick hacks to get the apeture to work) that are obsolete on most other cameras instead of proper AIS Nikkors which are better optically and can be used on a variety of cameras? The Nikkors are not much more expensive and worlds more versatile.

0 upvotes
obeythebeagle
By obeythebeagle (Aug 30, 2012)

I purchased a nex3 when they first came out, and small is good. It is the perfect second camera, and when I walk the dog I take the nex3 instead of the dslr. It's the highest image quality in the smallest package--the new leica.

And after a year and a half of use, the controls have grown on me and are actually fun to use. Saving my pennies for a nex7.

2 upvotes
captura
By captura (Dec 29, 2012)

You could leave your dog at home and just walk your 2 cameras!
Yes I have a NEX-3 which I am selling because I just bought a NEX-5R yesterday! So far so good, and a far cry from the 3.
I used my NEX mainly to hang manual lenses from. Focus-peaking is the ideal camera feature for doing this. Some of the better older lenses available very cheaply are Minolta MD or MC lenses, I have found. The Canon FD mount is too fiddly.

0 upvotes
eivissa1
By eivissa1 (Aug 30, 2012)

The designer of Nex cameras should be fired. Really silly and unbalanced form!

0 upvotes
zorglub76
By zorglub76 (Aug 30, 2012)

Well, call me silly and unbalanced, but I like the looks of this camera very much. I think of it as of a sticker at the bottom of the lens, so it doesn't bother me that the lens is bigger than the camera. I like that the design is not "retro" (I'm pretty much fed up with retro looks, instagram and such hipsteria). Ergonomics is also very good for such a small object (i have relatively meaty fingers). Anyway, much better than all the p&s cameras that I had before. Also, I can put this camera and 4 lenses in my bag, and I think that I could put no more than 2 lenses if I had d5100 or similar dslr.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
9 upvotes
ChrisKramer1
By ChrisKramer1 (Aug 30, 2012)

I have used it for a year (after owning a D90) and the form works ok. Sony do a lot of things wrong, but I am glad to see they kept the shape.

2 upvotes
ronniet
By ronniet (Sep 4, 2012)

I bought a C-3 because it was so small and eventually sold my DSLR. Being brought up on older style SLRs without grips, I learnt to hold a camera by the lens in my left hand for focusing and aperture control, so that my right hand was free to fire the shutter release and wind on the film. With hand grips and built-in autowinders, people have got into the habit of holding a camera by gripping it tightly in the right hand. With NEX cameras it's just a matter of re-learning to hold the camera by the lens, leaving the right hand free to squeeze the shutter release and work the controls.

2 upvotes
Joachim Wulfers
By Joachim Wulfers (Sep 6, 2012)

How silly you are. Use it before you judge.

0 upvotes
stanislaff
By stanislaff (Aug 30, 2012)

Way too disproportional dimensions/shapes.

1 upvote
ChrisKramer1
By ChrisKramer1 (Aug 30, 2012)

But when I used my D90, I always held the lens as well. So in practice, it works ok.

1 upvote
gadgets
By gadgets (Sep 5, 2012)

stanislaff change is good. embrace change or go the way of the dinosaurs.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 3 minutes after posting
4 upvotes
Ulfric M Douglas
By Ulfric M Douglas (Aug 30, 2012)

Great to see the wheel added, that's a big step up without changing the dimensions.
The review didn't mention the EVF (or show it fitted).
Does this take the EVF or not?

0 upvotes
EchoCharlie
By EchoCharlie (Sep 10, 2012)

Misleading Specs;
Built in Flash: No
Flash Range: 12m
Typo or my eyes, not sure

1 upvote
yehudakgtbnet
By yehudakgtbnet (Aug 30, 2012)

Built-in flash - No
Flash range - 12 m

Some error here.

0 upvotes
micdair
By micdair (Aug 30, 2012)

It comes with a small attachable flash, like previous models.

0 upvotes
wrcak
By wrcak (Oct 27, 2012)

Any errors??

0 upvotes
Ema2010
By Ema2010 (Aug 30, 2012)

So many new cameras and many of them without IS.
Oly OM D was more thoughtful to its customers and put 5-axis Image stabilization apart from IS in lens.

Comment edited 7 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
plasnu
By plasnu (Aug 30, 2012)

I thought 5N has nothing to improve, but I was wrong.

Good job, SONY.

