The NEX is dead—long live its replacement the featherweight Sony a5000.
Sony, which used to debut many new cameras at CES, is showing just two new models at the big photography trade show within this year's Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas—another sign of the effect smart phones are having on the world of digital cameras. The Sony a5000 is the successor to the NEX-5R (the NEX designation was killed off last year by Sony, replaced by the a/Alpha branding) and offers several improvements. Sony also introduced a budget-priced compact digital camera, the W830.
Sony a5000: Light and Wi-Fi Enabled
Boasting that it is the world's lightest Wi-Fi-enabled interchangeable-lens camera with a battery-less weight of 7.4 ounces, Sony introduced the a5000, with a higher-resolution 20.21MP APS-C sensor than its predecessor, the NEX-5R. It shares the same BIONZ X Processor that made its debut last year in the full-frame Sony a7 and A7R full-frame camera and boasts such high-end features as area-specific noise reduction and optical refraction-reduction software.
On-board Wi-Fi capabilities give consumers one-touch connection with Xperia® or NFC-compatible Android™ smartphones or tablets. Users can trasfer images quickly as well as operate the camera from their devices. The camera can be operated remotely via either Android or iOS devices.
New features include a new grip, tiltable LCD monitor that can rotate up to 180 degrees (think "selfies"), a new lever for operating the zoom lens while shooting video with the 16-50mm kit lens, and a Photo Creativity mode, which uses non-technical language to talk beginners through the creative process.
New Sony Lenses
Sony also announced a new version of the 55-210mm f/4.5-6.3 telephoto zoom lens in a black finish.
The Sony a5000 will be available from Adorama in March in silver, white, or black for approximately $600 including the 16-50mm kit lens.
Sony Cyber-shot W830: Budget Compact Camera
Sony also announced one compact digital camera, the Sony Cyber-shot W830, a basic affair designed for teenagers with a 20.1MP CCD sensor and 8x zoom lens. Its distinguishing feature, besides Optical Stead Shot Active Mode for smooth 720p HD videos, is a "Beauty Effect," which applies several retouch options after the photo is taken, inlcluding skin toning and smoothing, teeth whitening, eye widening, and shine removal. The camera will be available in February for around $120 in red, silver, and black.