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July 4th 2014 7:16 am

How would you change Sony’s NEX-3N?

Sony’s NEX-C3 is the centerpiece of every Engadget kitbag thanks to its light weight and good performance What then of its 2013 replacement, the NEX-3N? We praised the low price, but the lack of a microphone input or accessory mount meant that it wasn’t going to replace its predecessor in our hearts. Thankfully, fantastic image quality saved Sony’s blushes, but what about all of the shooters out there that wound up buying one? $500 for one of these with a 16-50mm power zoom lens made it a bargain, but was it worth it?

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Full metal body would be great.
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Better HDR performance. It's pretty much useless right now, everything just looks all dark.
More prominent warning when auto+ selects HDR mode, as it takes ~4s to complete the shot with multiple exposures. Really annoying to be forced to wait when you're used to the camera's otherwise fantastic shooting times.
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The biggest problem I found is the aperture not opening while auto-focusing in A and M modes. If the aperture is set to a specific value it stays the same even while auto-focusing. The upshot is the smaller the aperture the worse the AF-performance of the camera. If it doesn't open the aperture to its maximum while AF is taking place then not enough light goes on the sensor for perfect focus.
I posted this on the Sony support forum in hopes that the problem would be solved in a firmware update. But their reply was that they are not getting a high volume for this issue. And no firmware updates have ever been released for the NEX-3N.
Don't know about the a5000. But the high-end NEX-7 does open the aperture to maximum while focusing in A and M modes - that's a fact, tested it myself.

Other cons:
Even when the shutter button is triggered, the camera does not take the picture until it thinks it has focus;
The zoom rockers often get triggered unintentionally;
No anti-dust means;
Annoying warning dialogs appear when shooting RAW;
Turning the image stabilization on/off is exasperating;
The artificial shutter sound can't be turned off;
The interface and menus have very little logic behind them;
The kit lens has an uncommon 40,5mm filter thread.

Image quality for the money is superb, comparable with my Canon DSLR;
Small size with kit lens;
The battery lasts a long time. And very universal micro-USB charging;
SD-card slot door on the side. No problems ejecting the card when on tripod;
More often than not automatic shooting modes do a decent job;
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What about GPS ! ! ! !
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