Tuesday, March 11, 2014

SONY Cyber-shot DSC-QX10

SONY Cyber-shot
DSC-QX10

Breakthough from the conventional, that is what can be used to describe SONY recent line-up of digital camera products. From full-frame compact mirrorless cameras to pocket size lens-only cameras. QX10 belongs to the latter along with the big brother QX100. QX10 is essentially a WiFi-enabled 10x optical zoom G lens unit with an 18.2MP EXMOR R back-lighted CMOS sensor. The QX10 is missing a screen! So how does it work? It connects wirelessly to smartphones over WiFi via the SONY PlayMemories app. The smartphone now acts as the touchscreen for the QX10. Connecting to the device is a touch away since it is NFC-ready. There are 2 colors to choose from: Black and White. I chose the latter for the gold barrel.


Accessories includes micro-USB cable, lanyard, battery, smartphone attachment, operator manual, warranty leaflet, etc.

 DSC-QX10

Specifications

  • 1/2.3" 18.2MP sensor
  • Sony G Lens with max aperture 3.3
  • 10x Optical zoom
  • 630mAh battery
  • microSD slot
  • NFC, Wi-Fi
  • On-board microphones for video 
On the left side of the unit is a physical zoom rocker and shutter button.
A multi-port for micro-USB connection for charging and connecting to the PC can be located on the bottom.
A standard tripod mount is located at the bottom of the unit.
The rear opens up to the battery compartment and microSD slot.
The device up to SDXC.

The Lens Barrel
A small LCD displays battery meter.

Smartphone Attachment
Unfortunately, the widest that smartphone attachment is too small for Samsung Galaxy Note II!
I might have to use it separate from the Note II or I can clip it to my iPod Touch 5.

QX10 and Toys
 QX10 and Cameras

Shooting fromQX10
Connecting the QX10 and control screen on Android





Sample Shots from QX10
Here are some quick indoor shots at full resolution.
 1x zoom
10x zoom

Here are some samples taken in Program Mode with exposure compensation adjustment with auto ISO.





Sample video from QX10
Video shot from QX10 on firmware V2.00 in Full HD 1920x1080.


Verdict
The Good
  • Compact
  • Lightweight
  • 10x optical staibilized lens
  • 18.2MP backlit sensor
  • 1920x1080 Full HD video recording (need to upgrade firmware to V2.00) with zoom
  • NFC-ready
  • Excellent battery life
The Bad
  • Cannot clip onto Galaxy Note II
  • "Water-color effect" on full view
  • No Aperture or Shutter Priority modes
  • No Metering pattern selection
The QX10 is an interesting little camera that is rather fun to play with and get creative with various angles. The 10x optical zoom is very useful in daylight. Images are saved in the microSD card on the QX10 and a preview copy is saved on the phone. Both images can be set at 2MP or 18.2MP, with the latter having slower transfer. The best is to set preview image to 2MP and when shooting is done, you can use the copy image function on PlayMemories to transfer 18.2MP images to the phone. You can then edit, share these images via SNS on your Android or iOS device immediately. You can choose from 3 modes of shooting: Intelligent Auto, Superior Auto and Program Auto. Only in Program Auto mode, you get to adjust EV compensation from -2 to +2, 2 stops at 1/3 intervals, as well as ISO up to 3200 (V2.00). If you rely on iAuto or Superior Auto, it is likely to result in poorly metered images as in the sample images, which require post-processing. The full resolution images appear rather "watercolor-like" in full view.
If you are someone who have a capable compact camera, you can give QX10 a miss.
If you are someone who does not need 10x optical zoom, using the camera on your smartphone might be a better choice. For example, my Samsung Galaxy Note II captures lowlight shots much better, clearer, faster and brighter than the QX10.
Currently, this device is only a moderate-performer and if SONY does not spice up its controls in PlayMemories, the QX10 will soon be dumped at ridiculous prices.
Wait, didn't I get the QX10 at a ridiculous price!? I have faith in SONY!

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