Overall Rating:


Sony NEX-F3

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Price as Reviewed:


With a built-in flash and an over-the-top, front-viewable rear screen, Sony’s entry-level NEX-F3 is targeted at all family members

Sony NEX-F3 at a glance:

  • 16.1-million-pixel CMOS sensor
  • Bionz processor
  • ISO 200-16,000
  • 180° rotating LCD for self-portraiture
  • Built-in flash
  • Street price £499

The NEX-F3 is the first model in Sony’s third generation of compact system cameras. The first generation included the NEX-5, the world’s smallest and lightest interchangeable-lens camera at the time, and the NEX-3, which was a fractionally larger, plastic-bodied version that sold for a more affordable price.

These cameras had sleek and slender bodies thanks to the fact they did not have electronic viewfinders and the flashgun was a separate device included in the box. While this worked for the body size, the lenses needed to be quite large to cover the APS-C-sized sensor, so they appeared taller than the body. The flagship NEX-7 was added to the second generation, and included both flash and viewfinder in the body, which resulted in a more even match between lens and camera.

The NEX-F3 is the new entry-level model in the range and is a progression from the NEX-3 and NEX-C3 models, but like the NEX-7 it now offers a built-in flash unit. The ‘F’ in its name stands for family, as this camera has been designed to be used by all members, from granddad to granddaughter, and includes a new feature to aid the popular practice of taking self-portraits.

  • Video: 1080 (50i) AVCHD (25fps output), 720p MP4 (30fps)
  • External mic: Yes (through Sony accessory port)
  • Shutter Type: Electronically controlled focal-plane shutter
  • White Balance: Auto, 6 presets, Kelvin, plus custom setting
  • Built-in Flash: Yes (GN 6m @ ISO 100)
  • Memory Card: SD, SDHC, SDXC, Memory Stick Pro Duo
  • Viewfinder Type: N/A (port for optional EVF)
  • Output Size: 4912 x 3264 pixels
  • LCD: Articulated 3in LCD with 921,600 dots
  • White Balance Bracket: No
  • AF Points: 25-point (contrast AF), centre, flexible spot, multi-point
  • Max Flash Sync: 1/160sec
  • Sensor: 16.1-million-effective-pixel, APS-C (23.5 x 15.6mm) CMOS sensor
  • Weight: 225g (body only)
  • Focal Length Mag: 1.5x
  • Exposure Modes: iAuto, Superior Auto, program, aperture priority, shutter priority, manual, scene selection, sweep panorama, 3D sweep panorama
  • Power: Rechargeable NP-FW50 Li-Ion (470 shots)
  • File Format: JPEG, ARW (raw), AVCHD/MP4
  • Drive Mode: 5.5fps
  • Shutter Speeds: 30-1/4000sec in 1⁄3EV steps plus bulb
  • Colour Space: Adobe RGB, sRGB
  • Focusing Modes: Single, continuous, manual
  • DoF Preview: No
  • Dimensions: 117.3 x 66.6 x 41.3mm
  • Metering System: 1,200-zone evaluative metering, centreweighted and fixed centre spot
  • Connectivity / Interface: USB 2.0 Hi-Speed, HDMI
  • Compression: 2-stage JPEG
  • ISO: 200-16,000
  • Lens Mount: Sony E mount
  • RRP: £530 (with 18-55mm kit lens)
  • Exposure Comp: ±3EV in 1⁄3EV steps
  • Tested as: Enthusiast CSC

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