Sony RX1 Review

The Sony RX100 has caused quite a stir in the photography community and the general public because of its larger-than-usual (one-inch) sensor housed within a tiny body. However, the maker of the Sony RX1 has now integrated a 35mm format full-frame sensor into a body that is around the same size as before.

In exchange for your payment of £2,599, AU$2,999, or US$2,799.99, you will receive a Carl Zeiss T* coated lens with a fixed focal length of 35mm and an aperture of 2.0.

The Sony is a fascinating new offer in the ultra-premium compact camera market. It aims to compete with other ultra-premium small cameras, such as the Fuji X100 and maybe even the Leica M9.

Sony RX1 Build Quality

When you first take up this premium compact camera, the excellent craftsmanship of its construction is immediately apparent to the touch. Admittedly, the Sony RX1 is a pretty little camera. Yet, despite this, it is sturdily weighty enough to reassure you while still being light enough to give you that wow factor when thinking about the technology contained within its tiny body.

The lens has a fixed Carl Zeiss optic with a 35mm focal length and an aperture of 2.0, despite its very bulky size. Although it seems like it ought to be a swappable optic, it isn’t. According to Sony, this makes it possible for the camera to give the highest possible optical quality since it can use all its characteristics to get the most out of the lens.

It has a relatively secure feeling even while holding the camera with one hand. This is primarily due to the coating on the grip on the camera’s right side, which looks like leather.

Sony RX1 Performance

Because the Sony RX1 incorporates the same full-frame sensor as the Sony Alpha a99, in addition to the hefty price tag, we went into this purchase with extremely high expectations for the camera. The visual quality has not, thankfully, been something that has let us down.

The camera can create photographs with stunning detail, stunningly vivid colors, and a low noise level, even when the sensitivity setting is set to its highest level.

The lens is a Carl Zeiss optic with T* coatings and a maximum aperture of f/2.0; even though it has a fixed focal length of 35 millimeters, what you are getting here is a very high-quality lens, which is an excellent complement to the fantastic sensor. So you genuinely do obtain something that has the potential to provide exceptional outcomes.

Sony RX1 Image Quality

During this evaluation, the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX1 captured photographs of exceptionally high quality. The RX1 features a broad and highly useable ISO range that goes from 50 up to 25,600. ISO 50–1600 is noise-free, while ISO 3200 and 6400 yield more than satisfactory results, and even ISO 12,800 and 25,600 are suitable for usage in an emergency.

However, the RAW examples show how much processing the camera undertakes by default since they are significantly noisier than their JPEG counterparts across the board, regardless of the ISO value.

Chromatic aberrations were present but were effectively controlled; nonetheless, a small amount of purple fringing appeared in conditions with a high contrast ratio. The 24-megapixel photographs come out of the camera slightly soft when using the default creative style. For the best results, you should sharpen them some more by utilizing an application such as Adobe Photoshop; alternatively, you may adjust the degree of sharpening that the camera applies automatically.

The night shot turned out well thanks to the camera’s maximum shutter speed of 30 seconds and its Bulb mode, which allow lots of room for creative experimentation during nighttime shooting. The macro performance is satisfactory, enabling you to focus as close to the subject as 20 centimeters distant. The built-in flash performed admirably inside, preventing red-eye and providing enough exposure overall.

A practical Dynamic Range Optimizer function will extract additional data from an image’s shadow and highlight sections without adding any noise or other artifacts that aren’t intended.

The High Dynamic Range mode combines the results of two separate images taken at various exposures into a single image. The result is an image that has a higher dynamic range than what would be produced by a single photograph. However, it does yield some excellent effects even though it can only function with JPEGs and stationary subjects. Even after all these years, using Sony’s Sweep Panorama is still a delightful experience.

Picture Effects allow you to create unique looks quickly, which would otherwise require you to spend a significant amount of time in the digital darkroom. On the other hand, Creative Styles give a quick and simple method to adjust the JPEG photographs captured by the camera.

