Sony’s new cameras focus on vloggers

  • Nigh-indestructible RX0 II comes with a tiltable screen, offers 4K video
  • The a6400 mirrorless camera facilitates self-recording

 

(From left) YouTuber/MY DJ Phei Yong; Sony Malaysia head of Sales Chiw Yew Meng; Sony Malaysia MD Satoru Arai; Sony Malaysia head of Marketing Takahiro Yamasaki; and Sony Malaysia Product Marketing of Digital Imaging Loo Kah Kit

THE common notion on vlogging (whether for profit or leisure) is that you only need a digital video camera and a charming disposition. Things aren’t quite so straightforward, though.

Charming dispositions are rare and hellishly hard to cultivate; and you’ll need good equipment to ensure that your charm is clearly portrayed across the internet. Thankfully, good equipment is something you can spend money to rectify.

Sony’s latest cameras – launched in Malaysia on April 3 – are meant to fill that gap. The RX0 II (Mark II) and the Sony a6400 have designs and features that complement avid vloggers – compact in size, lighter in weight and equipped with features to accentuate those glimmering charm.

Improving the RX0

This is perhaps best encapsulated with the newly-introduced RX0 II, the second incarnation of Sony’s premium compact camera line-up.

A sequel to the RX0, released two years ago, this compact shooter retains its predecessor’s near-indestructible build – it is waterproof to 10 meters, dustproof, shockproof up to two metres and crushproof up to 200kg. It’s also immensely tiny, being merely 132g in weight and measuring 59 x 40.5 x 35mm.

 

Sony’s new cameras focus on vloggers

 

What makes it invaluable to vloggers is the newly-implemented tiltable LCD screen, which can be angled up to 180-degrees and down to 90-degrees. The new model now offers 4K 30p internal movie recording with full pixel readout and no pixel binning.

It houses a 1.0-inch stacked 15.3-megapixel CMOS Exmor RS CMOS sensor, which couples with an advanced BIONZ X image processing engine to offer enhanced colour reproduction. Sony says that it produces beautiful skin tones, which should delight vloggers.

The RX0 II also introduces in-body electronic stabilisation, to maintain steady footage even when shot handheld. Worth noting is the ISO range, which goes from 80 to 12800 – on paper, you are said to be able to shoot vlogs even in dimly-lit locations.

It’s also a capable still-photograph shooter, boasting an Anti-distortion shutter of up to 1/32000 sec and can shoot at up to 16fps. Sony’s Eye AF, which lets the camera lock on the eye of a subject, is also included here.

The RX0 II will be available in Malaysia from May 2019, and is priced at US$686 (RM2,799).

Snappy autofocus

Those seeking something bigger and more robust in lens options can opt for the Sony a6400 mirrorless camera. Announced last month, this is the follow up to the three-year old a6300 and positions itself as a more affordable alternative to the a6500. 

Its vlogging capabilities start with the 180-degree fully-tiltable LCD touchscreen, which – combined with the Sony GP-VPT1 VLOG Grip – can facilitate self-recording. The “Real-time Tracking” feature, which makes its debut here, uses Sony’s algorithms and AI to recognise subjects and follow them.

The a6400 offers internal 4K movie recording with full pixel readout and no pixel binning to collect about 2.4x the amount of data required for 4K movies, then oversamples it to produce high-quality 4K footage. Beneficial for the avid vlogger is the Fast Hybrid AF technology, which keeps the subject in focus no matter the scene – even when an object cross in front of the camera.

 

Sony’s new cameras focus on vloggers

 

It’s not just a camera for vloggers. Still photographers have other aspects to look forward to – the a6400 claims to have the world’s fastest autofocus (AF) acquisition of 0.02 seconds, which activates over 425 phase-detection AF points and 425 contrast-detection AF points across 84% of the image area.

The camera features a 24.2MP APS-C Exmore CMOS image sensor with the latest-gen BIONZ X image processor, and can shoot at 11 fps. The ISO ranges up to ISO 32000 for both stills and movies, and is expandable up to ISO 102400 for still images.

Eye AF can be found here as well, though this is an advanced “Real-time” version that uses AI based object recognition to detect and process eye data in real time, which adds to the accuracy, speed and tracking performance.

The Sony a6400 is available now, with prices starting at US$980 (RM3,999) for the body only and US$1078 (RM4,399) with the kit lens. A purchase-with-purchase deal gives you the GP-VPT1 grip for RM199.

 
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