We have a new puppy. He's a blast, but it's a shock to the system! The routine of my days has been well and truly disrupted and I am suffering from sleep deprivation, anxiety and impending poverty!
I wouldn't change a moment! It's great fun too and I wanted to capture his chaotic early weeks with us, without worrying about the camera or trying to be creative with the settings - just grab the camera and snap away. Interesting challenge really - I didn't have lots of time to do the diligent search. The M3 Version of the RX100 just launched which along with cash back made the M2 version look like a bargain!
New 'Puppy Cam'
John from LCE in Derby told me of a cash back offer from Sony and the numbers on the M2 made it a 'no brainer'! I came home with a brand new Sony RX100M2. The key things I required from the new 'puppy cam' were:
- Good image files out of the camera.
- Sturdy quality.
- Articulated Screen: low level shots
- Good high ISO performance
- Compact size / weight
At the time of writing, I have a Sigma DP2 Quattro, and a Ricoh GR - Both brilliant but neither quite suitable for puppy-cam! I a writing a comparison of the GR, Quattro and the RX100 as real world everyday tools vs the X100.
Tales of the Unexpected.
I have bought quite a lot of cameras. I've been loaned some, but I've mostly had to pay for them to get a feel for how they work, how they sit in the hand and in reality how often they get taken out and used! Over the years, I think this is a first time I've encountered a feature that I've completely overlooked during the purchase decision. I normally spend a while reading and learning about the upcoming purchase and use the features to justify the expenditure!
Last night, I got the first few hours peace since the puppy (Rupert) arrived. I sat in my chair nursing a cup of tea and started to look at the RX100 in a bit more depth. Since the little Sony arrived days after Rupert did, I just set the camera to the little green camera and shot away not troubling myself with the cameras potential - just talking snaps of Rupert!
As I sat sipping the my brew, I browsed through the menu settings and noticed for the first time the 'WIFI' possibilities. In less than thirty seconds I was transferring files to my iPhone.... and I was seriously impressed. It proved to be a genuinely quick, practical way of getting a picture or a folder of pictures from the camera to the iPhone (Or any smartphone - I happen to own an iPhone 5s and I'll use that model for reference).
A refreshing and unexpected bonus and it will make using and sharing from the camera much quicker and easier than waiting to download to the laptop then emailing them! It's a big step forward and erodes one of the key iPhone photographic advantages. But not a giant leap from popping the SD card into the built-in reader in my computer, it does mean, however, that I can take and send pictures in higher quality than that afforded by the iPhone when I'm out and about without the laptop.
Then... Bonus Number 2!
Really that should have been it for one cup of tea.
A second feature nearly made me drop my tea in my lap.
Now I am in my late 40's. (A fact that is unrelated to dropping tea in my lap!) and this feature really did make me stop and contemplate the progress that has been made: I've been an adult during an amazing time for technological progress: I've seen some astonishing changes in the office and at home, and in particular in digital imaging and in telephones. I won't bore you with the size and cost of the first car-phone, or the obscene cost of the first one-megapixel Nikon (Still got it as the fastest depreciating thing I've ever owned!) but suffice it to say that the notion of switching on WIFI to download pictures to my phone was quite something to take in, but then I found:
There is an app. (Isn't there always?) The same app used for transferring pictures from the camera is used to actually control the camera. This is new and groundbreaking stuff: Not particularly because it's clever or even unique per se, but because of how utterly routine this feature seems to be considered, and indeed how well it works.
It's something that I have always wanted for my SLR's. There have been devices that clipped over the eye piece, or in the case of the Nikon D700, plugged in, that allowed remote viewing and shutter release, but this Sony feature is cleverer, better executed and can do way more... a remote shutter release that has an echo of the actual image being focussed on the sensor. Switch the flash on (or off) trigger the shutter, share the resulting photograph via email or social media.
I made myself another cup of tea and switched everything off. I'm either getting old, or technology is just getting amazing. (I think probably both!)
What a cracking little camera!!