Print 29 comment(s) - last by Dan0512.. on Sep 9 at 9:34 AM

They clip onto your smartphone for better quality photos

Smartphone cameras are convenient because we tend to carry our phones wherever we go, so it's nice to always have everything in one device. However, they've failed to fully replace digital cameras (such as the ultra-portable point-and-shoot cameras) because of their lack of quality photos. So where's the middle ground?

Sony may have found a solution with its new QX10 and QX100 lens cameras. They're smart lenses that clip onto your smartphone and offer the best of both worlds: the portability of carrying one device; the ability to immediately share pictures with your smartphone (instead of having to dump them on a computer, like with a digital camera), and the quality of a point-and-shoot camera.

The QX10 offers a 1/2.3-inch, 18-megapixel image sensor with an f/3.3-5.9 lens. It has a Sony G Lens and communicates wirelessly through Wi-Fi and NFC. It also sports a microSD and Memory Stick slots for storage. 

The QX10 runs $250 USD. 


The QX100, on the other hand, features a 1-inch 20.2-megapixel Exmor R sensor and a f/1.8-4.9 Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T lens. Like the QX10, it communicates wirelessly through both Wi-Fi and NFC and has microSD and Memory Stick slots. 

The QX100 will hit the pocket a little harder at $500 USD. 


Sony's system allows your smartphone to be the viewfinder, shutter trigger, and backup storage while the lenses offer quality shots. It seems like it solves a couple problems associated with deciding between the smartphone camera and a digital point-and-shoot, but will people really want to carry a lens around with them in addition to their smartphones?

For those who answered "yes" to that last question, you can pick up the QX10 or QX100 as long as you have an Android smartphone or iPhone. 

Source: Sony

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RE: too bulky
By retrospooty on 9/4/2013 4:56:05 PM , Rating: 5
I dunno... If I cared to take good photo's of things that required this level of zooming, I would think the better option would be to get a real camera.

RE: too bulky
By chµck on 9/4/2013 6:17:07 PM , Rating: 2
You seem to have missed the point. This seems like something that would fill in the gap between smartphones and cameras; a gap i didn't know existed.
Of course you'll need more glass to get better zoom, but this is still a great idea.

RE: too bulky
By retrospooty on 9/4/2013 6:25:05 PM , Rating: 2
" a gap i didn't know existed."

That's pretty much what I meant... What gap? There are decent phone camera's that are really good "for smartphones" and there are "real camera's". I would think that anyone casual like me would use the phone, and anyone serious enough about photography would use a real camera. I dont think ther eis a gap. This is sort of just shoving its way into a crack, trying to make a gap, but none exists.

In other words, if you are going to carry this lense, you may as well get a real camera... I could always be wrong though. It seems dumb to me.

RE: too bulky
By chimto on 9/4/2013 8:04:22 PM , Rating: 2

While I think this thing looks pretty neat, if I'm gonna carry another thing in my pocket for photos I'll just get a compact camera. But what do I know? I'm not a photo enthusiast, just your average run of the mill casual picture taker.

RE: too bulky
By retrospooty on 9/5/2013 8:22:36 AM , Rating: 2
" if I'm gonna carry another thing in my pocket for photos I'll just get a compact camera. But what do I know? I'm not a photo enthusiast, just your average run of the mill casual picture taker"

I am with you there, but I do know several people that are really serious about photography. They speak of it on a level I just don't care to visit... But people that are serious about it, want your really good DSLR cameras or better. They wear them in a strap around their necks like Photo-Flava-Flav's (we have all seen these people LOL) and often carry an extra bag with lenses and accessories... This product doesn't seem to serves a purpose to the casual, or the serious photographer.

RE: too bulky
By drewp on 9/6/2013 1:41:24 AM , Rating: 2
i am one of those people, 2 of my cameras fully loaded weigh over 5 pounds. Needless to say I don't use them for every photo I take. I also have a mirrorless camera its much smaller and lighter but still too big.

the qx100 is perfect... this holiday season is going to be so tough!

RE: too bulky
By YearOfTheDingo on 9/5/2013 4:16:09 AM , Rating: 2
It does weight less than a DSLR. The lack of flash is a serious drawback though. Looks pretty awkward ergonomically too. Sooner or later the clip will come loose and either the phone or the camera gets smashed.

RE: too bulky
By ritualm on 9/5/2013 10:16:21 AM , Rating: 2
It's not the lack of flash that bothers me. It's the general idea behind these products - they are essentially full-featured cameras minus the screen, and they aren't any cheaper given that difference.

The F1.7 on my GX1 is sharper than what the F1.8-maximum on the QX100 can put out. This is just an awful waste of $500.

RE: too bulky
By Silver2k7 on 9/6/2013 5:19:39 AM , Rating: 2
Im also a bit of a photo enthusiast, but I would much rather buy a RX100/RX100 II than something like this add-on thing.

RE: too bulky
By nafhan on 9/5/2013 10:24:09 AM , Rating: 2
This is a "real" camera. Albeit, one that costs (quite) a bit more than you'd expect based on the specs, and then tries to make up for it with better than average smartphone integration.

If the $500 model had an APS-C sensor and could make use of Sony's SLR lens mount, I'd be interested. As it is: I'll use my SLR when I care about quality, and stick with my smartphone when I don't.

RE: too bulky
By retrospooty on 9/5/2013 11:33:44 AM , Rating: 2
" As it is: I'll use my SLR when I care about quality, and stick with my smartphone when I don't."

Exactly... Where does this fit in to your setup? At any given trip, you would have to weight carrying your camera vs. just phone. If you were going somewhere interesting where you wanted quality pics, you would choose your SLR camera. Since you have made the choice to carry your camera, what scenario would this new Sony thing be better than your real camera?

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