Sony’s new Cyber-shot RX100 III camera offers a wider, brighter lens than its predecessor along with a built-in viewfinder and packs even more shooting power into a compact body
The RX100 III builds on the reputation of its predecessors. An uprated lens and image processor are complemented by a retractable OLED Tru-Finder with ZEISS T* coating, enhanced movie features and a 180-degree tilting LCD – all in a stylish fixed-lens, aluminium bodied camera that’s truly pocket-sized.
Brighter and wider than before, the ZEISS Vario-Sonnar T* 24-70mm F1.8-2.8 lens offers a large F2.8 maximum aperture allowing for smooth background bokeh. The lens’s light-gathering power also allows faster shutter speeds to freeze fast-moving subjects. A built-in 3-stop (1/8) Neutral Density filter gives even more creative flexibility.
Another eagerly awaited addition to the RX100 III is its high-contrast retractable OLED Tru-Finder, which offers bright, detailed viewing with the camera held to your eye. The viewfinder’s optical surfaces include a ZEISS T* coating that dramatically reduces reflections and delivers exceptional corner to corner clarity. There’s also a handy eye sensor that automatically switches between viewfinder and monitor display.
The Cyber-shot RX100 III boasts a 20.1 effective megapixel 1.0-type back-illuminated Exmor R CMOS image sensor, which is far larger than the sensor in regular compact cameras. Offering excellent low-light sensitivity and low noise, the sensor is complemented by Sony’s latest-generation BIONZ X processing engine. Three times faster than its predecessor, it powers detail reproduction technology for natural reproduction of fine textures, diffraction reducing technology for enhanced quality at small apertures and area-specific noise reduction that maintains clarity in dimly-lit regions of indoor and night-time shots.
The speedy BIONZ X processor also powers new video features. In a Cyber-shot first, the RX100 III now supports the efficient XAVC S format. Based on the professional XAVC standard, it records Full HD video footage at up to 50 Mbps with minimal artefacts and noise. HD footage can be recorded at 100 fps in XAVC S mode for silky smooth slow motion replays via an application like Sony’s PlayMemories Home application.
Handheld video footage benefits from Intelligent Active Mode that minimises the effects of camera shake. Frame analysis technology and 5-axis stabilisation are combined for the first time in the RX100 series, ensuring steadier movies even when users are in motion.
A newly-added 4K still image output allows photo viewing on 4K TVs. High-resolution images can be transferred via HDMI or Wi-Fi, with support for Triluminos Colour assuring opulent tones and textures on compatible BRAVIA TV models.
Despite its diminutive size, the camera inherits several movie functions from Sony’s professional camcorders. There’s a clean HDMI output, allowing Full HD footage to be stored on an external recorder. ‘Zebra’ patterning on the LCD and in the viewfinder helps identify brightest areas in a scene, and dual video recording simultaneously stores small MP4 format files alongside top-quality AVCHD /XAVC S files.
Selfie fans will welcome the articulated 3.0-type Xtra Fine LCD that now flips up 180 degrees for easy arms-length portraits and is also very useful for shooting from either high or low positions.
Making its debut in the RX100 family, PlayMemories Camera Apps boosts your photo experience with a growing range of free and paid-for apps. It’s easy to enhance your photography with a choice of creative effects and filters, utilities and more and the integrated NFC/ WiFi connectivity ensure an easy customer experience.
Enthusiasts will value uprated manual control possibilities to help craft the perfect image. Functions can be assigned to the new Custom button or control wheel to suit individual shooting styles. The control ring and function button are also customisable for fumble-free access to frequently-used settings.
The Cyber-shot RX100 Mk III will be available in New Zealand from mid-June at around $1299.