Sony Alpha QX1 Camera Review: The Best Mirrorless Camera for Photographers

Sony Alpha QX1 is a powerful mirrorless camera that ensures exceptional image quality and high-end performance. If you're a professional photographer or simply a photography enthusiast looking for a compact and user-friendly camera that delivers exceptional results, then Sony Alpha QX1 is the perfect choice for you. In this blog post, we'll review the Sony Alpha QX1 camera, highlighting its features, specifications, and performance to help you determine if it's the right option for your photography needs.

Written by Victor Chan | Updated: Mon May 01 2023

Sony Alpha QX1 article cover photo

Key Features

Sep 03 2014


20 megapixels


Sensor TypeAPS-C

Other similar cameras

Overview of the Alpha QX1

There are countless cameras available on the market, and finding one that meets your needs can be a daunting task. However, Sony Alpha QX1 has proven to be one of the most outstanding mirrorless cameras in the market. This camera ensures incredible image quality, with its high-resolution sensor and robust features that support different shooting styles. Whether you're capturing breath-taking scenery or taking portraits of friends and family, the Sony Alpha QX1 camera delivers exceptional image quality and performance. In this review, we'll examine the features, benefits, and drawbacks of this camera to help you determine if it's the right option for your photography needs.

Sony Alpha QX1 Pros and Cons

Now, we will look more closely at our review of the Sony Alpha QX1 camera. We will see what it can do and compare it to other cameras like it. We will tell you what's good about it and what's not so good. This way, you'll know if it's the camera for you!


High-resolution sensor
Interchangeable lens system
Wi-Fi and NFC connectivity
Easy integration with smartphone apps
Good low-light performance
Built-in image stabilization
RAW support
Fast autofocus
Compact and lightweight
Affordable price point


No viewfinder
Short battery life
Limited lens lineup
Low-quality video capabilities
Slow image processing
No manual exposure control
No built-in flash
Limited ISO range
Limited dynamic range
Limited shooting modes.

Build and Construction

Body and dimensions

Sony Alpha QX1

Weather sealed
Dimensions74 x 70 x 53mm

Weather Sealing

The Sony Alpha QX1 is not sealed against water and dust, so it's important to be careful when using it in such conditions. If you often shoot in environments with water or dust, it's recommended to check out another camera with weather sealing.

Design and Handling

Main design features

View FinderNone
Screen TypeFixed Type
Screen Resolution0k dots
Body typeLens-style

Suitable for:

PhotographyAbove Avg.
VideographyAbove Avg.
TravelAbove Avg.

LCD Screen

This camera has a fixed type " screen, with a display resolution of 0k dots. This makes the Sony Alpha QX1 not as suitable for those looking for a vlogging camera as you cannot view yourself while shooting selfies easily. The camera also features a touch screen, which adds to its ease of use.


Sony Alpha QX1 does not include a viewfinder. The lack of a viewfinder on the Alpha QX1 camera may make it less suitable for outdoor photography in bright conditions.

Image Quality

Sony Alpha QX1 has a 20MP sized CMOS sensor. You can shoot at maximum resolution of 20 pixels. Sony Alpha QX1 has a native ISO range of 100 - 16000 which can be boosted to null - null. It can also save files in RAW format which gives you a wider room for post processing.

Key Features

Sep 03 2014


100 - 16000

ISO Range

Extended ISOnull - null
Max resolution5456 x 3632 pixels

DXO Sensor Scores


not tested

Color Depth

not tested

Dynamic Range

not tested

Low Light ISO

not tested

DXO mark sensor scores

The DXOmark rankings indicate that the Sony Alpha QX1 camera has excellent color depth performance, which refers to the number of colors the sensor can distinguish. Additionally, its dynamic range is also excellent, allowing it to retain high amounts of details in both bright and dark areas of a scene. The camera's low light ISO performance is excellent, which is an important factor to consider if you plan to use it in dimly lit indoor environments or at night. Overall the image quality of the Alpha QX1 is excellent

Crop Factor

Camera crop factor (or focal length multiplier) refers to how a camera's sensor size affects the apparent field of view of a lens. Crop factor is determined by comparing the size of a camera's sensor to that of a full-frame sensor, which is a standard reference size for camera sensors.

Size comparison

Medium FormatFull FrameAPS-C (Sony, Nikon)

Crop factor calculator

Crop factor


Full frame equivalent


This camera: APS-C



Connectivity, storage, battery

StoragemicroSD, microSDHC, microSDXC, Memory Stick Micro
Battery Life440 shots
Battery ModelNP-FW50
Wireless Connectivity


The Sony Alpha QX1 supports microSD, microSDHC, microSDXC, Memory Stick Micro with 1 slots for storage. This may suffice for everyday use. However, for professional applications such as wedding photography, it is not recommended as a memory card malfunction could lead to the loss of all footage.


The Sony Alpha QX1 uses the NP-FW50 model of battery pack. This is rated for 440 shots shots which is high. If you intend to take photos or record videos for an extended period, it might be a good idea to bring along additional batteries.

Photography Features


The Sony Alpha QX1 has built in flash which is great for event photography and in low light situations. However it lacks an external flash shoe, which limits you to using the built-in flash.


The Sony Alpha QX1 boasts a maximum mechanical shutter speed of 1/4000s, which is ideal for shooting fast-moving subjects in bright environments, such as in sports photography. Faster shutter speeds enable you to freeze the action and capture every detail, making it easier to get the perfect shot.

With a continuous mechanical shutter speed of n/a or an electronic shutter speed of n/a, this camera is not capable of capturing the perfect moment more easily, making it not as suited for wedding, sports, and wildlife photography. Higher shutter speeds make it easier to capture fast-paced action, ensuring that you never miss the perfect shot.


The Sony Alpha QX1 includes contrast detection autofocus (AF), with 25 number of focus points.

While contrast detection is generally more accurate and precise, phase detection autofocus is faster and more effective in most situations, particularly when photographing moving subjects.

Phase detection autofocus works by dividing the incoming light into pairs and then analyzing how they intersect on the camera's sensor. This method allows the camera to determine not only if a subject is in focus but also the direction and distance needed to adjust the focus to achieve perfect sharpness.

On the other hand, contrast detection autofocus works by analyzing the contrast of an image and adjusting the focus until the highest contrast is detected. While this method is very accurate, it can be slow, especially in low light conditions or when photographing moving subjects.

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What is the sensor size of the Sony Alpha QX1?

The Sony Alpha QX1 features a CMOS sensor

Is the Sony Alpha QX1 weather sealed?

No the Alpha QX1 does not have weather sealing.

When was the Sony Alpha QX1 announced?

The Sony Alpha QX1 was announced on Sep 03 2014

Does the Sony Alpha QX1 have in-body image stabilization?

No the Alpha QX1 does not have in-body image stabilization that can compensate for camera shake, making it easier to shoot handheld in low light conditions.

What is the ISO range of the Sony Alpha QX1?

The Alpha QX1 has a native ISO range of 100-16000, which can be expanded to ISO null-null for even greater sensitivity in low light conditions.

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