REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

by PowerReviews
SonyAlpha NEX-5 Interchangeable Lens Digital Camera w/18-55mm Lens (Silver)
 
4.5

(based on 153 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (97)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (48)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (4)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (3)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (1)

97%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Easy to use (119)
  • Large clear LCD (118)
  • Compact (112)
  • Good in low light (99)
  • Great resolution (82)

Cons

  • Short battery life (56)
  • No viewfinder (49)
  • Limited zoom (26)
  • Complicated controls (12)
  • Poor flash (8)

Best Uses

  • Travel (118)
  • Family photos (109)
  • Low light (91)
  • Video (68)
  • Sports/action (52)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Photo enthusiast (59), Casual photographer (49), Semi-pro photographer (25), Pro photographer (9)
    • Was this a gift?:
    • No (111), Yes (20)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

A "Wow!" Experience

The Alpha NEX-5 is one of several digital cameras in my collection that includes a Leica fixed-lens rangefinder and a Nikon D3.

This camera is a marvel in it's menu of...Read complete review

The Alpha NEX-5 is one of several digital cameras in my collection that includes a Leica fixed-lens rangefinder and a Nikon D3.

This camera is a marvel in it's menu of options. Set-up is extremely easy, so easy in fact, that one can make choices without ever looking at the instruction book. Though I have not had time to experiment with many aspects, these are some that I really like:

• Sharp,highlighted screen which can be set with all kinds of assists in functions;
• Panorama function;
• size; though it tends to be a bit heavy, it is so much lighter than a normal size SLR with comparable lenses, making this camera easy to carry (a must for me, since I can no longer haul my huge camera bag;
•Memory Card Tool, allows me to arrange photos or title folders, especially helpful for travel;
•Instructions can be set to appear on screen, most helpful for a new user;
• Background De-Focus, the function of which is accessible by turning the joy-stick wheel;
• The flash is very acceptable, must moreso than one of my other digital (rather high-end) cameras of this type.
• I fits in my purse :-).
• I'm experimenting with Color Space. Appears interesting, but have not had enough time to comment fully.
• Playback enlargement

Negatives:
I have only two, and they are not critical issues. (1) The shutter is a bit noisy, but I haven't compared it with my SLRs as yet. (2) The on-off switch and the shutter should be reversed. It feels a little awkward to access the shutter by putting one's finger over the on-off switch. Again, I'll get used to it.

I have gone from a Brownie Box camera, through range-rinders, twin-lens relfex, press cameras, SLRs (film and digital) and this, in my opinion make experimenting a whole lot of fun because of its ease. With all the positives (and I'm sure I'll find many more to love), I can get by with that.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

focus problems in video mode

finally a big sensor in a small camera! The right way to go! The photos are good, low light performance is really good, although it loses some detail. The menu is easy...Read complete review

finally a big sensor in a small camera! The right way to go! The photos are good, low light performance is really good, although it loses some detail. The menu is easy to understand and I never needed a manual to find what I was looking for. There could be quicker ways for ISO and the likes, but aperture, shutter speed and moving the focus point is easily accessible.BUT: How would you like it if you focus on a subject, press the shutter --- and the focus goes "bye, bye I am doing whatever I want, not what you want". This is what happens with the video function. You have no control whatsoever - the result is accordingly. The camera seems to focus on the area with the most contrast - bad if you want to film a friend who isn't contrasty enough (and who is?) - in comparison with the background or some object closer to the lens. It will focus on the background or foreground. The person stays out of focus - almost always. Somtimes it focuses back and forth, seemingly not being able to make a decision.Only in well lit outdoor situations where the lights and contrasts are equally spread around the whole frame, the camera will set the aperture at a high value - and everything will be sharp - the background, the foreground, the subject/object.But what about the promise of a blurred background, the creative options promised by Sony? This will only come true if Sony at least enables face detection, subject tracking ... or the wisest option: the same manual control you have for still photography. It is all disabled in video mode, which makes for a dead camera in this mode.[@] says:"The large Exmor APS HD CMOS sensor inside the NEX-5 ensures superb video image quality. It also enables beautiful background defocus effects you can't achieve with video on ordinary compact cameras."Reality: Until now it enables an erratic focus, which blurs away your subject or the background - you never know. Solution: Firmware update! It is such a stylish camera, it should be enabled to shoot stylish videos!

