About the Sony NEX-3K
Sony's NEX-3K gives you the best of both digital camera worlds. Like an SLR, this "hybrid" camera has a larger image sensor capable of capturing cleaner, more dynamic photos. And it lets you add optional lenses and switch between them, so you can get creative with your shooting. But at just 1-3/8 inches deep, this cam has the svelte, travel-friendly body of a point-and-shoot.
Cool features that make it easy to use
It's obvious that Sony put a lot of thought into solving some common photography hang-ups. Just a few examples:
- Photographing something that's not at your eye level? Use the NEX-3K's tilting LCD screen to get a kid-level portrait of your toddler, or clear shots of the stage over the heads of the crowd.
- A lot of cameras really struggle with low-light shooting, resulting in blurry, underexposed shots of a cityscape at twilight or a dimly lit dining room. The NEX-3K takes multiple photos in rapid succession, then intelligently combines the best parts of each one to give you one clear, great-looking photo.
- If a camera's menus are hard to navigate, you might miss your shot while fumbling for the right setting. The NEX-3K's simple control wheel with helpful on-screen tips makes it easy to quickly select the settings you want.
18-55mm zoom lens — a great choice for all-around shooting
The included 18-55mm lens gives you a good focal range for everyday picture taking. On the 18mm end, you get a pretty wide-angle, "zoomed out" view that lets you capture a lot of the scene in front of you great for capturing dramatic landscapes and cityscapes. On the 55mm end, you get a good bit of zoom, up to about 3X or so, which can be a good focal length for flattering portraits.
For more versatile shooting, you can add Sony's 16mm wide-angle SEL lens. Or pick up the A-mount adapter and you can choose from any of the lenses that are compatible with Sony's Alpha SLRs. This camera doesn't come with memory, so you'll need to pick up an SD or Memory Stick PRO Duo card to save your pictures.
- 14.2-megapixel effective recording
- APS-C size HD CMOS image sensor (23.4 X 15.6 mm) for rich tonal gradation and true-to-life color
- includes 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 lens (35mm equivalent focal length: 27-82.5mm)
- tilting 3" LCD screen with live view for composing shots in real-time and previewing the effects of exposure settings
- high-def movie mode with sound (up to 720p)
- BIONZ® image processor for high-resolution, low-noise photos
- Anti-Dust Technology keeps image sensor clean for spotless photos
- 6-image layering: can take six pictures in under a second, then combine the best attributes of each into one photo to reduce blur and ensure proper exposure
- 25-area autofocus system for rapid, precise autofocusing
- "Background Defocus" control lets you easily blur the background
- supplied detachable, aimable flash gives you greater control over flash angle and intensity
- face detection adjusts focus, exposure, and white balance for great-looking portraits
- Smile Shutter technology snaps a picture when it detects a smile
- Sweep Panorama mode
- 3D Panorama mode: sweep across the panorama, and the camera captures "right-eye" and "left-eye" versions of the image. 3D TV and 3D glasses required to view images in 3D
- on-screen help guide and shooting tips
- warranty: 1 year
- Our 60-day money-back guarantee
- compatible with Sony E-mount lenses
- compatible with Sony Alpha SLR lenses when used with LA-EA1 lens adapter
Exposure Modes and Controls:
- continuous shooting mode: 2.3 frames per second (up to 7 frames per second in Speed Priority mode)
- shutter speed range: 30-1/4,000 seconds, bulb
- sensitivity or ISO (film speed equivalent) range: 200-12,800
- program auto, shutter-priority, aperture-priority, manual, and fully automatic exposure modes
- flash bracketing: up to 3 frames
- 8 preset scene modes for accurately exposed images in many different shooting environments
- flash sync at 1/160 second
File Formats and Storage:
- image storage modes: JPEG (Fine and Standard), RAW, and RAW+JPEG
- still image aspect ratio options: 3:2, 16:9
- top JPEG options (pixels): 4592 X 3056 (3:2); 4592 X 2576 (16:9)
- MP4 movie files up to 1440 x 1080 resolution at 30 frames per second with mono sound
- accepts optional SD, high capacity SDHC, MultiMediaCard, and Memory Stick PRO Duo memory cards
Connections and Dimensions:
- high-speed USB interface
- mini HDMI output (cable not included)
- 4-3/4"W x 2-9/16"H x 1-3/8"D (without lens)
- weight (without battery or media): 8.4 oz.