Sony RX1 Spec

Body typeLarge sensor compact
Max resolution6000 x 4000
Other resolutions6000 x 3376, 3936 x 2624, 3936 x 2216, 2640 x 1760, 2640 x 1488
Image ratio w h3:2, 16:9
Effective pixels24 megapixels
Sensor photo detectors25 megapixels
Sensor sizeFull frame (35.8 x 23.8 mm)
Sensor typeCMOS
Color spacesRGB, AdobeRGB
Color filter arrayRGB Primary color
ISOAuto, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200, 6400, 12800, 25600
White balance presets9
Custom white balanceYes (1)
Image stabilizationNo
Uncompressed formatRAW
File formatRAW (ARW2.3 Format)RAW+JPEGJPEG
Optics & Focus
Focal length (equiv.)35 mm
Optical zoom
Maximum apertureF2–22
AutofocusContrast Detect (sensor)Multi-areaCenterSelective single-pointTrackingSingleFace Detection
Autofocus assist lampYes, built-LED type
Digital zoomYes (14x)
Manual focusYes
Normal focus range25 cm (9.84″)
Number of focus points25
Articulated LCDFixed
Screen size3″
Screen dots1,229,000
Touch screenNo
Screen typeXtra FineTFT LCD
Live viewYes
Viewfinder typeNone
Photography features
Minimum shutter speed30 sec
Maximum shutter speed1/4000 sec
Exposure modesProgram AutoAperture PriorityShutter PriorityManualMR (Memory Recall) 1 / 2 / 3MovieSweep shootingScene SelectionIntelligent Auto
Scene modesPortraitLandscapeSportsSunsetNight PortraitNight SceneHand-held Twilight
Built-in flashYes (Pop-up)
Flash Range6.00 m
External flashYes (via hot shoe)
Flash modesAuto, On, Off, Slow Sync
Drive modesSingle-frame advanceContinuous advanceContinuous adv Priority AESpeed Priority ContinuousSelf-timerSelf Portrait Self-timerContinuous Self-timer
Continuous drive5.0 fps
Self-timerYes (2 or 10 sec)
Metering modesMultiCenter-weighted spot
Exposure compensation±3 (at 1/3 EV steps)
AE Bracketing(3 frames at 1/3 EV, 2/3 EV steps)
WB BracketingNo
Videography features
Resolutions1920 x 1080 (60, 50, 25, 24 fps), 1440 x 1080 (30, 25 fps), 1280 x 720 (30 fps), 640 x 480 (30, 25 fps)
Videography notesAVCHD: 28M PS (1920×1080, 60p/50p), 24M FX (1920×1080, 60i/50i), 17M FH (1920×1080, 60i/50i), 24M FX (1920×1080, 24p/25p), 17M FH (1920×1080, 24p/25p)
Storage typesSD/SDHC/SDXC, Memory Stick Duo/Pro Duo/Pro-HG Duo
USBUSB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
HDMIYes (Mini)
WirelessEye-Fi Connected
Remote controlNo
Environmentally sealedNo
BatteryBattery Pack
Battery descriptionLithium-Ion NP-BX1 battery
Battery Life (CIPA)270
Weight (inc. batteries)482 g (1.06 lb / 17.00 oz)
Dimensions113 x 65 x 70 mm (4.45 x 2.56 x 2.76″)
Other features
Orientation sensorYes
Timelapse recordingNo

Sony RX1 Verdict

In the end, Sony developed a camera to demonstrate what it could accomplish with its most recent technologies. Of course, it is highly improbable that the Sony RX1 would sell in any significant amount given its high asking price and fixed-length limits; nonetheless, this is not the primary focus of the product.

The Sony DSC-RX1 can produce outstanding photographs with a remarkable level of clarity, color, and dynamic range. Moreover, it is of the highest possible visual quality for anything of this small that you can obtain.

For this ultimate mix of quality and mobility, you will need to be prepared to pay a lot, and I don’t just mean in terms of the asking price; I also mean in terms of the product’s lack of adaptability.

Sony RX1 FAQs

Is the Sony RX1 weather sealed?

No, the Sony RX1 is not protected from the elements by a weather cover.

Does Sony RX1 have a viewfinder?

The first generation of the Sony RX1 did not come equipped with a viewfinder, but the Sony RX1R II features an integrated computerized viewfinder.

Is Sony RX1 a good camera?

With its full-frame sensor, sharp lens, and lightweight construction, the Sony RX1 has earned a reputation as a capable camera among photography enthusiasts.

When was the RX1 made?

The Sony RX1 was first made available to the public in 2012.

What is the R in Sony RX1 cameras?

The “R” in Sony RX1R refers to “resolution,” which indicates that the camera has a sensor with a better resolution than the one found in the original RX1.

How do I protect my Sony RX1 camera from rain?

You can use a rain cover or umbrella or avoid photography in wet circumstances to prevent the rain from damaging your Sony RX1 camera.

Do professional photographers use Sony RX1?

Even though the Sony RX1 may not be as well-liked among professional photographers as some of the other high-end cameras, it is still an effective instrument that can be used for various types of photography.

What is the shutter speed of the Sony RX1?

The Sony RX1 has a shutter speed that can go as fast as 1/40,000 of a second at its fastest.

Is the Sony RX1 camera best for real estate photography?

Even though the Sony RX1 is not the ideal camera for photographing real estate due to its fixed lens and comparatively restricted wide-angle capabilities, it can still produce high-quality images if the proper circumstances are present.

Why are photographers switching to Sony RX1?

The Sony RX1 may be gaining popularity among photographers due to its full-frame picture quality, compact size, and flexibility across various photography situations.

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