Reviewed by 153 customers

Sort by

Displaying reviews 1-20

Back to top

Previous | Next »

 
4.0

Love It!!

By hnc

from Oklahoma

About Me Casual Photographer

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Easy to Use
  • Fast Shutter Speed
  • Good Battery Life
  • Good in Low Light
  • Great Resolution
  • Large Clear LCD
  • Small / Compact

Cons

  • Limited Zoom
  • No Viewfinder

Best Uses

  • Family Photos
  • Sports/Action
  • Travel

Comments about Alpha NEX-5 Interchangeable Lens Digital Camera w/18-55mm Lens (Black):

This is our family camera and we love the ease and portability of it. My 8 yr. sold son enjoys using it to snap photos of his interests and my husband and I have loved having it to take pictures at all of the sporting events and family gatherings we have been to.

  • Ease of Operation:
  • 9
  • Was this a gift?:
  • No

Share this review

 
5.0

Portable, Powerful Sony NEX-5

By KEhrie

from Middelburg, Netherlands

About Me Photo Enthusiast

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Easy to Use
  • Fast Shutter Speed
  • Good in Low Light
  • Great Resolution
  • Large Clear LCD
  • Small / Compact

Cons

  • No Viewfinder

Best Uses

  • Family Photos
  • Indoors/Low Light
  • Macro Photography
  • Travel
  • Video
  • Wildlife photos

Comments about Alpha NEX-5 Interchangeable Lens Digital Camera w/18-55mm Lens (Black):

I was looking for a compact camera that is easy-to-use in versatile situations with superior lens options and good video functionality. A friend turned me on to the Sony NEX series and I couldn't be happier. The photo quality, even after only a brief tutorial with my new camera, is far superior to the Nikon D60 that I was using previously.

  • Was this a gift?:
  • Yes

Share this review

 
5.0

Excellent Beginner's Camera

By PeopleCanFly

from Virginia

About Me Casual Photographer

See all my reviews

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Easy to Use
  • Fast Shutter Speed
  • Small / Compact

Cons

  • Short Battery Life

Best Uses

  • Family Photos
  • Travel

Comments about Alpha NEX-5 Interchangeable Lens Digital Camera w/18-55mm Lens (Black):

This was my first EVIL camera and it is excellent, especially at this price range. It takes gorgeous pictures and has easy to use controls for any lighting situation. None of the preset functions feel gimmicky and actually serve a purpose. Sweep panorama mode is probably the most fun while hand-held twilight is the most useful.

The physical size of this camera is also a huge bonus compared to the standard DSLR. If you buy the 16mm pancake lens I can easily see this being carried around in a jacket pocket. Unfortunately, the stock lens is on the big size but it's great for almost every situation. Don't expect to pocket it with the kit lens, though.

The video mode is has nice quality, but only good light. Only the NEX-5N (And 7) allow manual controls over video. All you can adjust on this model is the contrast, saturation, and sharpness via the various creative styles. Low light video has visible noise.

Overall this is an excellent travel camera for taking photos and family videos. I highly recommend getting the pancake lens for maximum portability.

  • Ease of Operation:
  • 9
  • Was this a gift?:
  • No

Share this review

 
5.0

It's Everything I Wanted in a Camera!

