It’s not often that we see something that’s the result of such outside-the-box thinking as Sony’s soon to be released QX10 and QX100 “cameras.”
As I understand it, each of these may just look like a lens, but when paired with your smartphone, they’re entire cameras. The “body” is a zoom lens, a sensor, a slot for a storage card, a shutter button, a function-assignable ring and a clip. The “body” clips onto your smartphone and uses the phone as the viewfinder, shutter release, back-up storage and presumably other functions as well. The “camera” communicates with your phone via WiFi or NFC – meaning it doesn’t actually have to be clipped to your phone to be in contact with it. You can hold it in the palm of your hand; you can mount it on a tripod – as long as you’re within 15 feet of the camera, you can use your phone as a wireless trigger.
The QX100 is essentially a slimmed down version of Sony’s new RX100 II. Same lens 3.6x zoom lens that’s F1.8 at the wide end. Same 20 megapixel 1 inch sensor. Same processing engine. Image stabilizer. Various auto modes and effects. HD video recording. Weighing just over 6 ounces with the battery inserted. At a list price of US$500.
The QX10 has a smaller 1/2.3 inch 18 megapixel sensor. A 10X zoom lens that goes from F3.3 at the wide end to F5.9. For US$250.
These are available either in black or in a white/gold combination and are set to be released at the end of September.
Since the QX100 is a rethink of the already proven RX100 II, we can guess that it’s a very capable camera indeed. Hopefully the necessary iOS and Android apps to run it are also capable. We’ll see if this is just a soon-to-be-forgotten experiment or if it catches on and inspires similar devices from other manufacturers. Either way, kudos to Sony for some truly imaginative thinking here.
But imagine walking down the street using this for street photography. Cupped in the palm of your hand, finger on the release button, most people won’t know you’re holding a camera or taking their picture.
Yes. I want one.