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Sony ZV-E10 Review

Do you remember when Sony cameras didn’t even provide vloggers the option of a screen that could be articulated? That happened not too long ago, but the Sony ZV-E10 is the most recent in a growing line of video-centric Sony cameras that addresses this constraint. It also fills a gap between the company’s entry-level (Sony ZV-1) and mid-range (Sony A6100) product lines.

The ZV-E10 is essentially an A6100 spin-off with a video-tastic body; it has two parts old internals, one part new body, and a splash of souped-up software. The ZV-E10 looks like the A6100 inspired it. What’s even better is that this new competitor hopes to satisfy your video-playing cravings without exceeding $1,000, £1,000, or AUS $1,500 in price.

Sony ZV-E10 Build Quality

The ZV-E10 is a Sony camera because when you touch the touchscreen to interact with the menus, nothing occurs. This is how you can tell it’s a Sony camera. Sony introduced a fancy new touch menu for the Sony A7S III and FX3, but the more recent ZV-E10 forces you to navigate the user interface with the four-way wheel to the right of the display. We are still waiting for Sony to implement the feature on a lower-end camera model.

Before you access the menu, you’ll see that the camera’s design incorporates several Sony-specific design cues and elements. On the top of the camera is a Multi-Interface hot shoe attachment, which is compatible with digital audio equipment. There is also a grille that conceals a three-capsule microphone located underneath the mount.

To the right of the power button is a toggle that allows you to choose between Sony’s S&Q (‘Slow and Quick’) mode for time-lapses, Photo, and Video modes. In addition, there is a button designated explicitly for recording movies, as well as a button labeled Bokeh Switch (which doubles up as C1). In conclusion, the camera’s top contains a shutter release button, a zoom toggle, and a wheel that, by default, regulates the aperture and is manipulated with the thumb.

The articulating screen is shown prominently on the rear of the camera, and to the right are buttons for the menu, Fn, playback, and delete. In addition, there is a revolving wheel that may be used as a four-way pad.

Even though the camera’s body is made of magnesium, it has a flexible grip on the right side of the buttons that a user’s thumb can nestle into. Additionally, the pliable grip material wraps around the side of the camera and extends to the front grip.

Sony ZV-E10 Live Streaming

One of the things that make the Sony ZV-E10 stand out right out of the box is that it is capable of live streaming. It functions properly with UVC/UAC support and when paired with Imaging Edge Webcam, an application that is downloadable on both Mac and Windows computers.

Both choices do away with the requirement of a video capture card, which, ever before the epidemic hit, has become a standard software enhancement across Canon and even GoPro cameras. Both of these solutions are available. This implies that the ZV-E10 can act not just as a streaming device for Twitch and YouTube but also as a very high-end camera.

The feature of the UVC/UAC that allows for plug-and-play functionality cannot be emphasized. Simply navigate to the USB Streaming setting in the camera’s menu and turn it on for the camera to be ready for use. Connecting it to a computer is all that is required to get it ready for use with Google Meet, Microsoft Teams, or Zoom.

Sony ZV-E10 Autofocus

Back in 2019, the 425-point focusing system of the Sony A6100 was outstanding, and it’s still impressive at the price of the ZV-E10, drawing focus in only 0.02 seconds.

The hybrid autofocus system incorporates 425 phase-detection points. It provides coverage of 84%, while the ZV-E10 also welcomes the return of Sony’s Real-time Tracking and Real-time Eye AF technologies, which can track moving subjects, including humans and animals.

Real-time Tracking uses Sony’s prediction and recognition algorithms, such as AI-based object identification and color, subject distance (depth), pattern (brightness), and spatial information, not to mention face and eye detection. Real-time Tracking also employs geographical information.

This enables photographers to track a subject by just tapping it in the viewfinder, and the camera will then follow it as it moves across the frame automatically. If the issue has a face, eye detection will be utilized until they move away from the camera, at which point the AF will revert to Real-time Tracking. If the subject does not have a face, Real-time Tracking will be used.

