Sony Announces the RX100, Touted as “Best Pocket Camera of All Time”

Sony’s new Cybershot — specs and pictures of which were leaked just a couple of days ago — was just made official this morning, accompanied by quite a few nods of approval from tech and photo nerds everywhere. PC World are even calling it the “Best Pocket Camera of All Time,” and they may not be far off. That’s because the new Cybershot DSC-RX100 is a fixed lens point-and-shoot compact that packs a wallop.

At the heart of the camera you’ll find a whopping 1-inch sensor working in concert with an f1.8-4.9 Vario-Sonnar T* lens, a 3-inch 1,229k-dot LCD and a BIONZ imaging processor. As far as features go, the RX100 boasts 3.6x optical zoom at 100mm, 10fps continuous shooting, 80-25,600 expandable ISO range, RAW capabilities, full manual mode, 13 different effect options and 1080p/60fps HD video capabilities.

For a point-and-shoot it certainly is stacked with features; and that lens, which utilizes a seven-blade circular aperture, can keep f2.8 all the way through half the zoom range, making it much more versatile than other fixed-lens compacts on the market. Those who are interested will be able to pick up the camera starting in July, but be forewarned, she’s gonna cost you $649… and that’s before you grab any other accessories.

  • veryuncooltony

    Hopefully Sony will make a cool new memory card format for this camera!

  •!/thelonelylights Adam Cross

    apart from having the ugliest looking pop-up flash it seems like a cool camera – I wouldn’t mind 60fps at 1080p in my 7D :P

    and that dedicated panorama mode on the mode dial – yuck.

  • Wes Head

    if it did keep f2.8 through its zoom range it would be worth every penny. But it doesn’t. You drop below f2.8 after 50mm going down to 4.9 at 100mm *equivalent focus range 

  • Kimberly S. Patterson

    can keep f2.8 all the way through half the zoom range,

  • arttyIV

    I was almost in… but the price is too high for me. I’ll stick with my cellphone/DSLR combo for now.

  • Jackson Cheese

    Today I learned that some people actually care what the pop up flash looks like.

  •!/thelonelylights Adam Cross

    I’m sorry – I wasn’t aware that design wasn’t an important issue…. my bad!

  • Ingo Kwiat

    This really looks interesting as an addition to the fat and bulky DSLR,

    just wondering how Canikon will reply…

  • Knur

    Meh, $649 !< no way…

    The best pocket camera of all time is :
    Canon PowerShot ELPH 300 HS

  • Renato Murakami

    I’ll just copy paste the comment I made on Gizmodo about this one here, might help someone.

    For those wondering about how it compares to a ASP-C, crop sensor or full frame, here are some interesting reads: 
    Summary: it’s hard to know exactly, but it seems an 1-inch sensor is substantially smaller than a crop sensor (at almost half the size), and a step smaller than a micro four thirds sensor. Still the best sensor you can get on a point and shoot, and the f-stop is fantastic at 1.8, replacing the cost of a good lens.
    Overall problem: You can get a kit of micro four thirds camera plus lens for the same price or less. There are some more expensive models, but Olympus E-PM1, Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF3 and Pentax Q are all cheaper, and Nikon 1 J1 goes for the same price.
    So, even if the dSLR crowd would be willing to spend 650 bucks for a secondary camera, I don’t think this would be their choice. Micro four thirds is the way to go. But for people who don’t care for interchangeable lens system the 1080p 60fps (which allows for slo-mo on full hd) is fantastic.

  • Steve

    Micro four thirds with this lens range is quite bulky.  I’d like a genuine pocket camera.  Hopefully the price will come down to something more reasonable, after the initial rush of people with more money than sense.

  •!/thelonelylights Adam Cross

    what does “sense” have to do with anything – I’m sure if you lived comfortably with money to spend you would buy things without having to worry about bills etc – everyone would.

  • eeejokesno

    How easy is it to actually shoot like a real camera.  I don’t see a whole lot of dedicated buttons and dials.  That makes me think that maybe a lot of common settings are buried in menus.  That’s a non-starter for me.

  • B0ndiabl0

    I agree… I am going to have to see this thing at work to be slightly interested.

  • Buzzerfly

    True, Sony has their own way of doing things, and not everybody can afford their goodies. Still, I would not choose to shoot using anything else then Sony cameras and continue to enjoy their very high quality products.

  • Joey Duncan

    Actually it is important, that stupid flash will pop up all the time at parties. Which makes me think of two things:

    One: people will see it, it is a little funky for such a stylish camera
    Two: It’s really tall, so when that s**t opens up in your G/F’s purse and breaks off, you’ll be caring then. hahah

    I worked for a tech company sending this stuff off for repair for 4 years,one of the most common places these types of camera’s break are in the car, pocket and purses. 

  •!/thelonelylights Adam Cross

    @facebook-1111692326:disqus  you do realise I was being sarcastic, right? since @twitter-493302441:disqus thought he was being rather funny…

  • Henry_bloomfield

    No viewfinder, so pretty useless to anyone old enough to have difficulty focussing on things close to their eyes.

  • Osmosisstudios

    Someone needs to re-read…

    “can keep f2.8 all the way through half the zoom range”

    While I admit the writing is lacking (“all the way through half”?), it’s clear that it isn’t the entire range.

  • Osmosisstudios

    Best sensor on a compact? G1x has an almost-APS-C sensor.  Sigma have their DP2 cameras. You have bad google-fu

  • mlcred

    Perhaps I’m missing something but isn’t there a contradiction here:
    “Cybershot DSC-RX100 is a fixed lens point-and-shoot compact” versus:
    “RX100 boasts 3.6x optical zoom at 100mm”.