Rated 4 out of 5
by DrCrittendon DXC-RX100M3/B
First .. WOW .. the low light performance of this little camera is awesome!
The High-ISO performance is FAR beyond anything I've used in this class of camera and out-performs some recent mid-range DSLRs. I'm getting good useable photos at ISO 4000 and no problem at all with ISO 1600 .. it has many (if not all) the controls and settings of several DSLR cameras I've recently owned that helps with getting great low light performance as well.
Let's remember what we purchased this camera for .. it's tiny size and LARGE sensor .. it does not disappoint, when used as a pro camera .... OK, that said .. putting it in the 'Intelligent Auto' mode left me wishing for lower 'auto-ISO' choices or maybe a 'upper/lower ISO LIMIT' setting. But it takes great photos all the same. Not a disappointment, at all.
** I have only (2) CONs : The pop-up viewfinder eyepiece .. it pops up nice solid 'click' .. but when pulling back on the eye piece it does NOT 'snap' into place, feels a little 'wobbly' .. it does not seem to affect the operation or focusing that I can tell .. The second is the 'Diopter' adjustment .. because of it's proximity to 'eyebrows' and perhaps because the eyepiece is wobbly (the pullback part) .. it tends to need regular adjustment which can be a pain. (Otherwise I'd have given 5 or 6 stars) :-)
September 1, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5
by chookooloonks SHORT VERSION: IT'S AMAZING)
I read an article somewhere (I'm afraid I forgot where, or I'd link to it), that this camera is "the point-and-shoot for experienced photographers." And I think that description is spot on. The lens (from Zeiss, no less!) has a dial on it that lets you easily adjust aperture, and there's a dial on the back of the camera that allows you to adjust shutter speed on the fly. This means you can shoot manually, without having to make your subject wait for eons for you to capture the image -- with a point-and-shoot, no less! It has a sexy viewfinder, so if you don't want to compose your shot using the screen on the back, you don't have to. There's barely any shutter lag -- you click and it shoots, just like a dSLR, without any perceptible delay. And this is awesome: open to its widest angle (24mm), the aperture goes to f/1.8; at its maximum telephoto (70mm) it goes to f/2.8. Which means that this point-and-shoot has a lens that has enough range to capture both decent scenery shots and decent portraits, and you can finally get some of those narrow depth-of-field shots that are so difficult with most point-and-shoots.
Full review here...
July 23, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Highlando A big step forward in the DSC-RX100 series
I purchased the DSC-RX 100 when it first came out, and loved it. I traded up to the DSC-RX 100 II (again, loved it) and now to the DSC-RX 100 III. The viewfinder and large aperture throughout the range were the compelling features that led me to upgrade to the DSC-RX 100 III. This is a wonderful update. My wife and I really like the selfie feature! Of course a longer zoom would be nice, but I will gladly give that up for the nice wide aperture for the full range of the zoom. The only feature that I find annoying (and wish it could be disabled) is that the camera turns itself off whenever you push down the viewfinder. Most of the time I just want to push down the viewfinder - not turn off the camera. So I either have to leave it up when I don't need it or go through the process of turning the camera back on, possibly missing a shot. Sony: can you give us a firmware update to allow this feature to be customized?
July 16, 2014
Rated 4 out of 5 by AndyV Rx100 M3 Initial impression
The images are sharp but noise is prevalent. Even at ISO 200 the images
are noisy. Using Lightroom with a Luminous setting of about 50 clears that up. Not too much post processing sharpening is necessary, Perhaps a 50/50 setting of noise reductions and sharpening will do. As a small camera, use every means to keep it from falling out of your hand. Use the strap wrist band and the optional stick on grip. (not expensive) The image tone is excellent and an enlargement of 16x20 is very sharp.and attractive.
Has many features as on the A77 or A7 series. This is a quality point and shoot camera but has a limited aperture range of 1.8 to f 11.This could be a negative for Landscape shooting which often requires a smaller aperture. A workaround for this issues is to use hyperfocal techniques to gain a greater depth of field. What is interesting is the the wider lens openings are very sharp but are limited in depth of field.
Just began using it and these are my initial observation.
June 25, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by ArsenalFCEIE The Real Deal
This replaced a Leica D-Lux 5 as my carry around point-and-shoot; though, it's so much more than that... I'm a serious hobbyist who shoots Leica M, Nikon FX and now Sony FE camera systems... The RX100m3 was meant to augment my gear as a portable, on-the-go alternative... The build quality, image quality (decent at higher ISOs), EVF and flash are all superb on this little guy... And it literally fits in a shirt pocket (I'm 6'2" and wear XL gloves but don't find it "too small"; it's supposed to be small and portable)... Overall, I'm astounded by what this camera can do for its size and feel it's worth the higher price over previous models and other point/shoot options... Very satisfied...
