Entry 241 : First Impressions - Sony RX100VI

Oh, hey.

A few weeks ago, Sony announced the release of the next addition to their RX100 line-up:


Highlights for RX100VI:
  • NEW High magnification zoom lens, bumping the range from 24-70mm to 24-200mm
  • NEW 4K HDR movie recording 
  • SteadyShot optical stabilization up to 4 stops
  • 315 phase-detection AF points covering 65% of image area
  • 24fps continuous shooting with full AF/AE tracking, up to 233 images per buffer
  • Slightly thicker body while maintaining overall size
In conjunction with the new release, Sony Malaysia invited me and other media partners to attend the local launch to hear from the executives and to try out the new camera ourselves. The event was held at Skyrides Festival Putrajaya to give us a feel for the camera in a lifestyle/travel situation.

As always, Mr. Satoru Arai gave his opening speech, followed by presentations from the product specialist and guest celebrity

TV presenter and local celebrity, Bucky Zainal was invited to share his experience shooting the RX100VI on his trip to Indonesia

There wasn't too much that came from the presentations, aside from the fact that Sony really wanted to highlight the difference between "replacement" and "addition" of their cameras in the whole RX100 line-up.

To them, Sony simply comes up with the necessary technological advancements as requested/commented by users and reviewers without rendering their old models obsolete. This is evident in their simple comparison showed at the launch, where they gave suggested demographics for a certain RX100 model as shown below:

If you find yourself confused, maybe this guide can help

In a time where people are stripped for cash and spoiled for choice, it's great that Sony doesn't force new technology onto their users on a yearly basis. Sure enough, some of the older models will not be able to compete with the newer ones, but the point is that there is for sure a suitable model for every kind of customer. Those who do not require high-end specs can opt for a cheaper MkIII while others who want to look into all-round travel cameras may opt for the newest MkVI, now that it comes equipped with a formidable 24-200mm zoom range. My personal favorite camera of last year, the MkV still holds its own in the image quality department, while the MkIV provides essential video and image necessities. For Sony, there is no right or wrong camera, only the most perfect one for each individual.

Plus, for those looking at the new MkVI and thinking that it will be much larger than the MkV due to its significantly longer zoom range can ease their mind by knowing that the size remains exactly the same, albeit a slightly thicker body.

Pretty crazy schematics showing how they fit such a long range into the similar small form factor

As Bucky Zainal put it, "This camera in my pocket is smaller than my bulge!"

Truthfully, once the announcement came out, I was 100% already on board. One of the biggest drawbacks of the previous MkV was its zoom range of 24-75mm, which to some is not enough to sell them on a one-camera-fits-all situation. Now, with the extended range, I believe that the MkVI is the answer to this conundrum and I am really excited to see how it fares in the market. Of course, the drop in maximum aperture will then cause other users to rethink getting the MkVI over the MkV, but as I said, it is up to the customer to choose their preferred model.

Performance-wise, it's really hard to say from only using for a few bursts here and there. I'll leave my judgement for that part in my review in the future. For the time being, I am just glad that such a big company with huge aspirations still takes the time to bring immensely significant improvements to the lower-end of its production. Hopefully, this brings back some optimism to consumers who are sick of only having to fork out more money than they should for things that they don't really want - not withstanding the price of the RX100VI that has yet to be announced.

Here are some unedited samples that I got to take at the launch (click to view and download the photo at full resolution):

Big thanks goes to folks at Sony Malaysia for having me. Please check out their Facebook page for updates on new products and also the Alpha Universe Facebook page for workshops and events.

Do come over to THE FEAR's Facebook page for more updates and stuff. Be seeing you there.

Until next time, take care!

DISCLAIMER: I do not represent Sony, or any other brand that might be showcased in this review. This review is written for THE FEAR and is delivered with utmost honesty and sincerity.