Sony RX100 IV / V...or what?


Active Member

I'm looking to get either the Sony RX100 V, or possibly the RX100 IV, as it seems to tick all the boxes for me, but the one thing that really is stopping me is the really small optical zoom at only x2.9, especially when seeing other cameras with x20 / x30 / x50 zoom.

So my query is, what is there out there that is similar in spec to the Sony but with a better zoom? Had a look but can't see anything. A help much appreciated.

Things I like about the RX100 IV / V are
  • Supposed near DSLR image quality
  • Compact / pocket size
  • Large sensor for the size of the camera (1.0 type)
  • F1.8(W) aperture - in combination with the large sensor (for the blurry backgrounds)
  • Rated well for low light
  • Speedy from turning on to focusing and getting a photo (so much like a smart phone for ease of use)
  • Good focussing
  • Good video at decent frame and data rates
As for me as a user, I'm no photographer, but with a new baby I'd like to get some decent photos rather than having everything from a smart phone. I've had a couple of cameras in the past but nothing fancy, just £200 jobbies. I don't want to get just another mediocre camera and would prefer to spend a fair bit for a decent one that I won't feel the need to improve on for a good while, or lament not getting a DSLR.

I was going to go DSLR (e.g. Nikkon D330 or above) but when I saw one in real life it was far too huge and I'd never use it - so pocket friendly is what I'm after, or at least not too big to chuck in the wife's/baby bag.

I don't necessarily need 4k video, as I'm likely to get a camcorder a little later when the baby grows up and is more active, so 1080p should suffice, but high frame/data rates to avoid jutter would be preferred. But slow mo ability would be good if possible.

I did start to look at the Canon SX720 but the sensor was smaller.
I did consider the Sony Alpha ILEC 7K, as that's full frame, but the aperture is higher than the Sony's F1.8(W), I don't think it has an inbuilt flash, and I read that it isn't great for quick off the cuff snapping.

So, any suggestions?
Thanks all
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Distinguished Member
Have you considered something like an Olympus Pen or Sony A6000? Flexibility of a dslr without the size.


Distinguished Member
As a general camera with high quality you can't beat the RX100. I've used mine for everything and it works well. And because it crops well you can always zoom in most photo apps. But in practice you won't do that so much as you would think and you end up using your feet to get closer for a lot of shots where framing is important.


Panasonic TZ100 ?


Distinguished Member
I don't necessarily need 4k video, as I'm likely to get a camcorder a little later when the baby grows up and is more active, so 1080p should suffice, but high frame/data rates to avoid jutter would be preferred. But slow mo ability would be good if possible.

I would strongly suggest you bite the bullet with 4K if you are looking to make "forever" videos of your new baby. They only get bigger :) and you'll never get a chance to video their first smile, steps or first words and you'll want to watch those moments many years into the future.
Low light performance is important.

When my daughter was born in 2003 we took a few 320x240 15fps silent videos with a 2MP Fuji compact along with stills. She was actually our cross over from film to digital, her first few days were shot on both then we went full digital.
About a year in I got a Sony MiniDV camera which was pretty flash for a home camera at the time.
Roll on a few years and my Canon Ixus compact could make nicer 640x480 video than the MiniDV camera.
I have a few 1080 HD videos from school and things on my Olympus Micro 4/3rds cameras but as they get bigger video gets less appropriate for every day things until suddenly they're doing their own!

Looking back on the 320x240 videos is really nice now she's a teenager. All the videos have a certain charm but if I could do one photographic thing again I'd have gone for the latest video formats when she was very small.

I also found that juggling a MiniDV camera and a compact stills camera seldom worked out. I ended up on one or the other but not both so missed good photos or good video moments either way. I would go for a camera that handles both well.

You end up carting so much around in the early years that I would go for portability over a full size DSLR.
Panasonic Micro 4/3rds are a good compromise between portability and image and video quality though they won't go in your pocket.


Distinguished Member
Dpreview recently did a roundup of the 1in cameras:

2017 Roundup: Compact Enthusiast Zoom Cameras

In short though I'd agree with Jim's recommendation as the Panasonic offers a longer zoom range but still with the decent sized 1in sensor. It won't be quite as good in low light and you've got to bear in mind that there's more to shallow depth of field than just aperture, although the RX100's are F1.8 that's at the wide end which means a short focal length and not particularly shallow depth of field.

With the choice of the RX100, micro 4/3, Sony NEX and Nikon full frame I tend to go with the RX100 with kids certainly once they are able to move around. It's not as good as the other cameras but it still produces decent results and it's easy to shoot one handed which is certainly very useful with young kids as it means you can take part with the kids as well rather than just standing at the side.

I went with the original RX100 as it was the only one of its type then I changed to the newer mark 4 for the super slow motion (something I realise most are probably not bothered about), if I wasn't interested in slow motion and looking for one of these cameras it would likely be one of the Panasonics I'd be looking at first.



Active Member
Thanks all, very useful insight and very much appreciated. Thanks for the link too, John, very interesting. From that I also found a couple of youtube reviews showing synced footage of the RX100 V, the GX7 II and LX10 side by side. By people focussing on the video rather than stills, but useful none the less.

Tending toward the RX100 at the moment, but possibly the mark IV for the longer battery life, but still undecided for now.


Just some info. Looking at the "camera price busters " website it's showing that camera world Ltd have dropped the price of the Mk V by £50 and thrown in a camera case + sony are running a promotion that gives you £100 cash back. I've just purchased the Mk iii which has £60 off + £75 cash back a saving of £135 on yesterday's price. After cash back it's £425!


Well-known Member
If I was in the market for a 'proper' compact again, I wouldn't hesitate to go for the Sony RX100 range again, they are pocketable and have excellent image quality. My Mark 1 bought on day of release is still going, dropped twice, factory repaired once, but still plodding along!

Going Grey Now

Active Member
I have a Sony RX100 mk 3 to back up my Canon gear. It is very pocketable, albeit due to its size, isn't particularly comfortable in my hands. That said, the quality of photos achieved surpasses what I could ever have hoped for from a 1" sensor. I don't have any experience of the mk4/5 though. I'm sure the mk4/5 would be excellent choices.
Although mentioned above, can I just ask about micro 4/3rds? Having said I'm a Canon user (over 30 years man & boy), I've just purchased a Panasonic G80 and paired it with a 25mm prime lens. I am looking forward to using this to take family photos, especially grandchildren. It has 4k too and a whole host of other features, most of which I've only glanced at.
Although not pocketable, it's about half the weight of my Canon gear. Might just be worth a look?


Active Member
Just an update to close off the thread - I went with the Sony RX100 IV in the end and am very happy with it - pics and vids are great. Have to admit that I'm kinda thinking I should have just gone for the RX100 V despite the battery hit - just to avoid any what ifs etc - but heyho, nevermind; the IV is plenty good enough. Haven't seen any issues with overheating and got a few 5min clips in 4k with no issues, and the 4k does look great, so all good. Thanks for all the input and advice, much appreciated.

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