Sony RX100 VII | Watch Before You Buy

what’s up guys siggy here and welcome to another tech gear talk today we’re gonna check out the new Sony rx100 Mark 7 this is a new compact camera from Sony which offers a nice mix of speed range and portability and I’m gonna walk you through a review and in my decision-making process about whether or not I think I’m going to keep this camera I’m also going to talk about it while referencing the rx100 mark 6 and see if it’s worth the upgrade at a first glance the cameras are almost indistinguishable but don’t let that fool you Sony incorporated some awesome tech from the flagship a 9 as well as a few other upgrades like improved autofocus movie I out-of-focus and a mic input which are going to make both photographers and video shooters happen $1,300 is not a small amount to pay for a compact camera so I’m gonna cover what I liked and what I didn’t like about the rx100 Mark 7 and ultimately try to help you decide if this camera is right for you I’m going to very quickly go over some overall key features in case you’re just starting your research the rx100 mark 7 has a 20-point one megapixel one inch CMOS sensor

and it uses the BIONZ X image processor it has a 24 to 200 millimeter 35 millimeter equivalent Zeiss lens you can shoot up to 20 frames per second blackout free burst shooting and up to 4k 30 video with HL G and s log three gammas Sony incorporated 0.39 inch 2.3 $6,000,000 pop-up EVF and a 3-inch 921,000 dot 180 degree tilting touch screen we have industry-leading hybrid autofocus with 357 phase and 425 contrast detection points real-time tracking and eye autofocus a 3.5 millimeter mic input a pop-up flash interval shooting and a clean HDMI out alright now that we got that out of the way let’s dive in deeper and talk about the good and the bad the rx100 mark 7 is the official replacement of the older mark 6 and also uses the same twenty point one megapixel one inch sensor with a fairly hefty price point of $1,300 Sony put an ear or at top of the compact camera market but now without a slew of features the sensor has been improved from the previous model to further improve readout speed and Sony also included an updated BIONZ X processor the sensor is a stacked CMOS sensor so Sony was able to incorporate dram storage into the sensor to help buffer the data being read off the

chip the sensor is also BSI or backside illuminated meaning that some of the elements were moved to the back of the sensor with the goal being improved low-light performance additional advantages of this new sensors which I’ll cover later on in more detail are increased coverage of the face detection elements and improved autofocus the image quality again which we’ll get to in more detail later on was on par with what I saw from the mark 6 JPEGs were sharp and retained fine detail in a way that’s really impressive for a one inch sensor overall I was very impressed with the images and the video even in low-light and we’ll get to that when we talk about the lens dynamic range was also pretty good for a compact camera and for video we’re able to shoot with s log 2 & 3 gamma curves or hlg for flatter looking footage which better retains details in the shadows and the highlights the rx100 mark 7 does not use an identical chip to the professional and much more expensive 89 but it does mimic some of its functionality in addition to the impressive improvements we’ll talk about in the autofocus section the rx100 mark 7 also now offers better image stabilization for video back to the processor for photography I can shoot it up to 20 frames per second burst or continuous shooting with continuous autofocus so I can just hold down the shutter and the camera will keep firing with nuts this is a nice feature if you’re photographing kids running around if you’re at a basketball or

soccer game or any other sporting event or any time when you’re shooting any fast-moving subjects now 20 frames per second is actually slower than the mark 6 which offered 24 frames per second but with this ever so slightly slower rate we are getting black out free shooting and this is very important when you’re following a moving subject because your view of the subject is not interrupted you can easily respond to changes in direction and keep this subject in frame from the video standpoint the rx100 mark 7 can record internally up to 4k 30 frames per second with a 30 minute limit and externally at 4k 30 frames per second 4 to 2 now moving on I say this a lot but one of the most important things for me with any tool that I use is ergonomic s’ in terms of both handling and user interface the rx100 mark 7 is obviously a compact camera which makes it an excellent option as a travel or street photography camera I easily put it in my pocket and I also used it with the M 2 where it performed great as technology advances manufacturers are able to make

