New Sony Stuff – NEX

Yesterday, Sony released many new photographic products: a full-frame SLT camera, a full-frame compact camera, new lenses and flashguns and also some new NEX stuff which is what I am most interested in. I will post my thoughts on some of the other Sony stuff in another post; this post is about my thoughts on the Sony NEX announcements.

Sony now have 4 NEX cameras in their line up: NEX-F3; NEX-5R, NEX-6 and NEX-7; the newest of these is of course the NEX-6 which seems to be a half-way house between the 5R and the 7.

The NEX6 has the 16.1MP CMOS sensor of the 5R and the excellent 2.3 million dot resolution OLED EVF of the 7 too, some of the other highlights are as follows:

  • ISO 100-25600
  • Control dial
  • Dedicated Fn button
  • ‘Quick Navi’ display
  • Multi interface hot-shoe
  • Wi-Fi for connection via Wi-Fi networks or to smartphones
  • Proprietary in-camera apps
  • Built-in flash
  • Electronic First Curtain shutter
  • 1080p 60p HD movies in AVCHD (50p on PAL region models)

The surprising thing here is that Sony seem to have abandoned the propriety hot shoe that was introduced by Minolta many years ago. The A99 and RX-1 (also announced) also have a standard(?) hot-shoes. Their new design will take any “cold-shoe” devices that fit here such as bubble-level; there is a standard sync-pin for flash triggers too. However, unlike everyone else there are no extra pins in the socket area but there are contacts at the back of the shoe that you cannot see unless you look from the back of the camera.

The other nice addition is a mode dial for the exposure mode selection, the video button has been moved to a place where accidental activation should be a thing of the past – I’ll reserve judgement on this until I have had a chance to play with one.

The downside (i.e. different to the 5R) is that the NEX-6 has no touch-screen; Sony seem to think that the target market for the 6 (and 7) do not want touch screens. I personally would rather have the option to have it on or off (like it used to be in the NEX-5N that I used to own); the touch-screen on the Panasonic GX-1 was excellent and very useful so I’m not sure why Sony think that photographers do not want or need this.

Will I be getting one of these? I’m not sure, I need to actually use one and see if it is a viable 2nd body to the NEX-7 that I use. What I am looking forward to is that when it is time for a replacement for the NEX-7 (NEX-7R?), the replacement is going to use some of this good stuff.

Sony also announced 3 NEX lenses too: the SEL-P1650, SEL-1018 and the SEL-35F18.

The SEL-P1650 is a 16-50mm (f3.5-f5.6) Power zoom compact lens offers a 35mm field-of-view (FOV) equivalent of a 24mm to 75mm:

This lens (in black) can be bought on its own or as part of a kit with the NEX-6; there is a substantial saving (£189) by buying the lens with the NEX-6. Although this offers 2mm extra reach at the wide-end over my 18-55 and 18-200 lenses I am unlikely to buy this. However, I need to see what the lens is like in the real world, using the power lenses on the GX-1 wasn’t a great experience. However, if I purchase the NEX-6 I might as well get this lens too (it’s only another £120).

For more details on the NEX-6 and the 16-50mm power-zoom, I recommend heading over to the DP Review website here.

The 10 to 18mm f/4 zoom Lens (in black) offers a 35mm FOV of 15mm to 27mm and is a lens I will be purchasing, there is a definite lack of ultra-wide lenses for the NEX line up and this is also offers a constant f/4 aperture too.

Finally, the 35mm f/1.8 lens (again in black) is another lens that I will be getting, this one is not too expensive either. This will give a 35mm FOV of 52.5mm and will be a nice walk-around lens when the 24mm is too wide and the 50mm too long. It’s nice to see that Sony understand the need for some good and fast prime lenses.

Pricing information (from WEX) and availability:

The NEX-6 is £709: pre-order here
The NEX-6 and SEL-P1650 kit is £829: pre-order here
The SEL-P1650 on its own costs £309: pre-order here
The affordable SEL-35F18 is £399: pre-order here
The excellent and pricey SEL-1018 is £749: pre-order here

My Local London Camera Exchange is hosting a SONY demo day on Saturday 29th September; I have been informed that the Sony rep will be bringing some of the new stuff with him to try out. I will report my findings on anything that I can try out on the day. It might be very expensive if there are some pre-order deals on 🙂


One thought on “New Sony Stuff – NEX

  1. Pingback: New Sony Stuff – A99 and RX-1 | Chris Bennett's Photo Blog

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