Sony DSC RX100 VII Compact Camera
Sony RX100 VII Compact Camera Summary
The RX100 VII is powered by a newly developed 1.0-type stacked Exmor RS CMOS image sensor and the latest generation BIONZ X image processor. This combination delivers new levels of autofocus performance and achieves speed breakthroughs that have previously only been seen on the Alpha 9. Flexibility of shooting is ensured by a ZEISS Vario-Sonnar T* 24-200mm f/2.8-4.5 high magnification zoom lens, making the RX100 VII a versatile choice for all types of shooting scenarios and users, from photo enthusiasts to professionals.
With the RX100 VII, Sony have really listened to what people want and created a compact camera that is tough to beat. The eye autofocus is flawless, working for both humans and animals and the addition of the eye autofocus for movies (as found in the Sony A7R IV) makes shooting video a dream.
Videographers, vloggers especially, will also find the addition of a microphone input a great new feature. Combined with the 4K Active Steady (Image stabilisation), the eye autofocus for video and the flip over screen, this is a great vlogging system in a pocket sized package.
|Sony RX100 VII Review | Compact Camera of the Year?|
Sony RX100 VII Compact Camera Features in Detail
New Standard for AF Performance in a Compact Camera
The RX100 VII offers a world leadingv 357 focal-plane phase-detection AF points and 425 contrast-detection AF points. In addition, thanks to a newly optimised lens drive control, world's fastest 0.02 sec AF acquisition time is realised. A major leap in AF/AE tracking performance during continuous shooting means the camera performs AF/AE calculations up to 60 times per second and captures fast moving action at 20fps with AF/AE tracking, ensuring that each moment is shot with swift and accurate focus.
In addition, the image sensor realises blackout-free shooting for a completely live view, even when continuous shooting at 20fps; the same experience as the Alpha 9. The RX100 VII also debuts a new drive mode, Single Burst Shooting, for capturing the perfect high-speed shot at up to 90fps in JPEG/RAW format utilising the anti-distortion shutter. 'Single Burst Shooting' allows the photographer to frame fast moving action and shoot as if taking a single shot but the camera will actually deliver 7 still images, taken at 90fps, 60fps or 30fps, so the user can select the perfect moment.
For the first time in a compact camera, the RX100 VII introduces advanced 'Real-time Tracking' and 'Real-time Eye AF' capabilities. 'Real-time Tracking' utilises Sony's latest algorithm including artificial intelligence-based object recognition to ensure that subjects can be captured with excellent accuracy, even via the touch panel on the rear screen. 'Real-time Eye AF', the latest version of Sony's acclaimed Eye AF technology, employs AI-based object recognition to detect and process eye data in real time, resulting in improved accuracy, speed and tracking performance of Eye AF for both humans and animals, and allows the photographer to concentrate exclusively on composition.
The compact and lightweight characteristics of the RX100 VII mean it can always be carried around and can be mounted in places that larger cameras cannot. But its small factor belies a multitude of pro-level movie-making capabilities perfect for on-the-go shooting such as vlogging:
Broad zoom range from a pocket-size camera
The built-in ZEISS Vario-Sonnar T* 24-200mm f/2.8-4.5 zoom lens covers a broad zoom range equivalent to two standard zoom lenses (24-70mm and 70-200mm), all in a very compact size. It's configured with eight aspherical lens elements with 13 aspherical faces to achieve maximum resolution, clarity and contrast across the entire zoom range, and all the way out to the edge of the image. Four of Sony's original AA (advanced aspherical) elements help minimise spherical, coma and chromatic aberrations.
A new image sensor that delivers new levels of performance
The newly developed Exmor RS 1.0-type stacked CMOS image sensor works in tandem with the latest BIONZ X image-processing engine to deliver powerful levels of performance. The result is fast, Blackout-free Shooting at up to 20fps and Single Burst Shooting at up to 90fps. Reliable AF/AE tracking is possible thanks to rapid arithmetic processing at 60 times/sec. to predictively track subject motion, and the electronic viewfinder and LCD monitor also benefit, with improved image quality and smooth 60fps display during shooting.
Up to 20fps fast, Blackout-free Shooting with AF/AE tracking
Now you can rely on Blackout-free Shooting at up to 20fps, complete with AF/AE tracking, so you won't lose track of a moving subject even at telephoto range. Precise, reliable AF/AE tracking is based on high-speed arithmetic processing at up to 60 times per second during continuous shooting.
Up to 90fps speed Single Burst Shooting to capture decisive moments
A new high-density Single Burst Shooting mode is available to capture true split-second action. You can take seven still shots in rapid succession at shooting speeds equivalent to 90fps, 60fps or 30fps by pressing the shutter button. Both JPEG and RAW formats are supported, and the self-timer can be used.
