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Sony Bows Cyber-shot RX100 III

San Diego – Sony unveiled Friday a pocket-sized high-performing point-and-shoot in its Cyber-shot RX family.

Model RX100 III camera (shipping in June at an $800 suggested retail) features a large-aperture Zeiss 24-70mm lens, built-in OLED viewfinder with Zeiss T* coating, and Bionz X image-processing engine.

Sony said the body design is based on the same sleek lines of the existing RX100 and RX100 II models, while the Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* 24-70mm F1.8-2.8 lens is capable of capturing dramatic landscapes or large group photos at the wide 24mm length while offering macro shooting capabilities throughout the focal range. A built-in 3-stop (1/8) neutral density filter adds outdoor shooting flexibility. It uses nine total aspherical glass elements, including two advanced aspherical elements cemented together to provide an ultra-compact footprint while maintaining a wide maximum angle of view.

Both the lens and the built-in OLED viewfinder feature Zeiss T* coating to reduce glare.

Other features include a high-resolution 20.1-megapixel 1.0-type back-illuminated CMOS image sensor and the Bionz X processor featured in Sony’s high-end cameras, including the full-frame α7, α7R and α7S models. 

Video is captured in FullHD resolution, using the XAVC S format (the first Cyber-shot camera to do so), allowing a data rate of 50Mbps with lower compression for improved image quality. The camera also has dual video-recording capability (XAVC S/AVCHD files along with MP4), which allows making a high-bit-rate file for storage or editing purposes while also recording a lower-bit-rate video optimized for sharing via Wi-Fi.    

With the Bionz X processor, the camera is able to read, process and output data from all of the sensor’s pixels during video recording, to produce with minimal aliasing, moiré and false color artifacts. 

Other video features include a “clear” HDMI output for reviewing footage on an external monitor, 120 fps recording at 720p HD resolution, and zebra pattering on the LCD and built-in EVF. 

The camera also has Intelligent Active mode — another first for Cyber-shot RX series cameras — which utilizes Sony’s frame-analysis technology and five-axis compensation to reduce the effects of camera shake while shooting movies.

New to the RX series, the RX100 III model features an articulated LCD that can tilt upward by about 180 degrees for self-portraits and all the way downward to approximately 45 degrees for high-angle shots.

The camera also can output still images in 4K resolution with full wide-gamut Triluminous Color support when connected to compatible 4K televisions.

Built-in Wi-Fi offers one-touch file transfer connections using Xperia or NFC-compatible Android smartphones or tablets.

A single touch also activates Smart Remote Control, linking the camera with a smartphone or tablet for a live image preview, to fire the shutter from a distance and to review shots instantly, Sony said. 

For devices without NFC, users can wirelessly transfer images and videos and activate Smart Remote Control through Sony’s free PlayMemories Mobile app for iOS and Android devices.