In 2010 Sony released its first consumer video camera with interchangeable lenses. The NEX-VG10 had the same hardware at its foundation as the NEX compact system cameras, but with a different design, quality microphone and viewfinder was really built for shooting video. We were not entirely convinced at the time, as the camera lacked essential features like focus and lighting assistance and didn't have enough buttons for the enthusiastic camera man. More than two years later, Sony first created the replacement VG10, then the VG20 and now it's time for the VG30. We tested the latest version that resembles the original a lot, but promises a number of important improvements.
The new NEX-VG30 video camera has an APS-C sensor like its predecessor, with a much larger surface area than most of the 1/3-inch sensors used in many video cameras. The advantage of the larger sensor is that it catches more light, which can potentially help in low-light situations. The larger sensor, in combination with a large aperture, lets you shoot video with a shallow depth of field, creating a film-like effect. The NEX-VG30 can also take a variety of different lenses. It employs Sony's E-mount system that's also used by the NEX photo cameras. The NEX-VG30 comes with an 18-200mm lens with motorized zoom. So what's the cost for all this fun? About 2,600 euros, including lens. The body is also available separately, for a bit less than 1,800 euros.