Sony RX100 III Announced and Available for Pre-Order

Discussion in 'Open Gear Talk' started by napilopez, May 16, 2014.

  1. napilopez

    napilopez Contributing Editor

    Dec 14, 2013
    Napier Lopez

    Today Sony announced the third iteration of its RX100 series, and it seems like they have a winner on hand. While the older RX100 II was a just minor upgrade to the already excellent original model, the new RX100 III brings a host of new features that are sure to make fixed-lens compact camera shooters excited. Heck, interchangeable lens users too. All this, without significantly increasing the camera's volume.

    First and most obvious: that's not a second flash you see up there, that's a pop-up viewfinder. At an 800x600 resolution (1.44 million dots, but that's an unhelpful unit) and a magnification of 0.59x, the EVF is nearly identical in size and resolution to those on the Olympus E-M5 and E-M10. Once again, you have to commend Sony's engineers for being able to pack a ton of features into tiny bodies.

    Furthermore, and arguably more importantly, Sony has also changed the Zeiss lens from a 28-100mm F1.8-F4.9 to an impressive 24-70mm F1.8-F2.8. While some users will lament the lack of reach on the new glass, I think most will appreciate the added brightness and wider minimum focal length. After all, you can always crop, and the faster tele end of the new lens should compensate for DoF differences in portraiture.

    Other notable new features include the ability for the LCD to flip 180 degrees to photograph or film yourself, a 3 stop ND filter for lowering shutter speed in bright daylight or video, 50Mbps XAVCD recording, clean HDMI output, and more.

    The RX100 III is available for pre-order now for $800, and should begin shipping by the end of June.
    • Like Like x 5
  2. Biro

    Biro Super Moderator

    Aug 7, 2011
    Jersey Shore
    We've been discussing this camera for a few days. Now that it's officially launched, does anyone have any plans to actually buy one? Knowing Sony's pricing policies, the MSRP isn't likely to budge for a while. Or will you be on the hunt for an original RX100 Mark I?
  3. drd1135

    drd1135 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Jul 13, 2011
    Lexington, Virginia
    Tough call. Cheap is always good, but I would really like at least a tilting screen.
  4. rybolt

    rybolt Itinerant picture taker

    Mar 24, 2014
    Yellow Springs, Ohio USA
    Paul Rybolt
    I just ordered one. It won't replace either the Fuji or Sigma cameras but the 24mm wide and the video capability were the features that made me hit Buy.
  5. demiro

    demiro Serious Compacts For Life

    Dec 15, 2011
    I'd like to buy one, but when I analyze why it's mostly because I'm intrigued by the pop-up evf. My reality is that this would be my third camera, in terms of how I'd use it, and that the EVF isn't really critical for me. I currently have an RX100 and I'm just fine with the LCD. I'm just attracted to shiny new things. Sad but true.

    Now if the III somehow proves itself to be a capable replacement for my X100 at 35mm things would change quickly and I'd be happy to spend the $800.
  6. Armanius

    Armanius Bring Jack back!

    Jan 11, 2011
    Houston, Texas
    Must ... resist ...
  7. Biro

    Biro Super Moderator

    Aug 7, 2011
    Jersey Shore
    C'mon... you know you want it... :daz:
  8. Lightmancer

    Lightmancer Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Aug 13, 2011
    Sunny Frimley
    Bill Palmer
    Hmm... There are more reasons not to buy than to partake, from where I sit...
  9. dhazeghi

    dhazeghi Regular

    Jun 4, 2012
    Davis, CA
    I wonder how well the EVF, given that it has no eyecup, will work if you wear glasses? Especially in bright light (which is usually when the EVF is most indispensable).
    • Like Like x 1
  10. MoonMind

    MoonMind All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Dec 29, 2013
    While I won't buy one right away (it's not as if I needed another camera), I'm pretty sure that this'll finally replace my S95 (and maybe take the V1 with it, too - even though it has grown on me quite a bit in the short time I have it). What a great concept - together with what Sony got right before, this is really an extremely attractive package ... btw. The EVF looks quite similar to the one on the V1 (but it uses a better panel!) - and that one works fine with my admittedly small glasses (which means that they're pretty close to my eyes ... I hope you get the picture).

  11. Gubrz

    Gubrz O.* Gonzo's & Bentley's Dad

    Jun 5, 2012
    Austin, TX
  12. wt21

    wt21 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Aug 15, 2010
    Not me. I don't really care about 24mm, and I don't want to lose the reach. The lens is certainly brighter at 70mm, but according to DPR, it jumps to 2.8 very quickly, so except between 24 and 28, it's really a 2.8 camera. f/2.8, 24 and losing reach. Plus it's thicker (so I'd have to source a new belt pouch :)

    I'll just stick with the mki until it dies.

    Oops -- I just watched the TCSV video on this That EVF is SWEEET!

