Viewfinders keepers says reviewer

The Sony RX100 iii has a clear edge on the competing Canon G1 X MkII in performance terms, according to the latest reviews on the Photo Review website.

The Sony RX100 iii with viewfinder and flash extended.

The Sony RX100 iii with viewfinder and flash extended.

Buyers seeking a large-sensor, high-end pocket cameras will be looking closely at both these relatively new releases in the coming months.

While the third iteration of the Sony Cyber-Shot RX100 family has a higher RRP than the G1 X MkII, its lack of a viewfinder – except as an optional extra – was seen as a telling weakness in its review.

Reflecting on earlier overseas’ reviews (Sony Australia was late with review models), Photo Review’s technical editor, Margaret Brown noted: ‘It seems the universal opinion of Sony’s RX100 iii is that it’s the best performing and most versatile pocketable compact camera with a fixed lens on the current market. Unfortunately, purchasers pay a premium for pocketability and performance.’

The $100 dollars or more saved, and longer focal range on the G1 X do not make up for that lack of viewfinder in an enthusiasts’ camera, according to the review of the Canon model: ‘Canon’s PowerShot G1X Mark II is closest to the RX100 specifications, with the same sized sensor but a longer 24-120mm f/2-3.9 zoom lens. It’s also cheaper but not nearly as pocketable, and if you want a viewfinder it’s an add-on accessory that attaches to the hot-shoe.

The Canon G1 X is cheaper and has a longer focal range, but  bulkier and lacking that essential outdoor feature - the viewfinder.

The Canon G1 X is cheaper and has a longer focal range, but it’s bulkier and lacking that essential outdoor feature – the viewfinder.

‘The lack of a built-in viewfinder is always a deal-breaker for us and reviewing the PowerShot G1X Mark II reinforced our belief that any kind of viewfinder, no matter how basic, is better than none at all. An optional EVF is a poor solution, requiring the camera owner to spend more money and compromising the size and shape of the camera in a way that makes it difficult to slip into a pocket or bag.

‘… it’s a heavy, bulky camera when compared with the Sony RX100 Mark III, which we just reviewed. And it’s not such a good performer – in most respects. Nor is it particularly comfortable to hold and operate.’

Click here to access the Photo Review equipment review section.

 


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