Best Sony Compact Camera

If you want something which can deliver more than your smartphone, but still doesn’t up too much real estate in your bag, then you’ve come to the right place. Here we round up a bunch of cameras that can deliver something that your smartphone can’t quite muster. Whether that’s a larger sensor, manual control for creative freedom or a zoom lens to get you closer to your subject, there’s a range of good options here.

Perhaps you’re also looking for something which is good for video work or vlogging, as well as a thing that will suit travel and day trips.

Our “best of the best” recommendation comes in the shape of the Sony RX100 VII and Sony Zv-1. Sony continues to impress with its pocket powerhouses, with an incredible array of technology crammed into seriously tiny bodies. Of course, there’s always a downside – and with the RX100 series, that’s the asking price. The good news is that because the model is in its seventh generation, you can save cash by opting for one of the older versions.

Best Sony Compact Camera for photography in 2020

1. Sony RX100 VII

Sale $100.00
Sony RX100 VII Premium Compact Camera with...
  • 20. 1MP 1. 0 Type stacked CMOS sensor, Zeiss Vario Sonnar T*...
  • 0. 02 sec. High AF speed, 357 point focal plane Phase...

Sony RX100 VII is a pocket-sized camera packing a wealth of stills and video versatility. This seventh-generation digital camera in the esteemed RX100 series is the second to feature the impressive 24-200mm-equivalent ZEISS Vario-Sonnar T* lens that covers wide-angle to telephoto focal lengths for greater shooting flexibility in a variety of conditions. Making use of the extended range is a redesigned 20.1MP 1″ Exmor RS CMOS sensor, along with an improved BIONZ X image processor, for fast shooting performance, high sensitivity to ISO 12800, and UHD 4K video recording. The updated sensor design is all about speed and enables blackout-free continuous shooting up to 20 fps for easier subject tracking. Single Burst Shooting also permits shooting at an extreme 90-fps setting for working with the fastest moving subjects. The sensor’s design also provides a 357-point hybrid AF system for quick and accurate focus performance and subject matter tracking in both stills and video modes.

2. Sony RX 10 IV

Sale $100.00
Sony Cyber‑Shot RX10 IV with 0.03 Second...
  • World’s Fastest AF acquisition speed of 0.03 sec. Optical...
  • 315 phase-detection AF points covering Approx. 65% of the...

The Sony RX10 IV is an enthusiast long-zoom camera that improves upon its predecessor by adding a new image processor (the Bionz X from the a9), a hybrid AF system with 325 phase-detect points and 24 fps continuous shooting. It continues to use a 20MP 1″-type stacked CMOS sensor and 24-600mm equiv. F2.4-4 lens. Images can be composed on a fresh 3″ tilting touchscreen LCD or the same OLED electronic viewfinder found on the RX10 III.

The RX captures UHD 4K video without pixel binning to ensure the best possible quality. It offers numerous capture tools, including S-Log2/3 support, gamma display assist, zebra and proxy recording. High frame rate video at up to 960 fps can also be recorded. Both mic and headphone jacks are built-in.

3. Sony Zv-1

Sale $100.00
Sony ZV-1 Camera for Content Creators, Vlogging...
  • Fast Hybrid AF, Real Time Eye-AF3 and Real-time AF tracking
  • Quickly switch between two modes of defocused background...

Sony RX100 users have requested certain extra features that would increase its capabilities for video use. Sony has finally listened to those requests, but instead of adding them to the RX100 a brand new camera has been created, and presumably an entirely new camera range with the Sony ZV-1, which Sony is describing as a ‘Vlog’ digital camera ‘designed for creators’.

A glance at the features of the ZV-1 shows that it shares much of its DNA with the Sony RX100 VA. Both cameras share the same 20-million-pixel 1-inch size BSI sensor, Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T8 24-70mm f/1.8-2.8 equivalent lens and NP-BX1 battery, so as you can imagine, many of the specifications are identical. However, with just a few key areas of difference, Sony has switched the technology so that the ZV-1 has a clear focus on video, with still photography very much in the backseat.

