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NEX-6 Menus

The NEX-6's menu system is essentially the same as that of the more expensive NEX-7, with just minor changes. Now that the NEX-6 has a physical mode dial, there's no longer a need for a virtual one, so that option has been removed. The new addition is for accessing what Sony calls PlayMemories Camera Apps, which are add-ons which you can download to the camera via Wi-Fi or USB (more on that later).

Pressing the 'Menu' button first brings up this entry screen. The menus are divided into six sections, but it can take quite some time to familiarize yourself with where each option lives - the ordering isn't entirely intuitive. By default, the NEX-6 provides descriptions of most menu items.

The NEX family's most annoying characteristic is the labyrinthine interdependency of the available menu options. Depending on your current settings, certain options will appear greyed-out and unavailable - for example you're not allowed to configure focus peaking in the Custom menu unless the focus is set to MF in the Camera menu.

To its credit, the NEX-6 will generally tell you why options are greyed out (assuming that you have the Help Guide turned on), but it still forces you to navigate to the conflicting option, modify it, then return to the setting you wanted to change in the first place. And, in some cases, it will sullenly inform you 'This function is currently disabled', offering no hint as to why. Mercifully once you've worked out how you want to set the camera up for everyday shooting, and have configured the soft keys to your satisfaction, you can ignore the menus almost completely.

Another issue with the menu system is that a lot of scrolling is involved. Combine the long list of options and a large font and you'll be spinning the dials on NEX-6 quite a bit.

Camera Menu

Most options set via the Camera menu use a 'virtual dial' on the live view display, with options set using the soft keys. Exiting these takes you directly back to live view, rather than to the menu itself, which some users may find irritating.

Option Values / Actions Notes
Drive mode  • Single
 • Continuous
 • Speed priority continuous
 • Self-timer
2 sec
10 sec
 • Self-timer (Cont.)
10 sec / 3 image
10 sec / 5 image
 • Bracket : Cont.
0.3 EV
0.7 EV
1.0 EV
2.0 EV
3.0 EV
 • Remote Commander
Flash Mode  • Fill-flash
 • Slow Sync.
 • Rear Sync
 • Wireless
 • Flash Off
 • Autoflash
Wireless control not available using built-in flash, only with external unit.

Auto and flash off options only available automatic shooting modes.
AF/MF select  • Autofocus
 • Direct Manual Focus (DMF)
 • Manual Focus
DMF mode is autofocus, but allows manual focus adjustment too
Autofocus Area  • Flexible Spot
 • Multi
 • Center
Autofocus Mode  • Single Shot AF
 • Continuous AF
Object Tracking  • Off
 • On
Zoom  • Off
 • On
Allows you to adjust the amount of Clear Image and Digital Zoom (described later) being applied, using the rear dial.
Face Detection  • Off
 • On
 • On (Registered faces)
Face detection can be set to work with registered faces only, with the camera ignoring strangers.
Face Registration  • New Registration
 • Order exchanging
 • Delete
 • Delete All
Add a new person to the camera's facial recognition database, change their "rank", or delete one or all of them.
Smile Shutter  • Off
 • On
Normal Smile
Big Smile
Slight Smile
Smile shutter can be configured according to the habitual sullenness of your friends and acquaintances
Auto Portrait Framing  • Auto
 • Off
Soft Skin Effect  • Off
 • On
Shooting Tip List  • Basic Techniques
 • Portraits
 • Landscapes
 • Night Scenes
 • Shooting close-up with Macro
 • Shooting a subject in motion
Most of the NEX-6's Shooting Tips are contextual. If you want to browse through them all, choose this option.
LCD Display (DISP)  • Graphic Display
 • Display All Info
 • Big Font Size Disp
 • No Disp. Info
 • Level
 • Histogram
 • For Viewfinder
The options available here are contingent on those selected in the 'DISP Button (Monitor)' Menu (see below)
Finder Display (DISP)  • Display Basic Info
 • Level
 • Histogram
DISP Button (Monitor)  • Graphic Display
 • Display All Info
 • Big Font Size Disp
 • No Disp. Info
 • Level
 • Histogram
 • For Viewfinder
Allows you to select which display modes are available on the rear screen

Image Size menu

Option Values / Actions Notes
Still  • Image Size
L: 16M (3:2), 14M (16:9)
M: 8.4M (3:2), 7.1M (16:9)
S: 4.0M (3:2) 3.4M (16:9)
 • Aspect Ratio
 • Quality
JPEG quality is set to "fine" when shooting RAW + JPEG.
Panorama  • Image Size
 • Panorama Direction
Movie  • File Format
 • Record Setting
60i 24M (FX)
60i 17M (FH)
60p 28M (PS)
24p 24M (FX)
24p 17M (FH)
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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.

1 upvote

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

1 upvote

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?


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


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?

1 upvote

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