Sony RX10 review: is this powerful bridge camera the next big game-changer?

    | Compact Cameras | Reviews | 19/03/2014 00:01am

    Sony RX10 Review: Performance

    What's behind the Sony RX10 8.3x zoom lens?

    Because the Sony RX10 uses the same quality sensor as the RX100 II, we felt confident in the camera’s image quality, and our tests confirmed as much.

    Detail is excellently resolved by the 20.2-million-pixel sensor, as we’d already seen in the RX100 II. Colours are reproduced very well.

    They’re bright and punchy without showing too much saturation. Skies are represented well, as are skin tones.

    You can alter the colours that come straight from the camera by adjusting Picture Styles, for instance if you want more vivid or neutral colours.

    One good thing about Picture Styles is that they can be shot in combination with a raw-format shot, so you’ll have a good, clean version of the image to work on should you need it.

    The Sony RX10’s all-purpose metering is generally good, although you may find that you need to dial in some exposure compensation for dark scenes.

    SEE MORE: Nikon Df vs Sony A7r – which full-frame camera should you buy?

    Its automatic white balance system is also excellent, erring towards warm, yellowish, tones under artificial lighting conditions.

    Sony’s Dynamic Range Optimiser system helps to produce balanced exposures, especially if there are areas of high contrast in the scene.

    Leaving it on Automatic usually does a good job, helping to bring out detail in the shadows without being an over-the-top effect.

    If you prefer, you can change the levels between 1 and 5, with 5 being the most pronounced: it can leave images looking a little fake if you use the maximum setting, so it’s best used sparingly for high-contrast situations.

    The camera does an excellent job at high sensitivities. Image smoothing is present throughout the sensitivity range, but doesn’t start to become problematic until around ISO 3,200, and then only when you’re closely examining images at 100%.

    Generally, image noise is minimal, while detail is held well.

    The RX10’s optic is a Zeiss lens, so we expected it to be a good performer – and it is.

    The f/2.8 aperture and comparatively large sensor mean you can create some great shallow depth-of-field effects throughout the focal length.

    Out-of-focus areas are rendered beautifully, with some excellent bokeh visible.

    Autofocusing speeds are pretty quick, although they do drop a little in lower-light conditions. It’s only when it’s extremely dark that the camera really struggles to focus.

    SEE MORE: Canon 1200D vs Nikon D3300 vs Pentax K-500 – which is the best entry-level DSLR?

    Sony RX10 Review Lab Results

    Sony RX10 Review: lab results

    Click on the infographic to see the larger version

    Sony RX10 review: Overview and main rivals
    Sony RX10 Review: Key features
    Sony RX10 Review: Build and handling
    Sony RX10 Review: Performance
    Sony RX10 Review: Our best images
    Sony RX10 Review: Verdict


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    Posted on Wednesday, March 19th, 2014 at 12:01 am under Compact Cameras, Reviews.

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