It might feel like Sony has tried this before, but Sony’s latest camera has video makers in mind, particularly if they want to use different lenses.
Whether you’re someone who wants to make a small video or a big one, it’s pretty clear you have options out there, ranging from small cameras, big cameras, cameras made primarily to capture video, and cameras made primarily for stills. You might even be using a phone, because they’ll do that job, as well.
These days, cameras typically do double duty, killing two content creation birds with one optics-based stone, and even the dedicated video camera has largely become a thing of the past unless you’re a professional filmmaker. Be it a small or a big option, if you’re someone who creates video, you’re probably doing it from something that looks more like a stills camera. It’s all pretty much the same these days.
There are some specialty things video producers might want over those taking photos, such as support for higher bitrates, quick autofocus that doesn’t hunt and for a subject, and the ability to throw the background out of focus, but depending on what your setup is, that also may require more expensive hardware. Bigger cameras and faster lenses are often the domain of this, however it might be changing, and not just due to the advanced smarts our phones have.
Sony has been dabbling with producing compact cameras built for both forms of media for a while, but last year it went a little further in creating a model for folks keen on producing videos. Called the ZV-1, it was a compact camera made for both stills and videos with a focus on the latter, offering a flip out screen, background defocusing, and support for 4K video, basically making it a compact studio of sorts in one camera.
However that one camera only came with one lens, and that mightn’t always cut it for all situations and scenes, and so this year, Sony is adding a similar model to the range, coming in the ZV-E10.
Whereas last year’s ZV-1 offered a 20 megapixel sensor with a built-in lens focusing on the 24mm to 70mm range, this year’s ZV-E10 is built more like Sony’s A-series cameras, offering a bigger 24 megapixel APS-C sensor with support for interchangeable lenses in Sony’s E-Mount.
Offering a similar design but with a lens you can remove, the E10 brings a flip out screen and background defocus, but marries it with a new mode that can shift the focus for you from a product back to your face in the “Product Showcase” mode, which aims not to hunt for a shot and just quickly acts like a proper filmmaking focus system would: from you to the product and back again easily.
With that in mind, you can see Sony is largely focusing (excuse the pun) on the vlogger crowd, particularly folks doing videos for YouTube, TikTok, and the like, with the camera able to be set in either landscape or portrait, capturing at 4K or Full HD, and either to an SD card or live-streaming.
For folks intending to use it as a filmmaker beyond their own selfie needs, Sony’s ZV-E10 has a zoom lever and eight zoom settings to let you zoom in slowly or quickly, giving you a similar sense of control that filmmakers might have with larger cameras.
There’s also a three-capsule microphone inside built to provide better audio than a standard camera might offer, but there’s also a shoe interface up top to let you plug other microphones in if need be, not to mention the customisation you get by supporting other Sony E-Mount lenses.
“We are super excited to announce the new Alpha ZV-E10 camera to the content creator community,” said Jun Yoon, Head of Digital Imaging for Sony in Australia and New Zealand.
“We have adopted many features that were so well-received in our ZV-1 camera, and then added even more scope to your creative vision, through a larger sensor and an interchangeable lens system,” he said.
“Whether your content is focused on stills, video, or a healthy mix of both, this camera could be the perfect step-up, or additional tool in your kit.”
Much like last year’s ZV-1, Sony’s ZV-E10 is a little on the pricey side, fetching a body only price of $1249, while the ZV-1 drops from that price tag to just over a grand at $1088. Mind you, that’s without a lens, with the ZV-E10 kit arriving with a 16-50mm F3.5-5.6 power zoom lens for $1449 in Australia. Both variations — body only and kit — are set to arrive in August where they’ll be available in both black and white.