My review of the RX100 for the photo enthusiast

Started Sep 23, 2012 | Discussions thread
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tbcass Forum Pro • Posts: 33,096
My review of the RX100 for the photo enthusiast

I know this camera is not an SLR type but due to it's quality I believe it should be of interest to everyone in this forum as a pocket/compact camera to add to your kit.

I have been an enthusiast photographer since the 60's. My primary cameras have been mostly SLR types. I have on occasion tried more compact type cameras as something more convenient to carry around but they have been, without exception, unacceptable to me due to mediocre image quality, inadequate manual capabilities and slow overall speed and responsiveness, auto focus and shot to shot times in particular. When this camera first came out I was impressed by the universal praise it received from professional reviewers so I decided to give it a try as a take everywhere addition to my camera kit.

I have had the camera for over a month now, have taken over well 1000 photos with it and am happy to say it, if anything, exceeds my expectations. The speed is DSLR like including fast auto focus. Due to the ability to customize the functions of the wheels and buttons I have it set up just the way I want it making it extremely easy to use whether for manual or automatic use.

As far as handling, at first the small size put me off but after a few days I got used to it and now I have no problems. Some people complain about the lack of a hand grip but for me it isn't needed on a camera this small and light. It may make one handed shooting a touch more difficult for some but it hasn't caused me a problem. I usually shoot 2 handed anyway. I was even able to use it simultaneously with my A65 holding the RX100 in my right hand, the A65 in my left, shooting video with the RX100 and stills with the A65 pushing the A65 shutter button with the little finger of my right hand.

The only thing lacking with this camera is an eye level viewfinder but I can forgive that omission because with a camera this small a decent one would be impossible to include without increasing the size of the camera significantly. The LCD is usable in bright sun when you set it to the brightest setting.

Last but not least the image quality. In this area I have no complaints at all. Up to iso 800 it can compete with any DSLR, at iso 1600 and 3200, it is a small step behind. At iso6400 I find it unacceptable but few cameras of any kind are acceptable at 6400 as far as I'm concerned.

All things considered, the combination of small size, speed, handling and image quality make this camera worth every bit of it's $650. In fact I call it a bargain. If I could give it 6 stars out of 5 I would.

A comment about video. I am not as serious about video as I am about stills but, other than the lack of a separate microphone jack, the camera is very good with results competitive with Blue Ray quality. The built in stereo mic is adequate for general use.

A final comment about the flash. Some complain about it's location but there is no place else to put it. It pops up which can reduce red eye and it can be tilted to use as a bounce flash, a first for a built in flash.

Look at the picture, not the pixels

 tbcass's gear list:tbcass's gear list
Sony RX100 Tamron SP AF 90mm F/2.8 Di Macro Sony DT 35mm F1.8 SAM Tamron SP 70-300mm F/4-5.6 Di USD Sony RX10 III +9 more
Sony RX100 Sony SLT-A65
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