4 upvotes
GodSpeaks
By GodSpeaks (Aug 30, 2012)

Has Sony solved the overheating problem?
Do they still have the worldwide 30 minute recording limit?
No 1080P30.
How long is it going to take Sony to make NEX viable (for video users)?

Comment edited 34 seconds after posting
1 upvote
ageha
By ageha (Aug 30, 2012)

There is nothing to solve. The limit is there for tax reasons.

3 upvotes
Robertach
By Robertach (Sep 4, 2012)

Buy a video camera if you want good video! This camera ROCKS and I have laid my Canon EOS 60D to rest. Anyone want it?

2 upvotes
Vitruvius
By Vitruvius (Sep 5, 2012)

As above; it is an International Trade / tax issue. The 30 minutes defines what is taxed as a "video' camera. There is talk of changing this some day.

0 upvotes
nawknai
By nawknai (Aug 30, 2012)

I don't know why Sony cameras get so much credit than Samsung's. The RAW images from the Samsung would be comparable to the NEX and the best m4/3 cameras, and perhaps the JPEGs as well (if you tweak the settings).

And Samsung has lenses, even small ones.

0 upvotes
Vitruvius
By Vitruvius (Sep 5, 2012)

The Samsung has lenses??? That is the only reason I have not bought one yet. Show me a 17-35mm (FF equiv.) f2.8 lens for Samsung NX and I will buy one.

0 upvotes
StevenE
By StevenE (Aug 29, 2012)

If they had two sharp f2.8 pancakes: 24mm and 35mm (FF equiv), then I'd be very interested. So far only the Samsung NX20 and maybe the soon-to-be released Panasonic GH3 are the most hopeful small and light travel packages for me.

Sony really needs a couple of cracking-good small and light wide angle lenses to make these worth while.

In the meantime I'll continue to carry my 5DII package.

0 upvotes
SteveNunez
By SteveNunez (Aug 29, 2012)

Almost perfect- but no Mic-In jack??

3 upvotes
ET2
By ET2 (Aug 30, 2012)

No, but there is "ECMSST1 Microphone" for $90 (street prices) that can use the top accessory port.

0 upvotes
Simon97
By Simon97 (Aug 29, 2012)

One thing I like about the NEX is the the grip. The thing that makes little sense is the small thin body, yet you need relatively large lenses unless you stick to pancakes exclusively. Lens size is where u4/3rds makes sense.

0 upvotes
Adrian Harris
By Adrian Harris (Aug 29, 2012)

I still can't see the point of these cameras. Still far to big to fit in ones pocket. Shame it doesn't have a smaller sensor and hence small light lenses. Thank goodness for M4/3.

0 upvotes
Herschel
By Herschel (Aug 29, 2012)

For me, getting the biggest possible sensor in the smallest possible package was the priority, and the NEX family fits that bill. I get uncompromising DSLR image quality in a much smaller package. My only complaint thus far has been a lack of lens selection.

7 upvotes
micdair
By micdair (Aug 29, 2012)

I guess the point is the IQ of the DSLR in a smaller body and lower weight.

1 upvote
Shelly Glaser
By Shelly Glaser (Aug 30, 2012)

For each, what he likes... Since technology and physics link image quality to sensor size, micro-4/3 cameras will always have slightly worst image than DX cameras of the same generation of technology. On the other hand, as a proud former owner of the original Olympus Pen-F FILM camera, which used half-frame film format of the same size as DX format, and was smaller than the current micro-4/3 digital "Pen" CAMERAS, I would expect mirrorless DX cameras to be much smaller.

PS: The old Rollie-35 and Minox-35 pocket-able cameras, both full frame (=FX) FILM cameras were still much smaller - if you accept collapsible non-zoom lenses,there is lots of room for miniaturization without sacrificing image quality.

Comment edited 6 minutes after posting
2 upvotes
T3
By T3 (Aug 30, 2012)

And m4/3 fits in your pocket? I use an E-PM1, and it doesn't fit in my pocket either. But I still appreciate that it's a light, compact ILC. The same applies to these Sony NEX cameras: they don't fit in your pocket, but any rational person should be able to appreciate that they give you an APS-C ILC in a very light, compact package.

2 upvotes
FTW
By FTW (Aug 30, 2012)

Buy military style jeans with large leg pockets, they fit in there with a pancake.

