Producing videos for YouTube is something that I thoroughly enjoy. I love using videos to connect with people.
I am still at the start of my journey on YouTube and need to build up a larger following; however it is something I love doing every week regardless of the size of my audience.
I currently have two YouTube channels. My main channel mainly focuses on technology related subjects, though in the past I covered topics such as internet marketing and travel too.
Launching this channel allows me to keep my main channel focused on technology related topics.
Vlogging on YouTube
Whilst I do want to improve the quality of my videos, I also enjoy recording vlog style videos. These videos are quick to record and require little to no editing, which in turn frees up a lot of my time.
A year ago I looked at many different options for vlogging. I looked closely at popular vlogging cameras such as the Canon G7 X and the Sony RX100 series. Both of these cameras were mentioned in a recent video I published about vlogging cameras.
I was close to purchasing an RX100 at the time but opted instead for a Sony action camera for vlogs and the Panasonic Lumix G6 for recording higher quality clips at home. The G6 is a larger camera so is not practical for vlogging (though obviously you could use it for that).
I was never fully happy with the Sony action camera due to the fish eye lens it uses. Sometimes I don't think the clips it produces are that bad, other times I want to throw it against a wall as it looks like I am sitting inside a fish bowl.
After using the action camera for a month or two, the camera sat in the corner and gathered dust for the rest of the year.
When I recently launched the Rise Forums YouTube channel, I wanted to focus on vlogging style videos that were quick to record and upload. Rather than use the Sony action camera, I used my Google Nexus 6P instead.
The Google Nexus 6P is not a terrible vlogging solution, but it is not a great one either.
A number of problems can arise when you record through your smartphone. For example, even if you put your phone into aeroplane mode, you still run the risk of videos cutting out due to the camera app crashing. This has happened to me a few times and I have lost 10+ minute recordings as a result of it. It's extremely frustrating.
One of the reasons the camera app crashed so much is because recording 4K footage overheats the CPU of the smartphone.
Overheating and unexpected app crashes are not the biggest problem of the Nexus 6P. The biggest problem was the lack of good image stabilisation.
I decided to address this issue, sell my action camera before the price drops even more, and purchase a dedicated vlogging camera (my action camera was sold for a low price, damaged during postage, and returned smashed up….but that's another story!!!).
Once again, my attention turned to the Canon G7 X and the Sony RX100 series. They are still lauded as the best vlogging cameras due to their high quality specifications and portability.
Having a good dedicated portable camera will help me produce more videos for my channels. I plan on taking a camera with me wherever I am. This will allow me to record videos at home, when I am driving, and when I am out and about.
It takes me around 20 to 35 minutes to go to training and the same time back (depending on traffic etc). I normally make this journey about five times per week. Hopefully I can be productive with this time and use the journey to record videos in my car on a regular basis.
The Sony RX100 Series
The Sony RX100 series was a game changer when it was first released in 2012. It packed a huge one inch sensor in a portable camera at a time when every company was packaging smaller sensors. Without doubt, they created a market that had not existed.
Serious photographers started buying the RX100 as it allowed them to leave their large DSLR cameras at home and take great pictures while on the move. Video enthusiasts soon realised that the Sony RX100 was also a device that had fantastic video recording quality.
As I write this, there are four versions of the Sony RX100 series, however a fifth version is due around June 2016.
Having four different versions of a camera is unique in the world of technology. Most companies phase out older versions once the newer version has been released to the marketplace.
Sony has improved the series with each iteration and simply adjusted older versions of the camera. This means that there are four different price points for the series.
In the UK, the RX100 mark 1 retails for around £250 new, the mark II sells for around £375 new, the mark III sells for around £550 new, and the mark IV sells for around £750 new.
As you can see, the latest version of the series retails at three times the cost of the first version. It should be no surprise that there are savings to be had buy buying an RX100 second hand, though these cameras have proved to hold their value in the camera world as much as Apple iPhones do in the smartphone world.
In the video below I explain the main differences between each version of the camera from a vlogging point of view.
The last two versions of the RX100 have a flip out screen, though if you don't think you need that, you may want to consider one of the earlier versions and save a little money.
I purchased the Sony RX100 mark IV from a seller on eBay initially, but the seller was not happy with the price and just refused to send the camera to me. It has been several years since I have had to leave a negative rating on an eBay seller but I was happy to do post a negative rating with that particular seller. Despite the seller having a trading rating of -1, someone else attempted to purchase the camera from him. The seller refused to send the camera once again and he now has a rating of -2.
Whilst I was waiting for a refund for my purchase, I looked into the Sony RX100 mark III. From a vlogging perspective, the main difference between the mark III and mark IV was the lack of 4K recording and the lack of slow motion recording.
Slow motion recording was not something I wanted or needed, but 4K was a feature I would have loved. However, the mark IV can only record 4K footage for five minutes and some people have reported the camera overheating quicker than that. Most of the clips I will be recording with the camera will be longer than five minutes, so the inclusion of 4K was kind of irrelevant for me as I would have to record in 1080P anyways.
In the end, I opted for the Sony RX100 mark III as it had all the features I needed and gave me more bang for my buck. I found a second-hand mint condition unit for only £320. A whopping 42% saving over buying new and since I purchased it from CEX in the UK, it comes with a two year guarantee.
The Sony RX100 Mark III
I have been incredibly impressed with the RX100 M3 since purchasing it a few weeks ago. It is allowing me to record clips quicker and easier. The quality of footage is fantastic for such a small device.
You can see what the camera looks like in my quick look video below.
There are a lot of reasons I believe the Sony RX100 series is the perfect companion for vloggers.
It's lightweight, it can record amazing footage, and the built-in microphone is really good. The flip up screen is not something I think I would really need, but it is a feature I absolutely love as it allows me to see exactly what is in the shot.
I also love the fact I can charge the camera using a USB cable. The majority of cameras require you to take the battery out and charge it separately using a battery charger. Some people have complained that the RX100 series does not come with a battery charger, but I personally love the fact I can connect the camera to a power point or portable power bank at any time and charge it up.
I talk about vlogging with the Sony RX100 in the video below.
The footage above highlights how good the image stabalisation is in the RX100 series. Some vloggers have noted that the camera's auto focus could be better, but I have been impressed with it.
I am incredibly pleased with my purchase of the Sony RX100 mark III and I am looking forward to producing many videos with it.
If you have any questions about the RX100 series, or about vlogging in general, please leave a comment below. I will do my best to help you out.
Thanks for reading.