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Sony RX1

File Sizes and Bit Depth

The Sony Cybershot DSC- RX1 produces 24-megapixel (6000 X 4000) finished RGB images from its 6024 X 4024 full frame sensor.

Sony’s marketing material makes a false claim:

The BIONZ® image processor enables ... 14-bit RAW image data recording.

The claim should be understood as “14 bit image data from the sensor processed in full bit resolution then tonally compressed to an 8-bit representation and stored as 8 bits per pixel”. (It is not entirely clear if the pipeline is entirely 14-bit or partially 12-bit).

The actual recorded files are a fixed 8 bits per pixel, by simple math (6024 X 4024 * 1 byte = 24.24 MB, actual file sizes are a fixed 25.2MB total size including overhead, see screen shot at right). With real 14-bit files (Nikon D800/D800E), file sizes are continuously variable using a lossless compression method. The 'lossless' aspect is why they are variable size; no lossless compression algorithm can ever guarantee a fixed size.

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Diglloyd Guide to Mirrorless offers comprehensive integrated coverage of most APS-C and full frame mirrorless cameras and lenses.

Special emphasis is placed on Sony full-frame, including Sony lenses and the high performance Zeiss Batis and Zeiss Loxia lenses plus Rokinon/Samyang and others. Fujifilm X, Olympus and Panasonic M4/3, Sigma dp Merrill and dp/sd Quattro are also covered in depth. Years in the making, it offers a wealth of material for choosing and using a mirrorless camera.

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  • Make better images, a sort of “cheat sheet” saving yourself months or years of ad-hoc learning—best practices and how-to and processing parameters are discussed and shown.
  • Jaw-dropping image quality found nowhere else utilizing Retina-grade images up to 28 megapixels filling up to 5K display, plus large crops.
  • Real world examples with insights found nowhere else. Make sharper images just by understanding lens behavior you won’t read about elsewhere.
  • Aperture series from wide open through stopped down, showing the full range of lens performance and bokeh.
  • Optical quality analysis of field curvature, focus shift, sharpness, flare, distortion, and performance in the field.

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