0 upvotes
ChrisKramer1
By ChrisKramer1 (Aug 30, 2012)

The Sony NEX 5n produces fantastic images with excellent dynamic range. The images of M4/3 cameras are nowhere near as good. Raw files are available from various websites, so people can see for themselves. The range of lenses is too limited but then, Sony have previous for messing up good ideas. M4/3 has more lenses but most offer mediocre quality.

0 upvotes
ennemkay
By ennemkay (Sep 12, 2012)

i have a nex-3 and e-pl2. the nex is smaller with a pancake than the e-pl2 with a pancake.

0 upvotes
highwave
By highwave (Aug 29, 2012)

Come on Dpreview can't you give us a spoiler and tell us up front if the NEX hybrid Autofocus is lightning fast and effective or not?

A lot of us are dying to know

5 upvotes
Superka
By Superka (Aug 29, 2012)

When, At last DPReview stops writing "Rangefinder-style"

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
5 upvotes
Doug Frost
By Doug Frost (Aug 29, 2012)

If it's indeed true that the wi-fi feature allows for a smartphone app that gives you a wireless remote viewfinder and shutter release, it's a revolutionary breakthrough. That would instantly make this the most amazing street photography camera ever.

Comment edited 3 times, last edit 5 minutes after posting
2 upvotes
zapatista
By zapatista (Aug 29, 2012)

Assuming it works well.

2 upvotes
MarkInSF
By MarkInSF (Aug 30, 2012)

Not quite original. Samsung has had this feature on their wi-fi phones. Apparently it works well on those, though it has limitations. About all you can do is see, specify focus point, and shoot. I hope the Sony app gives control over more parameters. Having these as apps should let Sony (or someone else) write an app that gives full control over the camera. That would be sweet.

This is a subtle upgrade? Wi-fi, apps, hybrid af, fancy flip screen, and improved controls is way beyond subtle, even if they kept the appearance the same. Nice camera, and now a significant upgrade from the F3.

0 upvotes
MarkInSF
By MarkInSF (Aug 30, 2012)

I meant cameras, not phones. Several of their current models. It will be a very nice feature eventually.

0 upvotes
TheSummerYears
By TheSummerYears (Aug 31, 2012)

How would a remote viewfinder/shutter make a camera an amazing street photography camera...?

1 upvote
Doug Frost
By Doug Frost (Sep 14, 2012)

Simple. It would enable you to take photographs of people without appearing to be taking their photograph. Your camera could be slung over your shoulder, pointed in one direction, while you're looking at your smartphone in another direction. If you've ever done street photography, you'd know what an advantage that would be.

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
1 upvote
Rheuter Cheng
By Rheuter Cheng (Aug 29, 2012)

So does anyone has the duration info on video recording? Will the 5R has the same 29min 30sec limitation like on the 5N? Also any click sound while video recording without an external mic? Many thanks!

1 upvote
goodlensgoodlens
By goodlensgoodlens (Aug 29, 2012)

Technically they can go beyond but manufacturers are bounded by trade regulations. If they want to sell it as a "photo camera', they have to cap the limit of the video capabilitiy.
I hope they will remove this limitation one day because it's not benefitting the consumers.

1 upvote
JaccoW
By JaccoW (Sep 3, 2012)

Add 5.4% to the price if you want , which adds around €35 for the body.

0 upvotes
Jim Evidon
By Jim Evidon (Aug 29, 2012)

I would say that the topside wheel is a welcome addition. I find that in using the wheel on my 5N, it is all too easy to activate one of the cursor buttons; the wheel and cursor buttons being entirely too small and tightly packed. I have large hands and the NEX controls are entirely too small. I'll not buy the 5R because buying a new camera every year, while making the companies happy, really doesn't do much for me as the consumer. Nevertheless, kudos to Sony.

Comment edited 15 seconds after posting
1 upvote
Martin Rohr
By Martin Rohr (Aug 29, 2012)

Where are the good quality lenses that would make me want to buy an NEX. Sony, stop making bodies for a while and concentrate on quality (optical) lenses!!!

6 upvotes
davids8560
By davids8560 (Aug 29, 2012)

I agree - but I wonder exactly what lenses would make me happy. How about an 18-105mm f/2-2.8 OSS?

Comment edited 21 seconds after posting
1 upvote
Ciccioformaggio
By Ciccioformaggio (Aug 30, 2012)

2.8 at 105mm would be even a bigger package...

