Monthly Archives: August 2014

Sony DSC-RX10 Camera Gets New Video Format with Firmware Update

Sony has released an update to firmware version 2.00 for the DSC-RX10 camera, giving the camera a new video format. With this release, as seen in the screenshot below, the File Format item on screen 2 of the Shooting menu has a new entry, XAVC S, at the top, in addition to the existing AVCHD and MP4 formats.

RX10-File-Format-Menu-Screen-for-Web

The XAVC S format is a consumer version of the XAVC format, which is used for recording 4K video. The 4K standard has a higher resolution than normal HD (high-definition) video, having roughly 4,000 pixels in each horizontal line, instead of the 1,920 pixels in HD video.

The RX10 does not shoot 4K video with the new format, but the XAVC S format does provide a higher bit-rate than the other formats, of 50 megabits per second. In addition, if you select XAVC S for File Format, the Record Setting option, just below File Format on the menu screen, offers choices of 60p, 30p, 24p, and 120p, meaning the camera can shoot progressive video with 24, 30, 60, or 120 full frames per second, as shown on the next screenshot. (These choices are different with cameras sold in countries that use the PAL/50i video standard, which have options of 50p, 100p, and 25p.)

Sony-RX10-Record-Setting-Menu-Screen-for-Web With the 60p or 120p setting, you can record at the fast frame rate and then slow the footage down in your video editing software to produce high-quality slow-motion footage.

So, if high-quality video is important to you, this firmware update is well worth getting.

One important note: If you want to use the XAVC S format for video, you have to use an SDXC card with a speed of at least class 10 and a capacity of at least 64 gigabytes. This is not just a strong recommendation; if you use a card that does not meet those specifications, the camera will display an error message and will not record video using that format.

To get the firmware update, visit the Sony site at http://esupport.sony.com. Here is a link for the update in the United States; there are other links for sites in other countries.

There is a good discussion of the update along with links to various sites for obtaining the update at the dpreview.com website.

Sony Releases Firmware Update 1.10 for DSC-RX100 III Camera

Sony has just released an update of the firmware for the DSC-RX100 III camera, also referred to as the DSC-RX100M3. This update, which is numbered Version 1.10, does not add any new features or make any major changes to the way the camera operates; according to Sony, the update “resolves an issue where the camera may not power on in certain situations.”

Also, the update appears to address an issue with the use of the Soft Skin Effect option when recording video. With the original firmware release, when recording video in Intelligent Auto mode with Face Detection turned on, the camera activated the Soft Skin Effect setting and you could not turn it off. Many users found it undesirable to have that effect turned on, and they found it difficult to achieve good autofocus on faces with Face Detection turned off. With the firmware update, it is now possible to have Face Detection turned on but Soft Skin Effect turned off, when recording video in Intelligent Auto mode. I have not found a huge difference in the actual appearance of videos shot after this update, but that may just be because of the particular conditions I was shooting under. In any event, you now have the option of turning Soft Skin Effect off, which gives you more flexibility in your settings for recording video.

I installed the update using my Macintosh computer; the process took about 15 minutes. When the process was finished, I checked the Version item on screen 6 of the Setup menu, which confirmed that the camera now had Version 1.10 installed, instead of the original Version 1.00. I have not noticed any changes in the operation of the camera, but I’m always glad to have the latest version of the firmware installed.

To get the update, you can visit Sony’s site at http://esupport.sony.com and search for the camera’s model number, DSCRX100M3.  Here is a link to the page where I found the update.

You need to be careful to follow the instructions carefully, by, for example, having a fully-charged battery in the camera, removing the memory card, and connecting the camera to the computer using the Sony USB cable when prompted by the firmware updating software.

For general information about the RX100 III camera, see my book, Photographer’s Guide to the Sony DSC-RX100 III, available through this site and various online sellers.

 

Sony RX100 III Book is Now Available in PDF, iPad, and Kindle Versions

sonyrx1003coversmallAs of today, Photographer’s Guide to the Sony DSC-RX100 III is available in all three downloadable versions: PDF, ePub (for iPad, iPhone, Kobo, Sony, Nook, etc.), and mobi (for Kindle). You can purchase a bundle of all three versions through this site for $9.95 using the above link.

The book will be available in paperback for $26.95 through Amazon.com and other online sellers by the end of August or early September 2014. I will post further details as they become available.

The electronic versions also are available through the Barnes and Noble, Amazon, Kobo, Apple, and Google Play online stores.

Please note: If you purchased the PDF-only version of the Sony RX100 III book through this site, you should have received a message providing links to the iPad and Kindle versions. If you did not receive that message, please send a message to contact@whiteknightpress.com making reference to your order number, and I will send you the other two versions.

Sony RX100 III Book is Now Available in PDF Version Only – Other Versions Coming Soon

sonyrx1003coversmallAs of today, my newest book, Photographer’s Guide to the Sony RX100 III, is available for purchase through this site in a PDF version for $9.95.  The new book has almost 500 pages of text and more than 400 full-color photographs and illustrations.  The book covers all features, menus, and controls of the RX100 III camera.  It is similar to my earlier books about the RX100 and RX100 II cameras, but I rewrote it in many areas to cover changed menu structures, different control options, and other new features of the camera.

The book is available now only in the PDF version.  I am making it available in this format in response to requests from customers who would like to start using the book before the other versions are available.  The paperback version and the versions for the iPad and Kindle should be ready by the end of August 2014.

If you purchase the PDF version through this site, you can receive the other two downloadable versions at no extra cost if you send a message to contact@whiteknightpress.com when those versions are available, including your order number and asking for the other two versions.