By JOB

from Cheonan, South Korea

About Me Photo Enthusiast

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Easy to Use
  • Fast Shutter Speed
  • Good Battery Life
  • Good in Low Light
  • Great Resolution
  • Great Zoom
  • Large Clear LCD
  • Small / Compact

Cons

  • Limited Zoom

Best Uses

  • Family Photos
  • Indoors/Low Light
  • Macro Photography
  • Wildlife photos

Comments about Alpha NEX-5 Interchangeable Lens Digital Camera w/18-55mm Lens (Black):

I'm at an amature when it comes to photography, but I know what I want from a basic picture and from the camera taking my picture, and I've (mistakenly) looked for it in $200-300 point and shoots. This camera is EXACTLY what I've been looking for.

I read reviews about the camera, and I agree with all of them except the negative comments (every once in a while there comes along a faulty product ... but I didn't get that and I haven't had to deal with Sony directly, so i can't speak to their quality of customer service).

The camera is compact enough to fit in a coat pocket (the lens of course adds more size than a regular point and shoot), and it really is easy to just carry around.

One of my favorite aspects of the camera, and the one that really makes this camera worth the money (i've been looking for a camera that does this) is the low-light capabilities. Most point and shoots have difficulty keeping a steady shot in anything but bright light -- indoors is almost off-limits without a flash, which affects any natural lighting. The nex5 does the low-light. I took it into the bathroom with the light off and only a trickle of light coming in, and it still took a half-decent pic! I had to close the door for pitch black conditions to get a bad picture.

Although there aren't many quick buttons on the exterior, the menu setup really is easy to use. It is well-organized and easy to navigate the options. Although the option to designate which functions are controlled by the quick buttons, I wish there were a little liberty in assignment options (for example, if i want the ease of switching between color and b/w, it's impossible to assign a b/w function to those buttons). Regardless of that very minor setback, the menu is still easy to use.

One other small option that i wish it had is being able to change the point of focus in the "intelligent auto" mode. Point of focus can only be changed in the manual modes. That being said, the intelligent auto mode takes REALLY good pics.

The back LCD is superb. The images are super clear, and even the menu search is pleasing to the eye and easy to use with the scroll button. Up and down tilt makes it easy to get those "other" point of reference shots (shooting above a crowd or taking a shot near the ground).

In short: I LOVE THIS CAMERA.

  • Ease of Operation:
  • 8
  • Was this a gift?:
  • No

Share this review

 
5.0

Simple Enough for Even Me!!

By AbacoSean

from Shores of New Jersey

About Me Casual Photographer

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Easy to Use
  • Fast Shutter Speed
  • Good Battery Life
  • Good in Low Light
  • Great Resolution
  • Great Zoom
  • Large Clear LCD
  • Small / Compact

Cons

  • No Viewfinder

Best Uses

  • Family Photos
  • Indoors/Low Light
  • Sports/Action
  • Travel
  • Wildlife photos

Comments about Alpha NEX-5 Interchangeable Lens Digital Camera w/18-55mm Lens (Black):

I have two sons that have both studied photography and when I asked them what camera I should buy, I got the third degree... Once that was done they decided I needed to look at this one. They couldn't have been more right. Simple Stupid and takes great pictures. I take it with me everywhere and have not been displeased. Thanks to my sons and Sony

  • Ease of Operation:
  • 9
  • Was this a gift?:
  • Yes

Share this review

 
5.0

Wish it came with a screen protector

By thaispicy

from Emeryville,ca

About Me Photo Enthusiast

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Small / Compact

Cons

  • Short Battery Life

Best Uses

  • Wildlife photos

Comments about Alpha NEX-5 Interchangeable Lens Digital Camera w/18-55mm Lens (Black):

small,compact

  • Ease of Operation:
  • 5
  • Was this a gift?:
  • No

Share this review

 
5.0

Nice!

By "O" the artist

from Huntsville, AL

About Me Casual Photographer

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Easy to Use
  • Small / Compact

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Family Photos
    • Travel
    • Wildlife photos

    Comments about Alpha NEX-5 Interchangeable Lens Digital Camera w/18-55mm Lens (Black):

    Use the camera to take reference photos that I can use as subjects for my fine art. Easy to use and takes great pics.