- supplied lens weight: 6.9 oz.
- 18-55mm Sony lens
- detachable flash and flash case
- rechargeable NP-FW50 lithium ion battery
- battery charger/AC adapter
- neck strap
- USB cable
- software CD-ROM
- MFR # NEX3K/S
What's in the box:
- NEX-3 Digital camera body (silver) with SEL1855 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 lens installed
- 49mm Lens cap (installed)
- AL-C-SH112 Lens hood
- HVL-F7S Flash unit in a plastic case
- BC-VW1 Battery charger (8.4V/0.28A)
- NP-FW50 rechargeable InfoLithium battery (7.2V/1080 mAh)
- 56" USB cable (has a USB type A connector on one end and a mini USB connector on the other end)
- Adjustable neck strap
- Application software CD-ROM
- Instruction Manual
- Warranty Sheet
- Lens & Accessories brochure
- On-line registration sheet
Sony NEX-3K reviews
Thanks for submitting your review
More details on the Sony NEX-3K
Features & specs
|LCD Screen Size||3"|
|Lens 35mm Equivalent||27-82.5mm|
Memory Stick PRO Duo |
|Sensor Size||23.4 X 15.6 mm CMOS|
|Highest Resolution||4592 X 3056|
|Video Resolution||1280 x 720|
|Weight With Battery (ounces)||10.5|
|Parts Warranty||1 Year|
|Labor Warranty||1 Year|
Package Contents: The Sony NEX-3K ultra-thin zoom lens kit contains the α (alpha series) NEX-3 camera and the SEL1855 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 E-mount zoom lens.
Thin Design: The Sony NEX-3 is the smallest interchangeable lens digital still camera in its class. The conventional mirror box, AF sensor, and viewfinder have all been removed, reducing the thickness of the camera considerably. The camera is compatible with Sony's E-mount series of smaller, lighter lenses, such as the included 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 (SEL1855) zoom lens and the optional 16mm F2.8 (SEL16F28) wide angle lens. With the optional LA-EA1 lens adapter, the Sony α (alpha) lenses can be used.
3" Tiltable LCD Screen: The NEX-3 uses a 3" Xtra Fine LCD screen with 921,600 pixels. The TruBlack screen has a special resin layer to suppress internal reflections and increase contrast compared to conventional LCDs. The screen tilts down 45° and up 80° to frame high- and low-angle shots. The camera does not have a separate viewfinder.
Versatile Recording Formats: Images can be captured in the following modes:
- RAW+JPEG (Fine)
- JPEG (Fine and Standard)
Image Sizes: You can record still images in a 3:2 or 16:9 aspect ratio. The image sizes include:
|Aspect Ratio||Image Size||Resolution|
|3:2||L: 14M||4592 x 3056|
|M: 7.4M||3344 x 2224|
|S: 3.5M||2288 x 1520|
|16:9||L: 12M||4592 x 2576|
|M: 6.3M||3344 x 1872|
|S: 2.9M||2288 x 1280|
Movie Recording: The NEX-3 can record High Definition (16:9) and Standard Definition (4:3) movies in MPEG-4 format with AAC-LC 2-channel audio. Continuous recording is possible for approximately 29 minutes. The following size options are available:
|Image Size||Average Bit-rate||Usage Guidelines|
|1280 x 720 (Fine)||9 Mbps||Records with high image quality for viewing on a high-definition TV|
|1280 x 720 (Standard)||6 Mbps|
|VGA (640 x 340)||3 Mbps||Records in the suitable size for uploading to the web.|
Dual Media Options: The NEX-3 accepts three types of media for capturing still images: Memory Stick PRO Duo (including Memory Stick PRO-HG Duo) and SD, SDHC, and SDXC Memory Cards. The camera is also compatible with Eye-Fi cards, which can upload images from the memory card wirelessly to your computer via Wi-Fi. Images recorded on SDXC cards cannot be imported to or played on computers or AV devices that are not compatible with exFAT. The maximum number of images that can be recorded on a memory card is as follows:
Still Image Capacity based on images taken at L 14M/Aspect Ratio: 3:2:
|Size \ Capacity||2 GB||4 GB||8 GB||16 GB||32 GB|
|RAW & JPEG||84||176||362||745||1478|
|MP4 Movie |
(1280 x 720 Fine)
Image Sensor: The NEX-3 features an APS-C sized Exmor CMOS HD image sensor (23.6 x 15.8mm). It has approximately 14.6-million total pixels and 14.2-million effective pixels.
