Mirrorless market continues to expand, and many professional photographers switch from DSLR to mirrorless cameras. Both of the systems certainly have their advantages, but there’s one interesting feature you can find specifically in Sony mirrorless cameras. It’s called Clear Image Zoom, and it helps you turn a prime into a zoom lens (sort of) without losing quality. Manny Ortiz talks about it in this video giving you some tips and hints for using it.
Clear Image Digital Zoom is a feature hidden in Sony mirrorless cameras. It allows you to double your focal length on a prime lens without losing image quality. Now, I get the shivers from the very thought of digital zoom, but this appears to be something else. The explanation is as follows:
“The processor compares patterns found in adjacent pixels and creates new pixels to match selected patterns, resulting in more realistic, higher quality images.”
So basically, this is “digital zoom on steroids”. It crops into your sensor and enlarges your focal length two times. Manny uses 85 mm f/1.4, and this features gives him effective 170mm without losing quality.
This feature can be useful for wedding cinematographers who use mirrorless cameras. They can increase the functionality of their prime lens and don’t need to change lenses when covering crucial moments. As for photographers, you can also use this option. However, it has two downsides. The first one (probably expected) is – you can only use it in JPEG mode. And the second one is that you have no option to choose focus point. There will be a big “box” around your screen, and the camera chooses where to focus. Although, if there’s an obvious subject in your image, it will focus properly. After pixel-peeping in Manny’s video, you can see that the focus is correct and the quality of the image is still pretty good.
Now, because of JPEG-only issue, this feature may not be useful for photographers at all times. However, videographers could benefit from it and use up their lens and their mirrorless camera to the max.
I haven’t used this feature, as I have never had a mirrorless camera. So I would like to hear from Sony mirrorless owners. Did you know about this feature? Have you used it? Do you find it useful and does it affect quality or not? Share your thoughts and experiences in the comments.