Sony ZV-E10 Performance

The Sony ZV-E10 is a camera that brings back tried-and-true photography gear with its 24.2 megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor. There is nothing novel about its image qualities, considering that it has a maximum ISO of 32,000 and a shutter speed that can go as fast as 1/4000.

The camera features three levels of SteadyShot electronic stabilization, which are Active, Standard, and off. This is a positive aspect of the device. Hand-shake was effectively adjusted, and pans were smooth when combined with the Optical SteadyShot feature on the majority of the lenses that we tested with the ZV-E10.

Even though the video is recorded at 4K resolution, it is shot with 6K oversampling since the sensor pixel count allows for it.

The fact that the Sony ZV-4K E10’s footage can only be captured at a maximum of 30 frames per second is disappointing, as is the case with the vast majority of 4K cameras available at this price point. Meanwhile, Full HD video can be captured at frame rates of up to 100fps; however, when filming in Sony’s S&Q mode, this may increase to 120p.

Sony ZV-E10 Image & Video Quality

We put the ZV-E10 through its paces with several different lenses, including as the Sony E 16-50mm f/3.5-5.6 OSS, the FE 24-70mm f/2.8 OSS, the FE 12-24mm f/4, and the 135mm f/1.8 GM. Every combination created a rich photo with remarkable depth, richness, and contrast, regardless of whether it was shot handheld in bright or dim situations.

Even if you choose to shoot at higher sensitivities like ISO 6400, the ZV-E10 maintains excellent control over image noise across the entirety of its sensitivity range. Because the ‘Normal’ option on the camera can be a little too aggressive, we recommend that if you are going to be shooting JPEGs, you change the High ISO NR (noise reduction) setting on the camera to low.

The motion is quite beautiful and smooth, and the audio quality is also very high when the camera is held still. The video quality is also outstanding when the camera is steady, and the footage from the ZV-E10, captured with an 8-bit color depth and 4:2:0 subsampling, delivers lots of information.

Along with the included windscreen, the three-capsule microphone that can be found on the Sony ZV-1 is very much appreciated for providing higher-quality backup audio. However, if you can wire in some external audio, you should most certainly do so, especially for situations that are similar to interviews.

How noise is handled when recording video is not very impressive and, as expected, lags well behind the full-frame competitors. When downsampling from 4K to FullHD, however, the ISO may be valid up to about 6400, even when shooting with an APS-C sensor, thus, this setting is exactly where it needs to be. In any other case, it is in your best interest, in our opinion, to maintain the film at a maximum of about ISO 4000.

Sony ZV-E10 Specs

Lens MountSony E
Sensor ResolutionActual: 25 Megapixel
Effective: 24.2 Megapixel (6000 x 4000)
Sensor Type23.5 x 15.6 mm (APS-C) CMOS
Crop Factor1.5x
Image StabilizationDigital (Video Only)
Built-In ND FilterNone
Capture TypeStills & Video

Exposure Control

Shutter TypeElectronic Shutter, Mechanical Focal Plane Shutter
Shutter SpeedMechanical Shutter
1/4000 to 30 Seconds
1/4000 to 1/4 Second in Movie Mode
Bulb/Time ModeBulb Mode
ISO SensitivityPhoto
100 to 32,000 in Auto Mode (Extended: 50 to 51,200)
Video
100 to 3200
Metering MethodCenter-Weighted Average, Multi-Zone, Spot
Exposure ModesAperture Priority, Auto, Manual, Program, Shutter Priority
Exposure Compensation-5 to +5 EV (1/3, 1/2 EV Steps)
Metering Range-2 to 20 EV
White BalancePresets: Auto, Cloudy, Color Temperature Filter, Custom, Daylight, Flash, Fluorescent (Cool White), Fluorescent (Day White), Fluorescent (Daylight), Fluorescent (Warm White), Incandescent, Shade, Underwater
Continuous ShootingUp to 11 fps at 24.2 MP for up to 116 Frames (JPEG) / 46 Frames (Raw)
Interval RecordingYes
Self-Timer2/5/10-Second Delay

