Sony has officially announced the ZV-1, a compact camera designed specifically for shooting video. Even more specifically than that, it’s designed for vlogging. It’s based on essentially the same core as the popular RX100 point-and-shoot camera line but optimized for video with a few features that will appeal to people who regularly need to shoot footage of themselves.
The Sony ZV-1 will retail for $799.99 but will have an intro price of $749.99 through June 28th. It should begin shipping on June 11th.
The ZV-1 has a 20.1MP 1.0″-type stacked Exmor RS CMOS sensor plucked out of the RX100 VII. The lens is an older 24-70mm used in the RX100 cameras from RX100 III to the RX100 V and not the newer 24-200 used in later RX100 models. Furthermore, the ZV-1 also features a built-in ND filter, which was a feature on RX100 from Mark III to V, and enables shooting in very bright light with slower shutter speed or wider aperture.
The ZV-1 can record video in 4K with full-pixel readout without binning in 24 or 30fps. You can also shoot slow-motion video in 240fps, 480fps, or 960fps. There’s built-in interval shooting for time-lapse videos and support for HLG, S-Log3, and S-Gamut3.Cine for those who want to color grade or have an HDR workflow. There’s also built-in optical and digital image stabilization.
One of the main features of the ZV-1 is the fully articulating display, a first for a compact Sony camera that so far only featured screens that tilted up or down. The ZV-1 offers a Background Defocus feature, which can be activated by a dedicated button next to the shutter release.
The ZV-1 autofocus system has also been optimized to work with objects with the new Product Showcase mode. Normally, when recording yourself, the camera would lock the focus on your face, so if you hold something in front of the camera to show your audience, the object would be out of focus. With this mode, holding something in front of the camera causes the autofocus to momentarily snap on to the object and then go back to face tracking once the object is off-screen. This is designed for content creators who do things like makeup tutorials or product videos where they need to showcase the product but also later have the focus shift to them without having a dedicated camera operator.
The ZV-1 also features a new built-in microphone system, with a directional 3-capsule mic that is optimized to pick up sounds in front of the camera and ignore things happening on the side and back of the camera. A windscreen is provided to reduce noise on windy days. The camera also has a microphone jack for attaching external microphones directly to the camera.
There’s also a micro HDMI if you want to output to an external recorder or capture card. The USB port still uses micro-USB but at least allows you to charge the battery while the camera is in use. Finally, Sony is also offering an optional and atrociously named accessory called the GP-VPT2BT Shooting Grip with Wireless Remote Commander, which lets you mount the camera and control it using the grip. It’s just a grip, however, and there is no stabilization built-in. The grip is part of a kit that also includes a 64GB memory card.