certain components and cameras smaller but I think it’s important to strike a balance between performance organ ahhm –ax and portability as far as handling the rx100 mark 7 is pretty terrible and I don’t know how Sony didn’t do better essentially every surface you come in contact with is so smooth and slippery and I almost dropped it so many times luckily I was using it on a gimbal a lot of the time or with a small tripod or with the provided wrist strap and by the way if you have an aftermarket wrist strap that you like please let me know in the comment section and I’m gonna go check it out now regardless Sony should have added some material that offers any kind of grip I’ll probably end up adding some gaffers tape to both sides just to increase friction the next issue I had with the ergonomics is the shutter there isn’t a super defined half press on it and there are many times when I was just trying to obtain focus and the rx100 mark 7 just fired away took the picture this is something that is difficult to convey in video but you’ll notice it as soon as you start shooting the rest of the buttons on the camera are pretty small but I’m not going to complain about that because the entire premise of this camera is based on portability the body is super solid and it seems extremely well-made but as with most compact cameras the mark 7 does not have weather-sealed protection so keep that in mind and try not to

expose the camera to water or sand as far as the battery the mark 7 uses the MPB x1 which is rated for 240 shots it’s not great but again we don’t have a lot of room to work with as usual sony doesn’t include a charger and you have to either use a micro USB cable to charge the battery in camera or you need to buy a charger I always complain about this and even more so if the battery isn’t going to last all day what’s nice is that you can use the camera while it’s charging and Sony does include a plug and micro USB cable so I used the regular power bank to constantly replenish the battery throughout the day as I was traveling and I can even use it while it was plugged in when I was in a pinch and what’s nice here is that Sony doesn’t require you to use a PD capable power source as far as the number of buttons and dials I’m happy with what you get with the Rx mark 7 considering the amount of real estate that Sony had to work with we’ve got a ring around the lens and a dial on the back that’s used for aperture and shutter speed and a custom button on the bottom right for ISO I think if you’re buying a camera and you’re just using it with the factory settings you’re really missing out part of what you get when you’re buying a nice camera is the ability to customize it to work better for exactly how you shoot so I’ll soon publish a video showing you exactly how I set up the rx100 mark 7 so if that’s something you’re

interested in go ahead and hit the subscribe and notification buttons I recommend you check it out when it’s published and even if you don’t end up using it the way I do it’ll give you some great ideas and you can pick and choose the ones that work best for you a big part of what I did was customize the functions menu which offers 12 functions that can be displayed at the bottom of the screen when you press the FN or function button on the back this gives you very quick access to some of the most used features without having to hunt for them in the menu on the left side we have the electronic viewfinder trigger and this is one of my favorite features about the mark 7 unlike the viewfinder we get in cameras like the g5 x mark 2 which needs to be popped up and then manually pulled out and then pressed back in every time you want to use it Sony incorporated a super clever design that lets you use the trigger to fully expand the viewfinder and you simply press it down which will automatically retract the portion that extends toward the back this might seem like a small thing but when you’re in a rush and trying to get the

shot every split second counts as far as specs it’s a 0.39 inch two point three six million dot OLED electronic viewfinder which was really nice to have when using the camera in very bright conditions on the top portion of the camera we also have a flash trigger the on/off switch and a shutter and lens zoom lever on the right side we have the HDMI port a microUSB port and a new feature which I’ll discuss and demonstrate later the external mic input moving on to the bottom of the camera we have the battery compartment and the SD card slot getting the card in and out is a little challenging but again that’s due to the limited space in that compartment next I want to talk about resolution frame rates and image quality for stills the rx100 mark 7 has a maximum resolution of 5,000 472 by 36 48 which is really great for such a small camera and plenty for what most people would ever need you can of course shoot JPEG and RAW so you can decide just how much information you want to capture depending on what you plan on doing with these images in post-production the image quality for stills is really impressive for such a small camera and I found that my images were detailed with pretty good

dynamic range JPEG noise reduction is very good for a compact camera and the Sony colors are improving specifically for skin tones overall image quality is comparable to the mark 6 in terms of detail but probably slightly improved color rendering for video if you’re shooting in NTSC the rx100 mark 7 can record 4k at 24 and 30 frames per second Full HD at twenty four thirty sixty and a hundred and twenty frames per second in PAL you can shoot 4k in twenty five and Full HD at twenty five fifty and a hundred frames per second now let’s get a little nerdy here the rx100 mark seven actually over samples by collecting about 1.