Ultra-fast 0.02-sec. AF with 357 phase-detection points
The fast, highly accurate autofocus can achieve a remarkable 0.02-sec. acquisition speed, the world's fastest, to capture fleeting moments with precision. A total of 357 focal-plane phase-detection AF points covering approx. 68% of the image area – the most in the world – work in conjunction with 425 contrast-detection AF points and High-density AF Tracking Technology to follow even erratically moving subjects reliably.
Real-time Tracking to maintain steady focus on your subject
For the first time in the RX series, Real-time Tracking is supported. When you're tracking a fast-moving subject, the camera's motion tracker uses a sophisticated subject recognition algorithm (AI) that draws on colour, pattern (brightness), distance (depth) and face/eye information to automatically recognise and maintain focus on your subject. During continuous shooting, the camera relies on AF calculations at up to 60 times/sec. to maintain high-accuracy tracking even as the subject's position changes moment by moment. Tracking can also be initiated through touch operation, for both stills and movies.
Enhanced Real-time Eye AF for better portraits and pet photos
Real-time Eye AF detects and focuses on the eyes of your subjects, even when part of the face is hidden, the face is backlit or the subject is facing downwards. With up to 60 AF calculations per second, the RX100 VII's AF enables powerful continuous shooting, and stunning portrait shots through precise focusing on your subject's eyes – person or animal. For human subjects, activating Real-time Eye AF simply requires a half-press of the shutter button.
Extraordinary image quality and low noise
The 20.1MP, 1.0-type stacked CMOS image sensor uses back-illumination technology for increased light-collection efficiency. The standard ISO range is 100-12800, expanded to ISO64 and ISO80 for stills. In conjunction with the processor, it delivers high perceived resolution, low noise, highly accurate colour reproduction and natural skin tones.
Soft Skin and other effects to widen your creative options
The camera offers a range of special effects for your photos. Soft Skin mode reduces small facial wrinkles and skin dullness while preserving the clarity of the subject's eyes and mouth, and Beauty Effect can be used on images that are already shot. Auto HDR results in a higher dynamic range, reproducing gradations in brightness and contrast that are close to what the human eye perceives. A range of Creative Style and Picture Effect options helps you create unique images.
Optical SteadyShot equivalent to 4.0 stops
The camera's built-in image stabilisation delivers the equivalent of a 4.0-stop shutter speed increase at 200mm, to compensate for camera shake during hand-held shooting, even in telephoto or low-light conditions. Combined with the camera's sophisticated optics design and advanced image-processing engine, this helps to achieve remarkable image quality.
Anti-distortion shutter with silent shooting option
The Anti-distortion electronic shutter achieves speeds as fast as 1/32000 sec., while fast data readout from the image sensor reduces distortion for fast-moving subjects. You can also mute the camera's shutter in noise-sensitive scenes, such as candid portraits and animal photos, to avoid distracting shutter clicks and capture subjects in a natural state.
4K HDR (HLG) video recording
When shooting 4K (QFHD resolution: 3840 x 2160) movies the RX100 VII uses full pixel readout, without pixel binning, and 1.7x oversampling to provide outstanding resolution with reduced moiré and jaggies. The XAVC S video format supports high-bitrate recording (max. 100Mbps) and, with HLG (Hybrid Log-Gamma) capability, you can enjoy HDR images simply by connecting the camera to an HDR (HLG) compatible Sony TV via a USB cable.
Enhanced Fast Hybrid AF and Real-time Tracking for movies
Thanks to the evolution of Auto-Focus (AF) algorithms, AF capability for movie shooting has been improved in speed, accuracy, and tracking performance, including better results in dimly lit settings. Autofocus optimises the camera's focus according to the subject, and when Real-time Tracking is activated you can start tracking simply by selecting the subject on the touchscreen, even for movies. AF drive speed and AF tracking sensitivity are adjustable, so you can fine-tune the focus transitions to match the scene.
Real-time Eye AF for people during movie recording
For the first time in RX series cameras, the RX100 VII can detect and track people's eyes during movie recording, maintaining sharp and steady focus as the subject moves. Focus is set and maintained automatically, so you can concentrate on framing your shots. The feature can be used in conjunction with Touch Tracking – simply touch the corresponding point on the touchscreen to focus on either the subject's left eye or right eye, or switch between eyes.