The attraction of the RX100 for videography is its compact size, 4K video shooting, fast autofocus, 1-inch sensor and ability to shoot exactly the same video Picture Profiles as its A7-series bigger brothers. Whilst the RX100 VII introduced a microphone socket for the first time in the RX100 series, it lacks a hot-shoe mount to actually mount a mic. Part of the reason for not having a hot-shoe is that the RX100 collection cameras have a flip-up front-facing screen, which would be blocked by any mounted microphone. As well as this the RX100 has limited space on its top plate due to a built-in flash and a pop-up electronic viewfinder.

4. Sony a6600

Sale $100.00
Sony Alpha A6600 Mirrorless Camera
  • World’s fastest AF at 0 02 sec W/ real-time AF & Object...
  • 24 2MP APS-C Exmor sensor w/ front end LSI and ISO up to 102...

Check Out: Best Sony a6600 Lenses

At its core is a 24.2 megapixel Exmor CMOS image sensor, the latest BIONZ X picture processor, and a front-end LSI inherited from Sony’s more expensive range of full-frame mirrorless cameras.

The Sony Alpha A6600 has 425 focal-plane phase-detection AF points and 425 contrast-recognition AF points covering approximately 84% of the image area, with a very fast autofocus acquisition time of just 0.02 seconds. Sony’s latest Real-time Tracking and Real-time Eye AF technologies are also both on-board.

The A6600 can record 4K HDR (HLG) 3840×2160 video at 30fps, along with Full HD 1080p footage up to 120fps, both without any limits on the recording length. There’s also a new integrated microphone input for clearer and crisper audio and also an integrated headphone jack for accurate monitoring of recorded sound.

Other key features include a magnesium alloy design that is dust and moisture resistant, a 5-axis in-body image stabilisation system, a 180-degree tiltable, 3.0-inch, 921k-dot LCD touch screen, an XGA Tru-Finder 2.36m-dot OLED electronic viewfinder, an ISO selection of 100-32000 (expandable to ISO 50-102400), 14-bit raw file support, 11fps continuous shooting with full autofocus and autoexposure, 720 still image battery life and the ability to charge the camera via its USB port, and built-in Wi-Fi, NFC and Bluetooth connectivity.

5. Sony RX10 III

Sony DSC-RX10 III Cyber-shot Digital Still Camera
  • High zoom 24-600mm (25x) F2.4-4.0 ZEISS Vario-Sonnar T*...
  • Super slow-motion movie HFR (High frame rate) up to 960 fps...

The Sony RX10 III is Sony’s flagship compact camera, built around a 1″-type stacked CMOS sensor which produces 20MP stills in addition to 4K/UHD video. The RX10 III surpasses the zoom selection of its predecessor with a 24-600mm equiv. F2.4-4 zoom lens, which sizable lens helps make room for aperture, concentrate and zoom bands, as well as a focus keep button. Sony states that its SteadyShot stabilization program offers up to 4.5 stops of shake reduction. There’s also an XGA OLED EVF with 2.36 million dots, in addition to a tilting 3″ LCD display.

It’s no real surprise that the RX10 III includes a solid movie specification, offering 4K video from 1.7X oversampled, complete pixel readout without binning. The digital camera also supplies the video-centric Image Profiles that provide fine-grained control on the camera’s tonal and colour responses, you need to include the flat S-Log2 and S-Log3 gamma curves. Just like the RX10 II, the III includes both a mic insight socket for utilizing an exterior mic and a headphone jack for supervising that recorded sound. The RX10 III offers the higher frame price ‘HFR’ videos settings that catch footage at around 960 fps (albeit at decreased resolutions) and play it back again as 1080/24p.

6. Sony RX100 III

Sony RX100 III 20.1 MP Premium Compact Digital...
  • 209 MP 1"-type Exmor R CMOS sensor ; Optical zoom:2.9x...
  • Operating temperature:32-104°F / 0-40°C.24-70mm equivalent...

The RX100 III is the most premium of pocketable premium enthusiasts compacts from Sony. Built around a 1″ CMOS sensor and a 24-70mm equivalent F1.8-2.8 Zeiss lens, it promises sharp images even in low light. Other than the redesigned zoom lens, the Mark III differs from its other RX100 siblings by including a built-in and retractable OLED viewfinder with the same T* coating as the camera’s lens to reduce flare and ghosting. The RX100 III also features built-in Wi-Fi and NFC connectivity for both wireless image sharing and camera control via smartphone, and a multi-angle WhiteMagic LCD display.