7 times the information that’s needed for 4k output and by doing this rather than pixel binning its able to increase clarity in detail while reducing the appearance of artifacts these sometimes see in video 4k footage from this camera is really nice and I would say that this new sensor gives the mark seven a leg up over the mark six in terms of overall sharpness I’ll talk about this in more detail later but Sony added a feature called active steady shot which uses a combination of lens based is and digital image stabilization to reduce the appearance of camera shake and produced more stable footage at the slight cost of a 1.9 X crop now moving on to 1080p you can shoot at 24 30 60 and 120 frames per

second 30 60 and 120 offered two different bit rates so always choose to hire one to get the best quality the quality of the Full HD or 1080p isn’t as good as 4k of course and if you’re editing in 1080p and you want the absolute best footage you can still shoot in 4k and then downscale it to 1080p in post if you choose to do that you will get sharper footage with more detail but of course you have to deal with 4k footage so you’ll need to decide if the added quality is worth it for what you’re gonna do with this footage now let’s get to 120 frames per second which is one of my favorite things about using Sony cameras if you’ve seen some of my reviews you know that I love slow-motion and I love the footage that I’m getting from the mark 7 when shooting 1080p 120 frames per second at a hundred megabits per second the autofocus works really well and I’m super happy with the quality one thing that I did want to mention is that tracking does not work when you’re shooting 120 frames per second so that means you can’t click on a subject and have it tracked while you’re shooting for slow motion there’s also an option for high frame rate recording and up to 960 frames per second which allows you to get super slow motion but with some serious limitations on the length of the recording I would definitely use 240 frames per second footage but going to 480 and then 960 the quality of the footage definitely degrades one feature that I would have loved to see on this camera is a built-in ND

filter this is something that can include it on a g7 X mark 2 & 3 it allows us to record video with the correct shutter speed when shooting in bright daylight and if you have any questions about this let me know in the comment section and I’ll be able to help alright next let’s talk about autofocus which is a serious strength of the rx100 mark 7 one of the reasons I’ve been hesitant in the past to use Sony cameras is that I haven’t always had the best experience when it comes to continuous autofocus for video previously for stills Sony autofocus has been excellent but for video continuous autofocus would sometimes just hunt and I just couldn’t rely on it and the a7 3 was the first Sony camera that I tried were I was super impressed with the autofocus system and I immediately bought it after using the a7 3 for a while so picked up and a 6400 and have been super happy with the autofocus performance for both photography and video so when it came to the rx100 mark 7 at very high hopes and the good news is that it didn’t disappoint it uses 357 phase detection autofocus points and 425 contrast detection autofocus points that cover around 68% of the sensor for photos the focus is lightning fast and very accurate the camera quickly locked on to subject and I was able to use real-time tracking from moving subjects as I’ve

come to expect the eye autofocus is excellent with this camera and we actually have real-time eye autofocus for both humans and animals which you know I’m going to love when shooting portraits you can leave the camera on wide focus mode and it will just automatically detect the face and then lock on to the eye I’m telling you just like with the a7 3 in the a 6400 it just nails it and I love the green marker on the eye you can’t miss it and if it doesn’t find the eye there is still fallback to face detection for me this removes a lot of the static that comes from ensuring that the focus point is on the subjects eye and I can pay more attention to framing my shots depending on how familiar you are with Sony’s focus settings you may or may not find them confusing there a lot of them in a first glance err seems to be some redundancy but once you dive deeper into each setting and dial down to the one that you want to use for a particular scenario it works incredibly well I really like the flexibility of being able to control how much of a change the camera needs to detect before shifting focus and then on top of that having control of how fast or slow it will rack focus as I mentioned in addition to human eye detection we also have animal eye out of focus which I love because I take a lot of

