Designed with vloggers in mind, according to Sony, the ZV-1 II corrects some of the shortcomings of the previous model, as the company must contend with a newcomer to the market: Canon with its V10.
Right after Canon introduced its smartphone looking V 10 for vloggers, Sony shows the new model in its ZV family: the ZV-1 II, with a newly developed ZEISS Vario-Sonnar T* 18-50 mm F1.8-4i lens that is the company’s reply to all those who asked for a wider wide angle. Sony hopes that with this new look the ZV-1 II helps vloggers make more engaging storytelling with attractive photogenic image quality.
With a more classic look, where cameras ae concerned, than Canon’s V10 model – which looks a bit like a toy – the Sony ZV-1 II is the all-new second generation camera aiming to seduce more users. Its optical system is a key asset, as far a Sony’s marketing goes, and the company states that “from the 18-50mm wide angle lens which can frame everything from group selfies to narrow interiors or dynamic recordings of everyday scenes to the Multiple Face Recognition, which recognizes multiple faces and automatically adjusts to keeps all faces sharp and clear when taking selfie shots that include two or three people, the ZV-1 II is the advanced vlogging camera packed into a travel-size.
The 1.0-type Exmor RS image sensor (approximately 20.1 effective megapixels), BIONZ X image processing engine, and newly developed ZEISS Vario-Sonnar T* 18-50 mm F1.8-4i lens, the ZV-1 II allows for creators of many skill levels to enjoy sophisticated capabilities, according to the company, who hopes this model opens the door for a wider audience of content creators.
“The ZV-1 II is an exciting chapter for content creators and will be the go-to camera for many, including vloggers, social media influencers and short form video creators. With the newest vlog camera in the ZV series, we have taken requests from various users and included features that matter most to vloggers,” says Yang Cheng, Vice President, Imaging Solutions, Sony Electronics Inc. “We are striving to take feedback from our community to continue to expand and elevate our ZV series and the ZV-1 II does just that.”
All you need to know about the ZV-1 II
Here is a complete description of the things the new camera offers, as shared by Sony. As usual for the company, there is a series of footnotes – which we left out here – with limitations and other info that must be read before going ahead and buying this model.
Comprehensive Features for Vloggers & Video Content Creators
The ZV-1 II has a number of new and popular features that will empower creators to capture better content.
Ultra-wide angle and Zoom – 18mm wide angle of view makes it easy to capture attractive photogenic image with the entire scene – especially when shooting selfies at arm’s length. The 18-50mm optical zoom and the Clear Image Zoom smoothly enlarges images while minimizing loss of image quality to create variety in videos by changing the angle of view.
1.0 type sensor with Bokeh Switch which gives beautiful bokeh by defocusing the background with a single touch.
Intelligent 3-capsule microphone – In Auto mode, the camera recognizes human faces or objects and automatically switches the direction of the built-in microphone ([Front] or [All Directions]). In Manual mode, you can select [Front] for selfies, [Rear] when shooting with narration or [All Directions]. The supplied windscreen ensures a clear recording of the speaker when outdoors. Easy to use cableless attachment to Multi Interface Shoev and a 3.5 mm microphone jack makes it easy to connect external microphones.
Cinematic Vlog Setting function responds to the demands to easily capture videos with a filmic look. It enables impressive imagery at a touch. Simply tap the on-screen function icon and the camera will automatically set a CinemaScope size (2.35:1) and a frame rate of 24 fps –the same as for a cinema movie. Then finish off the work with the on-screen buttons to select from five LOOKs and four MOODs
Creative Look which supports 10 preset looks to suit your creative preferences and pro-level imaging features.
Face Priority AE and Soft Skin Effect automatically and immediately detects faces and adjusts the exposure to optimize facial brightness, no matter the lighting. Soft skin effect smooths skin and facial features when filming.
Fast Hybrid AF System – Even in high-definition 4K where precise focusing is required, the camera will keep the images sharp with the same Fast Hybrid AF system seen in α series cameras. The camera is equipped with AF Transition Speed to select the focusing speed during video recording, and AF Subject Shift Sensitivity to control whether the camera shifts focus from one subject to another. In addition, the Real-time Eye AF can accurately keep focus on human or animals for both stills and movies.
Product Showcase Setting – which delivers convenient shooting of product review videos with smooth focus transitions from your face to the item you are highlighting.
S&Q shoot mode which allows a selection up to 5x slow or up to 60x quick motion to add impact to everyday scenes. The combination of shooting and recording frame rates can now be set on a single screen.
ISO sensitivity spanning from 125 to 12800 – allows the camera to record sharp images with less noise, even in low lighting.
Active Mode electronic image stabilization – content can be captured while walking or in motion and is especially useful for handheld shooting. Useful for handheld Movie and Slow & Quick motion shooting.
Built-in ND filter – to reduce exposure by three stops and allow for beautiful background bokeh even in the brightest situation.
Compact and Lightweight for Easy Portability, Operability, Connectivity
The ZV-1 II is perfect for on-the-go; its compact and lightweight design can be easily carried in a pocket or small bag, even with its optical wide zoom lens. The ZV-1 II supports different filming styles with the vari-angle screen suitable for selfies, easy to hold body grip (or with an optional GP-VPT2BT grip), user-friendly key and control layout and the recording indicator on the front face of the body. The monitor display has been redesigned with a bold, clearly visible red frame that makes it obvious when recording is in progress. Power charge easily via a USB Type-C connector.
Creators can connect and share content easily with Sony’s Creators’ Cloud platform and easy smartphone connection. The Creators’ App can be used to control the ZV-1 II from a smartphone, monitor camera battery and media status, edit date and camera names, and easily transfer stills and videos shot, even in the background. The Creators’ Appx also provides a convenient way to update camera software.
For easy high-quality live streaming, simply connect the ZV-1 II to a PC or smartphone with a commercially available USB cable (not included) to use it as a webcam. Make your video more attractive in online meetings and live streaming by using Creative Look to improve the skin’s appearance and adjust the hue. Faces will appear clearer and brighter (Face Priority AE) and the eyes will be kept in focus (Real-time Eye AF).
The ZV-1 II includes accessibility features that facilitate operation in several ways, including screen reader functionality for people with low vision or with visual impairments. Accessibility features allow anyone to enjoy shooting and playback. When the screen reader function is activated, text on the menu screens is read aloud. The screen reader function can be activated by turning the [Screen Reader] function in the [Setup] tab ON. Screen reader volume can be adjusted via the [Sound Options] settings.
In addition to the above, the ZV-1 II includes several functions that assist in achieving pinpoint focus on a variety of subjects. Additionally, the Real-time Eye AF can automatically recognize and focus on [Human] or [Animal], or the Real-time Tracking function. Focus Magnification, and Peaking functions make it easier to focus manually, and features like Touch Focus, Touch Tracking, and Touch Shutter let the user focus, track, and shoot simply by touching the subject on the monitor screen. ZV-1 II accessibility features (items listed in the specifications): Screen Reader, Touch AE, Focus Magnifier, Peaking Display, Real-time Eye AF, Real-time Tracking, Touch Focus, Touch Tracking, Touch Shutter, Vari-angle LCD screen and Custom function.
Pricing and Availability
The new ZV-1 II will be available in June 2023 at a variety of Sony’s authorized dealers, for an estimated retail price of $900 USD and $1,200 CAN.
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