Sony Nex 5N Road Test. Better Than The Canon G1X.



Try This With The Canon G1X!

I have had the Sony Nex 5N for a few months now and wanted to share some of its strengths and weaknesses. This little APS-C sensor camera is awesome for B-Roll and other secondary camera options. It is not the best A camera out there and I would caution anyone from trying to use it as their main camera system. The Sony Nex5 N is ultra portable, has great image quality and will shoot a blistering 10 frames continuous RAW and 24P/60P in Full HD 1920 X 1080. It overheats very easily, has no real decent native glass and could be considered too small for handheld work. It’s like using a front heavy iPhone.
I got it as a possible B-Camera for our documentary film “The Board Of Education” and it has been a valuable tool. It is also very unobtrusive. I certainly won’t scare anyone with it. I have stolen so many shots that would have required setup and time with our FS100 by just grabbing it with this little camera. It truly is a great Director’s camera.
I would also highly recommend this over the new Canon fixed lens G1X ($799US). A fixed lens camera is just way too limiting from the start. Not to mention the super lame floating iris. Filters?
The price on the Sony Nex 5N has already dropped to a low $599 and lenses are starting to trickle out like the Zeiss 24mm f1.8. The overheating issue can easily be overcome with an external monitor or EVF. (A good tip if you plan on shooting interviews). It really does overheat very easily! Otherwise this is a killer little camera at a great price.

Jared Abrams is a cinematographer based in Hollywood, California. After many years as a professional camera assistant he switched over to still photography. About two years ago a new Canon camera changed the way the world sees both motion and still photography. He just happened to be in the right place at the right time.
  • jb

    How about some sample footage?

  • Richard Allen Crook

    Hi Jared, thanks for the post! The 5n is really a great b camera to the fs100. I find it matches the color gamut closer than any canon offerings. I’m surprised to hear about your overheating problems though. I’ve run my 5n for 30 minutes in a training video where the camera was suctioned cup high up out of reach, and again recently on a series of interviews. I ve never had the issue come up. (no external monitor neither) I wonder I’d there’s a setting that is causing it…or perhaps you simply have a bad unit?

  • Douglas Grillo

    Hi Jared;

    Certainly is not a pro camera, but with this little wonder i finished 5 payed projects already, and in just one case i have the overheating issue, i do not recommended for long shots or run and gun situations, sadly Sony does not offer a better option than this even the Nex7 is not by much better to use for video than the 5n, i´m saving for the FS100 but i wish to buy another camera before, my fight is between Nex7, A65 and the GH2.

    Thanks for sharing you experiences Jared.

  • jahlove

    If you use an external monitor on the 5N can you fully get the 29 min? Can you average a couple of 15 min video shoots back to back with the external monitor?


  • Jared Abrams

    I have not tried 29 min yet, but it should help with the overheating issues.

  • Scroll

    The G1X is better than the NEX 5…

    See the noise…

    And it’s not a bazooka.

  • João Dias

    if you want something that big, why don’t you buy a Reflex? 

  • Jalan

    we cant all afford $4000 lenses chump!!!