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Leaked manual reveals features of Sony's upcoming iPhone-compatible wireless camera lenses

post #1 of 26
Thread Starter 
New details on Sony's anticipated Bluetooth camera lens accessories, which will be able to use Apple's iOS devices as viewfinders, have been revealed through a leaked product manual, including an integrated microphone and hardware shutter button.

Sony


Part of the manual was published on Friday by Sony Alpha Rumors, revealing that Sony apparently plans to release two models: a high-end DSC-QX100, alongside a more basic model dubbed DSC-QX10. Both products will offer the same functionality, but feature different quality lenses.

The QX100 is revealed to have the same internal components as the RX100m2 camera, including a 20.2-megapixel Exmor R sensor and f/1.8 Carl Zeiss lens. The manual says it will include focus ring control, while weighing 179 grams.

The QX10 will have a lower end 18-megapixel CMOS sensor, and an f/3.3-5.9 lens, the same found in the Sony WX150 point-and-shoot camera. It will weigh 105 grams.

Prices for the accessories are unknown, but the RX100MIII sensor and Zeiss lens sell for $600 on Amazon, while the WX150 camera is available for $400.

Sony
Product manual leak via Sony Alpha Rumors.


Aside from the different lenses and inclusion of ring control on the QX100, both lenses will sport many of the same features, including a microphone, display panel for showing battery charge or lack of SD card, a hook for a belt, and a tripod mount. Both will also include a zoom lever, dedicated shutter button, and multifunctional jack.

The lenses are expected to offer compatibility with both Apple's iOS and devices running Google Android. Rather than mounting to the existing camera on an iPhone, as some current accessories do, the Sony lenses will be their own separate cameras that will connect wirelessly to an iOS device, allowing the Apple product to serve as the viewfinder for the higher-quality lens.

The anticipated products were revealed in leaked promotional photos earlier this week. Sony is expected to officially announce the products at a media event scheduled for Sept. 4.
post #2 of 26

That sounds exotic!

post #3 of 26
While I bought a nex-6 because i like the convenience of the anywhere type wifi link to my iPhone, so i can send pics, even for example when out on a boat - i was hoping these lenses would connect to the lightning port of the iPhone - so there would be zero config to do each time
post #4 of 26
I would seriously consider buying one of these, depending upon reviews.
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post #5 of 26
How about that? A camera case for your phone, but one that's even less drop-proof.

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

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post #6 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post

How about that? A camera case for your phone, but one that's even less drop-proof.


I'm sure Sony has a neck strap accessory for added convenience.
post #7 of 26
I wonder if it is fully under the control of iOS's software? Will it for example, work with the HDR multiple exposures automatically, will it support iOS's pano feature? I look forward to knowing. Having said that I currently use a high end Canon with many lenses or my iPhone. I am not sure this would be worth it for me but for those without a high end DSLR I could see it being a very nice addition to their iPhone.
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post #8 of 26

I just think this is the stupidest design ever.  It's like the worst of both, put together as one.  

It looks like a cool lens system that you attach to your phone, but it's actually a complete (crap) camera that you attach to your phone

 

You still have all the disadvantages of carrying an extra camera with you, plus you can now attach it precariously to your phone with a cheap plastic thingie! Why not just carry a good camera with you?  

This design just means that you're more likely to drop it, break it, scratch the hell out of your phone, or drop/break your phone with it.  

 

And if you don't want to attach it to the phone, it's a fully working camera, but without the viewfinder, making it unusable. WTF?

post #9 of 26
I am curious as to how the video from the camera will be displayed on the iphone screen. Is it via bluetooth? I have been looking for a video input device for my ipad. When i am recording video on my Canon 5d, i would love to be able to use the ipad as a live preview monitor, especially if i could do it wirelessly. At the moment, i use a small hd monitor connected via hdmi which can be restrictive. I assumed that apple did not allow video capture/input devices for ipad and iphone. I hope this might open up the market for a product that suits my needs.
post #10 of 26

IF you cant beat them, join them

post #11 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post

I just think this is the stupidest design ever.  It's like the worst of both, put together as one.  

It looks like a cool lens system that you attach to your phone, but it's actually a complete (crap) camera that you attach to your phone

 

You still have all the disadvantages of carrying an extra camera with you, plus you can now attach it precariously to your phone with a cheap plastic thingie! Why not just carry a good camera with you?  

This design just means that you're more likely to drop it, break it, scratch the hell out of your phone, or drop/break your phone with it.  

 

And if you don't want to attach it to the phone, it's a fully working camera, but without the viewfinder, making it unusable. WTF?

Couldn't disagree more. I've been wanting this since the iPhone came out.

I hate stand-alone digital cameras because the software and interface are invariably horrible.

I had envisioned a camera body where you simply snap the iPhone onto the back, making it the brains and viewfinder, but I like this.

My only concern is that it doesn't seem to act as a lens for whatever software can be written in iOS, but somehow tied to specific Sony software, in which case THAT's the deal killer.

If this simply bypassed the built-in camera, I'd be lined up for it.

post #12 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by GQB View Post

Couldn't disagree more. I've been wanting this since the iPhone came out.

I hate stand-alone digital cameras because the software and interface are invariably horrible.

I had envisioned a camera body where you simply snap the iPhone onto the back, making it the brains and viewfinder, but I like this.

My only concern is that it doesn't seem to act as a lens for whatever software can be written in iOS, but somehow tied to specific Sony software, in which case THAT's the deal killer.

If this simply bypassed the built-in camera, I'd be lined up for it.

 

But you still have to carry this sucker with you along side your phone in a bag.  There are numerous small, excellent cameras of this type that you can already buy.  Why is it an advantage to have to strap it to your phone to use it when you could just have a better, lighter, easier to use camera instead?  You may like it, but it's bad design. 

post #13 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post

 

But you still have to carry this sucker with you along side your phone in a bag.  There are numerous small, excellent cameras of this type that you can already buy.  Why is it an advantage to have to strap it to your phone to use it when you could just have a better, lighter, easier to use camera instead?  You may like it, but it's bad design. 


This 'camera' will be an accessory of smartphone.  Thus is will be able to take advantage of all the functionalities of smartphones. For example, each shot can record the location.  Each photo can be store in the album automatically and emailed. One problem I see is the power.  Does it use the iPhone battery?  Is so, it will drain it easily.

post #14 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post

 

But you still have to carry this sucker with you along side your phone in a bag.  There are numerous small, excellent cameras of this type that you can already buy.  Why is it an advantage to have to strap it to your phone to use it when you could just have a better, lighter, easier to use camera instead?  You may like it, but it's bad design. 

Got an alternative barring as-yet-uninvented high quality zoom lens in the phone itself?

Again, my point isn't that I don't have to carry an extra thing... I carry lots of little things as is my choice.

My problem is with the universally crappy software that runs EVERY existing phone. Just give me a lens for which I can use the phone as controller and viewfinder.

Do what you do well (lenses) and leave the software to the experts.

post #15 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacApfel View Post

That sounds exotic!

Sure does. I'm looking forward to this introduction, being the keen photographer that I am. But I'm skeptical about the ergonomics of these devices in relationship to ones smartphone. Is it a workable alternative to carrying a quality compact around with you or will it be an impractical mess?

post #16 of 26
I'm surprised the AI headline didn't read "Sony prepares iPhone-compatible wireless camera lenses as compact camera market is eviscerated" 1smile.gif

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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post #17 of 26

I like the idea but the problem is it is only using the phone as a viewfinder. Once you take a picture it'll be on a micro SD card on the lens attachment, there will be no way to send it via the phone to FaceBook etc. I doubt if the pictures will be GPS tagged like a normal iPhone photo and many of the other options will be limited.

For the same price you can buy a good compact camera.

 

I wish that Apple would do an iOS version of the Galaxy camera.

post #18 of 26
I suppose it would be wishful thinking to expect that it will be compatible with the original iPad and older devices without cameras or lower quality cameras ...? I'm guessing iOS 6 at a minimum requirement ...
post #19 of 26

Emphasis supplied in the quotes below.....

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Evilution View Post

I like the idea but the problem is it is only using the phone as a viewfinder. Once you take a picture it'll be on a micro SD card on the lens attachment, there will be no way to send it via the phone to FaceBook etc. I doubt if the pictures will be GPS tagged like a normal iPhone photo and many of the other options will be limited.

For the same price you can buy a good compact camera.

 

I wish that Apple would do an iOS version of the Galaxy camera.


You can't buy a 179 gram camera with an F1.8 lens for the same price.

Nor can you buy any smart phone I know with built in true optical zoom - a camera capacity which opens up a whole new set of variables - in perspective, depth-of-field, etc. that even (nearly all) reviewers always fail to mention these days. 

Sadly, the whole mis-named concept of "digital zoom" - which is really simply "digital cropping" (along with the loss of res it brings) - seems to have dumbed even the semi-serious segment of the photography market down.

So as for Apple releasing a phone model more dedicated to photography (at the cost of a bit of added mass, but with optical zoom) - I've been publicly advocating this since, well, 2007...

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post

I just think this is the stupidest design ever.  It's like the worst of both, put together as one.  

It looks like a cool lens system that you attach to your phone, but it's actually a complete (crap) camera that you attach to your phone

 

You still have all the disadvantages of carrying an extra camera with you, plus you can now attach it precariously to your phone with a cheap plastic thingie! Why not just carry a good camera with you?  

This design just means that you're more likely to drop it, break it, scratch the hell out of your phone, or drop/break your phone with it.  

 

And if you don't want to attach it to the phone, it's a fully working camera, but without the viewfinder, making it unusable. WTF?