SteadyShot: When the supplied 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 E-mount lens is attached to the NEX-3, you can turn on the Steady Shot function to reduce the effect of camera shake. You cannot set Steady Shot when the optional 16mm F2.8 E-mount lens or an A-mount lens is attached.
25-Point AF System: The NEX-3's high-performance auto focus system uses 25 focus points to deliver fast and precise focusing. You can choose from the following Auto/Manual Focus Modes:
- AF/MF Select: You can choose from these three focusing
- Auto Focus: The camera focuses automatically.
- Direct Manual Focus: After focusing automatically, you can make fine adjustments to the focus by turning the focusing ring.
- Manual Focus: You can adjust the focus manually by turning the focusing ring.
- AF (Auto focus) Mode: You can select between 2 modes:
- Single-Shot AF: The camera focuses and the focus is locked when you press the shutter button halfway down.
- Continuous AF: The camera continues to focus while the shutter button is pressed and held halfway down.
- AF (Auto focus) Area: You can select between 3 settings:
- Multi: The camera determines which of the 25 AF areas is used in focusing. When Face Detection is active, AF operates with priority on faces.
- Center: The camera uses the AF area located in the center area exclusively.
- Flexible Spot: You can choose a focus area from the 25 areas using the controller.
Focus Lock: If a subject is off-center and outside of the AF area, you can lock the focus of the camera.
AF Illuminator: When you press the shutter button halfway down a red illuminator is emitted until the focus is locked. Under dark lighting conditions or when you shoot a low contrast subject, the AF illuminator allows the camera to focus more easily on the subject.
Drive Modes: The camera offers the following shooting modes:
- Single Shot Advance: Default setting for standard picture taking--shoots one still image.
- Shooting Continuously: When you press and hold the shutter button, the camera records the images continuously at a maximum 2.3 images per second.
- Speed Priority Continuous: When you press and hold the shutter button, the camera records the images continuously at a maximum 7 images per second.
You can set the camera to two different self-timers:
- 10 Second: After you press the shutter button, the shutter will be released about 10 seconds later. This is convenient when the photographer wants to appear in a photo.
- 2 Second: After you press the shutter button, the shutter will be released about 2 seconds later. This is convenient to reduce camera-shake.
- Self-timer Continuous: After you press the shutter button, the camera will continuously take 3 or 5 images after a 10-second pause.
- Exposure Bracket: The camera can shoot three continuous images with the exposures shifted automatically. This setting shoots images continuously with exposure value shifted by plus or minus 0.3 EV or 0.7 EV.
Exposure Modes: The camera offers the following exposure recording modes:
- Intelligent Auto: The camera analyses the subject, and allows you to shoot with appropriate settings. It recognizes and automatically switches to Night View, Tripod Night View, Night Portrait, Backlight, Backlight Portrait, Portrait, Landscape, or Macro. You can also defocus the background to make the subject stand out.
- Scene Selection: You can select an appropriate mode for the
subject or the shooting conditions to allow you to shoot the image with a
suitable setting for the subject:
- Portrait: blurs away backgrounds and sharpens the subject; expresses skin tones softly
- Landscape: shoots the entire range of scenery in sharp focus with vivid colors.
- Macro: for shooting close subjects such as flowers, insects, dishes, or small goods.
- Sports Action: for shooting moving subjects outdoors or in bright places.
- Sunset: for shooting the red of the sunset beautifully
- Night Portrait: for shooting portraits in night scenes. You should attach and use the supplied flash.