August 4, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by DFWPhD a brilliant little gem of a camera
This is my fourth Sony camera and easily my 10th digital and roughly 20th camera (counting both film and digital). It's a beauty. I thought it would be hard to top the Sony RX1 as the perfect travel camera (please see my detailed review of the RX1 on Amazon), but I think on balance, this is a better travel camera than even that brilliant piece of full frame ingenuity. Not a better camera mind you, but a better travel camera, when space and size are at a great premium. Its lens and sensor are not quite as sharp as the RX-1's - but they are not that far off either. And the RX100-III does beat the RX-1 in one critical functional area, in terms of having a useful range of wide to mild telephoto focal lengths. No more zooming with just the feet . . .
Clearly this little camera does not beat the RX-1 or any other full frame camera in image quality, at least not in photo image quality, but it is clearly superior in relationship to video quality to the RX-1/A99/A77-65, where the improved Bionz X processor in the RX100III allows for a way better sampling heuristic (instead of the clumsy line skipping approach done in the RX 1, A 99, and all the other recent APS-C cameras). It's also astonishingly flexible in terms of shooting modes and operational styles, and additionally, Sony's improved image stabilization gives it a 2-3 stop advantage at least, narrowing the low light performance gap between this sensor and a full frame sensor (such as in the RX 1) to surprisingly little by allowing the RX100III to shoot at slower shutter speeds, and thus keeping ISO lower. I'm able to shoot wide open at a 24 mm equivalent in low light at 1/5 second shutter speed, without any image blurring, keeping my ISO relatively low and basically wiping out almost all of the low light advantage of the RX-1 FF sensor. It still of course doesn't quite create images that are as breathtaking as full frame equipment - that simply is not a hittable or realistic performance target, but it comes amazingly close, and it's frankly very close to APS-C in my informal noise testing. I cannot tell the difference between noise at any given ISO on this camera and the Sony A65 (although that was no low light phenom). It would be interesting to compare noise on this and the newer Sony APS-C sensor in the A77II (better sensor in terms of noise) once I can get a real sampling of the A77II's output. In any case, its low light performance is LEAGUES ahead of every other compact its size, and is reasonably competitive with much larger cameras (such as m4/3 and APS-C where its noise is roughly one stop poorer than the best of the m4/3-APS-c crowd, making it about two stops poorer than a typical FF pro-cam).
1) Simply the best photo and video image quality for its size without any question, no contest, end of discussion. Not even debatable.
2) Very sharp video, rivaling Canon full frame 5DII and Panasonic GH2/3/4, and with new video codecs (XAVC-S) that will allow 50mb bit rate. Reduced moire and yet still very sharp.
3) Fast Zeiss lens (1.8-2.8) with a 3X zoom range, covering the essential wide-angle 24 mm to 70 mm equivalent. Some loss of zoom reach relative to prior editions of the RX 100, but in exchange, the lens is significantly faster and goes to 24mm (highly useful), and allows F2.8 shooting at a moderate telephoto 70mm. This extra lens speed/brightness is more important for most individuals than the extra telephoto reach (but some may find this restricting and a bad tradeoff - see cons).
4) Lens is sharp in the corners from F4.0 and up and is decently sharp in the corners even wide open.
5) Comprehensive and flexible menu/operating system structures with considerable customizability. Way better there than previous generation Cybershot models.
6) Fits in your shirt pocket.
7) Wifi and NFC (but see cons).
8) Excellent image stabilizing in both video and stills, with highly flexible IS in video (three levels with associated progressively larger crop factors). This also means that video can be shot at a ~ 100mm perspective (albeit with modest loss of resolution). Excellent photo IS that is transparent and highly effective.
9) Terrific little EVF with almost as much resolution and apparent view size as Sony's flagship A99 EVF, and with adjustable brightness and display features vis a vis the LCD. Very neat and highly useful.
10) Bright and accurate LCD panel for viewing results (and shooting, if you don't like composing with the EVF).
11) Many aids for the videographer, including adjustable zebra to see areas of overexposure, option to changing ISO and aperture on the fly with smooth front ring control while shooting, and HDMI output to an external recorder, but see last con (omission of 4K).
1) Limited telephoto reach and of course no option to change lenses. Partially mitigated by modest digital zoom capacity (1.4-2.0) but with predictable loss of resolution. Obviously will not compete with compact superzooms in this area. Not the camera for bird watchers and wildlife buffs!
2) Cost - this might be one of the most expensive cameras on a dollar per pound basis on the market.
3) Modest battery life, esp if you use the neat little EVF much, and once again, Sony did not provide a second battery. I thought initially Sony finally provided an external charger but its clear now that I jumped to conclusions. Still no option for external charging - (but check out Wasabi power!)
4) Did I mention it's $800?
5) No option that I can find for scaling the zoom speed, which is a bit confining and unexpected in a premium compact camera
6) Audible motor noise in the video during zooming (but at fairly low level).
7) Slightly hesitant auto focus in low light with some annoying hunting.
8) It is so compact that those with large hands may find it hard to manipulate.