    I might also have to edit my post in this thread, too
    • Like Like x 1
  13. RT Panther

    RT Panther All-Pro

    Dec 25, 2012
    Today, at my local brick n' mortar store, the Sony rep was there & I gave him a hard time about not having one on display....:biggrin:

    He said to paraphrase: 'Hey, I just found out about it last week"...
    • Like Like x 3
  14. Biro

    Biro Super Moderator

    Aug 7, 2011
    Jersey Shore
    If anyone is concerned about the relative thickness of the Sony RX100 Mark III compared with the original Mark 1 - it's all of two-tenths of an inch thicker. All other dimensions are identical.,332
    • Like Like x 2
  15. dhazeghi

    dhazeghi Regular

    Jun 4, 2012
    Davis, CA
    That's good to hear. With the E-M5's EVF, sometimes even the standard eyecup isn't sufficient to shade out the sun when I'm wearing glasses.

    Another thing I'd be curious to know is the max magnification the lens is capable of (for close-focusing). Can you fill the frame with a quarter? A dime? Etc.
  16. RidgeRunner22

    RidgeRunner22 Regular

    May 31, 2013
    Jackson, WY
    24mm sounds great to me. My dream compact would have a 21-50lens so this is close! I like my rx100 EXCEPT for the 1/30 minimum shutter speed in auto ISO sounds as though there is no change there
  17. Biro

    Biro Super Moderator

    Aug 7, 2011
    Jersey Shore
    Well, I have the Fuji X10 and XF1, both of which continue to do a solid job for me. The Fuji X30 reportedly will be introduced this summer (in the northern hemisphere) and will reportedly have a sensor larger than the RX100's one-inch chip. Since it look less than a year for both the RX100 and RX100 Mark II to be discounted $100, I can wait to see how the X30 turns out. I also have the Ricoh GR but, as great as it is, it's a bit more of a niche camera. The GR paired with the RX100 Mark III or X30 might cover all of my compact camera needs.
    • Like Like x 1
  18. MoonMind

    MoonMind All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Dec 29, 2013
    Biro: You're right there - it'll be very interesting to see how those two compare. But the thing is, between my GR and my M10, I simply see no need for a *bigger* compact - those two cameras have both amazing IQ and handling for their size and prize point. What *I* want is something smaller with very good IQ. While the S95 isn't a bad camera, it just can't keep up with the new breed. Still, even though the RX100 was a game changer, it wasn't the camera to replace it, in spite of its far superiour IQ - because it was too similar, the specs were, well - just "compact". However, fact is, the RX100 III has what was missing from both the S95 *and* the GR - a bright *zoom* and a viewfinder. Together with the lens ring, you should be able to handle the III just like a classic rangefinder. That's why I'd say that the RX100 III is the serious shooter's version of what has been an impressive package to begin with! Even though I'm far from being a Sony fan, I simply love what Sony has done this time. Thankfully, I don't really *need* a new camera, so I can wait and see what comes next - but I'm already pretty sure that the Sony has what it takes to win me over this time.

    That said, the GR is a joy to shoot with, niche or not, and I doubt that any camera of approximately the same size (safe of course the A) will beat it at what it's best at any time soon. Thus, I don't want to replace the GR. However, if Ricoh ever did a GR with a viewfinder similar to the Sony's, I'd go after it like greased lightning ...

  19. blue_quartz

    blue_quartz Rookie

    May 29, 2013
    Practically speaking, the Mark III finally answers the ideal camera I am looking for since 2012 *on paper* - a proven image sensor coupled with fast apertures over a zoom range I can see myself using, built-in ND filter and even an EVF to boot! However, since I started praying at the Altar of GR almost a year ago (and bearing in mind I switched from the original RX100), I am more convinced that an enjoyable camera is not necessarily the smallest one crammed full of features I liked, but one that has the right feel to it with the features I need. No surprises that the GR fits the latter - it is the camera I never knew I needed.

    It seems to me that Sony has designed the Mark III based on wishlists of photographers - and they have delivered it quite brilliantly, whereas Ricoh has designed the GR based on a manifesto, an ideology of what photography should feel more like...

    So yes, I agree, the Mark III is definitely not a replacement for the GR, it can become a formidable sidekick certainly. I will be paying close attention to the usability of the EVF... I secretly wish it'll be sub-par so that I'll feel less impulsive about the Mark III. I only have the budget for one good camera in my life and I don't intend the potential sidekick to replace the master with that constraint in mind...

    edit: on the nitpicking list for Sony RX100 series, here's an existing one: what's with their obsession over the 102x58mm measurements? When the first model came out, it was arguably to show how much better a performer it is compared to Canon PowerShot S-series, and the point was made. Would it kill them to lengthen the camera just a little more and sculpt a better grip to vastly improve the handling? The Mark III is also getting too chunky at 41 mm... On the upside, maybe the little extra thickness will help improve the handling, somewhat.