Sony ZV-1 revealed: A high-powered RX100-styled camera tailor-made for video creators


posted Tuesday, May 26, 2020 at 10:00 AM EDT

Click here to see our Sony ZV-1 Preview


Here's a little surprise from Sony. Literally! Though we are still awaiting the arrival of the A7S II successor, Sony has nevertheless surprised us with another high-powered video-centric camera, this time in a compact and pocketable RX100-like form-factor. Meet the new Sony ZV-1

Though the model name is quite different, the new ZV-1 does indeed share quite a bit with its RX100 siblings, particularly the RX100 VII in terms of sensor and processor, and the earlier RX100 V with its 24-70mm eq. f/1.8-2.8 zoom lens. However, while these RX100-series cameras have always been geared more towards photographers, despite their healthy video features, the new ZV-1 is essentially the opposite. It's a pocketable, premium compact camera tailored for video content creators, particularly run-and-gun video shooters, vloggers and YouTubers looking for a camera that's capable, easy to use and lightweight.

Sporting the same imaging pipeline as the RX100 VII -- a 20MP 1-inch-type stacked CMOS sensor with onboard DRAM and a fast BIONZ X image processor with front-end LSI -- the ZV-1 offers an impressive array of video performance on paper (and stills-shooting capabilities, too, in case you're curious). It can shoot unlimited 4K video, high-speed Full HD video, offers Real-Time Eye AF tracking in video, supports HLG/HDR video and has S-Log3/2 picture profiles. Going further, the ZV-1 offers new video recording features not offered elsewhere in Sony's camera line, including an on-demand Background Defocus mode and a new Product Showcase focusing mode.

Beyond the internals, the physical design of the camera offers amenities that video shooters should find pleasing, especially compared to the RX100-series. There's a rubberized handgrip, a front REC tally light and a side-ways flip-out touchscreen display. Gone are the pop-up EVF and pop-up flash, and in their places are a Multi-Interface shoe for external microphones (there's also a 3.5mm mic jack) and a large, built-in 3-capsule microphone with detachable windscreen.


What's more, while Sony's RX100-series have long commanded fairly premium price points, especially with the latest-generation model, with MSRPs reaching the $1000 mark if not higher, the new Sony ZV-1 is debuting with a more palatable $799.99 price and should be hitting store shelves in early June. 

For all the details on this new video-centric compact camera, head over to our Sony ZV-1 Preview!

Sony ZV-1 Preview