DARK KNIGHT

Gadgets and Gizmos (India) - - TESTBENCH -

One look and it is hard for you to say if the new Sony Cy­bershot DSCRX100 is dif­fer­ent from reg­u­lar com­pact cam­eras. It ac­tu­ally looks like one of those new com­pact mir­ro­less cam­eras. Well, it is not. It is in fact the first com­pact cam­era from Sony that is able to cap­ture RAW im­ages. It also sports a con­trol ring around the lens. Those are what make this cam­era dif­fer­ent.

DE­SIGN

The con­trol ring can be de­cep­tive. But the RX 100 is a com­pact cam­era, though not just any com­pact cam­era. Its all-black body and build makes it look and feel very solid. There is a con­trol dial on the side of the LCD that lets you do the same even quicker, but the ring is def­i­nitely a wel­come ad­di­tion. It also sports an F1.8 Carl Zeiss Vario-Son­nar T 3.6x op­ti­cal zoom lens. The mode dial is on the top right while the Fn but­ton above the con­trol dial lets you se­lect and edit other pa­ram­e­ters in any of the modes.

EASE OF USE

The set­tings mode will take care of most auto func­tions, even though there are In­tel­li­gent Auto and Su­pe­rior Auto for the rest. In fact, the macro mode on the RX 100 is among the best we have used. In­tel­li­gent Auto can de­tect for it­self if you are click­ing a por­trait or a land­scape and ad­just the set­tings ac­cord­ingly. The video qual­ity is good in MPEG, though it gets slug­gish in AVCHD. But the zoom is smooth with the Full HD record­ing and you have the op­tion of shoot­ing in Pro­gram or Shut­ter/Aper­ture/ Man­ual modes and this is a great func­tion­al­ity. An­other good fea­ture is the fact that this cam­era can charge di­rectly through an USB, so no need to carry ex­tra adapters.

PER­FOR­MANCE

A 20.2 MP cam­era means your im­ages are go­ing to have qual­ity and the RX-100 does not dis­ap­point in any sense. The con­trol ring makes com­pos­ing shots much eas­ier. For in­stance, if you are in full-auto it be­comes the zoom con­trol, while in shut­ter pri­or­ity it con­trols shut­ter speed and so on. And as the LCD of­fers live view you get to know ex­actly how your shot will look. The auto-fo­cus is real fast, even in low light and for that the wide aper­ture of the lens could also be a fac­tor. The D-Range op­ti­miser brings the best out of the im­ages, es­pe­cially when you are tak­ing a night shot, by ad­just­ing the gamma curve to op­ti­mum lev­els. While the RAW and RAW+JPEG cap­ture modes are great op­tions to have, es­pe­cially for those who would like to get the best out of their im­ages, these can slow down the pro­cess­ing time. It takes a few sec­onds to save these files if you don’t have a Class 10 mem­ory card, which is be­com­ing a pre­req­ui­site for most mod­ern day cam­eras. We also felt that the auto-modes were much faster than the semi-auto modes. One ba­sic flaw we no­ticed was the lack of a bat­tery in­di­ca­tor. If it is there some­where, we couldn’t find it.

OVER­ALL

The RX 100 is a ver­sa­tile com­pact cam­era which can do most of the things you can with a DSLR, even RAW im­ages. How­ever, for the ad­di­tional fea­tures and func­tion­al­i­ties you have to pay a pre­mium. Still it is a su­perb op­tion for power users.

SONY CY­BERSHOT DSC-RX 100 Price:

` 34,990 Specs:

CMOS 20.2 MP; F1.8 - F4.9 28-100 mm lens; 1/2000 to 30 sec shut­ter speed; ISO 25600; Full HD 1080p (60fps); SD/SDHC/ SDXC, Mem­ory Stick Duo; RAW.

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