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Sony Cyber-shot RX10 Vs Sony Cyber-shot R1 Comparison Review

Sony Cyber-shot RX10 Vs Sony Cyber-shot R1 Comparison Review - We travel back through time to take a look at the original large sensor bridge camera, the Sony Cyber-shot R1, and compare it to the new RX10.

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Category : Compact Cameras
Product : Sony Cyber-shot RX10
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Features
Handling
Performance
Verdict
Specification
Sony Cyber Shot RX10 Vs Sony Cyber Shot R1 (2)

Sony, a major technological company, with an image sensor business that supplies the majority of digital camera manufacturers, has not shied away from trying new technology and sensor designs, often leading the market. 

With the Sony Cyber-shot RX10, Sony has introduced one of the first bridge cameras with a larger sensor, in this case, the RX10 features the same 20 megapixel 1inch backlit CMOS sensor as the Sony Cyber-shot RX100 II. However, it's not the first time Sony has used a large sensor in a bridge style camera, with the Sony Cyber-shot R1 (above right) featuring a 10 megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor, introduced in 2005. As we had one to hand, we thought it would be worth looking how far we have come since the R1.

Sony Cyber-shot RX10 vs R1 Features

Sony Cyber Shot RX10 Vs Sony Cyber Shot R1 (3)

The Sony Cyber-Shot RX10 features a larger than normal 20 megapixel 1inch backlit CMOS sensor, vs the larger 10 megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor. The RX10 features an 8.3x optical zoom lens, vs a 5x optical zoom lens in the R1 - and due to the larger APS-C sensor in the R1, the lens is physically larger. Both cameras start at 24mm equivalent and feature a Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* branded lens, and start with an f/2.8 aperture, however the R10 benefits from a constant f/2.8 aperture, while the R1 isn't as bright at the telephoto end with an f/4.8 aperture. 

Both cameras feature an electronic viewfinder, however the R10 has a high resolution 1.44 million dot resolution, while the R1 has a 235k dot resolution. The RX10 with a more conventional style features a larger 3inch tilting screen on the back and a top LCD screen, whereas the R1 features a tilting / rotating 2inch screen on the top of the camera. The R1 also features a manual zoom ring, whereas the zoom on the RX10 is electronically controlled. 

Sony Cyber Shot RX10 Vs Sony Cyber Shot R1 (6)

Sony Cyber-shot RX10 vs R1 Handling

Sony Cyber Shot RX10 Vs Sony Cyber Shot R1 (7)
Weighing 995g vs 755g for the RX10, it is noticeably lighter than the R1, although still quite heavy compared to other compact cameras. The Sony Cyber-shot R1 measures 139.4 x 97.7 x 156mm vs 129 x 88.1 x 102.2mm for the RX10, making the RX10 noticeably smaller than the R1. It's when you view the cameras from the top that you can see how much of a size difference there is between the cameras. 

Sony Cyber Shot RX10 Vs Sony Cyber Shot R1 (10)

There is a rotating scroll wheel on the back and a command wheel on both. Both cameras also feature an eye-detection sensor so that the camera will automatically switch to the electronic viewfinder when the camera is held up to your eye. The RX10 has an exposure compensation dial on the top.

Sony Cyber Shot RX10 Vs Sony Cyber Shot R1 (9)

The rear of the Sony Cyber-shot R1 has a rather unconventional layout of controls compared to the RX10, yet gives quick access to a number of settings including metering, drive mode, self-timer, AE lock and an ISO button on the top of the camera. On the side of both cameras is the memory card slot, with the RX10 taking Sony Memory Sticks or SD/SDHC/SDXC cards, while the R1 takes either Sony Memory Sticks or CompactFlash cards. 
Sony Cyber Shot RX10 Vs Sony Cyber Shot R1 (8)

Sony Cyber-shot RX10 vs R1 Performance 

Here we look at a number of photos taken in the same location and time with both cameras: 