- Night View: for shooting night scenes without losing the dark atmosphere.
- Hand-held Twilight: for shooting night scenes with less noise and blur without using a tripod. A burst of shots are taken, and image processing is applied to reduce subject blur, camera shake, and noise.
- Anti Motion Blur: This mode is suitable for indoor shots without using the flash, to reduce subject blur.
- Sweep Panorama: You can create a panoramic image from
composed images. To shoot, pan the camera horizontally or vertically while
holding down the shutter button. You can select two modes of panorama
- Standard: Vertical--2160 x 3872; Horizontal--8192 x 1856
- Wide: Vertical--2160 x 5536; Horizontal 12416 x 1856
- Program Auto: This mode allows you to shoot with the exposure adjusted automatically (both the shutter speed and the aperture value), while keeping the custom settings for ISO sensitivity, Creative Style, D-Range optimizer, etc.
- Aperture Priority: This mode allows you to shoot after adjusting the aperture value manually, letting the camera set the appropriate shutter speed. This mode gives you greater control over the depth of field.
- Shutter Speed Priority: This mode allows you to shoot after adjusting the shutter speed manually, letting the camera set the appropriate aperture. With a high shutter speed, the moving subject appears as if it is frozen on the image. With a slow shutter speed, the moving subject appears as if it were flowing.
- Manual Exposure: This mode allows you to shoot after adjusting the exposure (shutter speed and aperture) manually.
- Bulb (Long Exposure) Shooting: In this setting as long as the shutter button is pressed, the shutter remains open. You can shoot trails of light, such as fireworks.
3D Panorama: The NEX-3 is capable of capturing scenic panoramic vistas in 3D. As you sweep across the panorama, the camera records separate right-eye and left-eye images that make landscapes display in 3D. A firmware update (from the Sony eSupport website) is required for the 3D feature. 3D viewing requires a 3D-capable TV, a high-speed HDMI cable (supporting at least 10.2 Gbps), and 3D glasses (all sold separately).
Exposure Compensation: Exposure compensation is used to alter the camera's standard exposure setting. You can make the image look lighter (increased exposure) or darker (decreased exposure). The exposure compensation amount can be set up to +/-2 EV in 1/3-step increments.
AE Lock: You can fix the exposure before deciding on the composition when taking a picture. This is effective when the metering object and focusing object are different or when you want to shoot continuously while keep the same exposure value.
Face Detection: When activated, the camera detects the faces of your subjects and adjusts the focus, flash exposure, and white balance settings automatically. You can also select the priority face to be focused on. You can set Face Detection to Auto, Child Priority, or Adult Priority.
Metering Mode: A 40-segment honeycomb sensing system provides multi-pattern measuring for superior exposure control accuracy in a wide range of lighting conditions. You can select the method for measuring the brightness of a subject from the following three methods:
- Multi Pattern: This method uses the whole screen divided into 49 segments to measure light.
- Center Weighted: While emphasizing the central area of the screen, this method measures the average brightness of the entire screen.
- Spot: This method measures light only in the spot metering circle in the center of the frame.
White Balance: You can adjust the color tones according to the lighting conditions. You can choose from the following WB options, and adjust the +/- 3 to fine tune the colors:
- Auto WB: This mode adjusts the white balance automatically.
- Daylight: This mode adjusts for outdoors and sunlit subjects.
- Shade: This mode adjust for shady conditions on a clear day.
- Cloudy: This mode adjust for a cloudy sky.
- Incandescent: This mode adjusts for incandescent lighting.
- Fluorescent: This mode adjusts for florescent lighting.
- Flash: This mode adjusts for flash conditions.
- Color Temperature: This mode adjusts the white balance depending upon the light source (color temperature). It achieves the effect of color compensation (CC) filters for photography.
- Custom: In a scene where the ambient light consists of multiple types of light sources, use of the custom white balance is recommended in order to accurately reproduce the whiteness.
Creative Style: This camera is pre-programmed with image styles optimal for various scenes and purposes. For each setting, you can adjust the contrast, saturation, and sharpness. You can choose from the following settings:
- Standard: This setting reproduces various scenes with rich gradation and beautiful color.
