A dead cat & review of the Sony ZV-1

I got a new pocket camera—a Sony ZV-1 to replace an RX100 that’s been missing for five months. This timeframe lines up with a bunch of upheaval, so that tracks. It was a good camera that served me well for many years.

The ZV-1 shares many of the core components that I appreciated of the RX100—fast focus, a good sized sensor, articulating screen, and zoom lens. It leaves off the electronic viewfinder and replaces the metal body with plastic.

It’s geared more for content creators so it adds a few features like a better microphone (with detachable dead cat) and “Product Showcase” that will quickly shift focus between a face and a product so you don’t have to hold up your hand to defeat face detection, like so:

A person holds up a gray fluffy rectangle in front of their hand
Dead cat microphone cover from above

I’ve had many generations of RX100s and they consistently hit the sweet spot of size and image quality.

But after 29 days with this ZV-1, I realized a few things:

  • I’m not a content creator that needs vlogging tools. This camera isn’t for me.
  • When breaking out a cooler for the first time this year, low and behold my missing camera was in the pocket.
  • I had one day left to return it.

Something just didn’t sit right with the ZV-1. The articulating screen favors selfies where I prefer different articulation points that help with low shots or holding the camera overhead.

Everything just added up to “this isn’t for me” and thank goodness I found my old camera.