Sony launched their new generation NEX cameras in Singapore with the surprise reveal of a new product to come.
The NEX 3 & 5 (NEX stands for New E-Mount eXperience) are compact digital cameras with DSLR-sized APS-C sensors and interchangeable lenses, all of which promise excellent DSLR-like photo quality with none of the bulk of a traditional DSLR. The NEX cameras reduce size and weight by losing the mirrors found in DSLR cameras, which allows them to build smaller lenses as well.
Sony also introduced the new E-mount found on the NEX bodies which complement the existing Sony A-mount found on Alpha DSLRs. While Alpha lenses can be used on the NEX cameras with the help of an adapter, the new E-mount lenses cannot be mounted onto existing Alpha DSLR cameras due to the differences in size and technology. Even though auto-focus capability is lost with the use of the adapter, a Sony spokesman told us that they don't rule out the possibility of adapters which allow the use of auto-focus with Alpha lenses in the future.
Together with the launch of the NEX cameras came the unexpected reveal of a new camcorder currently in development. It has the same interchangeable lens system for use as the new E-mount lenses (existing Alpha lenses can be used with the help of an adapter, we assume that like with the NEX cameras, the auto-focus function will be lost). The camera records to 1920 x 1080 using the AVCHD codec and an EXMOR APS-sized CMOS sensor. Sony mentioned that more details will be available soon.
The NEX cameras are slated to be on sale in mid to end June.