Enhanced image stabilisation for movies
The camera's image-stabilisation system has evolved to use "Active" mode during 4K movie recording, and thanks to advancements in the camera's algorithms the image stabilisation effect in HD movie shooting is also enhanced in every shooting mode, with more effective results than were previously available. You can additionally use the Imaging Edge Movie Edit add-on mobile app to achieve ultra-smooth images similar to what you would see when using a gimbal.
External microphone jack
Even though the camera is compact, it includes a newly added jack that can be used to attach external microphones. The standard 3.5mm input enables the use of high-end microphones for professional audio capture for movies and vlogs.
Vertical-format movie recording
The camera supports movie recording in vertical format with embedded metadata indicating the camera's orientation. This means that movie clips in this format that are transferred to smartphones can be played back and used as is, without needing to rotate them from horizontal format.
Interval Shooting for time-lapse movies
Interval Shooting with a set interval of 1 to 60 seconds is now available within the camera. The resulting still images can be edited into a time-lapse movie on a PC in post production. A simple variable-speed preview function allows a draft of the time-lapse movie to be viewed on the camera.
Super slow motion at up to 40x slower speed
The stacked CMOS sensor enables an extra-high frame rate of up to 960fps/1000fps, so even when shooting at 200mm telephoto it's possible to record impressive close-up super slow-motion footage. The frame rate and recording setting can be set independently for slow-motion playback speeds from 1/4 to 1/40th of real-time speed, and can be captured using either start or end triggers to record even the most fleeting of moments.
Support for professional movie-recording workflows
For more demanding productions, the camera supports a range of movie functions more typically found in professional equipment, including S-Log3 and S-Log2 gamma curves. The wide dynamic range and colour space available using these S-Log profiles is perfect for camera matching and minimising blown-out highlights or lost shadow detail. Additional options for Picture Profile and Creative Style are also available, along with advanced features like Gamma Display Assist, Zebra metering, a Clean HDMI output with Rec Control, timecode, and Proxy recording. There's everything a video professional could need in day-to-day work situations.
One-push Access viewfinder
The XGA OLED Tru-Finder offers sharp resolution (2.35-milliion-dot equivalent), bright self-illumination and high contrast, making it excellent for previewing shots and adjusting settings. Electronic viewfinder eyepiece optics reduce unwanted reflections and ensure corner-to-corner visibility. Depressing the pop-up switch on the side of the body makes the viewfinder instantly available, and it can be retracted just as quickly when not in use.
180 degree tiltable LCD screen with versatile touch operation
The high-resolution 921k-dot LCD has a 3.0-type screen which tilts upwards 180 degrees and downwards around 90 degrees, for easy framing of self portraits and high- and low-angle shooting. Touch operations include Touch Shutter (to release the shutter), Touch Focus (to set the focus point), Touch Tracking (to activate focus tracking for the selected subject), and Touch Pad (to smoothly move the focus point).
Custom functions for improved operability
Function Menu items can be set independently for still and movie shooting, and help displays are available on the menu screen. The My Menu feature allows for the flexible assignment of 30 menu items, and frequently used functions can also be assigned to the control dial and control wheel with My Dial.
Ratings, protection, and continuous shooting groups
In playback mode, still images can be given a rating or protected from deletion, and these functions can conveniently be assigned to custom keys. Continuously shot images can be displayed in the groups in which they were shot, and groups of shots can be deleted or protected with one operation. You can now also select from four different continuous shooting display styles, for the viewfinder or LCD monitor, according to your preference.
More efficient control of settings with an improved user interface
To make your shooting even more fluid and efficient, frequently used ISO ranges and focus-area types are given prominence in their settings screens. The Flexible Spot focusing mode has been simplified to shift through the frame faster – ideal for sporting scenes where the subject often shifts position. In addition, the focus frame can now be switched between red and white to enhance its visibility in diverse shooting environments, and a blue indicator has been added for focus peaking – ideal for warm-coloured subjects.
Expanded possibilities with Imaging Edge Mobile
Use the free Imaging Edge Mobile app to start and stop movie recording and capture stills remotely from your smartphone or tablet using built-in Wi-Fi. Captured images and 4K movies can also be wirelessly transferred to your device for easy sharing, and the camera can even use your smartphone's location data to tag your images via a Bluetooth connection. And thanks to the auto background transfer function, remotely shot still images can be transferred automatically from the camera to a smartphone while shooting.
Imaging Edge Remote, Viewer, and Edit
Elevate your photography with Imaging Edge desktop applications. Use "Remote" to control and monitor shooting live on your PC screen; "Viewer" to quickly preview, rate, and select photos from large image libraries; and "Edit" to develop RAW data into high-quality photos for delivery. Get the best from Sony RAW files, and manage your productions more efficiently.