2012: Sony Cyber-shot RX100
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2012: Sony Cyber-shot RX100

You knew it was only a matter of time before Sony showed up on this list. The Cyber-shot RX100 was the first of what has turned out to be a very successful line for Sony, and introduced the basic ingredients which have made the RX100-series so popular ever since: a large 1-inch sensor with very high speed shooting capability, a high-quality zoom lens and excellent video features all wrapped up in a genuinely pocketable form-factor.

We said: '[Images from the RX100] are consistently so good that you'll rarely find yourself too disappointed on the occasions you didn't have your big camera with you. And its class-leading video capabilities mean it's worth keeping with you, even when you did. In addition, it's as happy shooting sweep panoramas and automated HDR images as it is capturing Raw images with plenty of exposure control, which means you arrive home with a more varied selection of images and videos than you might with one of its competitors.

August 2012

Subsequent RX100 models added valuable improvements and useful extra features like a built-in EVF (the RX100 VI and V are still our favorites, thanks to the EVF and fast, relatively short lens) but Sony got a lot right in the original RX100. Overnight, this was the compact camera to beat, and in the years after its introduction, models like Canon's PowerShot G5 X and G7 X-series (and Nikon's unrealized DL-series) sprung up in direct competition.

Have your say

Most important cameras of the 2010s
  • Apple iPhone 410.8%
  • Canon EOS R2.5%
  • Canon EOS 6D3.2%
  • Fujifilm GFX 50S3.0%
  • Fujifilm GFX 1005.3%
  • Fujifilm FinePix X1006.1%
  • Leica Q (Typ 116)1.7%
  • Leica T0.4%
  • Nikon D85011.0%
  • Nikon D7505.0%
  • Nikon Z6/75.0%
  • Nikon 1 J/V10.8%
  • Olympus OM-D E-M56.4%
  • Panasonic Lumix DC-GH55.2%
  • Pentax K-12.4%
  • Samsung Galaxy NX0.2%
  • Samsung NX12.6%
  • Samsung NX100.4%
  • Sony a7/R16.0%
  • Sony a96.5%
  • Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 5.3%
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