    • Ease of Operation:
    • 9
    • Was this a gift?:
    • No

    Share this review

     
    5.0

    I would buy this product again and again

    By Chan

    from Sacramento, CA

    About Me Casual Photographer

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Easy to Use
    • Fast Shutter Speed
    • Great Resolution
    • Great Zoom
    • Small / Compact

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Family Photos
      • Macro Photography
      • Travel
      • Video
      • Weddings/Events
      • Wildlife photos

      Comments about Alpha NEX-5 Interchangeable Lens Digital Camera w/18-55mm Lens (Black):

      I use this camera take family picture and some time take on travel. I like this camera because it has intercharge lens. I can choose any lens I want to. and I can focus the picture as a professional camera. I can choose any optional lens and etc...

      • Ease of Operation:
      • 9
      • Was this a gift?:
      • Yes

      Share this review

       
      5.0

      Love it!

      By Heather

      from Oklahoma

      About Me Casual Photographer

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Easy to Use
      • Good Battery Life
      • Great Resolution
      • Large Clear LCD
      • Small / Compact

      Cons

      • No Viewfinder

      Best Uses

      • Family Photos
      • Sports/Action
      • Travel

      Comments about Alpha NEX-5 Interchangeable Lens Digital Camera w/18-55mm Lens (Black):

      We love this camera. This is the second one that we have owned, the other one was taken by a family member because she loved it so much. The portability and ease of use make this camera superb for photos at family activities and sporting events.

      • Ease of Operation:
      • 9
      • Was this a gift?:
      • No

      Share this review

       
      5.0

      What an easy buying experience

      By A62flip

      from Orange county,CA

      About Me Casual Photographer

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Good in Low Light
      • Large Clear LCD

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Family Photos
        • Indoors/Low Light
        • Sports/Action
        • Travel
        • Video

        Comments about Alpha NEX-5 Interchangeable Lens Digital Camera w/18-55mm Lens (Black):

        Great product, low price, And awesome price guaranty! I bought for the first time, Ino problems. 2weeks later, checked the web site again, and it was $200 cheaper. Called customer service, without even a order number ... Credited me without question.

        • Ease of Operation:
        • 9
        • Was this a gift?:
        • Yes

        Share this review

         
        5.0

        An absolutely great camera

        By Metropo

        from Oklahoma City

        About Me Semi-Pro Photographer

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Easy to Use
        • Fast Shutter Speed
        • Good Battery Life
        • Great Resolution
        • Great Zoom
        • Large Clear LCD
        • Small / Compact

        Cons

        • No Viewfinder

        Best Uses

        • Travel

        Comments about Alpha NEX-5 Interchangeable Lens Digital Camera w/18-55mm Lens (Silver):

        I travel a lot and the NEX5 does my bulky DSLRs do without the size and weight. The sweep panorama is excellent. The other features are equally impressive and too many to comment on now. Only one negative thing: no viewfinder. I like to my eye as it much easier to frame a shot and also adds stability. I took care of this by modifying a Pana-Vue Slide Viewer #3 to slide over the top of the display on the back of the camera. It works great. I got the idea from a you-tube video.

        • Ease of Operation:
        • 9
        • Was this a gift?:
        • No

        Share this review

         
        5.0

        Excellent camera

        By Amy

        from New Haven, CT

        About Me Photo Enthusiast

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Easy to Use
        • Fast Shutter Speed
        • Good Battery Life
        • Good in Low Light
        • Great Resolution
        • Great Zoom
        • Large Clear LCD
        • Small / Compact

        Cons

        • No Viewfinder

        Best Uses

        • Family Photos
        • Indoors/Low Light
        • Travel

        Comments about Alpha NEX-5 Interchangeable Lens Digital Camera w/18-55mm Lens (Black):

        I recently bought this camera after selling a large SLR camera that became too cumbersome with my 2 young kids. This camera has a solid frame and is durable. It is so compact it can fit in my diaper bag. I thought not having a flash available at all times would be an issue, but it's actually not at all. While dim lighting generally is an issue, the night mode on this camera is excellent. This is a great choice for a more simple approach to amateur photography.