pictures of my dog and the traditional autofocus mode usually focuses on his nose which means that his eyes are not in focus moving to video the mark 7 autofocus is again very good and with face eye and subject tracking I really enjoy using it face and eye detection for video was excellent even in low-light situations and I felt completely comfortable relying on it when vlogging with the camera facing me in selfie mode eye detection immediately locked on and stayed consistent I don’t know if I ever even noticed it reverting to face detection so if I happen to look away from the camera and then look back by the time I was facing the screen I autofocus was already locked on so to recap my opinion about the autofocus for both Stills and video it’s super fast and accurate tracking worked well for face eye and subjects there overall I’m super impressed with the performance for a compact camera all right let’s move on to the lens we have an integrated 24 to 200 millimeter equivalent zeiss lens with a variable maximum aperture ranging from F 2.8 to 4.5 optically this lens is very good and produced excellent results for me for both photography and video I love the range that I get to be able to essentially replace both a 24 to 70 and a 70 to 200 and the fact that the lens retracts means that I’m getting all of this versatility in a

camera that is smaller my hand Sony also incorporated OSS or optical steadyshot to provide up to four stops of stabilization and help minimize camera shake when shooting with slower shutter speed in low-light situation my one critique of this lens is the maximum aperture range although we do start at F 2.8 when you’re a 24 millimeter angle of view it quickly drops to f4 as soon as you get to 44 millimeters that’s a full stop difference meaning that you’re only letting in half as much light which means we either have to slow down our shutter speed by a factor of two or double our ISO value to maintain the same exposure and if this is confusing I’ll put a link in the description and up in the corner to my proper exposure tutorial so that’s for photography but if we’re dealing with video we can’t change the shutter speed which means that we can only increase the ISO which introduces additional noise to our footage I will say that overall I haven’t used any camera that offers this type of performance and range with a faster lens and I’m super happy with the images and the footage that it produced moving on let’s talk a little bit about the screen the rx100 mark 7 has a 3-inch flip touch screen ish LCD you can tilt the screen up which is good when you’re shooting from the

hip or anytime you’re above the camera you can also tilt it down all the way to 90 degrees so you can always get the angle you want if the camera is placed above your head and then if you’re in front of the camera it flips 180 degrees to face the front and it does that in a much more compact and elegant way than the a 6400 if you saw my a 6400 review you know that I complain about that design and I’m happy to see that Sony decided to stick with the design of the mark 6 this is obviously a great feature for vlogging and I was really happy with this setup when I used it on a gimbal or with my Joby now let’s get to the touch screen and I said touch screen ish because it is technically a touch screen you can use it to set focus point or to select a subject for auto focus tracking but that’s it you can’t control the menu and you can change settings none of that works as far as the touch screen is concerned again as usual I’m not sure why Sony continues to do this the screen is clearly capable of detecting touch and it seems like menu navigation and feature selection is just the natural progression as far as the quality of the image on the

LCD it’s pretty good and it worked well for me in anything but the absolute brightest conditions at which point I could use the built-in viewfinder moving on I also wanted to talk about a few other features that this camera has that may help you make a buying decision first I want to talk about image stabilization so the rx100 mark 7 does not have ibis or in body image stabilization but it does offer lens based OSS and digital image stabilization called active steady shot the camera uses a 1.

