It’s Official: I Finally Bought The Sony RX100 Camera!

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For a couple of years I’ve been eying a new camera. I’ve been using the same camera for over five years, and while it has served me extremely well for tens of thousands of pictures, it was time for an upgrade. Technology improves at such a fast pace, and given how many pictures I publish from my travels here, I need to keep up.

Why I haven’t gotten a new camera in five years

While I’ve been wanting to get a new camera for a long time, the reality is that I suck at technology, so really didn’t know what I should be looking for in a new camera. Add in the fact that I’m a creature of habit and hate being at an information disadvantage, and I was more or less destined to have the same camera forever.

Fortunately I have access to you guys, who are much more tech savvy than I am. So in July 2014 I first asked you guys which camera I should upgrade to, and you guys provided some great responses. The most common answer was that I should get the Sony RX100. As is typically the case when crowdsourcing information, I tend to think that the most frequent answer will rarely lead you wrong.

After far too long of a delay, I decided I finally wanted to get a Sony RX100 based on feedback from you guys, but was trying to decide on which version to get, given there are several.

Just shortly after I made that post, someone reached out to me on behalf of Sony to ask if I wanted to try out the Sony RX100 III and Sony RX100 IV. I took them up on the opportunity, so I could report back to you guys.

As I shared in a follow-up post, I loved these cameras. I provided some side-by-side comparisons between my old camera and the Sony RX100, like this one:

Camera-1

Camera-2

What I value in a camera

I’m sure I could get significantly better pictures with both cameras, but that’s not the goal for me. I want a camera which is easy to use, and where I can snap quick, high quality pictures with minimal effort. After all, I’m often taking pictures during boarding, while the plane is taking off, etc., where I have a split second to grab a picture.

To expand on that, here are all the things I value most in a camera:

  • It needs to be compact, both so it’s easy to travel with, and also so it doesn’t arouse suspicion on airplanes and in public spaces
  • It needs to be great in low light conditions, since I’m often taking pictures on planes with limited light
  • It needs to be easy to use, since I’m not very tech savvy
  • It needs to take crisp, effortless pictures; I don’t want to be playing around with the settings, but rather want to just point and shoot and get a great picture
  • It needs to be good at taking pictures while moving, given that I’m often taking pictures during takeoff and landing

Sony RX100 III vs. Sony RX100 IV?

I had the chance to try the Sony RX100 III and also Sony RX100IV. Both are fantastic cameras, though I didn’t notice any difference in quality between the two when just “pointing and shooting.” The biggest difference is that the IV takes much higher quality video, though that’s not really something I do much of on the blog, so it seemed like an unnecessary investment.

Therefore I decided that the Sony RX100 III is the best fit for me. I’ve returned my loaner and have purchased the camera, and am looking forward to using it from hereon out.

Sony-RX100-1

Bottom line

Everyone is looking for different things in a camera, and I’m not really a tech expert. What I know is that I asked you guys what you thought the best compact camera was, and the overwhelming answer was the Sony RX100. I tried two versions of it, and found the simpler of the two was the better fit for me.

I’ve noticed that the camera takes significantly better pictures than my old one. I realize I’m probably not using 90% of the camera’s features, which I’m fine with. I’m not looking to be a professional photographer, but rather am looking to take tons of pictures in very short periods of time, so I can take you guys along on my journeys.

The Sony RX100 III isn’t cheap — it retails for ~$800 — but it seemed like a worthwhile investment given that I review airlines, hotels, etc., for a living. Based on how many of you seem to have the Sony RX100 as well, I guess I’m not the only one who finds it worthwhile.

Stay tuned, because in a follow up post I’ll be giving away an RX100, courtesy of Sony.

Sony-RX100

Comments

  1. I’ve owned the RX 100 I for a few years and have been amazed at how great it works in low light. Since I use it with my work I’ve considered upgrading to the RX 100 III. I believe the retail price is more along the $799 range, at least at Amazon and local places here in San Diego who do price matches. In any event, I’m sure you will be very happy with your new camera.

  2. Well done. Going by the side-by-side pics above, we should be in for some great pictures going forward. Does this mean you will be reviewing LH, CX and EY First class again now that you have a new camera 😉

  3. What credit card did you use to purchase? Did you do a comparison of the extended warranty benefit offered by different cards? Did you use a shopping portal?

    Have some major electronics purchases on the horizon, so would be great to get your thought process on this.

  4. Oh how odd, I thought this was a repost, then realised you might have been using a loaner in the last RX100 related post. Congrats though – not only will you love the low light performance, and the wide field of view, you’ll love how your closeup photos look. Yummy, creamy bokeh. Even if not twiddling with lots of settings is your default mode, this camera just takes gorgeous pics. Can’t wait to see the new photos you will be capturing with this camera.

  5. When I bought my RX100 many years ago, I went through the Ultimate Rewards Mall using the Ink Card and got 10x points for a gift card for the Sony Store, then 10x for the purchase. Approximately 13,000 points total. I then transfer them to BA Avios and used it for a last minute short-haul flight on AA which saved us about $600.

  6. Just FYI, could be wrong but I don’t think you’re currently linking to the correct camera — looks like you’re pointing to Sony DSCRX100M2/B ($648), not the Sony DSC-RX100M III ($798). From your side-by-side post which shows the version you tested, I can tell you were indeed using the III b/c of the lens range 25,7, whereas the one you’re linking to is marked with 37,1.

  7. You’ve made a great decision. It is the point and shoot I use as well. I have been extremely happy with the image quality so much that I’ve recommended the same camera to friends who are also shopping. Looking forward to future postings with the new camera!

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