Using an RX10 as a journalism camera.

Chef being interviewed.

This past March I covered an event at SXSW for New York public relations agency, Allison PR. The event featured chef, Dominique Ansel, making his signature baked product, the Cronut(tm) and he also introduced a new product which is a chocolate chip cookie, shaped like a shot glass or tumbler and served filled with cold milk. As is usual for a SXSW event over 400 people waited in line for several hours to gain entry to the Stephen F. Austin (Intercontinental) Hotel for their chance to taste one of these delicacies. 

My job was to cover all the aspects of the event, from the baking and making to the crowds of fans who had a blast sampling the product and visiting the adjacent bar.

I brought along a few full frame cameras but I ended up leaning on my favorite camera of the moment, the Sony RX10. The wide zoom range was valuable for shooting tight in and then whipping back fro establishing shots. ISO's from 200 to 3200 were intermixed and looked great. Certainly more than good enough for the primary use which was a quick journey to the web. 

From bounce light in the above image to fluorescent lights in the images below the camera was able to absolutely nail color balance and exposures while being quick and automatic to operate. 

Much as I love the RX10 (and I really do!!!) I have to report a flaw that recently popped up. You know that wonderful switch on the bottom of the lens that gives you a choice between defined click stops on the aperture ring and free wheeling action for video production? Well that switch no longer holds in position and the camera constantly wants to shift from the click-y position at which I've set it into the click-less position, in which I have much less interest...

While it's not worth sending it in to fix it is nonetheless an aggravating failure for a camera that carries a premium price in its niche and which has been handled lovingly and with kid gloves. Of course, if Sony values good customer relations they will no doubt read this and send a team over to the studio to fix it on site. Hey! Sony guys! If you are headed this way can you stop by the Starbucks on Bee Caves Rd. and Walsh-Taralton and pick me a up a Venti half caff drip coffee? I'll pay you back when you get here....

making the tops of Cronuts happy places.

Adding garnish to the Cronut.

The chocolate lined cookie shot glasses, awaiting milk.

Many lines are written on the web that would make one think no professional job could be done with less than a D4s or a 1DX but you won't read those ideas here. The RX10 was more than adequate to the task and the images ran in hundreds of places. The event was a screaming success. 

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

After one week shy of six months, the click/unclick switch of my RX10 is still as good as new, and so is the rest of the camera. I've even took it on a windy, sandy beach a couple of times, but so far no worries.
My only somewhat subjective niggles remain to be the variable speed MF/zoom ring, which is a minor niggle, and the fact that some of the MF and DMF features available on the stills side are not available in video mode. Suppose there's a reason for that, but I haven't figured it out yet. Some other users may not consider these as niggles at all.

As for the RX10 being adequate for pro work, sure, no problem. Suppose the key is to ignore the gear snobs and concentrate on delivering top notch results.