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Body & Design

All recent NEX-series cameras followed a fairly consistent design aesthetic, and accordingly there are a lot of similarities between the NEX-6 and the NEX-5R, and to a lesser extent the NEX-7. Like the NEX-7, a large, deep grip extends from the camera's top plate with a sharply sloped platform accommodating the only controls to be found on the front; a power switch which surrounds the shutter button and a dedicated Fn button.

In typical NEX fashion the silver-colored lens mount extends outwards from the front of the body, while the articulated rear LCD panel sits flush with the camera back. The control dial is placed directly in line with the thumb of your shooting hand.

The bulk of the NEX-6's camera's controls are found on the rear, with a dedicated flash, playback and a customizable AEL button along the top edge. A four-way control dial with center button sits between a two 'soft keys'. Movie recording can be initiated from any shooting mode with the press of a button, right up on the upper right corner of the camera. This somewhat odd placement might be in reaction to (legitimate) complaints of accidental movie operation on the NEX-7.

A notable distinction between the NEX-6 and any previous model in the lineup is the inclusion of an eight-position exposure mode dial which rests on the top plate. Sandwiched directly underneath it is a larger-circumference control dial. A built-in flash, new standard ISO hot shoe (that also contains Sony's proprietary multi-interface port) and OLED viewfinder with adjacent diopter round out the remaining controls.

Compared to the NEX-7

In terms of specification, there is precious little other than sensor size (16mp versus 24MP) and price to separate the NEX-6 from Sony's flagship NEX-7. If you have no need for output beyond 16MP and are willing to trade the NEX-7's Tri-Navi control interface and external mic socket for a mode dial, Wi-Fi connectivity and a Quick Navi menu, you can get the NEX-6 with a co-announced 16-50mm F3.5-5.6 OSS power zoom for an attention-grabbing MSRP of $999. In discussions with dpreview, Sony has acknowledged that it expects the NEX-6 to have a direct impact on sales of the higher-priced NEX-7. Clearly Sony considers this to be a risk worth taking.

From the front, the NEX-6 is virtually indistinguishable from the NEX-7, being marginally taller only due to its protruding mode dial. It has more gently rounded edges along its top plate and lacks the metal construction of Sony's flagship model, but is still a solid-feeling camera.
Both cameras incorporate the same 3 inch LCD and OLED viewfinder. Button layout is very similar, with differences only in the placement of the movie record button (which was much-criticized on the NEX-7 for being too easy to press accidentally). The NEX-6 has two control dials (versus three on the NEX-7) and an exposure mode dial. It also lacks an AF/MF switch. The NEX-6 is shown here with the included rubber eyepiece cup. the NEX-7 also has an eyecup (but ours fell off).
On the top plate there is little to distinguish the cameras other than their dial arrangement and the ISO-standard hotshoe on the NEX-6. Yet the small power zoom kit lens, which offers much wider coverage and similar reach to the older 18-55mm lens on the NEX-7, creates a much more compact package.

Compared to Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX1

The 16MP Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX1 is one of the NEX-6's nearest competitors both in terms of design and specification, although notably it lacks an equivalent to the NEX's built-in electronic viewfinder. Here's how the two compare, physically.

The NEX-6 and GX1 are virtually identical in height. The NEX-6 offers a built-in OLED EVF (an optional clip-on LCD unit is available for the GX1) and an articulated (versus fixed) rear LCD panel, though it lacks any of touchscreen capabilities found of the GX1. Both cameras offer a built-in flash and an array of external control points arranged primarily along the right side of their rears.
Both cameras feature a mode dial and a standard accessory hotshoe. The NEX-6 has a much more prominent handgrip, which offers a platform for the power switch, shutter and Fn buttons. The new 16-50 power zoom kit lens brings the NEX line far closer than it has ever been to competing with its mirrorless rivals in terms of overall size. Impressively, the new kit lens is actually not much longer than the GX1's 14-42 power zoom, but the NEX viewfinder (shown here with its rubber eyecup) contributes to a thicker package overall. Of course, it's still much more compact than the Panasonic when the GX1 is mated to its optional EVF...
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Total comments: 31

Maybe an old subject...has anyome fhotshoe adapter to allow 3.5...or 2.5 mic jack other than sonys on
Y external microphone?


Which camera would compete well with the nex 6..?
Any opinions greatly appreciated.

I originally wanted to invest in a canon 700 d ( just missed out on a greal deal on the 600d ) but the fact tthat the viewfinder is optical swayed me.

Is there an all round dslr for amatuers coming from a bridge version with the following...
Decent lens ( perhaps a Compact system type ) mid range 18-55mm or a little more
High ISO
Flip screen, preferably one which can actually swivel round to take portraits...
Touch screen is NOT necessary
And of course a decent battery which the camera makes tend to overlook...
I feel Canon have lost sight where Nikon is concerned whereas Sony and Lumix seem to have come a long way and are doing what Olympus did in the 70s and the 80s...
Again, any thoughts on the above..?


I am just about to purchase this camera on the basis that I can return it within 15 days if unhappy...
I thought I had done my homework when decidng on the nex 6 but I am unable to find out if it is possible to override the function of having the screen on.
It seems that the EVF switches on automatically when you place your eye close up to the corner of the camera ( thrus the screen goes off...) and the screen does the same when you move away from the EVF.

To my surprise there is quite a 'waste' of battery time...
Living in a sunny country means the use of an EVF is much more practical.

Can anyone give any tips on how to make the battery last longer.
Ideally, taking three on trips is practical. An external charger is wise too.
And the pc method when on the go is practical as well. Nevertheless, total control over the screeen makes sense nowadays.
I share your point too photosym. That does not make sense as a selling / marketing point. Is this the case with most sony cameras??


