Jump to content

Close
Photo

Sony RX1 Review

- - - - -

  • Please log in to reply

#1
Andrew Reid

Posted 30 April 2013 - 11:20 PM

Andrew Reid

    Andrew Reid - British Filmmaker - Editor EOSHD

  • Administrators
  • 4,260 posts
sony-rx1

The Sony RX1 is a compact camera that beats Leica and Hasselblad for image quality.

Read the full article here

#2
Andrew Reid

Posted 01 May 2013 - 12:23 AM

Andrew Reid

    Andrew Reid - British Filmmaker - Editor EOSHD

  • Administrators
  • 4,260 posts

Added full resolution 24MP 6400x4000 JPEGs (from raw) http://we.tl/VuaRBuQBo9



#3
matt2491

Posted 01 May 2013 - 12:24 AM

matt2491

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 86 posts

Fantastic stills image quality!



#4
zephyrnoid

Posted 01 May 2013 - 02:22 AM

zephyrnoid

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 162 posts

I'll be brief. Fabulous review and samples!
The camera seems miraculous indeed. Unfortunately, the age of glossy print mags is wanning, so the over-sampling ( for screen) while nice to have, is too late to matter much from the distribution point of view unless you're crazy, like me, and shoot ads with a point and shoot .
As Video continues to overtake print as the medium of choice for imersive visual narrative, THAT will mater most moving forward.
Obviously, pixel peepers will delight in the mural size gallery possibilities.
I wish them luck in producing murals that sell if that matters.
I wouldn't mind spending a day shooting jewelry and watches with this. how close do the lenses focus and do they offer an apo/macro?



#5
zephyrnoid

Posted 01 May 2013 - 02:35 AM

zephyrnoid

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 162 posts

"I’ve been looking for a stealthy street camera with that Henri Cartier Bresson magic for a long time and now I finally have it, without resorting to the expense of a Leica system."
He would have found that funny. Yes. He shot with a Leica M3 Single stroke, but his magic was never so much camera related. :D



#6
Sean Cunningham

Posted 01 May 2013 - 02:36 AM

Sean Cunningham

    Pixel Cowboy

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 979 posts
  • LocationAustin, Texas

The age of glossy print mags died in the USA a long time ago.  They're all shit now with horrible, horrible printing to match their poor, overly digital, obviously 'shopped photo quality.  Still plenty of great work being done in Asia and Europe, as far as I see from international newsstands.  The Japanese are fetishistic when it comes to the quality of paper stock, plate photography, typography and layout.  The last time I picked up a UK auto magazine I could see, if not the Japanese touch at least care given to photography and the printing of said photography.



#7
Andrew Benton

Posted 01 May 2013 - 05:42 AM

Andrew Benton

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 33 posts

The age of glossy print mags died in the USA a long time ago.  They're all shit now with horrible, horrible printing to match their poor, overly digital, obviously 'shopped photo quality.  Still plenty of great work being done in Asia and Europe, as far as I see from international newsstands.  The Japanese are fetishistic when it comes to the quality of paper stock, plate photography, typography and layout.  The last time I picked up a UK auto magazine I could see, if not the Japanese touch at least care given to photography and the printing of said photography.

Most definitely, here in Japan prints are everywhere like any other day, trains are chock full of advertising and it's rather interesting to take a look at a lot of them for being fine detailed quality prints with often great color tone.

Now for the RX1, great review! I'm still not tempted to get one with the price + fixed lens nature, as often as I shoot with a 35mm anyways, but goodness that DR is marvelous, it gets difficult to appreciate such latitude with a final photo, where actually taking the shot and then post editing to see what can be done is where the magic is at, but saturated blue skies and the dark areas under tents exposed equally really is insane to think of, and a white tiger on a sunny day with again, saturated blue sky. Now look at what you've done, today's a super clear day and now I don't feel like taking my 5DII out for a stroll :(
Although I'm confident my Sigma 35 is a better lens, not just a stop faster, but sharper and never had any problem with purple fringing :)
I wonder though if/when this camera will be used for an event by the likes of Ryan Brenizer or someone, he used an X100 and the results were fantastic, so a small camera with a big punch like the RX1 in a wedding would be great for the candids, stealthy and unobtrusive for the intimate moments (though, once people are used to big glass they do tend to not care anyways).



#8
hexx

Posted 01 May 2013 - 09:39 AM

hexx

    Newbie

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 2 posts

Hi Andrew,

 

I've been reading your articles for a long time but never really felt I've got something to say or disagree.

 

But now I simply disagree with your statements abut RX1 being medium format quality pocketable camera.

 

Also comments regarding AF - I did not find it any faster than on fully updated X-Pro1. I know you didn't like X-Pro1 but X-Pro1 has far better controls than RX1 - far better.

 

As a street shooter it fails at few things:

- orange ring

- no VF

 

It is a CyberShot and that's what it is. It's good travel camera but not a good street shooter, X-Pro1/X100(s)/Leica and others do this better.

