Last updated: August 9, 2021

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Lens, sensor, viewfinder? There is a lot to consider when buying a camera. Finding the right camera can be quite a challenge. With our Sony camera test 2021, we will guide you through the Sony camera range in this article and answer all your questions.

The buying criteria also help you to evaluate and compare Sony cameras. The manufacturer has a wide range of different cameras and offers you high quality standards. The range includes small compact cameras, larger system cameras where you can change the lens, and lots of accessories for your Sony camera. Soon you can hold the right camera for your project in your hands and capture unforgettable moments.




Summary

  • Sony cameras are characterised by their good quality, high-quality workmanship and high light intensity. The innovative manufacturer Sony offers the right camera model for every type of user, as well as various accessories.
  • Sony cameras are divided into two basic types, compact cameras and cameras with interchangeable lenses. The small compact cameras are great for travelling and are easy to use without prior knowledge. Interchangeable lens cameras are a little bigger and more bulky, but give you great professional quality images.
  • Your Sony camera comes with a two-year warranty and a comprehensive service for repairs and spare parts.

The Best Sony Camera: Our Choices

Guide: Questions you should ask yourself before buying a Sony camera

If you're thinking about getting a Sony camera, you'll probably have a few questions. In this section, we'll give you some relevant background information to help you make your decision.

What makes Sony cameras different from other manufacturers?

Sony is a well-known electronics company from Japan with a large market share in the consumer electronics industry. The manufacturer is a reliable address when it comes to photography equipment.

Sony cameras are characterised by good quality, high-quality workmanship and high light intensity. Whether amateur or professional, Sony has a suitable camera for every type of user in its range. However, it must also be mentioned that most models are relatively price-intensive.

Sony Kamera-1

Sony cameras are of good quality. There is a suitable camera model for almost every need.
(Image source: unsplash.com / Pavel Anoshin)

The pictures taken with a Sony camera are of convincing high quality. So when it comes to camera production, you can trust Sony as an innovative manufacturer.

Sony wants to inspire and arouse curiosity and offers its customers a kind of digital space with additional services. You can create an account online on the website and register your purchased product, i.e. your camera.

You will receive extensive support, helpful tips and tutorials on how to use the camera as well as current offers and promotions. There is also a discussion forum where you can exchange experiences and solutions with the community.

Who is a Sony camera for?

Sony has a wide range of cameras with something for everyone.

Sony has camera models for everyone.

Hobby photographers, beginners, advanced and professional photographers will find a suitable camera in the Sony product range.

In the course of this article, you will find tips and explanations on which type of Sony camera is suitable for your needs.

What is the price range of Sony cameras?

Sony cameras tend to be in the high price range. Especially for a camera with an interchangeable lens, you have to dig deeper into your pocket.

Type of camera price range
Sony compact camera approx. 200-4200 euros
Sony camera with interchangeable lens approx. 450-5400 euros

However, Sony also offers savings campaigns from time to time. Thanks to the so-called Sony Cashback campaign, you have the opportunity to get the purchase price back, provided you buy your camera within a set period of time and meet all the conditions.

Students can also look for Sony student discounts before buying a new camera.

If you're interested in financing your Sony camera, you can search Google for the latest offers. Various online shops and even some electronics shops offer financing options.

Where can I buy Sony cameras?

You can buy Sony cameras in any conventional electronics store, Sony Store or photo shop. You can also go directly to the Sony website and search for retailers near you. There are also many online shops, such as Amazon, where you can get your Sony cameras delivered to your door.

If you're lucky, you can also find a good deal on Ebay Classifieds and get your Sony camera used for less.

What accessories can I buy for my Sony camera?

Sony offers a huge range of accessories for your camera. The following list gives you an overview of what extras or additional equipment you can buy:

  • Batteries, chargers and power supplies
  • Portrait grips
  • Flash units and lights
  • Microphones
  • Viewfinders and monitors
  • Tripods and remote controls
  • Cases/camera bags, covers and straps
  • Other accessories such as lens caps and protective films

Sony Kamera-2

Sony offers a wide range of accessories to go with your Sony camera, including camera bags, tripods and remote controls.
(Image source: unsplash.com / Jakob Owens)

What alternatives are there to Sony cameras?

Sony itself also offers special video cameras in addition to cameras if you prefer to capture moving images. These include Sony action cameras, Sony camcorders and professional Sony camcorders.

The manufacturer also offers smartphones with camera functions. Depending on what you want to use the camera for, these alternatives may also be a suitable option for you.

Other well-known camera manufacturers include Nikon and Canon.

Decision: What types of Sony cameras are there and which one is right for you?

If you want to buy a Sony camera, you can first choose between two main categories into which the manufacturer divides its cameras.

  • Sony compact camera
  • Sony camera with interchangeable lens

In the following sections, we'll explain these two types and their respective advantages and disadvantages in more detail.

