Cameras

Sony ZV-E10 Review

Do you remember when Sony cameras didn’t even provide vloggers the option of a screen that could be articulated? That happened not too long ago, but the Sony ZV-E10 is the most recent in a growing line of video-centric Sony cameras that addresses this constraint. It also fills a gap between the company’s entry-level (Sony ZV-1) and mid-range (Sony A6100) product lines.

The ZV-E10 is essentially an A6100 spin-off with a video-tastic body; it has two old internals, one new body, and a splash of souped-up software. The ZV-E10 looks like the A6100 inspired it. Even better, this new competitor hopes to satisfy your video-playing cravings without exceeding $1,000, £1,000, or AUS $1,500 in price.

Sony ZV-E10 Build Quality

The ZV-E10 is a Sony camera because nothing occurs when you touch the touchscreen to interact with the menus. This is how you can tell it’s a Sony camera. Sony introduced a fancy new touch menu for the Sony A7S III and FX3, but the more recent ZV-E10 forces you to navigate the user interface with the four-way wheel to the right of the display. We are still waiting for Sony to implement the feature on a lower-end camera model.

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Before you access the menu, you’ll see that the camera’s design incorporates several Sony-specific design cues and elements. On the top of the camera is a Multi-Interface hot shoe attachment, which is compatible with digital audio equipment. There is also a grille that conceals a three-capsule microphone located underneath the mount.

To the right of the power button is a toggle that allows you to choose between Sony’s S&Q (‘Slow and Quick’) mode for time-lapses, Photo, and Video modes. In addition, there is a button designated explicitly for recording movies and a button labeled Bokeh Switch (which doubles up as C1). In conclusion, the camera’s top contains a shutter release button, a zoom toggle, and a wheel that, by default, regulates the aperture and is manipulated with the thumb.

Sony ZV-E10 Live-streaming capabilities

One thing that makes the Sony ZV-E10 stand out right out of the box is that it is capable of live streaming. It functions properly with UVC/UAC support and when paired with Imaging Edge Webcam, a downloadable application on both Mac and Windows computers.

Both choices do away with the requirement of a video capture card, which, ever before the epidemic hit, has become a standard software enhancement across Canon and even GoPro cameras. Both of these solutions are available. This implies that the ZV-E10 can act as a streaming device for Twitch and YouTube and as a very high-end camera.

Sony ZV-E10 Autofocus

Back in 2019, the 425-point focusing system of the Sony A6100 was outstanding, and it’s still impressive at the price of the ZV-E10, drawing focus in only 0.02 seconds.

The hybrid autofocus system incorporates 425 phase-detection points. It provides coverage of 84%, while the ZV-E10 also welcomes the return of Sony’s Real-time Tracking and Real-time Eye AF technologies, which can track moving subjects, including humans and animals.

Real-time Tracking uses Sony’s prediction and recognition algorithms, such as AI-based object identification and color, subject distance (depth), pattern (brightness), and spatial information, not to mention face and eye detection. Real-time Tracking also employs geographical information.

Sony ZV-E10 Performance

The Sony ZV-E10 is a camera that brings back tried-and-true photography gear with its 24.2 megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor. There is nothing novel about its image qualities, considering that it has a maximum ISO of 32,000 and a shutter speed that can go as fast as 1/4000.

The camera features three SteadyShot electronic stabilization levels: Active, Standard, and off. This is a positive aspect of the device. Hand-shake was effectively adjusted, and pans were smooth when combined with the Optical SteadyShot feature on the majority of the lenses that we tested with the ZV-E10.

Sony ZV-E10 Video and Image Quality

We put the ZV-E10 through its paces with several different lenses, including the Sony E 16-50mm f/3.5-5.6 OSS, the FE 24-70mm f/2.8 OSS, the FE 12-24mm f/4, and the 135mm f/1.8 GM. Every combination created a rich photo with remarkable depth, richness, and contrast, regardless of whether it was shot handheld in bright or dim situations.

Even if you choose to shoot at higher sensitivities like ISO 6400, the ZV-E10 maintains excellent control over image noise across the entirety of its sensitivity range. Because the ‘Normal’ option on the camera can be a little too aggressive, we recommend that if you are going to be shooting JPEGs, you change the High ISO NR (noise reduction) setting on the camera to low.

The motion is beautiful and smooth, and the audio quality is also very high when the camera is still held. The video quality is also outstanding when the camera is steady, and the footage from the ZV-E10, captured with an 8-bit color depth and 4:2:0 subsampling, delivers lots of information.

Along with the included windscreen, the three-capsule microphone that can be found on the Sony ZV-1 is very much appreciated for providing higher-quality backup audio. However, if you can wire in some external audio, you should certainly do so, especially for situations similar to interviews.