 

If you want pocketable street shooter I don't think there's any point to go for anything else than X100S or if you have money go for Leica (I have old film M6 which again is completely different beast).

 

Regarding your remarks about IQ and references to DXOMark - do people still use DXOMark as reference to work out IQ??? Those are off-sensor measurements and they don't tell you how camera really performs in terms of IQ.

 

Output from PhaseOne IQ180 will blow output from RX1 any time - you simply cannot compare these two, not for IQ, nor for intended use.

 

There's only one small sensor camera which gives you 'look' of medium format and that's Sigma's DPxM range of cameras.

 

I couldn't believe it so I bought DP2M and it's far far far away from anything I've seen coming from APS-C or FF cameras. And it also behaves like a medium format camera :) ISO max 800, best results on tripod and it behaves a little bit like a film camera too, battery lasts for 60 shots :)

 

RX1 is a great camera but when you add price of EVF to it, especially here in the UK, it's way too expensive and I cannot find one single reason why I would get it over X100S (which I'm not buying as I have X100 and X-Trans based X-Pro1).

 

As a first iteration of the concept it's great success but calling it a contender for medium format or a street shooter is rather wrong as it's none of them, it's a rich man's point and shoot.



#9
jgharding

Posted 01 May 2013 - 09:42 AM

jgharding

    Director, Harding & Brookes - Creative Digital Agency

  • Moderators
  • 1,304 posts
  • LocationLondon & Cambridge

Those stills are insane, It's pretty clinically sharp! Quite absurd resolving power, almost intimidating. I'd love to use this for portraiture with some improvised filtering and whatnot

 

Such a shame about video though, a real waste.


HampB-LOGO-and-SIGNATURE-WEBGIF--SMALLER


#10
Andrew Reid

Posted 01 May 2013 - 01:09 PM

Andrew Reid

    Andrew Reid - British Filmmaker - Editor EOSHD

  • Administrators
  • 4,260 posts

"I’ve been looking for a stealthy street camera with that Henri Cartier Bresson magic for a long time and now I finally have it, without resorting to the expense of a Leica system."
He would have found that funny. Yes. He shot with a Leica M3 Single stroke, but his magic was never so much camera related. :D

 

You'd be surprised how hard it is to do with digital what he did with film.

 

First DSLRs are out. People react differently to a big lens and camera.

 

You could pick a small mirrorless camera, but none of them are full frame so the look isn't the same as a Leica M3.

 

Of course you could just get a Leica M 240 but if I were spending that much it'd go towards a film not stills!

 

Oddly enough the Nikon 1 V2 with 18.5mm F1.8 came pretty close for decisive moment street photos. Superbly fast AF, tiny, and very good built in EVF. It's just that the Sony RX1 has the quality and look of 35mm film, whilst the V2 has the quality of a good digital compact camera.

 

I didn't get on with the Fuji cameras. As a poster said above, he said he felt the Fujis are better street cameras. I just don't agree. The X100 had a miserable focussing system whether in manual or AF mode. Not responsive enough for a decisive moment and of course it isn't full frame. On the X Pro 1, I had several issues - again a terrible feel to manual focus, dreadful AF and some horrible electronic noise reduction going on in the raw file processing which I couldn't turn off. The hybrid viewfinder which worked well on the X100 didn't suit the nature of interchangeable lenses and the body was way bigger than my Olympus OM-D E-M5. It was the worst £1900 I'd ever spent.

 

I liked the X10 compact better, but it ain't no Leica!

 

I've tried the new X100S, love the split-image manual focus assist - just like with a Leica you immediately know which way to turn the focus barrel to lock focus and you're not tempted to hunt around slightly for a perfect lock on. The feel of the focus ring is much improved too but the AF is still well behind Micro Four Thirds and Nikon.

 

Canon EOS M AF takes 5 seconds to lock focus in good light and that has phase detect AF pixels on the sensor... But then that's Canon for you.

 

NEX 7 and OM-D E-M5 are fine efforts but they just don't have the full frame image quality going on that a Leica M or Sony RX1 gives you.

 

I hope that gives some perspective as to why I think the RX1 is the best tool yet for doing decisive moment street photography. I can't think of another one of my cameras I'd rather use for stills, unless it is a particular lens I'm looking to use on the GH3 / 5D3.

 

Video of course is another matter. I'm baffled by Sony's slapdash implementation of image quality on it. They think they can get away with it in video mode but they couldn't do that with stills! I can only assume the Japanese designers really don't care about video. Only stills.



#11
Andrew Reid

Posted 01 May 2013 - 03:12 PM

Andrew Reid

    Andrew Reid - British Filmmaker - Editor EOSHD

  • Administrators
  • 4,260 posts

Hi Andrew,

 

I've been reading your articles for a long time but never really felt I've got something to say or disagree.

 

But now I simply disagree with your statements abut RX1 being medium format quality pocketable camera.