What are Sony compact cameras and what are the advantages and disadvantages?

Sony compact cameras, or Cyber-Shot models, can be further divided into three broad subgroups.

Subgroup Description
Sony Cyber-Shot camera for hobby photographers Very compact, flat, light and inexpensive camera with few features/functions (e.g. model W830)
Sony Cyber-Shot camera with large zoom Small compact cameras with 20-30x zoom or somewhat larger bridge cameras (bridge between compact cameras and interchangeable lens cameras) with 50-60x zoom (e.g. model types H- or H-series). E.g. model types H- or HX)
Sony Cyber-Shot camera for professionals Stylish compact cameras with powerful technology that deliver professional-quality images (e.g. model type RX)

Compact cameras are therefore small and compact cameras that are particularly suitable for travelling and on the move. They don't take up much space and are easy to carry.

Advantages
  • Considerably cheaper
  • Small, compact, mobile
  • No prior technical knowledge required for operation
Disadvantages
  • Narrower range of functions
  • Fixed lens, no exchange possible
  • Image quality not as high as with interchangeable lens cameras

Since Sony compact cameras come with a lens already built in and the functionality is limited to the essentials, even laymen without prior knowledge can easily achieve beautiful pictures.

What are Sony interchangeable lens cameras and what are the advantages and disadvantages?

Sony interchangeable lens cameras deliver professional quality images. However, they are also quite expensive. Sony interchangeable lens cameras also have two subcategories.

  • Single-lensreflex camera (semi-transparent mirror): DSLR (digital single-lens reflex)
    Sony model range: A-mount
  • Mirrorless system camera: DSLM (digital single-lens mirrorless)
    Sony model range: E-mount

SLR cameras were still called THE cameras a few years ago. In the meantime, they are also facing strong internal competition from Sony's mirrorless system cameras. Sony has also shifted its focus more towards system cameras without mirrors.

Advantages
  • Images in professional quality
  • Interchangeable lens
  • Numerous settings and functions
Disadvantages
  • Price-intensive
  • Larger, heavier, not as handy
  • You should have the know-how to operate it

Thanks to the interchangeable lens, you can set up your camera optimally and adapt it to the area of use. Even if you want to use a new, better lens, you can easily exchange it without having to buy a completely new camera.

Ultimately, it depends on what you want to do with your Sony camera. If you want to take nice photos without much effort or prior knowledge, for example when travelling, you should consider a compact camera. However, if you want to achieve professional image quality and a variety of settings are important to you, a Sony camera with an interchangeable lens is a good choice.

Buying criteria: Use these factors to compare and evaluate Sony cameras

Sony cameras are available in different versions and models. The following buying criteria will help you compare the models and find the right Sony camera for you.

In the following, we explain what to look for in each criterion.

Lens and sensor

The right lens and a good sensor are crucial for a camera. With the sensor, the bigger the better. With regard to the lens, you should first ask yourself what you want to use the camera for, because there is no perfect lens for everything. If you want to do different things or take versatile photos, then a camera with an interchangeable lens is probably preferable to a compact camera.

There are Sony cameras with APS-C lenses and full-frame cameras. Furthermore, you can roughly choose between lenses with zoom, fixed focal length or wide angle. The choice of lens also depends on the light intensity, image stabiliser and number of megapixels.

For portrait photography, for example, a fixed focal length with high speed is suitable. High speed means that the aperture can be opened as wide as possible, allowing a lot of light to fall onto the sensor. You cannot zoom with a fixed focal length lens. Compared to zoom lenses, the aperture can be opened wider due to the design of the camera, which is why these lenses are faster.

Furthermore, an image stabiliser can be important so that the pictures are not blurred. However, if you will always be shooting with a tripod anyway, you don't necessarily need an image stabiliser. Some cameras have a stabiliser built into the body, others you may have to make sure that the lens has a stabiliser.

The megapixels also play a role here, as they give you information about the resolution of the pictures. One megapixel stands for one million pixels. When it comes to the number of megapixels, the more the better. The image quality can also appear worse if there are too many megapixels, as noise increases.

Connectivity

Connectivity refers to data transfer, i.e. the transfer of photos. With an app (Imaging Edge) or via WiFi, the pictures can be easily transferred from the camera to the mobile phone or a laptop.

Sony Kamera-3

Some Sony camera models can even be controlled remotely via an app.
(Image source: unsplash.com / Ken Suarez)

There is also the option of NFC (Near Field Communication) one-touch sharing, which can be used to transfer pictures and videos to a mobile device. Provided the Sony device and your mobile phone are capable of this function, an effortless, instant Bluetooth connection can be established, which can then be used to quickly transfer the images.

Otherwise, you have the traditional option of transferring images via USB cable.

Make sure you check the connectivity of the Sony camera of your choice when you buy it, so that when you transfer the images later, it works the way you want it to.