9 X crop to help reduce the effect of unintended camera movement and stabilize the footage it doesn’t mean that you can go out on a full sprint with this camera and you’ll get super smooth footage but when you’re walking around and you’re paying attention to how you handle the camera you’ll get very usable results and you’ll definitely notice the difference next I want to talk about time lapse or interval shooting the rx100 mark 7 does not have embody time-lapse but it does have a built-in intervalometer this means that you can have full control over your time lapse in terms of exposure interval and the number of photos and you

simply need to process those images in post-production to get a time-lapse video the next thing I want to talk about is the Imaging edge app at the time I’m shooting this video I’m using an iPhone 10s with iOS 13 point 1.3 and I’m unable to connect to the camera using the app I spent almost an hour on the phone with sony support and finally had them tell me that it works with thirteen point one point two but not thirteen point one point three I need to call Apple support this means that I couldn’t transfer images video or control the camera remotely I expect that when this is fixed the app will work just like with other models and that it still lacks the ability to select a focus point or mode or even see which mode is selected or where the focus point is and if this is not accurate let me know in the comments section next I want to talk about another feature that people who shoot video are going to like and that is the mic input this is a big upgrade from the mark 6 and it lets you use an external microphone to get much better audio than you’re going to get from the on-camera microphone so this is going to give you an idea of what recording directly into the rx100 mark 7 sounds like I’m probably sitting about 3 feet away in a fairly well treated room again recording directly

into the built-in microphone and now I’m recording using the rode videomic pro plus it’s right here right out of the frame and I’m using the plus 20 DB setting on the microphone so that I’m letting the microphone amplify my voice and rather than trying to use the camera’s preamps and increasing the gain so what I’m doing is I’m letting the microphone do all the work for the audio and letting the camera take care of the video so hopefully you can hear the difference I’ll put some links in the description to a few options that I think would pair up well with the rx100 Mark 7 as well as a microphone comparison video I did to help you choose I’m also going to link to the live show I did about the rx100 mark 7 so you can see how I set everything up without a hot shoe mount I also like that the audio levels are always displayed on the screen and can even be changed during recording which is not a feature that’s always available ok so I would love to know what you think about the rx100 mark 7 let me know in the comments section if this is a camera that you would consider getting and then why or why not I think that the rx100 mark 7 is the most powerful compact camera that I’ve used to date and it’s an excellent option if I’m looking for a very small and portable camera that

can do a great job for both photography and video for photography the 20 megapixel one inch sensor gave me very good image quality the autofocus was incredibly fast and accurate and the tracking features for Phase I and subject performed at a very high level for video autofocus worked very well and I was super impressed with what I was getting in such a small camera ergonomics were a little challenging due to the small form-factor and I really think Sony needs to rethink adding some sort of coating to the front of the camera to add some grip I got sharp and detailed 4k at up to 30 frames per second and full HD or 1080p at up to 120 frames per second which let me do slow-motion at 4x if I’m editing at 30 frames per second or 5x if I’m editing at 24 frames per second I like the compact flip screen design and having the option to use an external microphone for better audio the electronic viewfinder worked really well and I love the clever design allowing it to easily pop up and retract without the need for extra movements the build quality seems pretty solid so far I use it while traveling and ran into no issues with the construction I couldn’t test remote functionality using the app or file transfer but I expect it to perform like other recent Sony cameras I tested once the incompatibility is corrected the body alone sells for right under $1,200 which is high but we’re getting a lot of powerful features in a very small and powerful compact camera I’ll put links in the description to this camera as well as some accessories that I liked because they’re always specials and discounts and the links will be automatically updated with the lowest pricing I really hope I was able to give you a good overview of the Sony rx100 Mark 7 if I did please let me know by giving this video a

thumbs up tweet it share it and if you haven’t yet join the community by hitting the subscribe and notification buttons for more opportunities for live interaction make sure that you find me on Instagram Twitter and Facebook at Tech your talk you know what I always say buy it nice or buy twice good luck and see you soon you want to be in the video Jack say hi what’s up guys so key here and welcome to another desert it’s what its really impressive yeah I mean it is really impressive but that’s not everything I wanted to say about it so I’m going to try to say that again I love the range that I get to be able to essentially not do anything I don’t know I don’t even know oh yeah you don’t seem to like it he doesn’t seem to like it and we also have animal out and I’m gonna wanna make you I never not once have I ever said this sentence right it’s on it Sam wha what just yeah here maybe I’m gonna shoot a sample you don’t know you don’t know what I’m gonna do you you think you know yeah you know

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