Sony takes compact cameras to the next level

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The design of compact cameras has been the same for a very long time. This is until today Sony unveils two new innovative cameras that are like no others. The Sony QX100 and the Sony QX10 are designed to be clipped to a smartphone and utilize the phone’s screen as a monitor and control panel. The shape of these cameras resembles that of a lens more than a traditional camera. It looks like they are quite easy to hold in hands, but I am not so sure about putting them in pockets. They look like they could be a bit bulky putting in  trousers pockets. It is similar to putting a small lens in your shirt pocket or trousers pocket. A great feature of the QX100 and QX10 is that they utilises your smart phone which already has a large touch screen, sharing apps, WIFI, 3G and many more great features of today’s smartphones. The QX100 and QX10 themselves have sensors built into them already, in fact the QX100 has a 20MP 1” Exmor CMOS sensor and the QX10 has a 18MP 1/2.3” Exmor CMOS sensor. They basically attach directly to a smartphone via a bracket and the built in WIFI of the cameras links to the iOS or Andriod smartphones. Via the Sony app, the phone serves as the camera grip while you use its screen for composition, playback, and touch-menu control, including touch autofocus. Images are automatically saved to both the smartphone’s memory and to the memory cards of the camera. The cameras can also function uncoupled from the smartphone. You can shoot handheld, with the smartphone serving as remote control, or you can use the integrated tripod thread to mount the camera.

You can pre-order the QX100 here and QX10 here.

The QX10 is targeted towards beginners as it only offers automatic and scene modes, but not aperture priority mode.

The Sony QX100 houses a 20.2MP 1” Back Side Illuminated Exmor R CMOS sensor and the BIONZ image processor for high-resolution imaging and effective low-light capture. This is the same sensor-and-processor combination found on the respected Sony RX100 Mark II. Furthermore, the Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* f/1.8 lens on the QX100 also matches the one on the RX100 II. This lens offers a 3.6x optical zoom with the 35mm focal length equivalence of 28-100mm. Its f/1.8 maximum aperture, on the wide-angle end, is effective in low light and works to enable shallow-depth-of-field shooting.

Enhancing the camera’s low-light capability, ISO sensitivities range from 160 to 12800, and can be expanded to 25600. Optical SteadyShot image stabilization provides compensation for the blur caused by camera shake at longer shutter speeds. The QX100 also supports full HD 1080p video capture at 30 fps in the MP4 format.

 

 

The Sony QX10  has a Sony G lens with 10x optical zoom for longer focal length reach. The 35mm equivalent focal length is 25-250mm for wide-angle to telephoto perspectives, and its maximum aperture range is f/3.3-4.9. The sensor on the QX10 is an 18.2MP 1/2.3” Back Side Illuminated Exmor R CMOS sensor and it houses the BIONZ image processor. The sensitivity range of the QX10 is ISO 100-3200, which is further expandable to ISO 12800 for enhanced low-light shooting. Optical SteadyShot image stabilization is supported for effective reduction of blur when shooting at slower shutter speeds. Although aperture-priority mode is not available, program auto, Face Detection, and both Intelligent Auto and Superior Auto with a total of 77 scene modes are provided. The QX10 is almost half the size and weight of the QX100.

