posted Monday, August 26, 2013 at 11:01 PM EST

In late 2012, Sony brought its NEX mirrorless camera series into the hybrid autofocus age, with the debut of the NEX-5R. Just ten months later, that camera gets a more modest refresh, with the arrival of the Sony NEX-5T.

The NEX-5T will be of interest to photographers using certain smart devices -- be they phones or tablets -- running the Android, Blackberry, Symbian and Windows Phone operating systems. That's because it now includes a short-range Near Field Communications radio, used to simplify the process of creating a longer-range, high-speed Wi-Fi connection with compatible devices. Photographers who have a preference for Apple gear will, sadly, not get to join in, simply because Apple has so far resisted adding NFC to its products.


Beyond the new NFC radio, there's only one other change of note: the NEX-5T ships with a different kit lens in its product bundle. Where the NEX-5R came with an E 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 OSS lens, the NEX-5T will include the E 16-50mm F3.5-5.6 PZ OSS lens. The new optic is still stabilized, but performed better in testing at our sister site, It's significantly lighter and smaller thanks to a retractable design, so we see this as a far better pairing. Be aware, though, that you'll get just a touch less telephoto reach in exchange for better wide-angle coverage.

Available from early September 2013, the Sony Alpha NEX-5T carries a list price of US$700 including the 16-50mm kit lens. That's just US$50 more than list pricing of its predecessor, a pretty good deal considering the better lens and added NFC radio.

Want to know more about the first NFC-equipped Sony NEX compact system camera? Read our hands-on first impressions Sony NEX-5T review for the full story!

Just want to get your order in before the rest of the world does? Place your pre-order with trusted Imaging Resource affiliates Adorama or B&H now: