Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Sony FDR-X3000R: The action cam 4K stabilized like a boss

Sony FDR-X3000R: The action-cam 4K stabilized like a boss
Sony FDR-X3000R. Say goodbye to vibration and seasickness! In the highly competitive world of action cams, Sony stands out for some time by being the only one to offer a stabilization in all its models. With its FDR-X3000R, Japanese hits hard, very hard, since stabilization is now electronic and optical system inherited the brand camcorders. Add the video 4K / UHD, Full HD idling, WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS, an original remote control supplied and you get one of the best Action-cam 2016 Muscular but not blameless.

Do not be fooled by appearances: this FDR-X3000R is both smaller and lighter than the FDR-X1000R it replaces. If it feels like to have put on weight, it's just because he had to expand in order to pass the optical stabilization. The good side is that the X3000 uses the same batteries that any action cameras of the brand, namely NP-BX1 Lithium-Ion mAh 1240. We shall return to autonomy.


Sony FDR-X3000R REVIEW
Adept of the elongated format with screen on the right spine, Sony has completely revised ergonomics of the flagship camera, without changing the general principle. The battery is removed from the side, completely lifting the battery cover. An interesting choice, but a performance that inspires little confidence since this side panel is applied only by a piece of rubber which we fear for the stability over time. Bonus: even with practice, it will often you will try several times to properly close the battery compartment. The good side is that the memory access and connectivity are now separated. The microSD / Memory Stick Micro withdraws by the sole of the camera, which features the always handy standard tripod socket. Micro-USB ports, micro-HDMI and the new microphone jack (3.5 mm) are grouped at the rear. This jack is saving both the internal microphone is sensitive and blowing in the wind. On the right spine, you always find the monochrome screen, now accompanied by a third button: one for the menu, both for navigation, which appears to be much more efficient and faster than the X1000. Also new: the X3000 now has three red LEDs (one above, one below the lens, one in back) that control, from any angle that you are filming. One detail that does not look anything but turns still good practice.

The remote control is, in turn, new. This RM-LVR3 version is more compact and now square. With five buttons (on / off and menu on the left side, rec / enter under the screen, navigation arrows on the right) the steering is fluid and consistent with that of the camera, since the logic is the same: excellent in heat of the moment! Better yet, it is now possible to turn on and off the X3000 directly from the remote. Extinction takes 2 seconds, against, there are still failures in the ignition: by pressing the on / off button on the remote control, the action-cam resumes from standby in 5 seconds, but then, it takes 10 to 30 seconds for the connection to Wi-Fi / Blutooth is established. The bracelet to wear the remote control comes complete but what we prefer is the brand new AKA-FGP1 accessory. Under this barbarous name hides a support possible to secure camera and remote control, which then becomes a rotating screen. The "handle" AKA-FGP1 (€ 25) is held like a pistol, recording trigger thumb. For our part, given the weight of the whole, we prefer to drag the thumb in the ring and support the coupling of the other four fingers, being careful not to cover the microphones at the front. When using this "handle", it will however make a cross on the waterproof housing MPK-UWH1 (75 €), now to dive to 60m.

Sony FDR-X3000R: The action-cam 4K stabilized like a boss

However, the X3000 is far from perfect and the complaints are numerous. The first will go to the screen. Whether monochrome and does not show that the filming does not matter, since the supplied remote control of office is there for. However, neither the screen nor the keys are not backlit, the reading of information becomes difficult by time too bright or when night falls - or a big cloud passes. The criticism is similar to the remote control. The screen is certainly in color, but it is impossible to adjust the brightness. And above all, Sony has opted for a slab at the corners of calamitous vision, all under too reflective glass: not always easy, in full light, to check its frame! Finally, like most action-cams, the X3000 suffers from limited autonomy. Joint use with the remote control, do not expect to shoot over an hour. By enabling airplane mode (Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, NFC and GPS off), you can earn 50% of autonomy, a total of 1:30, which, given the OIS most energy, is more than remarkable.

Sony FDR-X3000R IMAGE QUALITY
Unlike its excess on the side of smartphones, Sony has, for its action-cam-X3000R FDR, showed more than reasonable in choosing the sensor, Exmor CMOS 1 / 2.5 "(smaller than 1 / 2.3 "of the X1000) that has" only "8.2 Megapixel (MP against 8.8 previously). It sounds little but to shoot in 4K / UHD (3840 x 2160 px = 8.29 megapixels) and Full HD, that's enough. Especially, since the stabilization BOSS moves both the lens and the sensor, the diagonal 1 / 2.5 "will instead be an advantage. In terms of the processor, it is well known BionzX when officiating, for the optical part, the Zeiss Tessar f / 2.8 the X1000 which was taken, with slight modifications to keep the field angles.

Needless to maintain the suspense any longer: the Sony FDR-X3000R is simply the best action cam with which it was given to film. The image quality is exemplary, with good dynamics, colors are accurate, the picture is very stung 4K / UHD and especially stabilization is incredibly effective. It easily removes all the little vibrations and lets the big jolts that, far from disturbing, avoid getting too fluid effect that eventually would prove too artificial. It really was time that we had not had as much fun to shoot and view images captured in the heat of the action, either by walking, trotting, we are not sporting enough to run - or we strolling on our electric wheel.

Sony FDR-X3000R: The action-cam 4K stabilized like a boss

The editing application "Action Cam Movie Creator" proposed by Sony is pretty and can be operated GPS track, easily play on slow motion, but its capabilities are limited (no transitions between sequences, no fine tuning sound, no image correction, etc.)

So, that we dispense almost clear that the X3000 shoots in 4K / UHD 30/25 / 24p 100 Mbit / s in Full HD 120 / 100p (100 Mbit / s / 60 Mbit / s), Full HD 60p / 50p / 30p / 25p / 24p (50 Mbit / s) and HD 1280 x 720 240p / 200p (100 Mbit / s / 60 Mbit / s), which will make beautiful slow. Note that all this is done in XAVCs, which requires the use of a microSDXC card. In the absence of such a card, it will shoot MP4 with the best of the simple Full HD.

Like the X1000, three field angles are available: wide (17 mm equiv.), Medium (23 mm equiv.) And narrow (32 mm equiv.). Note that it is possible to vary the angle when shooting in HD and Full HD but not in 4K / UHD, where shooting by default in position 17 mm. Also note that these angles affect the definition of your photos: only the pictures taken at 23mm are 12MP, in the other two cases the definition down to 6 megapixels.

Sony FDR-X3000R CHARACTERISTICS:
Definition (max) : 3840 x 2160
Sensor : 8.57 megapixels
Angle : 108 °
stabilization : Optics
Video format : .mp4

STRONG POINTS:
  • Optical stabilization, sensor and electronics.
  • Image quality.
  • Video 4K / UHD (30/25 / 24p) and Full HD (120/100/60/50/30/25 / 24p).
  • Removable battery.
  • Taken micro-HDMI and microphone.
  • Remote control.
  • WiFi, NFC, GPS
  • Ergonomics reviewed and improved.
  • Tripod thread.


WEAK POINTS:
  • Screens (camera and remote control) improved.
  • Limited battery life (50 minutes with the remote).
  • Not waterproof without cabinet.
  • Disappointing internal microphone.


FINAL CONCLUSION
With its optical stabilization, mechanical and electronic, sound recording 4K, its efficient ergonomics and compact, the Sony FDR-X3000R itself as the best action cam 2016, both in terms of stabilization than image quality. It offers a vast creative potential that will, as often restrained by the autonomy a bit weak and very perfectible audio capture.

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