9) Flash seems a bit underpowered for those coming from larger equipment. Will not adequately illuminate objects 6-8 ft away at ISO 100. No option for outboard flash, as hot shoe sacrificed for EVF.
10) Real disappointment that 4K video not included, as on new Panasonic superzoom using this Sony chip. Firmware update probably can't provide this. Suspect Sony didn't want to take sales away from their new and pricy 4K camcorder.
Most of the cons are minor, while most of the pros are big. Still not perfect, but this is clearly the most powerful photographic and videographic instrument of its size that anyone has ever made. Time will tell, but I think that this camera threatens the established order and the doctrine that all reasonably serious shooting requires DLSR and/or FF equipment more than anything Sony has ever done previously, even including the RX1/A7/A7r platforms. This may speed the market retraction of classic SLR cameras with mirrors as much as any other mirrorless camera. And please, all you FF Canikon folks, don't get all bent out of shape (too much fan boy and troll voting on camera reviews as it is) - I'm not remotely suggesting that this little camera will supplant or compete with your pro equipment in still photography. But it will mean that outside of the most critical and hi quality still shooting, this camera will provide a very credible alternative for those who want to travel (extra) light and still get very good stills - leaving a slim margin between this and large APS-C and even larger FF gear. That margin looks like it now has a punitive weight penalty, still obviously worth it for really critical shooting, but how many people want 20-30lbs of extra gear on vacation, and toting it all through security? And in terms of great video, this camera competes favorable with any FF system. Even those who love their big pro gear and would never dream of moving off of FF entirely are probably going to buy one for days when they just can't (or don't want to) lug the 30+lb bag of big gear and bigger lenses. Given its appeal to the serious as well as the recreational photo buff, and its great video, Sony may struggle to keep up with the demand. Overall, this little camera is a tour de force in digital technology and a landmark in digital cameras.
August 2, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by mcalbala Great little camera, only minor suggestions
The camera is exactly the size I wanted and has the necessary functions for me to use it as a travel camera. Lugging around an SLR and associated lenses and such with the current airline rules just no longer makes sense. Great pictures, although the RX100 M3 comes close.
What I would like Sony to put in the RX100 III is the hints that appear on other cameras. I don't memorize the functions and features of the camera and knowing the hints are there at all times comes in handy.
Yes the lens is shorter than the other similar cameras, but having the aster lens is very useful. I would even appreciate a 1.4, but that's asking too much, I guess.
Offering accessories that plug into the MicroUSB port would be a killer for this camera. Of course that would require something to attach them to, maybe a small 90 degree device that plugs into the USB that provides sound and light, or other capabilities, not sure what they are at the moment though.
I love having the faster video and the XFINE JPEG. I use a 256 GB SDXC card which is perfectly capable of handling both. I would really like to see Sony work with Apple and the other tablet manufacturers to see them to be able to directly recognize XAVC formatted video. Right now if you use an ipad, MP4 is the limit. OF course, a workaround to the camera app would work too.
The last thing is that I believe a grip is required for this camera. It makes it so much simpler to use. Sony should build it into the camera or send it along with the camera, it is a minor thing but would actually be very helpful.
July 9, 2014
Rated 4 out of 5 by MNYC Amazing pocket camera, almost perfect
This is simply the best pocket camera there is right now. As a pro photographer and having used a previous generation RX100 I have to say this latest version is simply amazing. I only just received it so bear in mind this is a first impression review.
- The 24/70 lens with f1.8/2.8 max aperture is outstanding (a very nice upgrade from the last two RX100 models)
- Very good high iso performance for a camera this size
- Quick start time
- Full hd video with really good image stabilization
- NFC/Wifi (actually quite useful if you want to quickly post a nice quality pic to instagram)
- The new customizable FN menu is very convenient
- Built-in ND filter
- USB charging (one less charger to keep track of, yes!)
But nobody's perfect! There are a few minor CONS, some which already existed in the previous models and some which hopefully can be fixed via a BIOS update (one can always hope!)
- Closing the view finder shuts down the camera, which doesn't make sense. Either disable this or make it an option in settings.
- Picture effects cannot be disabled. Some are actually useful (high contrast mono for example) while others are completely useless. But since you can't select which picture effects are enabled you have to scroll through all the options every time. (previous RX100 also had this annoying problem)
- The screen is not touch-screen (I mean at this point almost everything is touch screen, this just seems like a strange oversight in such an amazing camera.)
- I wish the NFC/Wifi connect was even faster (it’s not slow, but still…)
- It seems saving a Picture effects image takes longer than in the previous generation RX100 (I’ll have to double check)
And a suggestion for the next generation:
- Camera size: while it’s amazing sony was able to fit such a good lens in such a small package, each version of this camera has increased very slightly in size and weight. I hope the next version could be downsized a bit (slimmer would be nice to more easily be pocketable.) Or maybe offer a more minimal version (no flip screen and no viewfinder) with a slimmer profile?
June 24, 2014