7. Sony a6400

Sony Alpha a6400 Mirrorless Camera: Compact APS-C...
  • 20.1MP stacked back illuminated 1" Exmor RS CMOS sensor w/...
  • Enhanced subject capture: wide 425 Phase/ 425 contrast...

Check Out: Best Sony a6400 Lenses

Stable, fast, versatile, and compact, the Alpha a6400 from Sony is an APS-C-format mirrorless camera that adopts many of the features normally reserved for their full-frame lineup. This includes an autofocus acquisition of 0.02 seconds, Real-time Eye AF and Real-time Tracking capabilities, high-speed shooting up to 11 fps and silent shooting around 8 fps, both with AF/AE tracking, an upgraded BIONZ X image processing engine, an LCD touchscreen that tilts 180° up and 74° down, UHD 4K movie recording with full pixel readout and no pixel binning, internal recording for time-lapse videos, and more.

8. Sony RX100 V

Sale $449.00
Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-RX100 V 20.1 MP Digital Still...
  • ELECTRONIC VIEW FINDER: retractable Tru-Finder EVF provides...
  • AUTO FOCUS: World’s fastest (0.05 sec.) hybrid AF system...

The Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 Mark V is the latest addition to Sony’s popular lineup of 1″ enthusiast compacts. The major additions to the Mark V are on-sensor phase-detection AF, and a burst rate of 24 fps with full-time focusing. The AF system takes the same 25-pt contrast-detect program and adds 315 PDAF points that cover 65% of the frame. 4K video is oversampled without pixel binning and saved using the XAVC S codec.

The RX100 V continues to offer a 20.1MP 1″-type stacked CMOS sensor, 24-70mm F1.8-2.8 lens, pop-up EVF and built-in Wi-Fi w/NFC.

9. Sony RX100 II

Sale $303.18
Sony RX100 II 20.2 MP Premium Compact Digital...
  • 20.2 MP 1"-type Exmor R CMOS sensor. 28-100mm equivalent...
  • Continuous shooting up to 10 FPS. ISO 160-12800, expandable...

The Sony RX100 II is a premium compact camera aimed at the keen enthusiast photographer. The RX100 II offers an integrated 3.6x, 28-100mm Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* zoom lens with a fast aperture of f/1.8 at the wide-angle setting, a new 20.2 megapixel 1.0-type Exmor back-illuminated CMOS image sensor and Full HD 24p/25p high-definition video recording. The RX100 MK2 also boasts built-in wi-fi and NFC connectivity, a high resolution tiltable 3 inch LCD screen, Multi Interface Shoe and Multi Terminal accessory connections, continuous shooting at up to 10fps at full resolution, high-speed autofocus that locks onto your target in 0.13 seconds, built-in pop-up flash, support for the Raw format and full manual controls.

10. Sony a6100

Sony Alpha A6100 Mirrorless Camera with 16-50mm...
  • World’s fastest AF at 0 02 sec W/ real-time AF & Object...
  • Wide 425-phase/425-contrast detection AF points over 84% of...

Check Out: Best Sony a6100 Lenses

Sony a6100 is an APS-C-format mirrorless camera well-suited for stills and video applications. Featuring a 24.2MP CMOS sensor and a BIONZ X processor, capturing high-resolution stills with a broad sensitivity range and low noise is possible. The sensor and processor combination also affords UHD 4K video recording along with quick continuous shooting up to 11 fps for working with moving subjects. Also benefitting fast-paced shooting, Real-time Eye AF and subject tracking capabilities help to ensure sharp focus on a variety of subject types.

11. Sony Rx10

Sony DSCRX10/B Cybershot 20.2 MP Digital Still...
  • 20.9 MP 1"-type Exmor R CMOS sensor
  • 24-200mm equivalent F2.8 lens with optical image...

The Sony RX10 is an ultra-zoom compact camera, featuring a 24-200mm equivalent (8.3x optical zoom) lens with a continuous F2.8 maximum aperture, and a 1-inch, 20-megapixel BSI-CMOS sensor. The RX10 uses the new Bionz X sensor (the same as the Alpha 7R/7 full-frame mirrorless cameras), which provides improved sharpness and noise reduction, reduced diffraction, and snappy performance.

