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Unboxed a new RX10 today...

Discussion in 'Superzoom Salon' started by Boompa, Feb 4, 2014.

  1. Boompa

    Boompa SC Regular

    First a confession: I'm a camera slut. OK. There. I said it. Now, moving on...

    I've been buying, using, trading and selling cameras since 1967 when I bought a Pentax Spotmatic w/ Super Takumar 50mm f1.4 lens at age 17.

    I've owned well over 100 cameras from then until now and currently own Fuji EX-2 with several lenses, Fuji X100S, Sony RX100 and Canon 5D Mk II (which I'll be selling shortly.)

    I recently purchased a Sony RX1R but returned it after 2 weeks for a variety of reasons- beginning with the $3500 cost including EVF, filter, extra batteries, etc. The camera had phenomenal IQ and low-light capabilities but forced the user into using RAW as the jpeg engine was absolutely horrible and the camera struggled to focus at times. That might be acceptable for $1000 but I was less forgiving for $3500!!

    Which brings us to the RX10. I love my little RX100 but I clearly heard the RX10 calling my name as well. So... it arrived this afternoon with a DEAD BATTERY (ARGH!) so I got a total of 3 test-shots quickly before I had to plug the camera into the wall since NO SEPARATE CHARGER IS INCLUDED! (ARGH AGAIN!!!)

    BUT... I LOVED the 3 images I took; loved the jpeg output (I'm too lazy and too busy to fool with PP unless it's a critical image that HAS TO BE saved!) and the IQ was very, very nice. They were NOT in the RX1R class of course- but MORE THAN ADEQUATE for my purposes 99% of the time and I'm not generally a pixel peeper.

    As with the RX1R- the owners manual is a joke... but that seems to be Sony's way of doing business these days. I've seen nicer instruction manuals with a $29 coffee pot!!

    I've ordered an external charger, 2 extra batteries and a 62mm B+W 010 filter for it. I put a nice braided Lance camera strap on it- and plugged it to wait for electricity to resurrect the battery from the dead!

    This HAS THE POTENTIAL TO BE the ultimate all-purpose go-to camera for videoing grandchildren's horseback competitions and swim meets, for family snapshots and for vacation photos, etc. I'm optimistic.

    I'm not likely to give up my X100s, XE-2 OR my RX100 as each has its purpose, including the RX10.

    I'll have a chance to test it more thoroughly over the next couple of weeks and see whether it deserves a permanent place in the equipment cabinet.

    We'll see,

    Steve
     
    • Like Like x 5
  2. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    Steve,
    I've been thinking about the RX10 as a jack-of-all-trades camera and will be looking forward to your images and your user experiences. I enjoyed the little RX100 when I had one, but it was too small for me. The IQ was good enough most of the time, so I think I can learn to live with the small step down in quality (from APS-C cameras) in exchange for the massive versatility of the RX10 and it's all-in-one lens.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  3. Ranger Rick

    Ranger Rick SC Regular

    66
    Mar 12, 2012
    Tempe, AZ
    Rick
    Someone on DPR Sony CSC Forum created a great RX10 manual. You can find it there in one of the threads, or PM me with email address and I will send it to you.

    I had posted some photos from an outing to Florence AZ here.

    Just a great camera in many ways. I don't find it slow to focus, the "accepted internet boogeyman". The key is steady focus speed; yes, focus by wire is not optimum, but that's life these days. It covers all the bases and frees me up to focus on images, not which lens etc.

    Rick
     
    • Like Like x 1
  4. Boompa

    Boompa SC Regular

    Well, what do they say: "Comparison is the death of contentment"? Sigh.

    After shooting with the RX10 for a day or two I decided to do some comparison images. As a result, my RX10 has gone back to the seller.

    I certainly didn't expect the RX10 to hold up to my 5D MkII- no surprises there. And I expected it to blow away my wife's lowly Fuji HS50EXR bridge camera- but it didn't. Yes- the images were modestly better- but not dramatically better by any measure. The HS50EXR has a tiny 1/2" sensor compared to the RX10's 1" sensor. And of course the RX10 costs 4 times as much with its constant f2.8 Zeiss lens. I expected an enormous difference in image quality but it never materialized.

    But the final blow was when I compared the images with my Fuji XE-2. Granted, the XE-2 has an APS-C sized sensor, and granted that the XE-2 with 18-55 kit lens costs the same as the RX10, and granted that you have to spend another $700 to add the 55-200 lens to achieve similar range. (You end up with 35mm equivalent of 27-300mm with the 2 Fuji lenses as opposed to 24-200mm with the RX10.) And granted you now have to carry 2 lenses and change them. Those are all significant compromises compared to the convenience of 1 mid-size camera with fixed lens.

    HOWEVER- there was absolutely no comparison in image quality. At every focal length the lowly $350 HS50EXR and RX10 looked surprisingly similar while the EX-2 was in a different class entirely. (OF COURSE the RX10 would have blown away the HX50 in low-light situations but that's not what I was testing.)

    SO... the RX10 went back; packed away once more in it's shiny black box. I own an RX100 and it's a keeper because of it's beautiful size. I briefly owned an RX1R and was BLOWN AWAY by the IQ and low-light capabilities it produced, but was never quite at ease with the fact I was holding $3500 in the palm of my hand w/ the EVF, filter, etc. and the jpeg engine produced miserable results. The RX1R was really a raw-only proposition.

    And so I come back once more to the EX-2 and my X100s. Out of the box these cameras and the associated Fuji glass produce wonderful images in a small, lightweight package at a mid-range cost.

    I NEVER intended this to be a Sony-bash, NOR did I intend for it to be a Fuji-fest. I was confident that given the superb Zeiss optics the RX100 would be a keeper. But given its substantial weight and $1300 price tag, it just couldn't justify its place between my RX100 and my XE-2.