- Vivid: This setting reproduces memorable scenery such as blue sky, sunsets, spring greenery, and autumn leaves with deep and vivid colors.
- Portrait: This setting accentuates the subject and softly reproduces skin tones.
- Landscape: This setting reproduces the scenery with vivid and sharp colors.
- Sunset: This setting beautifully reproduces the red of the sunset.
- B & W: This setting is for monochrome images.
ISO Settings: ISO is a unit of measurement of sensitivity to light. The larger the number, the higher the sensitivity. The camera's ISO can be set manually or automatically, depending upon the exposure mode:
- Auto or Scene Selection: When the exposure mode is set to Intelligent Auto, Scene Selection, Anti-Motion Blur, or Sweep Panorama, the ISO is fixed to Auto.
- P/A/S: When the exposure mode is set to Program, Aperture Priority, or Shutter Priority, and ISO is set to Auto, the ISO speed is automatically set between 200 and 1600.
- Manual: When the exposure mode is changed to Manual, the ISO is automatically changed to 200, and you can set it according the shooting conditions. Available ISO settings include 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200, 6400, and 12800. Auto ISO is not an option in the Manual shooting mode.
Flash: In a dark location, using the supplied HVL-F7S flash allows you to shoot the subject brightly, and it also helps prevent blurred photos due to camera shake. The NEX-3 features a special multi-pin jack for attaching the flash. When attached, you can turn the flash on or off by raising or lowering the flash head. When the flash is attached, it adds approximately 1/2" to the overall height of the camera, and adds 1-1/4" when raised. The NEX-3 offers the following flash modes:
- Autoflash: In auto mode the flash automatically fires if it is dark or against light.
- Fill-Flash: In this mode the flash fires every time the shutter is released.
- Slow Sync: Slow sync shooting allows you to shoot a clear image of both the subject and the background by slowing the shutter speed.
- Rear Sync: In rear sync mode, the objects illuminated by other light sources are captured first, then the flash is fired right before the exposure is completed.
- Flash Off: The flash does not fire, even if the flash is raised.
Noise Reduction: The camera offers Long Exposure and High ISO Noise Reduction (NR) to automatically reduce the grainy noise found in photos during long exposures or high ISO settings.
Optics: The Sony E 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 lens is compatible with the Sony α NEX-series interchangeable lens cameras. The lens has a 35mm equivalent focal length of 27-82.5mm, and a 76°-29° field of view for excellent low-light performance. It also has a smooth and quiet Auto Focus operation.
Focusing: The lens can be used in the auto-focus, direct manual focus, or manual focus modes. You can switch between focusing modes in the camera menu.
Dimensions: The lens has the following dimensions: Diameter=2.5", Length=2.375" (without lens caps).
|Lens||E 18-55mm F3.5-5.6|
|Angle of View||76°-29°|
|Minimum Focus||0.82' (9.84")|
|f-stop||f/3.5 - f/5.6 maximum |
f/22 - f/32 minimum
Playback Options: You can view images on the LCD monitor with 3 options: with recording data displayed, without recording data, or histogram display. A histogram is the luminance distribution that shows how many pixels of a particular brightness exists in a picture. The histogram display of this camera shows the brightness on the horizontal axis (left side is black, right side is white) and the number of pixels on the vertical axis.
Auto Review: After an image is recorded, you can have the camera automatically display it on the LCD monitor for two, five or 10 seconds. You can also turn off auto review.
Image Rotation: Vertical shots can be rotated automatically so that they are displayed upright during playback. This can be done manually or automatically.
Playback Screen: You can view your photos back as a single image on the LCD monitor, as an Index or as a Slide Show . During Index View mode, you can view 6 or 12 images at once. You can adjust the Slide Show mode interval from 1, 3, 5, 10, or 30 seconds.
Image Enlargement: During single image playback you can enlarge an entire image or a select area of an image, depending upon the image size. Small images can be enlarged up to 6.7x, Medium images to 10x, and Large images up to 13x. Once you have enlarged the image, you can pan around the image to view the desired portion.
