While fully committed to not working during this vacation, I will have the Sony RX100 V ($998.00 on Amazon) with me and in a jersey pocket when we ride. This is probably, maybe, the last annual family trip to Maui we’ll make with both kids off to college. So lots of family photos are gonna get taken…..
If you haven’t seen it by now, Sony again has done what they do best and made a pocket camera with features normally found in cameras twice the size. On assignment for Digital Photo Pro and Sony Mirrorless Pro (that’s double the PRO!), I covered the launch of the latest RX100 and now have a demo in. Those new features jam-packed into a palm-size camera body include a 20-mp sensor, high frame rate, lighting-fast autofocus, 315 AutoFocus points, continuous shooting at 24 fps, and 4K video.
Sony also beefed up the buffer so you can shoot longer and capture up to 150 frames in a burst and 7 seconds of super SloMo. That means you’re not going to miss your kid’s goal, a BMX flip, or big finish at a bike race.
And here’s what 24 FPS for about 6.3 seconds sounds like….
But Wait, There’s More
After parsing all those megapixels and speed specs, there’s still more. What it always comes down to, just like the ride of a bike, is the image quality. Despite having the smallest sensor of all the Sony cameras I’ve shot with the RX100 V also makes some of the most stunning images in auto-mode with the pinpoint sharpness of a f/1.8 lens.
How Sony gets so much image out of a 1” sensor (much bigger than the one in your phone) indicates their processing prowess, and it’s their defining power—Sony’s chip fabrication is the state-of-the-art and their sensors are found in countless devices.
Yeah, the UI Not So Much
Despite targeting consumers with this line, the menu system is the most cumbersome and littered with help flyouts, pages of settings, and a three-step process to fire off the super slo-mo video. All Sony cameras demand you read the manual or get into some fan forums, to lessen the chance you’ll get angry when you missed a BMX trick with the wrong setting or mode. Here’s a particularly useful setting.
That’s Lock-on AF and it automatically adjusts the AF target frame size to match the subject size. Also, if you turn on Eye-AF and Continous AF you’re not going to miss a shot unless you forget to turn the camera on.
I have NO idea how to turn any of those settings on without going deep into the menu system and toggling back and forth for a while.
I’ll spend the plane ride to Maui fiddling with the settings for sure and once back, share the photos and video. For fans and owners of the RX100, the fifth version of Sony’s popular compact camera is an obvious upgrade.