        • Was this a gift?:
        • No

        Share this review

        (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

         
        1.0

        Clicking noise in videos

        By 2bigwons

        from NY, NY

        About Me Casual Photographer

        Pros

        • Easy to Use
        • Good in Low Light
        • Great Resolution
        • Great Zoom

        Cons

          Best Uses

            Comments about Alpha NEX-5 Interchangeable Lens Digital Camera w/18-55mm Lens (Silver):

            Sony dropped the ball on this one. There are complaints of a constant clicking noise when you shoot video. It's unacceptable for a camera in this price range. Please look at videos on youtube. Search nex 5n clicking

            Apparently you have to send your NEW camera back to Sony for service if the camera exhibits this clicking noise. Sony is aware of the problem, but has not given guidance on next steps other than sending in your camera

            • Was this a gift?:
            • No

            Share this review

            (4 of 12 customers found this review helpful)

             
            2.0

            Not a DSLR substitute

            By opuntia_man

            from Chandler, AZ

            About Me Photo Enthusiast

            Verified Reviewer

            Pros

            • Large Clear LCD
            • Small / Compact

            Cons

            • Complicated Controls
            • Lag / Shutter Delay
            • Limited Zoom
            • Poor Image Quality
            • Short Battery Life

            Best Uses

            • Family Photos
            • Travel

            Comments about Alpha NEX-5 Interchangeable Lens Digital Camera w/18-55mm Lens (Black):

            About a year ago I was looking for a compact camera that would take DSLR quality photos. The Sony Nex alpha 5 seemed to fit this bill.

            I have taken several thousand photos over the last year with my Nex alpha-5. At the same time many hours have been spent coming to grips with the menus and reading the manual. My general feeling has always been that the layout of the menus and options provided to the user were designed by engineers with little if any interaction with photographers. To give one example, the purported HDR facility. Firstly, this is NOT HDR, but an 8-bit jpeg image. Secondly, there is no way to take an "HDR" image remotely - you actually have to press the photo button, so the first of three images has camera shake, even with the camera on a tripod.

            Also, why is the shutter soooo noisy? And in addition, you can feel the shutter so I think this adds blur to the images.

            There are also times when options are grayed out, but without any apparent reason. Again, you have to be very familiar with the manual.

            I think the issue that I found most annoying is the noise in images within areas of sky or shadow, even at ISO 200.

            There is little point taking photos in the Intelligent Auto mode since they are almost always over exposed.

            So is this a terrible camera? No, there are some good features such as its small size.

            Finally, I am sad that I spent my money on this camera. Oh well, I still have my Nikon D700.

            • Ease of Operation:
            • 1
            • Was this a gift?:
            • No

            Share this review

             
            4.0

            Feeling Good About this Purchase

            By King of them all

            from Philadelphia, PA

            About Me Photo Enthusiast

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Fast Shutter Speed
            • Large Clear LCD
            • Small / Compact

            Cons

            • Complicated Controls
            • Limited Zoom

            Best Uses

              Comments about Alpha NEX-5 Interchangeable Lens Digital Camera w/18-55mm Lens (Silver):

              This is my first digital camera, so I made sure to read as many reviews and research many different brands before making my decision. Since I'm not savvy at digital, I wanted to make sure it was of decent quality and still user friendly. I got both in this camera. There are so many features that it will take me awhile to master this camera, but I feel confident I made the right choice.

              • Ease of Operation:
              • 7
              • Was this a gift?:
              • No

              Share this review

               
              5.0

              Great camera!