Sony Cyber-shot RX10 Sony Cyber-shot R1
DRO Auto | 1/200 sec | f/4.0 | 8.9 mm | ISO 125
DRO Auto | 1/200 sec | f/4.0 | 8.9 mm | ISO 125
Drive | 1/250 sec | f/4.5 | 14.3 mm | ISO 160
Drive | 1/250 sec | f/4.5 | 14.3 mm | ISO 160
Wide | 1/500 sec | f/4.0 | 8.8 mm | ISO 125
Wide | 1/500 sec | f/4.0 | 8.8 mm | ISO 125
Wide | 1/250 sec | f/6.3 | 14.3 mm | ISO 160
Wide | 1/250 sec | f/6.3 | 14.3 mm | ISO 160
Full Zoom | 1/800 sec | f/4.0 | 73.3 mm | ISO 125
Full Zoom | 1/800 sec | f/4.0 | 73.3 mm | ISO 125
Zoom | 1/400 sec | f/8.0 | 71.5 mm | ISO 160
Zoom | 1/400 sec | f/8.0 | 71.5 mm | ISO 160


Noise performance:


1/13 sec | f/5.0 | 42.7 mm | ISO 200
1/13 sec | f/5.0 | 42.7 mm | ISO 200
1/13 sec | f/4.8 | 55.3 mm | ISO 200
1/13 sec | f/4.8 | 55.3 mm | ISO 200
RX10 ISO200 Actual Pixels R1 ISO200 Actual Pixels
1/200 sec | f/5.0 | 42.7 mm | ISO 3200
1/200 sec | f/5.0 | 42.7 mm | ISO 3200
1/250 sec | f/4.8 | 55.3 mm | ISO 3200
1/250 sec | f/4.8 | 55.3 mm | ISO 3200
RX10 ISO3200 Actual Pixels R1 ISO3200 Actual Pixels

The lowest matching ISO setting of both cameras is ISO200, so we have shown this as a comparison. 

The highest matching ISO setting of both cameras is ISO3200, so we have shown this as a comparison. The RX10 goes up to ISO25600 and is also twice the megapixel rating at 20 megapixels, compared to the 10 megapixels of the R1. The R1 also has a larger sensor, however, as can be seen, the advances in technology and image processing has resulted in a much cleaner, higher resolution image with much lower noise. 

If shooting JPEG with the R1, then you might think using ISO1600 and ISO3200 was something you just wouldn't want to do, but it's a different story when shooting raw, as these examples below show, when shooting at ISO3200.

R1 Raw no noise reduction Raw to JPEG with ACR8.2 Noise Reduction
RAW with no noise reduction (NR) applied RAW converted to JPEG with NR applied

Taking the RAW file from the Sony Cyber-shot R1 and processing it in a modern image application such as Adobe Photoshop CS6 with Adobe Camera RAW RC8.2, it's possible to get a much better result from the old R1. And while shooting RAW may not be as important with modern cameras, as they're often very good at producing very good JPEG results, with older cameras it is still useful to shoot raw to get the best possible results. 

Sony Cyber-shot RX10 vs R1 Verdict

We've come a long way since the Sony Cyber-shot R1 was released in 2005, and while the R1 may seem quite dated compared to the RX10, lacking even a video mode, it is still possible to get good results from the older camera. Thanks to advances made in RAW image processing, you can even use it at its highest ISO setting of ISO3200. However, for most people the benefits of having a modern digital camera, such as the Sony Cyber-shot RX10, with 10fps continuous shooting, excellent JPEG output, fullHD video recording, a higher resolution sensor as well as a brighter zoom lens, will be preferable. 

Read our full Sony Cyber-shot RX10 Review.

