We test a compact camera from the top shelf – Sony Cyber-shot RX100 V. Should you buy it anyway?
A good compact camera can replace many SLRs – especially on trips where we do not want to have a lot of luggage. The Sony RX100 V is the next generation of advanced 1-inch matrix compact cameras that will work as both a camera and a camcorder. Testing the Sony RX100 IV we were very impressed with its model capabilities. Will the successor raise the bar even higher?
Construction and ergonomics
The Sony RX100 V is one of the handhelds. It fits comfortably in the palm of your hand , although its weight can be a bit heavy – it's almost 300 grams. However, considering how many features a manufacturer has been able to get into this model, it's not so much. Still, he still lacked a grip that would make it easier to keep the device. The aluminum case is solid and the folding elements are perfect. However, the usage could be slightly larger. Only a small portion of the housing is covered with the rubber in place of the thumb, and the lack of a well-shaped grip does not provide a good grip for the camera.As we are dealing with a compact, the number of buttons and knobs is kept to a minimum . At the top you will find a mode dial (among them P, A, S, M, movie mode, Auto), the shutter release button, the zoom dial and the power button. At the top, there is a slider at the top, which will release the flashing pop up. But that's not all, because in spite of the small size the manufacturer managed to find a place for the electronic viewfinder. The camera is built very straightforward and should therefore not be difficult to handle. The RX100 V looks unassuming, because the manufacturer is not aimed at the popular retro styling, but the black aluminum case looks quite nice. It's a pity that it's so tiring. In the front of the casing, you will find traditional menu buttons, a movie button, and a function key. Well, instead of arrows, the menu can be operated with a knob. We will also use it to quickly set exposure values, such as ISO. The tilted screen was almost completely hidden in the casing – it does not go out of its way, which can also be saved on the plus side. On the right side there is traditionally a place for hidden HDMI microphones and micro USB. The battery compartment and the memory card are located in the bottom of the case. Minimizing the cabinet's dimensions has resulted in certain restrictions – such as reducing the battery compartment. The latter is not so bad at all – with a capacity of 1240 mAh enough to take just over 200 photos . T average score.
Display and viewfinder
The RX100 V is one of the few compacts that can boast of a digital viewfinder, which is a big plus. But let's start with the display – this is 3 inches in size and the resolution is at 1,228,800 points . These are good parameters, though not outperforming the competition. The color reproduction is very good, and the brightness is sufficient to be able to see everything even on a sunny day. They follow the lead of other manufacturers, Sony gives us a screen tilted 180 degrees , providing the ability to do selfie. This option is standard today and no wonder if the camera is really useful during holiday trips or useful for vlogging. The biggest surprise, however, is that the screen is not equipped with a touch. Writing almost two years ago the review of the predecessor RX100 V I did not find the lack of touch a disadvantage, because I underestimated his ability, then it was not as common as today. Today I can only write that touch makes it incredibly easy to work, especially the ability to focus your finger on the screen. It is a pity that it was not there.The camera menu is very similar to what we find in the SLRs and the manufacturer's mirrors. It has a characteristic black-orange color and has been well laid out. We will find a lot of options in it, because the RX100 V offers far more than simple cameras – it's an advanced compact. So we will spend some time to study each item. But I think the Sony menu is relatively instinctive, especially since we have a short menu that gives us almost everything we need. The slide-out electronic viewfinder boasts a resolution of 2,359,296 points and a 0.59x magnification. This is of course worse than good joggers, but still sufficient to provide us with a sensible view. The viewfinder is miniature, so there is no need to rely on a comfortable eye shell, but in a sharp light the presence of the viewfinder is invaluable.