Comment edited 41 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
trist
By trist (Sep 1, 2012)

Even a 16-50mm f/2,8 OSS would be a big lens ...
But one I would like to see for the NEX

0 upvotes
TheSummerYears
By TheSummerYears (Aug 29, 2012)

I just bought my 5N less than a year ago, and this is already a very compelling upgrade.

I came from a Nikon D70 before this. The addition of a further dial and a function button, combined with the existing dial with 4-way direction pad, and 2 highly-programmable buttons mean a whole ridiculous mess (in a good way) of direct controls, without having to fiddle with extraneous menus.

If they've managed to maintain or improve on their excellent noise-free 16 MP sensor, that'd be great. If they manage to dramatically improve or eliminate the issue with the sensor overheating, I'm ready to lay down some plastic.

Wifi, at this point, is really just a toy. I don't expect it to be a significant contribution at this point of the technology unless the camera can send out images via wifi as quickly as it can shoot (i.e. not going to happen at this point).

I do wish they'd popped in a GPS though.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 2 minutes after posting
1 upvote
D1N0
By D1N0 (Aug 29, 2012)

They didn't put more megapixels in it. Finally!

7 upvotes
chromablind
By chromablind (Aug 29, 2012)

> The Wi-Fi and apps combine to mean that the 5R can [...] allow the use of a smartphone as a remote viewfinder/trigger

That might be an interesting and a useful feature.

3 upvotes
chromablind
By chromablind (Aug 29, 2012)

Just to clarify - *can allow* or *allows*? Anyone at DPR can clear that up? Is that functionality in the 5R, or is this a speculation on what might be in the future?

1 upvote
ck3
By ck3 (Aug 29, 2012)

> Just to clarify - *can allow* or *allows*? Anyone at DPR can clear that up? Is that functionality in the 5R, or is this a speculation on what might be in the future?

According to Sony - "allows" - http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=WDIUO4B8wL4#t=194s

0 upvotes
guest2007
By guest2007 (Sep 18, 2012)

does it support live view over wifi?

0 upvotes
ET2
By ET2 (Aug 29, 2012)

From IR (imaging-resource) preview,

"Fast Hybrid AF requires a compatible lens, and firmware updates will expand support to existing models, says Sony. If not supported, the NEX-5R uses contrast detection alone.

"At launch, only the SEL1855, SEL55210, SEL18200LE, and SEL24F18Z models will be compatible with the faster autofocus system; support should be expanded over time through firmware updates, but it isn't yet clear if this will eventually encompass all Sony's E-mount lens models or not."

I don't think that info was present in DPR's preview

3 upvotes
Vladik
By Vladik (Aug 29, 2012)

Can someone explain to me why is this camera 200 dollars more than Nex F3?

0 upvotes
ET2
By ET2 (Aug 29, 2012)

It's not $200 more. It's $100 more, just like all 5 series were always $100 more than all 3 series.

0 upvotes
Vladik
By Vladik (Aug 29, 2012)

Well, F3 is 550 and proposed price for the5R kit is 750. F3 has an integrated flash, which in my opinion is an advantage.

0 upvotes
ET2
By ET2 (Aug 29, 2012)

Yes you are right, but the difference $150. F3 (with the lens) was originally $600 (when it was launched). 5R with the lens is $750 (body only $650).

That's then different from previous 3 vs 5 series where the difference was $100

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
Vladik
By Vladik (Aug 29, 2012)

I see Thanks ET2. still don't really see what advantages 5r has over F3, except wifi. I really couldn't care about wifi :))

0 upvotes
ET2
By ET2 (Aug 29, 2012)

The differences are easily worth $150 -- the PDAF AF, wifi, build quality, extra dial, app support, etc

2 upvotes
MrTritium
By MrTritium (Aug 29, 2012)

And the F3 is MUCH bigger and 45g heavier. Unless you really need the integrated flash, this is a no-brainer.
http://camerasize.com/compare/#325,34

0 upvotes
micdair
By micdair (Aug 29, 2012)

- newer sensor (we'll see if better)
- phase detection (we'll see if it makes the AF faster)
- screen can tilt downwards 45° - much more than iF3's
- higher ISO available (25k)
- magnesium alloy body
- TOUCH SCREEN
(- IR remote receiver)

-not too excited about the wi-fi here too, we'll see if the sensor make a big difference. I don't like the tilt mechanism of the F3's screen too much though.