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by tzeshan View Post


This 'camera' will be an accessory of smartphone.  Thus is will be able to take advantage of all the functionalities of smartphones. For example, each shot can record the location.  Each photo can be store in the album automatically and emailed. One problem I see is the power.  Does it use the iPhone battery?  Is so, it will drain it easily.


Devil's in the details, but there seems to be something about "wireless" both of you above are missing. 

The idea of the viewfinder/shutter being in my hand and the cam being anywhere (within 30' if Bluetooth) is pretty exciting to me....

...as for using it on the phone, dunno if the attachment will be precarious in practice or not....

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post #20 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post

I just think this is the stupidest design ever.  It's like the worst of both, put together as one.  

It looks like a cool lens system that you attach to your phone, but it's actually a complete (crap) camera that you attach to your phone

 

You still have all the disadvantages of carrying an extra camera with you, plus you can now attach it precariously to your phone with a cheap plastic thingie! Why not just carry a good camera with you?  

This design just means that you're more likely to drop it, break it, scratch the hell out of your phone, or drop/break your phone with it.  

 

And if you don't want to attach it to the phone, it's a fully working camera, but without the viewfinder, making it unusable. WTF?

 

Madness!!!...

post #21 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigpics View Post

Emphasis supplied in the quotes below.....



You can't buy a 179 gram camera with an F1.8 lens for the same price.


Nor can you buy any smart phone I know with built in true optical zoom - a camera capacity which opens up a whole new set of variables - in perspective, depth-of-field, etc. that even (nearly all) reviewers always fail to mention these days. 

So as for Apple releasing a phone model more dedicated to photography (at the cost of a bit of added mass, but with optical zoom) - I've been publicly advocating this since, well, 2007...

Devil's in the details, but there seems to be something about "wireless" both of you above are missing. 


The idea of the viewfinder/shutter being in my hand and the cam being anywhere (within 30' if Bluetooth) is pretty exciting to me....

I'm with you on this, it does seem pretty exciting. I prefer this option than Apple making some kind of special iPhone for photography with some mid-shapen, bulbous rear case to accommodate a better lens, however.

And the possibility of using the lens up to 30-50ft away from the phone is pretty cool.

Hopefully it's successful and we see a couple of decent primes released as well.
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post #22 of 26
Does it have own flash or use iPhone flash?
post #23 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigpics View Post

Emphasis supplied in the quotes below.....

 


You can't buy a 179 gram camera with an F1.8 lens for the same price.

Nor can you buy any smart phone I know with built in true optical zoom - a camera capacity which opens up a whole new set of variables - in perspective, depth-of-field, etc. that even (nearly all) reviewers always fail to mention these days. 

Sadly, the whole mis-named concept of "digital zoom" - which is really simply "digital cropping" (along with the loss of res it brings) - seems to have dumbed even the semi-serious segment of the photography market down.

So as for Apple releasing a phone model more dedicated to photography (at the cost of a bit of added mass, but with optical zoom) - I've been publicly advocating this since, well, 2007...

 

 


Devil's in the details, but there seems to be something about "wireless" both of you above are missing. 

The idea of the viewfinder/shutter being in my hand and the cam being anywhere (within 30' if Bluetooth) is pretty exciting to me....

...as for using it on the phone, dunno if the attachment will be precarious in practice or not....

 
I totally agree!.
the way things are right now, i have a mirror-less camera in my bag with me at all times, if i had this, i could carry less, the RX100 is a pretty kickass enthusiast compact camera, i know my mirror-less has a good APS-C sensor but still, this could be lots of fun.
post #24 of 26

They have to sell this for cheaper then the same point and shoot camera with display. if it is not cheaper then this makes no sense.

post #25 of 26
Had a Sony (Minolta lens) alpha DSLR a few years back and I liked it a lot (lighter and easier to use than my current Nikon D5000 while similar in picture quality).

It's a lot of money for essentially a compact camera replacement, but Exmor-R and the Zeiss f-1.8 sounds like a killer combo. Nearly 3 stops better than usual compact light gathering. Let's hope it runs on iOS-'simplicity quality' software.
post #26 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post

I just think this is the stupidest design ever.  It's like the worst of both, put together as one.  
It looks like a cool lens system that you attach to your phone, but it's actually a complete (crap) camera that you attach to your phone

You still have all the disadvantages of carrying an extra camera with you, plus you can now attach it precariously to your phone with a cheap plastic thingie! Why not just carry a good camera with you?  
This design just means that you're more likely to drop it, break it, scratch the hell out of your phone, or drop/break your phone with it.  

And if you don't want to attach it to the phone, it's a fully working camera, but without the viewfinder, making it unusable. WTF?

The RX100mkII is anything but a crap camera, so if the QX100 has the same guts, it's going to be great for the size/weight.
Certainly a lens with built-in electronics uses up less extra space than the full camera. In a little case, like the dslr prime lens cases, it could be easily carried around in a coat pocket.
Key question is storage: my iPhone is always full anyway, no space to store RAW pictures. So for this thing to fly, it would need an SDXC slot.
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