Monitor and viewfinder

The viewfinder's job is to prepare the image. It composes the picture, checks the correct focus and sharpness. There are optical and electronic viewfinders.

If there is no viewfinder in the camera, the display serves as a viewfinder. The display should therefore be large enough and have a good resolution. To be able to view pictures from different angles, a foldable monitor is very practical.

Weight and size

The different types and models of Sony cameras come in different sizes. Compact cameras, as the name suggests, are small and compact. They are therefore very handy and are great for on the go, e.g. when travelling.

System cameras with interchangeable lenses, on the other hand, are somewhat larger and heavier. You can also buy various accessories. This gives you more and better options for your shots, but also means that you have to carry more stuff with you. Of course, what matters most is what you intend to do with the camera and what you want to use it for.

Facts worth knowing about Sony cameras

In this section, we'll answer questions about Sony cameras and the manufacturer itself that may keep you busy even after you've made your purchase.

How can I connect my Sony camera to my mobile phone?

Transferring photos from your Sony camera to your mobile phone is very easy via a Bluetooth connection.

How do I clean my Sony interchangeable lens camera properly?

First of all, it's super important that you take care of your Sony camera. You should always use a lens cap and a case for your camera. Lenses are very sensitive and can get scratched quickly. Therefore, lenses should only be cleaned when absolutely necessary.

If your photos are blotchy or you see dust on the pictures, it is usually because there is dust on the camera sensor. Cleaning the sensor works as follows:

  • 1. Step - Turn off the camera: First switch off your camera. The vibration of the sensor causes loose dust to fall off.
  • 2. Step - Blow dust off the mirror: Now you have to remove the lens. This will reveal the semi-transparent mirror behind it. Use a bellows to blow the dust off the mirror. But be careful not to touch the mirror.
  • 3. Step - Fold up the mirror: You now have to lift the mirror by carefully pressing the mirror lock lever. This will give you access to the sensor behind the mirror.
  • 4. Step - Blow dust off the sensor: To remove dust from the sensor and get it out of the camera, you now have to blow into the mount a few times with the bellows. The lens mount should be pointing downwards and the bellows should be just inside the mount.
  • 5. Step - Fold the mirror back down: Then you can carefully fold the mirror back down until it clicks into place. Again, make sure you only touch the frame of the mirror.

A (rubber) bellows is best for cleaning the Sony camera. Never use compressed air or cleaning fluids to clean your camera. You should also not try to blow dust away with your mouth. Cameras are very sensitive to this. Take care of them as instructed. For example, if you damage your Sony camera by cleaning it incorrectly, this will not be covered by your warranty.

Always clean your Sony camera as recommended, and take good care of it so that you can enjoy it for as long as possible. Do not use compressed air or cleaning fluids when cleaning your camera and never touch the mirror to avoid affecting image quality and camera performance.

What warranty does Sony give me on my camera?

You have a two-year warranty on your Sony camera.

Sony gives you a two-year warranty on your camera. However, if your camera is damaged by dropping, moisture, lightning or misuse in general, Sony will not provide warranty service.

You do have the option of purchasing an extended warranty from Sony after purchase. There are various ways in which you can extend the warranty. This works like a kind of insurance and costs between 30-90 euros, depending on the scope. You can buy a premium service of +1 to +3 years on top of the regular warranty and then get support if something is wrong with the camera.

On the Sony website you can also register your purchased product. You can then use the correct purchase date to calculate the end date of your warranty online.

Can I get my Sony camera repaired and are there any spare parts for Sony cameras?

You can return your broken camera to Sony. If you are still within the warranty period, Sony will repair your camera for you free of charge. If you're past the warranty period or the damage to your camera isn't covered by Sony's warranty, you can still send it in. In this case, however, you will have to pay for the repair yourself.

The manufacturer will also assist you in finding replacement parts. If you are still under warranty, you can simply contact Sony via their website and they will explain the process, warranty and repair policies.

If your Sony camera's warranty has expired, you can still purchase genuine, tested replacement parts through Sony's partner EET Europarts or regional service centres.

What other products does Sony offer?

The Japanese electronics company Sony has many other products in its range besides cameras. Sony's product range on the German market is as follows:

  • Cameras: Cameras with interchangeable lenses, lenses, compact cameras
  • Video cameras: Camcorders, Action Cameras, Professional Camcorders
  • Mobile phones: Smartphones and accessories
  • Home entertainment: TVs, soundbars, projectors, Blu-ray Disc and DVD players
  • Audio: Headphones, mp3 players, High-Resolution Audio, wireless speakers
  • Car and boat: car receivers and players, speakers/amplifiers, marine audio, car audio systems
  • Memory: memory cards, cables
  • Fashion Entertainment: E-paper fashion watch (design can be changed and adapted to current trends at any time)

Image source: luchschen/ 123rf.com

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