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Sony announces new RX100 III compact camera

The Sony RX100 III comes with a brighter Zeiss Vario-Sonnar 7* 24-70mm F 1.8 - 2.8 lens, built-in EVF, and improved video performance

“We want to keep expanding the RX range into 2014,” says Sony, who has just announced the latest addition to the RX family – the Sony Cyber-shot RX100 III. The premium 20.1 megapixel compact camera is a step up from its predecessor, the Sony RX100 II. It has a new wide angle Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* 24-70mm F1.8-2.8 lens, integrated electronic viewfinder, Wi-Fi connectivity, and advanced video functions.

Acting on customer feedback, Sony has introduced a newly developed, large-aperture brighter and wider lens with a built-in 3-stop ND filter, which, says the company, is ideal for both portrait and macro shooting. The new 24-70mm F1.8-2.8 lens (the RX100 II has a 28-100mm F1.8 – 4.9 zoom lens) means users don’t need to switch to a macro mode to take close-up images.

New to the RX100 III is a retractable OLED Tru-finder electronic viewfinder with Zeiss T* coating to reduce flare and enhance clarity. There is also an eye sensor that automatically switches between viewfinder and monitor display. The camera has an 180-degree 3.0-type 1229-dot tiltable LCD screen, which is especially handy for self-shooting, and an in-built flash.

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The RX100 III has a high-resolution ultra-sensitive Exmor R CMOS image sensor with ISO sensitivity extendable up to 25,600, and a light capturing area that is approximately 4x larger than a standard compact DSC sensor, according to Sony. With its 20.1 effective megapixel back-illuminated sensor, (the same image sensor as its predecessor), and Bionz X processor, which is approximately three times faster than the previous Bionz processing engine, the RX100 III offers superb performance in low light conditions including improved area-specific noise reduction in dimly-lit indoor regions and night-time shots, says the company.

New to the RX100 series is PlayMemories Camera Apps – free and paid-for apps that allow users to enhance their photographs using creative effects, filters, utilities, and more. In addition, integrated NFC and Wi-Fi connectivity allows users to connect the camera to their smartphone (both iOS and Android), or tablet, ensuring easy sharing of images.

The pocket-sized camera is the same size as the current RX100 models and just a fraction heavier. It has improved manual controls and a new ‘custom button’ to which users can assign any of the camera’s 41 functions. The control wheel and function button are also customisable for easy access to frequently-used settings.

In terms of video functionality, the RX100 III now supports XAVC S video format – a consumer version of the XAVC format used by professionals, which offers high quality full HD (1920×1080) 60p video recording at up to 50 Mbps high bit-rate.

Enhanced movie features include: upgraded Intelligent Active Mode, which minimises the effects of camera shake, new dual video recording to enable users to shoot both full HD video and smaller MP4 files simultaneously, and full-resolution zooming of moving subjects.

The RX100 III is aimed at compact digital camera users who may be looking to upgrade, or those who already have an interchangeable lens camera and are looking to buy a complementary second camera.

The price of the RX100 III was not disclosed at the time of writing.

For more information, visit www.sony.co.uk.

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