Still Image Capture

Image Sizes1:1 Raw
4000 x 4000
3:2 Raw
6000 x 4000
4:3 Raw
5328 x 4000
16:9 Raw
6000 x 3376
1:1 JPEG
4000 x 4000
2832 x 2832
2000 x 2000
3:2 JPEG
6000 x 4000
4240 x 2832
3008 x 2000
4:3 JPEG
5328 x 4000
3776 x 2832
2656 x 2000
16:9 JPEG
6000 x 3376
4240 x 2400
3008 x 1688
Aspect Ratio1:1, 3:2, 4:3, 16:9
Image File FormatJPEG, Raw
Bit Depth14-Bit
Internal Recording ModesXAVC S 4:2:0 8-Bit
UHD 4K (3840 x 2160) at 24.00/25/29.97 fps [60 to 100 Mb/s]
1920 x 1080p at 23.98/25/29.97/50/59.94/100/119.88 fps [16 to 100 Mb/s]
External Recording Modes4:2:2 8-Bit via HDMI
UHD 4K (3840 x 2160) up to 29.97 fps
Gamma CurveHDR-HLG, Sony S-Log 2, Sony S-Log 3
Recording LimitNone
Broadcast OutputNTSC/PAL
IP StreamingNone
Built-In Microphone TypeStereo
Audio RecordingXAVC S: 2-Channel LPCM Audio

Interface

Media/Memory Card SlotSingle Slot: SD/SDHC/SDXC/Memory Stick Duo Hybrid (UHS-I)
Video I/O1 x Micro-HDMI Output
Audio I/O1 x 1/8″ / 3.5 mm TRS Stereo Headphone Output
1 x 1/8″ / 3.5 mm TRS Stereo Microphone Input
Power I/O1 x USB-C Input/Output
Other I/O1 x USB-C (USB 3.2 / 3.1 Gen 1) Input/Output (Shared with Power Input)
WirelessWi-Fi, Bluetooth
Global Positioning (GPS, GLONASS, etc.)None

Monitor

Size3.0″
Resolution921,600 Dot
Display TypeArticulating Touchscreen LCD

Focus

Focus TypeAuto and Manual Focus
Focus ModeAutomatic, Continuous-Servo AF, Direct Manual Focus, Manual Focus, Single-Servo AF
Autofocus PointsPhase Detection: 425
Contrast Detection: 425
Autofocus Sensitivity-3 to +20 EV

Flash

Built-In FlashNo
Flash ModesAuto, Fill Flash, Off, Rear Sync, Slow Sync
Maximum Sync Speed1/160 Second
Flash Compensation-3 to +3 EV (1/3 EV Steps)
Dedicated Flash SystemTTL
External Flash ConnectionIntelligent Hot Shoe

Environmental

Operating Temperature32 to 104°F / 0 to 40°C

General

Battery Type1 x NP-FW50 Rechargeable Lithium-Ion, 7.2 VDC, 1080 mAh (Approx. 440 Shots)
Power Consumption<2 W
Tripod Mounting Thread1 x 1/4″-20 Female (Bottom)
Accessory Mount1 x Hot Shoe Mount
Dimensions (W x H x D)4.5 x 2.5 x 1.8″ / 115.2 x 64.2 x 44.8 mm
Weight12.1 oz / 343 g (With Battery, Recording Media)

Packaging Info

Package Weight1.35 lb
Box Dimensions (LxWxH)12.5 x 9.5 x 7.1″

Sony ZV-E10 Final Verdict

Adding the ZV-E10 to Sony’s product roster was a natural and obvious step. It is a strong small video tool and produces excellent images, and its primary focus is on vlogging. The camera has a screen that can be articulated, enhanced microphones, and a tiny body.

The ZV-E10 is far from ideal; its three primary shortcomings are a severe rolling shutter when panning, a menu interface that does not support touch, and the inability to shoot 4K video at 60 frames per second, which is unusual for a camera in this price range. When you get beyond those limits, though, you’ll discover a hybrid that’s focused on video and offers good audio options at an inexpensive price.

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