The camera is equipped with an advanced compact 1-inch matrix. It provides very good quality pictures and videos, although one may wonder whether in the next version of the RX100 the manufacturer should not think of a larger die. Against the predecessor, you do not see a big change in picture quality. We can still record images with a resolution of 20.1 Mpix, what for such a small matrix and so it may seem too large. In poor lighting conditions, the camera does well for the compact, though it is quite good for the badminton players. Everything depends on the individual acceptability of picture noise. As for me, the noise level is already noticeable at the ISO 3200 value , although the noise can be reduced in post-production.Overall picture quality, tonal dynamics and detail are high . The small matrix has its limitations, so we do not get the top quality SLR camera or lens maker, but for most users this will not be a problem. Plus the Sony model is very nice, but also reasonably conquered colors, making photos "postcard". We can use automatic mode and opt out of post-processing, and these will look really good – better than, for example, photos taken with a smartphone. Below are some sample photos. Personnel in full resolution See you in our gallery . [Gallery ids = "132758,132760,132762,132764,132766,132768,132770,132772,132774,132776,132778,132780"] Sony also gives us some interesting photo effects, though only two in my opinion deserve attention. One of them allows you to key in the color you choose, so everything except the red color becomes black and white. The second useful effect is "black and white with rich gradation". In this mode, the camera makes black and white photos, which are characterized by high tonal dynamics and make a great impression. This is a very interesting effect that you will certainly use often. The new model is well suited for AF systems, both in single and continuous mode. 315 phase detection points guarantee accurate and quick sharpening . Hybrid AF in the new RX100 V is the top of the compacts, and the rear-view mirror does not give way. It's definitely one of the strongest sides of the new model, and I do not think I have to say that it's crucial from the point of view of using a camera for travel or street photography. It will also be useful during filming. The camera is equipped with a wide-angle lens – bright but short. Its range is 24-70 mm on a full frame (ie 2.9x) and the brightness ranges from f / 1.8 to f / 2.8. Same parameters could boast of the predecessor, so I expected that in the new version the manufacturer will slightly "brighten" the glass, or will provide a solid light. However, we will have to wait until it is time to present the sixth generation of the camera … The focal length range is as follows: The next item to consider is the serial mode. In it we can shoot at RAW at up to 24 frames per second at full resolution . So it is clear that the manufacturer puts on elements that are especially important for compacts, and therefore speed – autofocus, burst mode, and the entire model, as files are recorded instantly, even when doing dozens of images in burst mode. Of course, this is due to the very powerful BIONZ X image processor. The camera is also equipped with useful wireless communication systems. So we will find both WiFi. As well as NFC. This will allow us to quickly connect the camera to a mobile device, for example, and to preview or, with the help of a special application, control the camera using a smartphone. This is a very popular and very useful solution.
In the case of filming, the Sony cameras are always good, whether they are a full-frame mirror or a compact camera. Full HD content can be shot at 50 fps, which is a standard today. However, files can be saved in the efficient XAVC S format , where the bitrate of the recorded material is 50 Mbps. We can also film movies in 4K quality. In this case, the speed is 25 fps and 100 Mbps bitrate. In addition to the traditional Sony modes, Sony also offers slow-motion Full HD and 120 fps. Surprisingly, for me, Sony has not forgotten about movie profiles – we can find them in professional models. As you can see, the manufacturer decided that at such a high price the camera must give us more programmatic if it physically does not have so much difference with respect to its predecessor. So we get the S-Log profiles and the S-Gamut color space. This will allow you to record movies with increased tonal dynamics and help you get better results in post-production. The quality of the videos is very high and if someone can afford to buy this model for vlogging, they will certainly be happy with the results. Of course, the small matrix will not provide as much detail as a full frame, but for most users it will be sufficiently full. It is worth mentioning that while stabilizing the matrix is good during shooting. Although digital, but designed in such a way that it successfully mimics the effect of 5-axis stabilization.
Summary and evaluation
Sony's RX100 V model confirms its strong position in the compact camera market . The fifth installment of the popular 1-inch camera is another great photo tool that has a lot to offer in a small package. The camera can take beautiful photos and is extremely fast, because 24 frames per second is something that can be very rare. For all we have 4K movie mode, slow-motion in Full HD and movie profiles. Does the hardware have any disadvantages? Certainly the main is the price. This is still high enough that only a few will be able to afford to buy this gadget. I would like to remind you that instead of the RX100 V you can already buy a professional camera. In my opinion, the fact is that the new model does not differ significantly from its predecessor. If you can not see the difference why overpay? The other thing is that the Sony RX100 V has reached such a high level that it is difficult to come up with something clearly better (though it was possible to add a touch screen that is not noticeable ). Maybe it's time for a bigger matrix? It would certainly make the camera even more interesting alternative to the mirrors. I received the product "Good purchase". [Temperature2 product_id = "22120"]