Full specification

  Sony DSC-QX10 Digital Camera Sony DSC-QX100 Digital Camera
Imaging
Pixels Total: 18.9MP
Effective: 18.2MP
Total: 20.9MP
Effective: 20.2MP
Image Sensor 1/2.3" (7.76mm) back-illuminated  Exmor R CMOS sensor
R, G, B primary color mosaic filters
1.0" (13.2 x 8.8mm) back-illuminated Exmor R CMOS sensor
R, G, B primary color mosaic filters
Imaging Processor BIONZ BIONZ
Maximum Resolution 18MP: 4896 x 3672 @ 4:3 20MP: 5472 x 3648 @ 3:2
Other Resolutions 13 MP: 4896 x 2752 @ 16:9
5.0 MP: 2592 x 1944 @ 4:3
2.0 MP: 1920 x 1080 @ 16:9
18 MP: 4864 x 3648 @ 4:3
17 MP: 5472 x 3080 @ 16:9
13 MP: 3648 x 3648 @ 1:1
5.0 MP: 2592 x 1944 @ 4:3
5.0 MP: 2736 x 1824  @ 3:2
4.2 MP: 2720 x 1528 @ 16:9
3.7 MP: 1920 x 1920 @ 1:1
Aspect Ratios 4:3, 16:9 3:2, 4:3, 16:9, 1:1
File Formats Still image: JPEG (DCF, Exif, MPF Baseline), DPOF compatible
Movie: MP4
Still Image: JPEG (DCF, Exif, MPF Baseline), DPOF compatible
Movie: MP4
Color Spaces sRGB sRGB
TRILUMINOS Color Yes Yes
Image Stabilization Optical with and without electronic compensation Optical with and without electronic compensation
Shooting Time Lag Approx. 1.2 sec. Approx. 0.21 sec.
Shutter Release Time Lag Approx. 0.04 sec. Approx. 0.04 sec.
Shooting Interval Not specified by manufacturer Approx. 1.0 sec.
Optics
Lens Sony G lens
9 elements in 7 groups (4 aspheric elements)
Maximum aperture: f/3.3-5.9
Minimum aperture: f/8.0
EFL: 4.45-44.5 mm
35 mm equivalent (still image): 25-250mm (4:3), 27.5-275mm (16:9),
35mm equivalent (movie): 27.5-275mm (16:9, SteadyShot Standard), 27.5-385mm (16:9, SteadyShot Active), 33.5-335mm (4:3, SteadyShot Standard), 33.5-469mm (4:3, SteadyShot Active)
Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* lens
7 elements in 6 groups (4 aspheric elements including AA lens)
Maximum aperture: f/1.8-4.9
Minimum aperture: f/11
EFL: 10.4-37.1mm
35mm equivalent (still image): 28-100mm (3:2), 30-108mm (4:3),
29-105mm (16:9),
36-127mm (1:1)

35mm equivalent (movie):
29-105mm (16:9, SteadyShot Standard),
33-120mm (16:9, SteadyShot Active), 36-128mm (4:3, SteadyShot Standard), 41-146mm (4:3, SteadyShot Active)
Diaphragm blades: 7