              By MP

              from New York

              About Me Photo Enthusiast

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Easy to Use
              • Fast Shutter Speed
              • Good in Low Light
              • Great Resolution
              • Large Clear LCD
              • Small / Compact

              Cons

              • Limited Zoom
              • Short Battery Life

              Best Uses

              • Family Photos
              • Indoors/Low Light
              • Macro Photography
              • Sports/Action
              • Travel
              • Video
              • Weddings/Events

              Comments about Alpha NEX-5 Interchangeable Lens Digital Camera w/18-55mm Lens (Black):

              This is a great camera. It is very user-friendly and can capture both artsy pictures and random snapshots of life. There are photo tips and you can use it on both manual and automatic. This is a perfect camera!

              • Ease of Operation:
              • 10
              • Was this a gift?:
              • Yes

              Share this review

               
              5.0

              I would buy this product again and again

              By Primo

              from Vitoria and san diego

              About Me Photo Enthusiast

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Easy to Use
              • Fast Shutter Speed
              • Good Battery Life
              • Good in Low Light
              • Great Resolution
              • Great Zoom
              • Large Clear LCD
              • Small / Compact

              Cons

                Best Uses

                • Family Photos
                • Sports/Action
                • Video

                Comments about Alpha NEX-5 Interchangeable Lens Digital Camera w/18-55mm Lens (Silver):

                excellent camera, great size, everything I was looking for .....

                • Ease of Operation:
                • 10
                • Was this a gift?:
                • No

                Share this review

                (0 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                4.0

                Good Product

                By Felix

                from Los Angeles, CA

                About Me Casual Photographer

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                • Easy to Use
                • Good in Low Light
                • Large Clear LCD
                • Small / Compact

                Cons

                • No Viewfinder

                Best Uses

                • Family Photos
                • Macro Photography
                • Travel
                • Weddings/Events

                Comments about Alpha NEX-5 Interchangeable Lens Digital Camera w/18-55mm Lens (Silver):

                Generally speaking, it's a good product. Compare to GF2 or E-PL3, it has much better picture quality, especially in high ISO condition. But it lacks internal flash light and internal viewfinder, which are the major defects for this camera.

                • Ease of Operation:
                • 9
                • Was this a gift?:
                • No

                Share this review

                (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                4.0

                Interesting Camera - Fun to Use

                By Ralph M

                from New Jersey

                About Me Photo Enthusiast

                Verified Reviewer

                Pros

                • Easy to Use
                • Fast Shutter Speed
                • Good in Low Light
                • Great Resolution
                • Large Clear LCD
                • Small / Compact

                Cons

                • Limited Zoom
                • Short Battery Life

                Best Uses

                • Family Photos
                • Macro Photography
                • Travel

                Comments about Alpha NEX-5 Interchangeable Lens Digital Camera w/18-55mm Lens (Black):

                I have owned this camera for several months and find that it is an excellent travel camera. I bought it mainly for this purpose but have found it good for macro work as well. Using legacy lenses is a lot of fun and I dug out some Minolta Rokkors and Nikon AIs that I have from the 70's and 80's. Some of these are excellent lenses and capable of some great images. I do not find the camera overly complicated or difficult to use. It will not replace a DSLR for some things... Birds in Flight, Sports, Fast moving kids etc. But for a lot of applications it is fine.

                • Ease of Operation:
                • 8
                • Was this a gift?:
                • No

                Share this review

                (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                the best camera ever

                By odk

                from Federal Way, WA

                About Me Casual Photographer

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                • Fast Shutter Speed
                • Good in Low Light
                • Great Resolution

                Cons

                • No Viewfinder

                Best Uses

                • Family Photos
                • Indoors/Low Light
                • Video

                Comments about Alpha NEX-5 Interchangeable Lens Digital Camera w/18-55mm Lens (Black):

                The NEX5 is the best camera ever really high quality, portable, great looking, quality that of a very professional camera.Really great videos and an affordable price. The quality of the pictures will leave you speechless.

                • Ease of Operation:
                • 10
                • Was this a gift?:
                • No

                Share this review

                Displaying reviews 1-20

                Back to top

                Previous | Next »