Two lucky fellas won the chance to not only own the Sony RX10 IV, but submit to us their own review of the camera. The first of them is Lukas Avgerinos. From what I can see below, Lukas is as impressed with the camera as I was!
Sony DSC RX10M4 Review for EFTM
By Lukas Avgerinos
Ever since the original iPhone came out camera sales have plummeted, and with good reason. Why carry around a camera when you can just use your phone? The technology and quality of phone cameras has improved so much in recent years than even a cheap smartphone can take decent everyday pics. So why spend a lot of money on a separate big, bulky camera like the Sony DSCRX10M4? Quite simply, it will give you photos that no smartphone can.
To test this, I took the Sony to a Fire Spectacular show at Nightquarter, Helensvale, Gold Coast. These conditions are very difficult for a camera – hardly any light, sitting over 30 metres from the stage in the dark, with fire and sudden flashes of light to confuse focus. I looked around and most people had their phones out, and I guarantee they all would be disappointed when they looked at the results. I took a series of photos with the Sony on auto mode, with no software editing afterwards. At the same time, my daughter sat next to me taking photos with my iPhone X so we could compare. Again, standard settings with no editing.
Compare these two.
The Sony pic is super sharp with brightly lit faces, and the fire is not overexposed. The skin tones are natural and the background is black where it should be, not grey. This is incredibly difficult for most SLR cameras, let alone a smartphone. Here’s some more examples
In the next shot of the lady on the chair it looks like I’m right next to the stage, not over 30 metres back behind a huge crowd of people. Think of how many times you want to take a photo of your kids playing sport or doing a performance but you can’t get close enough for a decent shot. The Sony has 25x zoom (equivalent to 600mm) but features quality lens elements all the way through, unlike cheap superzoom cameras that are very ordinary when you zoom in. This makes it a good alternative to similarly priced SLRs as you won’t have to carry a big bag full of heavy lenses.
The autofocus is superfast and this alone makes it worth the money. I’ve been using a Canon SLR with L series lenses for 12 years and the only way I could get a shot like this is to use manual focussing and metering – it simply does not cope with fast focussing in these conditions, especially this distance from a subject.
At the widest angle, the Sony gives more detail than a smartphone. Compare these two – in the first one everything is clearer and you can even read the writing on the small sign in the middle.
Hundreds of settings can be accessed through the screen, but I like the way Sony has included physical buttons and knobs that mean you can c change settings quickly and without the confusion of navigating menus through the screen. For example, if you were taking a photo of your son playing soccer you simply switch the button to continuous autofocus. You can also assign your own custom settings to physical function buttons which saves a lot of time. It connects wirelessly to both iOS and Android phones so you can share your pics to social media without having to wait until plugging it into your laptop later.
The screen moves so you can hold the camera high in the air and still see the subject, and as you place your eye near the viewfinder the screen automatically turns off. The auto white balance and full dynamic range settings work really well. In this photo of my daughter you wouldn’t know it is late at night and I have not used flash or edited the shadow details.
The Sony also takes 4k video and as you’d expect the quality is superb.
The Sony DSC RX10M4 is a great camera, but then it needs to be to justify the price and size. The best camera is the one you have with you, and for me as a Dad, I want the best possible photographic memories of my kids which is why I’ll be taking it wherever I go.
Editor: Great review Lukas! Thanks mate. Sadly the web upload process does diminish the quality of the pics further, but trust me – the raw originals here are stunning!
Big thanks to Sony who provided the cameras for our reader reviews as giveaways so they can not only provide these reviews, but enjoy the product for years to come!