Focus  Range iAuto AF:
Wide: approx. 2.0" (5.0 cm) – Infinity
Telephoto: approx. 1.5 m (4.9′) to Infinity
Program Auto AF:
Wide: approx. 2.0" (5.0 cm) – Infinity
Telephoto: approx. 1.5 m (4.9′) to Infinity)
iAuto AF:
Wide: approx. 2.0" (5.0 cm) – Infinity
Telephoto: approx. 1.8′ (0.55 m) to infinity
Program Auto AF:
Wide: approx. 2.0" (5.0 cm) – Infinity
Telephoto: approx. 1.8′ (0.55 m) to infinity
Optical Zoom 10x (enabled during movie recording as well as still capture) 3.6x  (enabled during movie recording as well as still capture)
Focus Mode Multi Point AF, Touch AF
Linear Focus
Auto macro
Single-shot AF, Multi-Point AF, Touch AF (Contrast detection) Manual Focus
Linear Focus
Auto macro
Scan System Progressive scan Progressive scan
Exposure
Exposure Modes Superior Auto (44 scenes), Intelligent Auto (33 scenes), Program Auto Superior Auto (44 scenes), Intelligent Auto (33 scenes), Program Auto, Aperture Priority
Exposure Metering Multi-pattern Multi-pattern
Exposure Compensation 2.0 to -2.0 EV in 1/3 EV steps 3.0 to -3.0 EV in 1/3 EV steps
Face Detection Yes, 8 faces Yes, 8 faces
ISO Sensitivity Still image: Auto, 100-12800
Movie: Auto, 100-1000
Still image:
Auto, 160-12800; Expandable to 100-25600
Multi-Frame NR: Auto (160-25600
Movie:
Auto, 160-3200
Minimum Illumination (Movie) Auto: 20 lux (Shutter Speed 1/30 sec) Auto: 3.2 lux (Shutter Speed
1/60 sec)
White Balance Modes Auto, Daylight, Shade, Cloudy, Fluorescent 1, Fluorescent 2, Fluorescent 3, Incandescent Auto, Daylight, Shade, Cloudy, Fluorescent warm white, fluorescent cool white, fluorescent day white, fluorescent daylight, Color temp, Incandescent
Shutter Speed iAuto: 4 – 1/1600 sec.
Program Auto: 1 – 1/1600 sec.
1/4 – 1/1600 sec. when ISO above 3200
iAuto: 4 – 1/2000 sec.
Program Auto: 1 – 1/2000 sec.
Aperture Priority: 8 – 1/2000 sec.
Self-Timer 10 sec.,  2 sec. 10 sec., 2 sec.
Memory
Recordable Media Memory Stick Micro, Memory Stick Micro (Mark2), microSD, microSDHC Memory Stick Micro, Memory Stick Micro (Mark2), microSD, microSDHC
Memory Card Capacity Memory Stick Micro: up to 16GB
microSD/SDHC: up to 64GB
Memory Stick Micro: up to 16GB
microSD/SDHC: up to 64GB
Recording
Video Resolution 1440 x 1080 at 30 fps 1440 x 1080 at 30 fps
Video Clip Length Up to 29 min. (15 min. or 2.0 GB in MP4
1440 x 1080 mode
Up to 29 min. (15 min. or 2.0 GB in MP4 1440 x 1080 mode
Audio Recording Stereo Stereo
Playback
Maximum Size Under 14MP: 4320 x 3240 Under 20MP: 5472 x 3648
Printing
Exif Print Yes Yes
PRINT Image Matching (PIM3 Yes Yes
Connectivity/System Requirements
Connectivity Micro USB, USB 2.0 Micro USB, USB 2.0
Wireless Yes, NFC (forum Type 3 Tag compatible) and Wi-Fi for smartphone connection
One-touch remote, control with smartphone, send image to smartphone
Yes, NFC (forum Type 3 Tag compatible) and Wi-Fi for smartphone connection
One-touch remote, control with smartphone, send image to smartphone
System Requirements iOS or Android Smartphone
PlayMemories mobile app
iOS or Android Smartphone
PlayMemories Mobile App
Power
Power Source NP-BN battery (3.6 VDC, 630 mAh, 2.3 Wh) (supplied)
NP-BN1 battery (optional)
5.0 VDC AC adapter (optional)
NP-BN battery (3.6 VDC, 630 mAh, 2.3 Wh) (supplied)
NP-BN1  battery (optional)
5.0 VDC AC adapter (optional)
Power Consumption Approx. 1.1W Approx. 1.2W
Start-up Time Approx. 6.9 sec. Approx. 6.9 sec.
Physical
Tripod Mount Yes Yes
Construction Plastic Plastic
Operating temperature 32 to 104 deg F (0 to 40 deg C) 32 to 104 deg F (0 to 40 deg C)
Storage temperature 140 to -4 deg F (60 to -20 deg C) 140 to -4 deg F (60 to -20 deg C)
Dimensions 2.5 x 2.5 x 1.2" (62.4 x 61.8 x 30.0mm) 2.5 x 2.5 x 2.1" (62.5 x 62.5 x 52.2mm)
Weight Approx. 3.7 oz (105 g) with battery and Memory Stick Micro
Approx. 3.2 oz (90 g) camera only
Approx. 6.3 oz (179 g) with battery and Memory Stick Micro
Approx. 5.8 oz (165 g) camera only

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About Kent Yu

Kent is a professional wedding and portrait photographer based in Wellington, New Zealand. He and his team specialise in modern and contemporary weddings. Kent has his work published in international magazines and is a regular author to a number of photographic publication. He is fascinated by photographic equipment and enjoys showcasing the gear used in creating his images. You can find him on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Google+
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