Sony announces the HX80: “World’s smallest camera with 30x optical zoom” plus new wireless control rig


posted Monday, March 7, 2016 at 1:00 PM EDT

Sony today announced the new HX80 compact camera, as well as the development of a new wireless lighting control system.

The new Sony HX80 compact camera features a 30x optical zoom and 18.2-megapixel Exmor R CMOS sensor. The HX80 joins Sony's HX90V as the only compact high-zoom cameras with a retractable electronic viewfinder available in the US. Sony also reports that the HX80 is the world's smallest compact camera with at least 30x optical zoom and a built-in viewfinder.

Utilizing a BIONZ X processor, the Sony HX80 can record full HD movies in XAVC S format at 50 megabits per second (Mbps). To help with capturing stills and videos in low light, the HX80 includes 5-axis Optical SteadyShot image stabilization. On the back of the camera is a 921k-dot 3-inch LCD display that can tilt up to 180 degrees.

The Sony HX80 camera has a 30x optical zoom lens with an aperture range of f/3.5-6.4 and an actual focal length of 4.1-123mm. 

In addition to the pop-up OLED Tru-Finder EVF, the Cyber-shot HX80 also includes a built-in pop-up flash. Additionally, the camera includes built-in Wi-Fi and NFC for compatibility with Sony PlayMemories camera apps.


Available in April for a suggested retail price of US$350, the HX80 aims to deliver a compact and flexible camera well-suited for travel photography.

At the Wedding and Portrait Photographers International (WPPI) conference in Las Vegas, Sony has also announced the development of a new wireless lighting control system. This new system is designed for Alpha-series cameras and will allow for wireless control of external flash units.

The new wireless lighting control system can control up to 15 flashes in up to 5 groups at a range of 98 feet (30 meters).

The FA-WRC1M wireless radio commander and the FA-WRR1 wireless radio receiver are currently in prototype stage and are on display at Sony's WPPI booth. The system has a maximum range of just under 100 feet (30 meters) and provides flash sync speeds up to 1/250s with high speed sync also available. Capable of controlling up to 15 flash units in up to 5 groups, photographers will be able to control the flashes' power both manually and automatically.

The Wireless Lighting Control system will be available this summer. Pricing and additional specifications will be forthcoming.