Sony's entry-level NEX-3 Micro System Camera is compact-like in appearance but has changeable lenses and produces DSLR quality. The What Digital Camera Sony NEX-3 review...

Product Overview

Overall rating:


Sony NEX-3

Overall score:90%
Image Quality:95%


  • Affordable, image quality, small size


  • Fiddly flash unit, excessive menu digging, limited to three current lenses


Sony NEX-3 Review


Price as reviewed:


Image Quality & Value

Sony NEX-3 review – Image Quality

An area where the NEX-system truly shines; hats off to Sony for the new APS HD sensor and Bionz processor which succeed in creating bold, bright, low-noise, high quality images. Plus, with any of the three current lenses available, sharpness is decent too.

Exposure is clean, well-metered and equal and even Auto White Balance is more consistent than some of Sony’s previous DSLR releases, showing progression in attention to detail.

To simplify: the NEX-3 (as well as the NEX-5) provide the current best image quality of any Micro System Camera on the market, bar none. Images are useable at all of its ISO settings, which is quite a feat considering the top-end sensitivity is ISO 12,800.

Sony NEX-3 review – Value

With the 16mm lens the NEX-3 is an exceptionally-priced £440. For what you get and the image quality that can be squeezed out of this impressive machine that’s a great price – especially considering some advanced compact cameras push the £400 mark these days. The only current ‘let down’ is that there are only three possible lenses that can be purchased, which doesn’t match up to the more considerable (and not compatible with Sony) Micro Four Thirds (Panasonic & Olympus) offerings on the market.

  1. 1. Sony NEX-3 review - Features
  2. 2. Design
  3. 3. Performance
  4. 4. Image Quality & Value
  5. 5. Verdict
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