The second wave in a new line of Sony cameras is turning regular smartphone picture takers into bona fide photographers. Shaped like camera lenses, Sony’s QX line of “lens cameras” attach to the front of Android and iOS smartphones, enabling users to achieve high-level optic results even if their on-board smartphone cameras aren’t all that powerful.
The Sony QX30, scheduled for release next month at a cost of $350, comes with a single 30x, 24-720mm f/3.5-6.3 optical zoom lens. Offering 1080/60p video capability, the QX30’s guts are comprised of a 20.4-megapixel, 1/2.3-inch Exmor R CMOS sensor and can achieve 12.8k ISO. Photo and video storage is facilitated either via the camera?s microSD card or smartphone memory. The Wi-Fi connection used to pair the smartphone and lens cam is also used to wirelessly transfer data. Battery life is estimated at 45 minutes of HD video recording or 200 photographs.
Given its interchangeable lens mount and pop-up flash, the Sony QX1 appears to provide a greater level of shooting diversity. Built with a 20.1 megapixel APS-C sensor, the QX1 offers 16k ISO, can capture 1080/30p video, and can purportedly accommodate any of Sony’s E-mount interchangeable lenses. Just like the QX30, camera control is performed through the smartphone, which is paired via Wi-Fi. Battery life is estimated at 440 snapshots or 150 minutes of video recording. The QX1 is scheduled for widespread availability in November at a cost of around $400.