Sony NEX-5R: Conclusion

February 27, 2013 by Chris Gampat Reads (2,372)
Editor's Rating

Ratings Breakdown (1-10)

    • Image/Video Quality
    • 9
    • Features
    • 8
    • Design / Ease of Use
    • 9
    • Performance
    • 8
    • Expandability
    • 8
    • Total Score:
    • 8.40
    • Rating 1 to 10, top score 10

Sony’s NEX-5R is overall quite a minor update to the old NEX-5N–but the changes that are there really count. The WiFi transmission feature is really quite cool for photographers, journalists or enthusiasts that need to shoot and share on the spot. The new sensor renders not only spectacular color but also excellent high iso results. On top of this, Sony decided to add in more ergonomic exposure controls.

On the downside though, our unit’s touchscreen wasn’t the most responsive and the camera retains the old Sony NEX hot shoe vs the newer multi-interface shoe. On other units though, the screen was snappy and responsive–rivaling that of even Olympus’s!

Sony’s autofocusing performance still isn’t able to touch that of Micro Four Thirds cameras, and at this point we’re not exactly sure why.

For the best imaging results, we found that users should stick to prime lenses. Not only are they consistently sharper but they can also offer you the bokehlicious images that everyone wants.

So who is this for? Many people I personally know have bought one as their video camera/camcorder. The predecessor was used by the BBC–so why not? Indeed, it has excellent video capabilities. But it can also capture spectacular images with the right lenses. Many people can use this camera and grow with it due to the ergonomic controls for exposure added in. In the end though, enthusiasts and those looking for more power from an interchangeable lens camera should look closely at the 5R.


  • Great image quality up to 6400
  • Fast focusing, but still not up to par with Olympus’s FAST AF system
  • Compact size
  • The addition of the touchscreen helps a bit in most cases.
  • Improved battery life
  • Addition of new dials to make access to settings much simpler and quicker
  • WiFi connectivity is very good with the iPad but not so great with Android phones.
  • Overall some of the best ergonomics of any mirrorless camera out there.


  • Our touchscreen wasn’t as responsive
  • Old hot shoe
  • Weird placement of the playback button
  • Could have done better with at least an older EVF built in
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