How noise is handled when recording video is not very impressive and, as expected, lags well behind the full-frame competitors. However, when downsampling from 4K to FullHD, the ISO may be valid up to about 6400, even when shooting with an APS-C sensor; thus, this setting is exactly where it needs to be. In any other case, in our opinion, it is in your best interest to maintain the film at a maximum of about ISO 4000.

Sony ZV-E10 Specs

Body typeRangefinder-style mirrorless
Body materialComposite
Sensor
Max resolution6000 x 4000
Image ratio w:h1:1, 3:2, 16:9
Effective pixels24 megapixels
Sensor photo detectors25 megapixels
Sensor sizeAPS-C (23.5 x 15.6 mm)
Sensor typeCMOS
ProcessorBionz X
Color spacesRGB, Adobe RGB
Color filter arrayPrimary color filter
Image
ISOAuto, 100-32000 (expands to 50-51200)
Boosted ISO (minimum)50
Boosted ISO (maximum)51200
White balance presets10
Custom white balanceYes
Image stabilizationNo
Uncompressed formatRAW
JPEG quality levelsExtra fine, fine, standard
File formatJPEG (Exif v2.31)Raw (Sony ARW)
Optics & Focus
AutofocusContrast Detect (sensor)Phase DetectMulti-areaCenterSelective single-pointTrackingSingleContinuousTouchFace DetectionLive View
Autofocus assist lampYes
Digital zoomYes
Manual focusYes
Number of focus points425
Lens mountSony E
Focal length multiplier1.5×
Screen / viewfinder
Articulated LCDFully articulated
Screen size3″
Screen dots920,000
Touch screenYes
Screen typeTFT LCD
Live viewYes
Viewfinder typeNone
Photography features
Minimum shutter speed30 sec
Maximum shutter speed1/4000 sec
Exposure modesProgramAperture priorityShutter priorityManual
Scene modesPortraitSports ActionMacroLandscapeSunsetNight SceneHand-held TwilightNight PortraitAnti Motion Blur
Built-in flashNo
External flashYes (via hot shoe)
Flash X sync speed1/160 sec
Drive modesSingle shootingContinuousSelf-timerBracketing
Continuous drive11.0 fps
Self-timerYes
Metering modesMultiCenter-weightedSpot
Exposure compensation±5 (at 1/3 EV, 1/2 EV steps)
AE Bracketing±5 (3, 5 frames at 1/3 EV, 1/2 EV, 2/3 EV, 1 EV, 2 EV steps)
WB BracketingYes
Videography features
FormatMPEG-4, XAVC S, H.264
Modes3840 x 1920 @ 30p / 100 Mbps, XAVC S, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM3840 x 1920 @ 25p / 100 Mbps, XAVC S, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM1920 x 1080 @ 24p / 100 Mbps, XAVC S, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM1920 x 1080 @ 120p / 100 Mbps, XAVC S, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM1920 x 1080 @ 100p / 100 Mbps, XAVC S, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM1920 x 1080 @ 60p / 50 Mbps, XAVC S, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM1920 x 1080 @ 50p / 50 Mbps, XAVC S, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM1920 x 1080 @ 30p / 50 Mbps, XAVC S, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM1920 x 1080 @ 25p / 50 Mbps, XAVC S, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM1920 x 1080 @ 24p / 50 Mbps, XAVC S, MP4, H.264, Linear PCM
MicrophoneMultiple
SpeakerMono
Storage
Storage typesSD/SDHC/SDXC + Memory Stick Pro Duo
Connectivity
USBUSB 3.2 Gen 1 (5 GBit/sec)
USB chargingYes
HDMIYes (micro HDMI)
Microphone portYes
Headphone portYes
WirelessBuilt-In
Wireless notes802.11b/g/n + NFC + Bluetooth
Remote controlYes
Physical
Environmentally sealedNo
BatteryBattery Pack
Battery descriptionNP-FW50 lithium-ion battery & charger
Battery Life (CIPA)440
Weight (inc. batteries)343 g (0.76 lb / 12.10 oz)
Dimensions115 x 64 x 45 mm (4.53 x 2.52 x 1.77″)
Other features
Orientation sensorYes
Timelapse recordingYes
GPSNone

Sony ZV-E10 Verdict

Adding the ZV-E10 to Sony’s product roster was a natural and obvious step. It is a solid small video tool that produces excellent images, and its primary focus is vlogging. The camera has an articulated screen, enhanced microphones, and a tiny body.

The ZV-E10 is far from ideal; its three primary shortcomings are a severe rolling shutter when panning, a menu interface that does not support touch, and the inability to shoot 4K video at 60 frames per second unusual for a camera at this price range. When you get beyond those limits, you’ll discover a hybrid focused on video and offers good audio options at a low price.

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