Comparison Table

Sony Cyber-shot RX10Sony Cyber-shot DSC-R1
ManufacturerSonySony
Lens
Max Aperturef/2.8f/2.8 - f/4.8
35mm equivalent24mm - 200mm24mm - 120mm
Optical Zoom8.3x5x
Image Sensor
CCD pixels20.2Mp (Megapixels)10.3Mp (Megapixels)
Pixels (W)54723888
Pixels (H)34682592
Sensor TypeBack-lit CMOS (B.S.I.)CMOS
Sensor Size1inchAPS-C
Sensor Size (width)13.2mm21.5mm
Sensor Size (height)8.8mm14.4mm
Aspect Ratio
  • 3:2
  • 4:3
  • 16:9
  • 1:1
  • 3:2
LCD Monitor
LCD Monitor3in2in
Screen resolution1,228,800 dots134k
Touch ScreenNoNo
Focusing
Min Focus3cm35cm
Focusing modes
  • Autofocus
  • Manual
  • Spot
  • Multi
  • Centre
  • Autofocus
  • Manual
  • Multi
  • Centre
Exposure Control
Shutter speeds shortest1/3200sec1/2000sec
Shutter speeds longest30sec30sec
Exp modes
  • Program
  • Aperture-Priority
  • Shutter-Priority
  • Manual
  • Scene modes
  • Program Variable
  • Program
  • Aperture-Priority
  • Shutter-Priority
  • Manual
  • Scene modes
  • Program Variable
Metering
  • Centre-weighted - Average
  • Multi Pattern
  • Spot
  • Centre-weighted - Average
  • Multi Pattern
  • Spot
ISO sensitivity80 - 25600160 - 3200
White balance
  • Auto
  • Manual
  • Outdoors/Daylight
  • Cloudy
  • Incandescent
  • Fluorescent
  • Shade
  • Auto
  • Manual
  • Outdoors/Daylight
  • Cloudy
  • Incandescent
  • Fluorescent
Exposure Comp+/-3+/-2
Shooting Options
Continuous shooting10fps3fps
Video
Movie modeYesNo
Video Resolution
  • 1920x1080
  • 640x480 VGA
  • 1440x1080
    Video FPS60p, 50p, 25pNo Data
    Stereo SoundYesNo Data
    Optical Zoom with VideoYesNo Data
    Other Features
    Image StabilisationYesNo
    Interface
    HDMIYesNo
    USBUSB 2USB 2
    Wi-FiYesNo
    Storage
    Card Type
    • SD
    • SDHC
    • Memory Stick
    • SDXC
    • CF
    • Memory Stick
    File Type
    • RAW
    • JPG
    • RAW + JPG
    • JPG
    • RAW + JPG
    Power Source
    Battery TypeNP-FW50 Lithium IonLithium Ion
    CIPA Rating420500
    Box Contents
    Box ContentsRechargeable Battery Pack NP-FW50, AC Adaptor AC-UB10 / UB10B / UB10C / UB10D, Micro USB cable, Shoulder strap, Lens cap, Shoe cap, Lens hood, Eyepiece Cup, Instruction ManualinfoLITHIUM NP-FR1, AC Adaptor (AC-LS5), AV Cable, USB Cable, Shoulder Strap, CD-ROM 2x
    Dimensions
    Weight755g995g
    Width129mm139.4mm
    Height88.1mm97.7mm
    Depth102.2mm156mm
    View Full DetailsView Full Details


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    Photographs taken using the Sony Cyber-shot RX10

    Hydrangea in my back gardenHead of hydrangea
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    Comments


    Niknut e2
    4 740 64 United Kingdom
    30 Dec 2013 4:31PM
    Great comparison review !!.......not a massive difference in the image quality, but the RX10
    does have more 'bite' from the 20mgp sensor.

    Clearly the RX10 is more compact & maybe handles better, with a much improved EVF.

    Put the 24-120 lens of the R1 onto the RX10, & fit the 2.4m.dot EVF from the NEX6/7 &
    I'll definitely buy one !!!!!!!

    I've got a birthday coming up in February, so come on Sony, pull yer finger out !!!!!!!!.GrinGrin

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    frenchie44 8 293 United Kingdom
    2 Jan 2014 2:45PM
    when the R1 was launched I bought one, it was very good for its time, but the auto focus was erratic,
    I would focus on something in the centre of the frame, but when I put the shots on the monitor it was a tree or wall that was at the edge of the frame that was sharp and the rest out of focus, I took it back and got another one, that was the same, so then I gave up and got my cash back.
    MikeBe 7 United Kingdom
    10 Jan 2014 4:09PM

    Quote:Great comparison review !!.......not a massive difference in the image quality, but the RX10
    does have more 'bite' from the 20mgp sensor.



    Sorry but there is a massive difference in IQ and given the 8 years difference I would expect one! The RX10 cooers are far more natural and the images do not have that over-blown video look to them. More detail and less noise are clearly evident.

    I think the choice of lens is good for most users who want to carry just one camera without multiple lenses and the EVF is again good enough for most. The only issue is the current rather high price. Now when Sony can get it to the 750 mark I'm in!

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