 

As a street shooter it fails at few things:

- orange ring

- no VF

 

So tape the orange ring up with black tape then? I don't think it is an issue for stealth. Hand on the lens covers it anyway. I've never had a better non-reaction of people to this camera when pointing it in their general direction.

 

On the 1D C test shoot with Slashcam I was filming a blossom tree and a woman in Berlin who was standing on the pavement over the road actually stomped over to me and asked me if I was filming her. She harassed me down in a u-bahn station and went out of her way to do so. She even asked to see the shots. Some people have real hang ups about personal privacy and you need to be careful. Granted it happens VERY infrequently, but if Henri Cartier Bresson had to go round the street handing out release forms doubtless he'd have missed a few decisive moments :)

 

No VF? That's not correct. With the add-on it has one of the best EVFs around. I tried the Zeiss optical one too. Very nice for composition, very bright.


  • Sean Cunningham and Zach like this

#12
hexx

Posted 01 May 2013 - 07:40 PM

hexx

    Newbie

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 2 posts

No VF? That's not correct. With the add-on it has one of the best EVFs around. I tried the Zeiss optical one too. Very nice for composition, very bright.

 

:rolleyes:



#13
zephyrnoid

Posted 03 May 2013 - 01:21 AM

zephyrnoid

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 162 posts

You'd be surprised how hard it is to do with digital what he did with film.


Actually I would not be surprised but I've been doing it with film (1970-1990) and this stupid point and shoot of mine for as long as I can remember and certainly since I met HCB ;)
The video is given a bow because as you point out, it's very specifically intended as a Leica killer.And considering the enhanced ROI these days, the price-point is awesome. I'm guessing Sony is send us this message....
"Imagine if the video was where it needs to be"
One of these days ONE of the Big 4 is going to hit the jackpot. The big questions is WHEN ;)?
I'd certainly love to replace my P&S with this even if just for stills. Just need to know how much manual control I'd have.
- Does it use interchangeable lenses or is it fixed?
- PC/Sync or other sync for external flash?
- It would be a gas to shoot some ads with it.

 



#14
Bruno

Posted 03 May 2013 - 09:28 PM

Bruno

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 719 posts

On the 1D C test shoot with Slashcam I was filming a blossom tree and a woman in Berlin who was standing on the pavement over the road actually stomped over to me and asked me if I was filming her. She harassed me down in a u-bahn station and went out of her way to do so.

 

The basic law for taking pictures in public spaces is "if you can see it, you can shoot it", she was being silly.



#15
Liszon

Posted 04 May 2013 - 12:36 AM

Liszon

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 96 posts

This might be an alternative for those (like me..) who like to spend less for a quality compact:

 

The Nikon Coolpix A.

 

  • DX-format (same Sony sensor from the Nikon D7000/Pentax K5 etc.)
  • Great dynamic range (~13.8 Evs)
  • Decent built quality (aluminium + magnesium)
  • Fixed 28mm wide-angle lens

Well, it's not exactly the same "full-frame magic" as the Sony RX1, but it might worth a shot.


www.strikerartur.com

#16
Andrew Reid

Posted 04 May 2013 - 10:06 AM

Andrew Reid

    Andrew Reid - British Filmmaker - Editor EOSHD

  • Administrators
  • 4,260 posts

CoolPix is nice...

 

But I'd prefer the X100S to the Coolpix for similar price. Faster lens and 35mm equiv. not 28, nicer feel in my view.



#17
Liszon

Posted 04 May 2013 - 01:53 PM

Liszon

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 96 posts

True, the lens is faster, but actually I would crop the 28mm to get 35mm, just like you would do with the RX1 to achieve 50mm.

 

I prefer the Coolpix because I own a Pentax K5, and I know how capable is that Sony sensor inside.


www.strikerartur.com

#18
mjones41

Posted 05 May 2013 - 08:11 AM

mjones41

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 12 posts

Reminds me of the OMD with the Nokton 17.5mm f0.95, I use this lens a lot with a variable ND on it.  Yes it's big and heavy, but the you fall in love with the rendering, much like the RX1.  Since the Oly peaking hack came out, I haven't take the Nokton off ;)



#19
Andrew Reid

Posted 05 May 2013 - 09:44 AM

Andrew Reid

    Andrew Reid - British Filmmaker - Editor EOSHD

  • Administrators
  • 4,260 posts
Oly peaking hack?

#20
jgharding

Posted 07 May 2013 - 10:36 AM

jgharding

    Director, Harding & Brookes - Creative Digital Agency

  • Moderators
  • 1,304 posts
  • LocationLondon & Cambridge

According to this the OMD had clean HDMI 4:2:2, focus peaking and is capable of 1080p120, all locked by Olympus.

 

http://www.43rumors....aking-possible/

 

Since they have great sensor-shift stabilisation, unlocking these features would make it an amazing camera.

 

Of course there's no guarantee of the high frame rates, but this fellow reckons the HDMI out is simply intentionally locked.


HampB-LOGO-and-SIGNATURE-WEBGIF--SMALLER





0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users