Here comes something new from Sony: the RX0 which they tag as a multimedia camera. Looking somewhat like GoPro, it sports a 1-inch sensor which, in itself, is quite revolutionary for an action type camera. It will be welcome to multimedia creators as it offers advanced features and image quality.
The RX0 weighs just 96.1g / 3.9oz and measures (WxDxH) about 60.5mm / 2.38″ X 41.402mm / 1.63″ X 30.2mm / 1.19 but it can do 4K video with HDMI output , and also beautiful things like 960fps (!) slow motion, as well as burst shots up to 16fps.
“Up to 960fps super slow motion can be recorded. Image quality approaches Full HD quality at 240fps in Quality Priority mode. Sound cannot be recorded when shooting slow motion and setting conditions of focus, exposure, focus area, frame rate and other settings are fixed when start shooting. Micro SDHC/ Micro SDXC memory card of Class 10 or higher is required.”
All these candies packed in tiny waterproof box means something salivatingly good and expensive in the same go.
Judging by the initial press release, the 15.3 MPx 1-inch sensor looks through a 24mm equivalent f/4 Zeiss lens and the BIONZ X processor takes care of the processing.
“The new RX0 camera features a 1.0-type stacked 15.3 MP6 Exmor RS CMOS image sensor, BIONZ X™ processor and a wide-angle ZEISS® Tessar T* 24mm F4 fixed lens to deliver high resolution and less distortion results for both RAW and JPEG stills and across all supported video formats. It is equipped with an Anti-Distortion Shutter that can shoot as fast as 1/32000 second, as well maximum burst shooting capability at up to 16 fps, ensuring that even fast moving objects are beautifully and accurately rendered. Its small size also makes it an ideal choice for casual shooting, street and travel photography and more.” (Markets Insider)
This is what SONY highlights in describing their new camera:
“The image sensor’s innovations enable various kinds of expression that used to be supported only by pro-use gear.”
“Stacked DRAM memory chip structure allows for unconventionally fast readout that enables superb performance in many respects including super slow motion.”
“Packing professional-class functions to capture captivating images, the strong, compact RX0 gives you the range and freedom to shoot for more inspiration.”
RX0 is rated waterproof to depths down to 33 feet / 10 meters as is, but can reach 100 meters (11Bar) depth with the optional HSR1 casing. The camera should be safe dropped from 6.5 feet / 2 meters, and crush-proof to 440 lbs / 200kg, but you shouldn’t try none of it anyway.
That’s because (based on Sony tests) “Depending on usage conditions and circumstances, no guarantee is made regarding damage to, malfunction of, or waterproof performance of this camera”. In other words, user is likely to be guilty, whatever the conditions. So beware!
Keep it from temperatures lower than 0 degrees C, though – it hates to be in the cold.
You can link up to 15 RX0’s together and operate them via the optional WRC1M wireless transmitter, or via the PlayMemories app. They say one can synchronize and control five units at once, which is great for effects and advanced video scenes.
Since SONY in many ways has a leading role in photo industry, it is easy to expect many others to follow suit, so it’ll be interesting to see which manufacturer will incorporate an 1″ sensor into their products next… Also, will it be accompanied by similar firmware muscle, even if the final product might cost a lot less than the RX0? For, it has already happened in the industry, where the cameras appeared priced ¼th or less than quote original unquote. Leaders are thus always hard-pressed to invent something “new” just to remain on, or at least near, the top.
And while it might be extremely hard to predict anything in the imaging industry nowadays, let me predict that, because of the above, users of action and/or multimedia gear may find themselves living in interesting times, provoked by the very appearance of RX0.
The Sony RX0 should begin shipping in October 2017 for an estimated US$700/CA$900/€800.
Check out these brilliant specifications:
- 1″ stacked type 15.3MPvi Exmor RSCMOS image sensor
- BIONZ X processor
- Wide-angle ZEISS Tessar T 24mm / F4 fixed lens
- Anti-Distortion Shutter (up to 1/32000 sec)
- Can shoot up to 16 fps
- Waterproof as is to depths down to 10m
- Extra MPK-HSR1 housing enables depth down to 100m
- Shockproof when dropped from up to 2m
- Crushproof to 200kgf / 2000N
- Super slow motion footage – up to 1000fps
- 4K clean HDMI output
- MF Assist and Peaking Functions
- Picture Profile options and S-Log2
- Time Code / User Bit features
- Preset Focus options
- Works with a full range of accessories
Wouldn’t you just want one?