Nex-5N vs Nex-5R

Started Dec 4, 2012 | Questions thread
Tom Hoots
Tom Hoots Veteran Member • Posts: 6,072
My slightly different take.

I have not one, but two 5N's. But, I took advantage of the black Friday sales and grabbed a 5R. Here are the things that made the 5R worth it to me:

First of all, I'm a JPEG shooter, and I think the 5R has slightly more neutral JPEG color than the 5N does. The 5N can be a bit "reddish" at times, the 5R less so.

I also had the NEX-7, and I currently have the RX100. And one thing I absolutely love about them is the electronic level, that helps you "shoot straight." Sorry folks, but that one feature alone was enough to go for a 5R for me.

One other "enormous" control change was moving the on/off switch to its new position around the shutter button. Another wonderful thing first seen in the NEX-7.

Let's talk about it, in relation to battery life. I really don't notice the 5R eating batteries faster, but I really haven't done an all-day shoot with it yet. But, in the end, battery life is all about how many shots you take while you have the camera turned on. I probably get more shots out of a battery than any human being on the planet, because I shoot and shoot and shoot -- I use exposure bracketing, I usually take two or three sets of bracketed shots for any angle, and I'll shoot scenes at several different angles. I have always managed to get more than a thousand shots out of an NEX battery, no problem at all.

So, the bottom line is pretty simple -- if you're not going to take a shot, turn the dang camera off!! And that's where the new power switch comes into play -- it is RIGHT THERE where you can switch the camera off and on with the tiniest little flick of your index finger. You virtually have to change your grip on the camera and use your left hand in order to turn the 5N on and off. So, the new power switch helps you keep the camera powered up if you're shooting with it, and powered down if you're not.

That's really it for me -- more neutral JPEG color, the electronic level, and the finger-friendly power switch. Of course, it has all of the other new, improved stuff, and some of the downloadable applications are genuinely useful. Though, it's really too bad that they didn't include those in the camera's software in the first place -- most of them are built into the RX100, so why couldn't they include them in the NEX?

There's one other thing that I really appreciate about the 5R over the 5N, but I'm not sure that "normal" human beings would notice it -- I was always filling up the 5N's buffer with my bracketed shots, and I'd have to wait a second or two for the buffer to clear before I could take my next set. No such wasting seconds of my life with the 5R -- it can work faster than I can.

And there's one thing to comprehend about the new Function button next to the shutter button -- not only is it a bit handier to launch your favorite settings, but in the 5N, you have to use the button in the center of the rear control wheel to launch those settings. So, the new, extra Function button lets that center control wheel button serve to launch the "mode" settings, so you always have that available.

So, those are the things that I appreciate in the 5R over the 5N. It's really just some subtle fine-tuning of the camera's controls, but they definitely make a difference in handling the camera that I truly appreciate.

Tom Hoots

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