Sony NEX-5TL Brief Review


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  • 16 MP APS-C sensor
  • 10 fps shooting speed
  • Fast Hybrid phase-detection AF for DSLR-like focus
  • DSLR-quality in about half the size and weight
  • Full HD video
  • 3" tilt touchscreen
  • RAW
  • Release Date: 2013-09-08
  • Final Grade: 90 4.5 Star Rating: Recommended

Sony NEX-5TL
16 MP APS-C sensor; 10 fps shooting speed; Fast Hybrid phase-detection AF for DSLR-like focus; DSLR-quality in about half the size and weight; Full HD video; 3" tilt touchscreen; RAW
By , Last updated on: 5/18/2014

Sony's September 2013 introduction to their popular NEX line uses an APS-C sized sensor, the same sensor found in entry-level DSLRs. Lighter and smaller than the NEX 5R, the NEX-5TL is a compact shooter that packs a big punch. The autofocus speed also rivals that of a DSLR. With the large sensor and wide ISO range, the 5T should also perform excellent in low light scenarios. The 10 fps burst mode, however, is faster than most entry-level DSLRs. Sony has also included both wi-fi and Near Field Communication, where touching a compatible smartphone will transfer photos.

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Sony Reviews

Sony has been at the forefront of the market for consumer electronics for the past 30 years by offering innovative imaging products in response to changes in the market. Sony has made cameras that are ideal for casual users, hobbyists, and professional photographers through their dedication to implementing the most current technology with a sleek and minimal style, resulting in an end result of the highest quality.

Sony was the first to put a full-frame sensor inside of a mirrorless camera, the A7 and A7R, and a little later, the A7S. While the first-of-its-kind cameras aren't without flaws, Sony executed their ideas fairly well and made some pretty solid cameras to start the new line.

Speaking of first-of-its kind, Sony also designed a “camera-without-a-camera,” the QX10 and QX100. These cameras have a sensor and lens, but no operating system—instead, consumers use their smartphone via wi-fi or NFC to operate the camera. While the cameras certainly have flaws (mainly in the slow response due to operating through wi-fi), we still have to applaud Sony for the way they've responded to the rise in smartphone photography (plus the cameras have actually sold remarkably well).

Sony has also been highly successful with the RX compact camera line that began with the RX100, a compact camera with a 1” sensor, excellent image quality and full manual modes. The camera has since seen some solid updates, and remains a good option. Sony also added the RX10, a camera with a 1” sensor but instead of focusing on compact size, adds a much bigger zoom.

While their focus is on more advanced models, it’s usually a pretty safe bet to pick up a Sony compact, even a budget priced one, and still get a lot of bang for your buck. We're also big fans of Sony's designs, making their cameras easy to use and adjust, like the HX400 that has an automatic sensor on the electronic viewfinder as well as a control ring around the lens.

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