All technical and pricing issues aside, one of the things I love about the RX1 is that, in this digital world, it brings me back to thinking before I shoot, much like the Leica M9 does. Sure, there are faster and more clever digital cameras than the RX1 but I love being able to physically adjust the aperture with the lens ring rather than in a menu or small dial.
Other than slight issues with autofocus, the lens is superb. And the fixed lens again brings back memories of working the angles of a shot and getting physically closer to subjects when necessary. Sure, you can do that with a prime lens on a DSLR, but somehow the camera’s 35mm lens almost forces you to slow down and consider what you’re doing.
Obviously the RX1’s image quality is the unequivocal star and rightly so. While techies (including me) are impressed that Sony fit a full-frame sensor in such a small body, the image is what photography is all about.
The bottom line for many of us, of course, will be the price. Obviously, pros, semi-pros and enthusiasts with a passion for photography are more likely to dig deep in their pockets for the RX1 than those with a lesser interest in image making. And while there’s no lack of advanced compact cameras, the RX1 definitely stands out in this ever-growing category. Even if you don’t have (or aren’t willing to shell out) $2800 for this camera, stop by a local camera store and put it in your hands. That may not change your mind but you’ll have a better understanding about why the RX1 will likely have photographers reaching for their checkbooks and credit cards.
- excellent image quality and lens sharpness
- solid feature set
- manual aperture ring
- LCD difficult to use in bright light
- movie record button awkwardly placed
- autofocus somewhat sluggish in low light
- relatively short battery life
- fussy manual focus