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First Impressions: Sony NEX 6

by Chris Gampat on 09/12/2012

The Sony NEX 6 is the camera designed for people who do not want the NEX 5R but can’t afford or justify the NEX 7 to themselves. Because of this, it combines aspects and features of both bodies and adds to those in the formation of a different camera. If I really had to figure out a way to think about this camera, I would liken it to the situation years ago when Sony Announced the A900 and then the A850 (in that one was basically the baby version of the other.)

We spent a short amount of time with the camera a couple of weeks ago, and here are our first impressions.

EDITOR’S NOTE CONFIRMED VIA SONY’S SITE IT DOES HAVE A TOUCH SHUTTER/SCREEN.

Source

Second correction: Sony says this is a mistake. It does not have a touch shutter. We apologize for the mistake.

Tech Specs

- 16.1 APS-C (they’re branding it as APS HD, don’t ask me why) CMOS sensor

- ISO 100-25,600

- 1080p AVCHD 60p and 24p

- Hybrid AF

- XGA OLED TruFinder

- 921k dot LCD screen

- Multi-interface shoe

- Pop-up flash

- 1/4000 shutter speed max

- Peaking MF assist

- USB charging

- SD card slot

- Launching around the middle of November

- With the 16-50mm kit; it will be around $999.99

- Wifi connectivity

Ergonomics

The Sony NEX 6 features a couple of new things right off the bat. First off, there is the on/off switch around the shutter release and the Fn button next to that. Behind this is the new mode dial: which means that that section of the Sony menu system has been demolished.

Around said dial is another control dial for shutter control. Next to this is the pop-up flash, followed by the new standard hot shoe (not Minolta’s) and the viewfinder.

The back of the camera adheres to the 5R’s philosophy of simplicity You’ve got a playback button, pop-up flash, Auto Exposure Lock, two custom function buttons, four way control dial, and an LCD screen.

The pop-up flash can also be pulled back a bit to act like a bounce flash if the user wants.

Autofocus

In my brief time with the pre-production unit, the AF adhered to Sony’s super quick focusing technology. Like the 5r, this camera also has touch to shoot functionality, which makes it as fast as the Olympus OMD EM5, if not a tad slower.

Image Quality

We couldn’t put a card in the camera to test the image quality because this was a pre-production unit. But the images seemed right on par with the 5N previously, which was quite good.

Ease of Use

The only thing that I’ve never quite liked about the Sony NEX line of cameras was that the user needed to go through menu after menu to change anything. The NEX 6 makes that a bit easier with the dial, but other than that, I have to fully test the unit to give a better review. Unfortunately, the battery seemed to die on my unit as I got to it (I spent a ton of time with the A99 instead of this.)

First Impressions

The Sony NEX 6 has some very promising features with the Play Life memories connectivity and Wifi being built in. Additionally, the new Android and iOS app will add to a user’s ability to shoot and share immediately. Add onto this the fact that the new focusing system is also very fast and the touch to shoot functionality on the touch screen, and Olympus has a big competitor on its hands. and the only thing making Olympus still faster to use is the touch shutter function.

Only time and a thorough review will tell us how this camera will do.

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