Because of the limits of technology, we are sometimes forced to choose our battles and settle for compromises. That’s true for smartphones and it’s true for digital cameras as well. Super zoom? Yes, you can have that, but you’ll have to settle for less than speedy performance. Sony, however, is saying that you can have your cake and eat it too, so to speak. The latest addition to its Cyber-shot family, the RX10 IV, boasts of a few firsts. But its real claim to fame is combining a 24-600 mm lens with fast autofocus and fast tracking in a single camera.
Compared to the RX10 III before it, the new RX10 IV doesn’t exactly change the zoom formula. You’ve got a ZEISS Vario-Sonnar T* 24-600mm F2.4-F4 Lens that lets you achieve an ultra-telephoto zoom. Sony’s Optical SteadyShot addresses the shakiness common in these settings.
What the RX10 IV does add to the equation is its speed. The camera boasts of an astounding 315 PDAF points that covers about 65% of the entire sensor. Add some contrast-detection type AF and you’ve got a focus that locks in as little as 0.03 seconds. It doesn’t stop there either. The RX10 IV is the first in the Cyber-shot line to get High-density Tracking AF usually reserved only for a few high-end a (alpha) models.
Together with its 1.0-type 20.1 megapixel Exmor RS CMOS sensor with DRAM and the latest BIONZ X image processor, the RX10 IV achieves speeds of 24 fps in continuous shooting mode, complete with full AF and AE tracking. If you’re not into burst modes, the camera is also able to record 4K video with Fast Hybrid AF.
The new superzoom Cyber-shot also allows for fast operations via its 3.0-type 1.44M dot tiltable LCD touch screen and for fast transfers with Wi-Fi, NFC, and Bluetooth built-in. The Sony Cyber-shot RX10 IV goes on sale some time in October for 2,000 EUR, roughly $2,400.