At first glance, it's obvious, the RX0 is an action-cam. Rectangular, minimalist and robust, we expect a new and umpteenth competitor seeking to thrill GoPro. Yet as soon as we venture into the menus, the deal changes. Here we find classic menus Sony, perfectly similar to those of the compact series RX100. Shooting menu, video menu, settings menu, etc.: everything is there, condensed in this tiny device of almost 6 cm by 4 (59 mm long x 40.5 high x 29.8 deep). The angle of attack is no longer the same.
No, the RX0 is not an action-cam, but indeed an ultra compact digital camera!
Like an action-cam, you have to settle for the bare minimum physical interface and in this case, an ignition button and the trigger on top, and six keys on the back to access the menus, navigate, validate its settings and read its files. On the one hand, Sony makes the decision to simplify as much as possible the physical handling of the device; on the other hand, the software interface is extremely dense, probably too much compared to the idea we have of this product. This strong duality probably responds to Sony's desire to produce a very compact camera, but still offers extensive tuning possibilities. A simplification of the menus would still have been welcome.
The design of the RX0 is as minimalist as that of an action-cam.
It is at the back of the device that the essential is happening. To visualize its framing, it is necessary to be satisfied with the small LCD screen TFT of 3.8 cm of diagonal and 230 000 points only. A tiny preview to make his compositions, but at least, it is not necessary to go through an external application to see what we photograph. At the grip, we have also found the trigger too sensitive. It must be very soft to see the collimator lit in green before ending the race on the shutter release to take the picture, otherwise the trigger too fast prevents the focus is properly performed.
The RX0 is missing a key to direct access to the available modes (Program, Automatic, Manual and Customizable in photo). To do this, go to menu no. 1, page 2 and it would have been more judicious to integrate it with the settings accessible quickly via the Fn key. These small repetitive losses of time make the use of the device annoying. It is necessary at the same time to detach from the habitual grip of the cameras while being found in these dense menus, which require a certain time of adaptation.
We find the menus offered on compact cameras RX100.
Like an action-cam, the RX0 is compatible with a micro-SDXC memory card whose location is on the left of the screen. In the same place is a standard USB jack, a micro-HDMI jack and a jack for an external microphone. Wi-Fi and Bluetooth are integrated in the box, but given the low battery life (about 60 minutes in continuous video shooting and up to 240 photos), we strongly advise against their use if you want to save some pictures.
Note that the RX0 is resistant to crushing, shocks and falls from a maximum height of 2 m, and is waterproof without a box up to 10 m deep. Diving is not as impressive as the compact Olympus Tough TG-5 and Nikon Coolpix W300 compacts which respectively go down to 15 and 30 m, for example, but that's as much as the GoPro Hero 6 Black. No accessories are included with this compact camera, which however includes a standard screw thread.
At first glance, the RX0 is a tiny hybrid device with the strength characteristics and design of an action-cam, and the technical features and interface of a digital camera. Its small size allows to associate it with various optional accessories while enjoying more advanced settings than those offered by an action-cam. However, given its relatively high introductory price and its particularity, this device, although very compact but not easy to handle, is not really aimed at a wide audience. It is rather a niche product, thought for who would eventually want to equip a small camera resistant, easily slide into a bag or pocket in addition to his main camera, be very discreet, or do not have to take out your smartphone in difficult conditions (water, bad weather, etc.). Nevertheless, by its biases and its curious positioning, the RX0 leaves us a bit perplexed.
The RX0 embeds the Bionz X processor and has a medium responsiveness. The ignition is long: it is necessary to wait more than two and a half seconds before starting to photograph. In good light conditions, the focus is in half a second. It's a lot in front of compacts whose development requires 0.10 to 0.25 s on average. In low light, it is necessary to wait until 0.70s: there either, the performance is not exceptional, but remains honorable. The latency between each view also climbs to 0.70s and we are disappointed. Finally, the promised burst at 5.5 frames per second (I / s) is not required. We noted a sequence of 3.5 fps, either in RAW + JPG or JPG. A second burst mode allows you to record a larger burst of images (up to at 16 fps). In response, the performance of the RX0 are below the performance offered by most conventional cameras, which include a zoom.
If Sony had positioned the RX0 in action-cam, he would have been the first in this category to integrate a sensor as large: a CMOS Exmor RS type 1 "15.3 Mpx But Sony wanted to make its RX0 a camera Ultra-compact, we have tested it as such.The Type 1 "sensor is coupled to a fixed focal length and aperture lens, equivalent to a 24mm f / 4 and having the advantage of not deforming as much as the very wide angles imposed on the cameras. However, the RX0 does not have a built-in zoom. We must therefore be content with this unique point of view to photograph or film. The camera is recording in RAW + JPG format.
Two main modes are available to vary the exposure: Program mode and Manual mode. It is possible to change the ISO sensitivity from 80 to 12,800 ISO and the shutter speed which climbs to 1/32 000s in electronic shutter mode for manual mode, since the focal length is fixed at f/4.
The ISO RX0 rise is from 80 to 12,800 ISO.
At 100 ISO, the images generated by the RX0 are accurate and detailed. We also welcome the very good return of colors. From 200 ISO, the sharpening of the contrasts is less strong and the appearance of the smoothing at ISO 800 substantially degrades the image, which makes the details disappear completely at 3200 ISO. The arrival of noise at 6,400 ISO gives the impression of regaining slightly in detail, but does not really improve the whole.
ISO 6,400, a step from which the shutter speed starts to be faster.
In low light, the use of RX0 is particularly limited, especially on moving subjects. For a correct exposure, you have to climb up to ISO 6,400 so that the shutter speed finally changes from 1/4 s (minimum speed of the camera) to 1/8s, and to 12 800 ISO so that it reaches 1/15s, which is still not enough to freeze the movement (the recommended average speed being 1/60s). You have little chance to cumulate correct exposure and motion frozen without climbing in high sensitivities, so without having electronic noise on your images. The lack of electronic stabilization is really noticeable here. On a fixed subject however, when the light is sufficient, the image quality is good.
By default, the video mode of the RX0 is in Full HD definition. To access the 4K / UHD definition, use the HDMI output and record uncompressed video files to an external recorder. Again, it's a little disappointing. Although it is possible to apply different image profiles, there is no continuous focus, no stabilization, and no possibility of stabilizing the camera in post-production via higher definition video recording. However, you can change the ISO speed and shutter speed while recording in manual mode, so that's it.
But in video as in photo, we do not manage to understand what is the added value of this product, which has yet the appearance of an action-cam and suggests that more settings are possible. The Sony RX0 takes up the architecture and minimalist design of an action-cam designed to withstand harsh conditions and incorporates most of the technical features of a camera, including a Type 1 "sensor and a Focal lens and fixed aperture Better than the majority of standard action-cams, the RX0 is less versatile than a conventional camera, however, given its high price, this strange positioning leaves us skeptical. therefore to an extremely limited target whose use will also be very specific. Now you can get another camera software and firmware at https://www.cameradrivers.xyz
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