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
TravisLind
By TravisLind (Aug 29, 2012)

Also better video with a 1920x1080 60p modem, The Wi-Fi will bring some cool features like smart phone control, and I believe the 3F is also lacking the touchscreen LCD.

0 upvotes
ennemkay
By ennemkay (Sep 12, 2012)

can the f3 accomodate an evf?

0 upvotes
Kodakki
By Kodakki (Aug 29, 2012)

Absolutely disappointing!
No hot shoe - still this ridiculous accessory port, enforcing the exclusive use of external viewfinder or microphone/flash, but not of both or all 3 simultaneously (dedicated microphone and flash sockets missing) - video over-heating issue not tackled - no dials/buttons for custom functions
Wi-fi speed is not specified - suspect it to be as slow as the eye-fi cards.
I'm very keen to see a real firmware on this...

Comment edited 46 seconds after posting
1 upvote
edotgm
By edotgm (Aug 29, 2012)

Does it allow in body usb-charging like the nex-f3?
I would be surprised of the absence of such a useful feature :-(

1 upvote
clickstation
By clickstation (Aug 29, 2012)

I wouldn't say useful. I despise that.

One: It exposes the camera unnecessarily to the fluctuations in electricity current. Your country may or may not have stable electricity, but one thing for sure: it is unnecessary. Same principle as using the data cable vs. pulling the SD card out to copy pictures.

Two: You can't use the camera while charging. More of a nuisance when you have a backup battery (because then your camera would be out of service -not to mention being exposed to electricity directly- for twice as long, when charging).

Nope, the in-camera charging, IMO, is a baaad idea.

2 upvotes
rockjon
By rockjon (Aug 29, 2012)

From what I read, yes it does. "Other aspects that make the NEX-5R a great camera are its Creative and Fine-tune settings, Sweep Panorama mode, an optional multi-interface terminal, anti-dust technology and convenient USB charging. "

Source: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/888554-REG/Sony_nex5r_b_NEX_5R_Compact_Interchangeable_Lens.html

1 upvote
ET2
By ET2 (Aug 29, 2012)

Do you think charging your phone directly is a bad idea too? Would you rather carry an extra charger with your phone everywhere you go?

Bad idea? No it isn't. It's a good idea. It means less stuff to carry on a trip.

2 upvotes
Mr AB
By Mr AB (Aug 29, 2012)

actually I don't know. someone could have two batteries.

1 upvote
MarkInSF
By MarkInSF (Aug 30, 2012)

If you don't like it, just buy an external charger. Third party ones are cheap. I think it's a great feature. Most of the time just plug it in at night or let it charge from your computer while you transfer images or whatnot. Keep a spare battery topped up in an external charger.

The current issue sounds off to me. The charger doesn't just send mains voltage to the camera. It also regulates the current (usually) just like any other wall wart, though this one is quite small, because it's low powered.

0 upvotes
edotgm
By edotgm (Aug 30, 2012)

Thanks rockjon for pointing out the info!

And MarkInSF said exactly what I would have answered.
An if anyone doesn't like third party chargers, he might even buy original one.
Not including a separate charger should make the camera even slightly cheaper.

0 upvotes
mosc
By mosc (Aug 29, 2012)

Does this mean reasonable AF with alpha lenses through the cheaper adapter? I don't think it's possible but that would seem to be the main reason for this. Canon seems to be having mixed results with their attempt. Nikon's mirrorless is so much smaller I don't know if it's even a comparable technology.

0 upvotes
brendon1000
By brendon1000 (Aug 29, 2012)

^^ Looks highly possible but yes it remains to be seen if AF does improve.

0 upvotes
Low Budget Dave
By Low Budget Dave (Aug 29, 2012)

Looking forward to some detailed testing. For people with kids, the fast AF is the biggest draw. Having a camera that I can fit in my carry-on luggage is a side benefit.

0 upvotes
Claude474
By Claude474 (Aug 29, 2012)

When is the 5R going to be available for purchase?

0 upvotes
rockjon
By rockjon (Aug 29, 2012)

I think it ships in October

1 upvote
jeerzz
By jeerzz (Aug 29, 2012)

99 phase-detection points!!!

are those all cross-type?

0 upvotes
Dennis Linden
By Dennis Linden (Aug 29, 2012)

Where are the lenses?

0 upvotes
rockjon
By rockjon (Aug 29, 2012)

I think those are coming with the A99 and Nex 6 release on September 12.

0 upvotes
Total comments: 145
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