I don't know who designed this camera, but it certainly wasn't an active photographer. It would be a superb machine, but there's a massive design flaw. You can't use the self timer or an electronic shutter release when in HDR or Auto bracketing modes. Absolutely crazy!!! I've been in touch with Sony and they don't have any plans for a firmware update. I'm not sure if this applies to other Nex or Sony models, but be aware. This is the last Sony camera I will buy, I'll stick to Canon or Fuji in the future.

1 upvote

I agree with you photosym. This would be a great camera, but it is really useless in the respect of remote control bracketed photography. The remote control is useless when you can't have timers, and other manual settings. It is a shame.


I just bought a Sony nex 6. What a amazing camera. Yes you can use HDR and Auto Bracketing with a remote. At list via wifi with my android phone and ipad. Better than the Leica M digital. With more options. As a reporter I love this camera.


A massive design flaw ?
I must have entered the Twilight Zone.


Appears from the manual no input jack for an external mic attached to the shoe for this camera. Will use the new mic on the Nikon 5100.


I ordered the new SHURE VP83F LensHopper Camera-Mounted Condenser Microphone with Integrated Flash Recording for this camera and it's std size shoe mount to record and video shoot indoor stage Band performances.

Anybody else tried an external mic mounted to this camera.


I just unboxed my Sony alpha Nex6 a few minutes ago.
I have several Panasonic Lumix's and a Canon Rebel.
The Sony, however, is the first camera I've encountered whereby I cannot simply recharge the battery in a compact charger!
Instead I have to connect a wire from the camera into the charger and thence into a wall socket meaning I cannot have second backup battery.
If I'm on vacation I can't simply leave a battery charging at a hotel room and go out and use my camera with a second battery.
I have to leave the WHOLE camera behind to charge!
Am I missing something here? It seems VERY odd.


you can buy original sony charger, I have it but i leave hotel with both batteries charged anyway :) in-camera charging is also great, do your all previous cameras have such feature?

1 upvote

+1, I wish Canon and others would add this feature. While external chargers are vital for certain uses (long trips with brief access to power for example) internal chargers are WAY more convenient. Just bring a USB cord and your iPhone's USB->power adapter and you can plug in your camera to suck some juice whenever you have the chance.

I certainly don't hear people complaining about how the batteries in their phones work these days, we just need to get used to the same thing with cameras (especially the "grab some juice while you can" part, don't wait for it to empty out!)

1 upvote

Just to update this, I didn't realize that you can't use the camera at all while it's charging (mentioned in an Amazon review). That's a very tedious element of this equation if it's true. I can imagine a LOT of situations where I'd want to review photos, make picks or just mess around with the camera while charging it.

It should "work like your phone" like I said in the comment above, if you can't use it while it's charging that's not like a phone. Of course, it IS like every camera previously if you only own one battery ;)

Comment edited 44 seconds after posting

Any number of aftermarket and also (expensive but sure) Sony's spare battery and chargers will add external charging and spare batteries. Safe reliable aftermarket ones are not that expensive and will provide a much more convenient way to refresh the power than with having only one battery. I usually have up to 3-4 batteries always on hand for any primary cameras, two of which are always on the charger during vacations.

I guess in this market for consumer price wars, Sony can't include expensive batteries in the original bundles, at cut-rate prices, nor confuse the ever impatient general consumer who just wants things simple?

1 upvote

You're correct, it's very odd and another fudge by Sony.

Kurnia Lim

LOL I love charging direct to camera, and yes we need to buy extra external charger, but you can just buy cheap chinese charger for around 10-15 USD, with that I can charge 2 battery at the same times, and also I can charge with powerbank when it need.


Can anyone please explain me if I can add an PANASONIC 20mm f1.7 II pancake to this camera? Is it fully compatible?


john Clinch

No that lens is microfour thirds only. This only takes NEX lenses. That is Sony E-mount

1 upvote

Direct mounting is only with SONY E-Mount Lenses, however you have the option to add a LA-EA2 or LA-EA4 adapter to use any Sony A-mount lenses with full Auto Focus features intact. This is also true for all AF Minolta Lenses that use the A-mount as well.

Also, with aftermarket mounting adapter solutions, almost any SLR lenses can be used with MANUAL focus. Canon lenses can operate with some adapters with limited AF functions as well.

Comment edited 52 seconds after posting
Flower girl

Can I use my canon 18-200 on the sony . Has anyone done it and how does it handle?


I bought the RX100 and now I miss the viewfinder of my old P60. A movable screen would also be useful. What a pity...

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
esad As you know, the performance of a camera depends very much on the quality of the lens. What lens did you use to test the NEX-6, please? I couldn´t find any hints in the article.


I personally do not agree about adding a touchscreen to the NEX line of cameras. I simply don't like touchscreen and I know a lot of people that feel the same way.


sure your do. sure you do.
but fact is, navigating is easier with a touchscreen.


Seriously what an odd thing to be worried about. As long as you can disable it why deny it to those who would find it helpful?


Providing a touchscreen, with the ability to enable/disable will meet 100% of user preferences no? ;) Instead of battling opinions on if it should be there or not? I think that's what the review implies...

1 upvote
Gabriel Yeo

Sony continues without fail, to make ugly-looking cameras.


You are joking, right?

Henderson May

this is subjective


Just want to know if Sony Nex-6 had a time and date feature. I have looked through all the materials and have not seen it.

A V Cole

As it takes RAW files all of these details will be on the file along with shutter speed, aperture used etc.

Total comments: 31