Rotating Images: Images can be rotated counter-clockwise 360-degrees on the camera's LCD monitor during single image playback.
Protect Images: You can protect all images on your memory card or select only certain images to be protected from accidental erasure.
HDMI Output: The NEX-3 provides direct mini-HDMI output to your HDTV screen, so you can view and share photos in clarity and detail. You can choose between standard 3:2 or widescreen 16:9 aspect ratio. When connected to a Sony BRAVIA TV, you can control the image playback using the TV remote. A mini-HDMI-to-HDMI cable is not supplied.
Printing Options: The camera offers the following printing options.
- DPOF Compatible: Using the camera, you can specify the images and the number of images to print before you print images at a photo-shop or with your printer.
- Memory Card: You can print images with a Memory Stick or SD card compliant printer.
- Computer: You can copy images to a computer using the supplied "Picture Motion Browser" software and print the images.
InfoLithium Battery: The NEX-3 is powered by the NP-FW50 InfoLithium battery (supplied). The battery communicates data to the camera, so that the percentage of battery power remaining can be displayed. Stamina Battery power allows you to take up to 330 shots on a fully charged battery.
Charging: The supplied InfoLithium battery requires approximately 250 minutes for a full charge, using the supplied BC-VW1 charger. The battery must be fully charged before initial use.
Power Save: You can set different time intervals for the camera to switch to Power Save mode. You can set the interval to 1 minute, 5 minutes, 10 minutes, or 30 minutes. Once the camera goes into Power Save mode, you can return to the shooting mode by pressing the shutter button halfway.
Application Software CD-ROM: The following software is included with the NEX-3:
Picture Motion Browser Ver.5.2: Windows Only
- Import images shot with the camera and display them on the computer.
- Organize images on the computer on a calendar by shooting date to view them.
- Retouch, print, and send images as e-mail attachments and change the shooting date.
- Print or save still images with the date.
- You can create a data disc using a CD burner driver or DVD burner drive.
Image Data Lightbox SR Ver.2.2: Windows and Macintosh
- Display and compare RAW/JPEG images recorded with this camera
- Rate the images on a scale of five
- Set the color labels
- Display an image in "Image Data Converter SR" and make adjustments to it
Image Data Converter SR Ver.3.2: Windows and Macintosh
- You can edit images recorded in RAW mode with various corrections, such as tone curve, and sharpness.
- Adjust images with white balance, exposure, creative style, etc.
- Save the images displayed and edited on a computer. You can save the image as RAW format, or save it in the general file format.
- Sony Image Data Suite (Image Data Converter SR and Image Data
- OS Pre-Installed:
- Microsoft Windows XP SP3 (64-bit editions and Starter editions are not supported)
- Windows Vista SP2 (Starter edition is not supported)
- Windows 7
- CPU/Memory: Pentium 4 or faster is recommended, RAM 1GB or more is recommended
- Display: 1024 x 768 dots or more
- OS Pre-Installed:
- Sony Picture Utility (Picture Motion Browser):
- OS Pre-Installed:
- Microsoft Windows XP SP3 (64-bit editions and Starter editions are not supported)
- Windows Vista SP2 (Starter edition is not supported)
- Windows 7
- Minimum: Pentium III 800 MHz or faster
- Recommended: For playing/editing the movies: Intel Core Duo 1.66 GHz or faster/Intel Core 2 Duo 1.20 GHz or faster)
- Memory: 512 MB or more (for playing/editing HD movies: 1 GB or more)
- Hard Disk Space: 500 MB or more (for installation)
- Display: 1024 x 768 dots or more
- OS Pre-Installed:
- USB Connection: OS: Mac OS X (v10.3 to v10.6)
- Sony Image Data Suite only:
- OS Pre-Installed: Mac OS X v10.4, v10.5, v10.6 (Snow Leopard)
- CPU: Power PC G4/G5 series (1.0 GHz or faster is recommended) Intel Core Solo/Core Duo/Core 2 Duo or faster
- Memory: 1 GB or more is recommended
- Display: 1024 x768 dots or more