Best of the Best Holiday 2014: One Chance – Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100...

Best of the Best Holiday 2014: One Chance – Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 III

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If you have just one chance to capture a moment worth preserving, don’t leave it to a smartphone. This compact, portable imaging machine is built for speed and stunning picture quality, as well as video. Its Zeiss 24–70mm zoom lens is perfect for portraits and macro shots with soft, background defocus effects like the pros shoot, as well as landscapes and group shots.

A pro-level point-and-shoot camera with an eye-level viewfinder and a 3.0-inch, 180º-tilt LCD screen for selfies, the pocketsize RX100 III is compact enough to take anywhere. You can view every scene in detail with the bright, retractable viewfinder, which faithfully displays what will appear in your recording, including the effects of your camera settings. And the rotating LCD makes it easy to photograph over crowds or low to capture pets eye to eye by swinging up and down 180°.

Your photos can maintain soft background defocus even when zoomed in with its improved 24–70mm f/1.8–2.8 Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* lens, while an ultrafast Bionz X image processor adds speed and accuracy for stills and Full HD video. Unmatched by any smartphone’s, the Zeiss lens is built for portraits and macro shots, yet its wide aperture also allows the capture of moving subjects clearly without any blur due to camera and/or subject shake. And a premium multilayered T* coating dramatically reduces ghost and flare caused by light reflection.

With four times the capture area of image sensors commonly used in compact cameras, the RX100 III’s large, 1.0-inch Exmor R CMOS sensor is back-illuminated to double its light sensitivity while reducing noise levels. This a great help when photographing in dimly lit environments, indoors or out, and for capturing sharp video.

The camera records Full HD movies in the XAVC S2 format, which uses MPEG-4 AVC/H.264 for video compression and linear PCM for audio compression, while saving files in a MP4 wrapper. This permits extensive record times as well as high-quality video recording. The camera’s dual video recording capability (XAVC S / AVCHD files along with MP4 files) allows you to shoot high bit-rate video for storage or editing purposes while also recording a lower bit rate video for easily sharing via built-in Wi-Fi. And Sony’s intelligent active mode will dramatically reduce the effects of camera shake while shooting movies.

The Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 III retails for $799.99. sony.com

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