Other features include a 3-inch tilting WhiteMagic LCD with 1.228 million dots, SVGA electronic viewfinder, a weather-resistant body, Wi-Fi, 1080/60p video with uncompressed HDMI output, and much more.

12. Sony RX100

Sale $233.01
Sony RX100 20.2 MP Premium Compact Digital Camera...
  • Approximately 20.1 megapixels , Exmor CMOS Sensor, 28-100mm...
  • Operating temperature:Approx. 0°C to 40°C (32F° to...

The Sony RX100 is an enthusiast compact camera based around a 20MP 1″ CMOS sensor. It features a 28-100mm equivalent lens with F1.8-4.9 aperture range and image stabilization and is the first Sony compact to capture Raw files. It can shoot 1080p60 and capture 17MP (16:9 crop) stills simultaneously. It includes a lens control dial and a 3:2 aspect ratio sensor (the same proportions as most DSLRs). It’s also the first Sony compact to feature the company’s ‘White Magic’ LCD technology, promising a brighter or lower-power display.

13. Sony HX99

Sony DSC-HX99 Compact Digital 18.2 MP Camera with...
  • ZEISS Vario-Sonnar T* 24-720mm High Magnification Zoom and...
  • Stunning 4K video with full pixel readout and no pixel...

At the time of its launch, the Sony Cyber-shot HX99 and its HX95 sibling are the smallest travel zoom compacts in the world. Like the HX95, the HX99 packs a 28x zoom 24-720mm equivalent lens, 18MP 1/2.3″ sensor, 180-degree tilting 3.0″ screen and 4K/30p video with full pixel readout. The cameras also include a front-end LSI and BIONZ X processor, making possible 10 fps shooting with a 155 image buffer. The HX99 offers a couple of additional features: touchscreen functionality and a customizable control ring around its zoom lens.

14. Sony WX500

Sony DSCWX500/B Digital Camera with 3-Inch LCD...
  • 30x Optical/60x Clear Image Zoom ZEISS (Trademarked)...
  • 18.2MP Exmor R (Trademarked) CMOS Sensor for superb low...

Sony WX350 Digital Camera is a compact zoom point-and-shoot that features an 18.2MP Exmor R CMOS sensor with a BIONZ X image processor for notable low-light performance, and a powerful 20x optical zoom lens with an additional 40x Clear Image Zoom. A 4.3-86mm f/3.5-6.5 lens, which has a 35mm equivalent focal length of 25-500mm, establishes the camera as having considerable wide-angle to telephoto image capturing abilities. To view your images and high-resolution full HD 1080/60p AVCHD videos, there is a 3″ Clear Photo LCD 460k-dot monitor at the back.

Optical SteadyShot Picture Stabilization helps compensate for camera shake to provide clearer images, especially in low light and when using the longer focal lengths. Useful for sports photography, the WX350 features 10 frames per second continuous shooting at the full 18.2MP resolution ensuring sharp, clear images that are less likely to be missed.

15. Sony WX350

Sony DSCWX350 18 MP Digital Camera (Black)
  • 20x Optical/40x Clear Image Zoom G Lens
  • Keep your subject in focus with Lock-On AF

Sony WX350 Digital Camera is a compact zoom point-and-shoot that features an 18.2MP Exmor R CMOS sensor with a BIONZ X image processor for notable low-light performance, and a powerful 20x optical zoom lens with an additional 40x Clear Image Zoom. A 4.3-86mm f/3.5-6.5 lens, which has a 35mm equivalent focal length of 25-500mm, establishes the camera as having considerable wide-angle to telephoto image capturing abilities. To view your images and high-resolution full HD 1080/60p AVCHD videos, there is a 3″ Clear Photo LCD 460k-dot monitor at the back.

Optical SteadyShot Picture Stabilization helps compensate for camera shake to provide clearer images, especially in low light and when using the longer focal lengths. Useful for sports photography, the WX350 features 10 frames per second continuous shooting at the full 18.2MP resolution ensuring sharp, clear images that are less likely to be missed.

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