    It may have been that I simply got a bad copy of the RX10. Anything is possible. But in the end I think the combination of a heavy, nearly-DSLR-sized camera compared to most of today's mirrorless cameras, combined with the small 1/2" sensor just didn't live up to my expectations. Probably my expectations were just too high.

    A special shout-out to Rick for emailing me a link to the online users manual. THANK YOU. That was invaluable in making sure the camera was properly set up.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  5. kyteflyer

    kyteflyer ~@¿@~

    Jan 31, 2011
    Newcastle, Australia
    Sue
    Interesting to hear that it did not surpass the HS50 in IQ. Surprising.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  6. stillshunter

    stillshunter Super Moderator Emeritus

    Nov 5, 2010
    Down Under
    Mark
    Oh Luke…:shakehead: I think I know how this story ends.

    :laugh1:
     
    • Like Like x 1
  7. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    I've already thought better of it. If I want zoom, I can crop my Fuji shots.
     
  8. Boompa

    Boompa SC Regular

    Sue-- oh, the RX10 DID surpass the HS50... but it was incrementally- not significantly. If I were to assign 1 to 10 values for IQ by the seat of my pants, I would give the RX1R a 10, my 5D MkII a 9.2 or 9.5, the Fuji XE-2 a 7 or 7.5, the RX100 a 5, and the HS50EXR a 4. Somewhere below that would be my little Canon S100 at a 3 and the whole world of $100-$200 P&S cameras between 1 and 3.

    So yes- there WAS a difference, but it was very small in COMPARISON to the enormous difference between the RX100 and the X-E2.

    At least that was my experience on a given day with those cameras. As I said- my RX100 MAY have been faulty.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  9. RT Panther

    RT Panther SC All-Pro

    Dec 25, 2012
  10. Luckypenguin

    Luckypenguin SC Hall of Famer

    Dec 24, 2010
    Brisbane, Australia
    Nic
    Easy come, easy go :smile:
     
    • Like Like x 1
  11. bilzmale

    bilzmale Super Moderator Emeritus

    Jul 17, 2010
    Perth, Western Australia
    Bill Shinnick
    That's dampened my GAS too.
     
  12. Biro

    Biro SC All-Pro

    Aug 7, 2011
    Jersey Shore
    Steve
    Many if us have seen images out of the RX10 and they're not bad. This little tale makes me wonder how viable Fuji's new S1 superzoom bridge camera will be.
     
  13. Ray Sachs

    Ray Sachs SC Legend

    Sep 21, 2010
    Not too far from Philly
    you should be able to figure it out...
    I sort of reached the same conclusion after the time I spent with an RX10. It was a pretty good all in one solution, but at the end of the day, I didn't see which other camera/lenses I'd have been willing to give up for it. It's not good enough in low light to replace my m43 gear at either normal or telephoto lengths. It's somewhat more convenient than carrying an m43 body with two zooms (the 12-35 or 12-40 and the 35-100 - the same focal range at f2.8) but not enough to lose the m43 gear. The zoom is slow enough to feel like an impediment to my shooting. And the low light advantage of everything else I own meant that the RX10 would have been ANOTHER camera, not a replacement for anything. So no go for me.

    I'd pretty highly recommend it to a number of people who are a bit less picky or for whom photography is less of an obsession. But it wasn't gonna find a place in my bag...

    -Ray
     
    • Like Like x 2
  14. drd1135

    drd1135 SC Hall of Famer

    Jul 13, 2011
    Southwest Virginia
    Steve
    Part of me would love a superzoom camera. The problem is I keep coming back to the "when would I take this as opposed to the EM5 with the 40-150?" question. The EM5 (and now the EM10) are just not that big and the tele-zooms like the 40-150 are just not that heavy. The new SP-100 is a possibility because it's only $399 and the zoom is ridiculous at 1200mm equivalent.
     
  15. Biro

    Biro SC All-Pro

    Aug 7, 2011
    Jersey Shore
    Steve
    I hear you. A superzoom only becomes an option for me at a fairly low price and because of the ridiculous telephoto reach. But some are clearly better than others. One has to maintain realistic expectations. Still, when I look back on photos I took on a trip to Europe in 2007 with my old Canon S3 IS, they hold up quite well.

    Of the current crop of superzooms, the Oly SP-100 and the Fuji S1 look interesting.
     
  16. drd1135

    drd1135 SC Hall of Famer

    Jul 13, 2011
    Southwest Virginia
    Steve
    Every time a Fuji XS1 comes up fro <$400 I look. The X-10 sensor with a really long zoom. But it weighs over two pounds.
     
  17. Luckypenguin

    Luckypenguin SC Hall of Famer

    Dec 24, 2010
    Brisbane, Australia
    Nic
    I would have thought that the RX10 is nothing less than the modern day reincarnation of the Canon Powershot Pro1, and I still read the occasional lament over at photography-on-the.net that Canon never made a successor.
     
  18. BruPri

    BruPri SC Top Veteran

    699
    May 11, 2011
    Seattle, Washington USA
    Bruce J. Pritchard
    Ok, I'm onboard now, traded all my Nikon 1 gear for an RX10. Those who know me also know that I change kits like the seasons. I've been through the entire NEX line, RX1 and 100, for what ever reason ended up dissatisfied for reasons varied. I think this may be the one though... HA!
     
    • Like Like x 2
  19. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    can't wait to see what you do with it Bruce
     
  20. BruPri

    BruPri SC Top Veteran

    699
    May 11, 2011
    Seattle, Washington USA
    Bruce J. Pritchard
    Well me too Luke! What they don't tell you is it takes 5 hours to charge the battery! Luckily the salesman is sending me an external charger and extra battery as part of the deal.