Sony Takes a Huge Step Backwards with QX10 and QX100

YouTube member PhoneArena

Today Sony has released an innovative idea that merges a complete camera system into two different lens bodies. Controlling the QX10 or QX100 is done through your smart phone.

Controls not Inlcuded

The QX10 and QX100 may deserve the term innovative, but that might only be used to describe design. Every aspect of the QX10 and QX100 is working backwards from what Sony has praised themselves for previously.


When Sony designed the NEX-7 they highlighted the fact that they've added more buttons and dials and an improved EVF electronic view finder. The new QX10 and QDX100 relies on a touch screen smartphone and a laggy display. Not to mention lag time when initiating the shutter to fire. Lagging displays played a major part with the slow adoption of mirrorless cameras. Some display like that of Fuji's EVF almost appear as if you're looking through the mirror of a DSLR camera, not an LCD screen.


The Sony RX100 and RX100 Mark II have been praised to bring a high quality sensor into a very pocketable camera. While the new QX10 and QX100 have sensors similar to the RX100, it can only be as comfortable as sticking a cup in your pants.

I think it's only fitting to share this next video from The Onion that spoofs such backwards innovation.

With a price tag of $499 and useless without a decent smartphone, the QX10 and QX100 brings image quality that can already be captured in a cheaper and more pocketable point and shoot system, and the only innovation they bring is to promote glorified 'selfies'.

Still, if you want more information on the QX10 and QX100 they are already available for pre-order via B&H (here).

find-price-button Sony QX10 and QX100 Smart Lens Cameras

20 thoughts on “Sony Takes a Huge Step Backwards with QX10 and QX100

  1. Urban B

    Think of a different market. Something tells me most of the commenters here don't carry a purse and take lot of selfies. I'm also thinking of people at concerts, parents at recitals (like that stupid commercial), family pics in the living room, and crowd shots at dragon*con. So this isn't geared to the poeple who tune in to cheesycam. And yes, folks will shell out the money for this.

  2. Nelson

    The shutter lag using onboard shutter button is pretty low (0.035ms?), but if controlled by camera it is 0.22ms for QX100 and 1.2s(!) for QX10

    But I can already have some ideas for use on this camera that your normal P&S can't do, sometimes you have to think outside the box.

  3. Dan B

    I think Sony shot themselves in the foot with this one. Not only is this a gimmick, Sony are the world leaders in smartphone camera technology for christ sake. Heres an idea, build a phone which has 'already great optics/sensor', why not chuck a lump on the back and make it slightly better, less portable and more expensive on top of an already expensive phone. Come on, your still going to have to carry that 'lump' around with you and not that other camera people were worried about. Sony, which couldnt you have at least experimented with integrating this in a smaller way within a smartphone already like having the zoom come out of the camera for instance?

  4. Emm

    Post author

    @Kirill - I wrote an article a short while back on the Eye-Fi and also thought it was a terrible product. The new 'Mobi' version has been very reliable in my Fuji X100s, Sony RX100s, GH3, etc. Once the images are on my phone they are automatically synced to my DropBox account. I can share very large images with a single link rather than trying to email a large JPEG. If you decide to try Eye-Fi again, use the Mobi version.

  5. Kirill

    @Emm, my experiences with the Eye-Fi have ranged from terrible to worse. I wasn't even able to offload and sell to anyone.

    I will definitely be trying this out. I was gonna go with the 5R or RX but this seems like a no brainer for non-professional work.

  6. Emm

    Post author

    @Chester - I was just having a conversation about this. It's something that could take too long to launch an app and sync up when all you need is a quick snap with a zoom lens.

    For something truly portable with 10x optical stabilized zoom Canon sells the Elph for about $100 bucks. Couple this with an Eye-Fi Mobi SD Card that automatically sends images to your smartphone and I think it will be a better experience than fiddling with the QX10.

    Plus I like how one single Eye-Fi card can work across many cameras including my very large DSLRs, so i'm not limited to how my smartphone receives images and from what camera I can instantly share with.

  7. It's a cool concept but just doesn't make real-world sense.

    1. The lens-camera modules are not significantly more portable than the standard compact camera bodies they're based off of. So this is not a solution that makes it more likely for you to always have on your person and spontaneously whip out.

    2. Particularly because this will take forever to get up and running. The time to pair the devices is bad enough, but then consider needing to log into your phone (security password), launch PlayMemories, AND THEN wait to pair.

    3. Once it's paired, the combined device has ergonomics, screen lag, and feature set that is vastly inferior to what you'd have with the regular cameras.

    4. And at least in the case of the RX100 II, you can already do the Wifi remote control with PlayMemories on the phone, so the remote control and easy social sharing selling points of these lens cameras are not unique.

    There is literally no point to get these lens cameras unless, perhaps, you would only ever use it as a fully-automatic point-and-shoot and the $250 price delta is a really big deal to you.

    Nonetheless, I hope Sony sells enough of these to continue with development on the platform as a whole, because I'd love to see PlayMemories get more fully featured...for use with my RX100 II...

  8. Emm

    Post author

    @jim - I'm just one opinion, and although I find it innovative, I don't think this is the product that is going to be a game changing experience. One example is that the mirrorless market is booming, and Canon's first EOS-M was dare I say 'not a hit'. I think this is Sony's first try (a good try) but far from making a good user experience.

    Sony wanted to address a few 'smartphone photography' shortcomings which include not being able to zoom in. They also wanted to have a camera that can instantly share on social media.

    When it comes down to mobile photography and fast social network sharing, my preference for such innovation lies in the way Samsung is doing things with their Galaxy Android Cameras:

    I'm sure there are many people who will throw in the 'Large Sensor' and 'Megapixel' cards, but the best camera is always the camera you use the most. I can't say my iPhone takes better pictures than my Mark III, but i've been able to capture way more memories through the iPhone than I have from my 5D.

  9. jim

    I am incredibly excited about both of these lenses, and so if everyone I know who is involved with mobile photography. The camera industry know that these are compact killers.

    Mobile photography is eliminating the point and shoot market and this will be the death knell as soon as Canon and Nikon and Olympus follow suit with their offerings.

    If I am not bring my DSLR with me, or film camera, then I am most certainly using my iphone 90% of the for photos. The processing and fun factor of social media destroys my user experience on other formats. These new lenses will only bridge the gap further.

    This article headline is exactly the opposite reception that I have heard from everyone I have talked to this about and I am in the industry...

  10. Emm

    Post author

    @Kirill - Let me know how that goes after you pick one up. I think you'll find it may be more of an inconvenience. If you want images to go directly to your smartphone for instant sharing, an Eye-Fi card works wonders.

    I placed one of these in a Sony RX100 (not mark II), and it's pretty instant if you want to share from your phone to your social netwworks - and it shoots RAW. The QX10 and QX100 share a similar sensor to the RX100.

  11. Kirill

    Backwards? Not at all. If I wanted an rx100 or nex if get that... But given that I travel a great amount and pretty tired of having a camera along with my smartphone, this is brilliant for me.

    Only thing about it that I would wish for is for it to shoot raw. A mark ii perhaps.

  12. Jenn Grover

    Pairing via NFC for iPhone...brilliant...if iPhone supported it. Oh, and leave out the 41 megapixel Lumia 1020 - poorly executed.

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