Sony ZV-E10 vs ZV-1 - Worth the Upgrade?
The Sony Alpha ZV-E10 interchangeable lens digital camera | Courtesy of Sony

Last week Sony announced the Alpha ZV-E10, their latest APS-C interchangeable lens camera. Like the Sony ZV-1, the new model is designed for vloggers and content creators seeking a powerful yet easy-to-use video camera. Available for pre-order now, we compared the Sony ZV-E10 vs ZV-1 to see what differs the two vlog cameras.  

Sensor & Camera Type 

Sony Alpha ZV-E10
The Sony Alpha ZV-E10 | Courtesy of Sony

At first glance, the Sony ZV-E10 offers two key advantages over the ZV-1.  Firstly, the new model is equipped with a 24.2MP APS-C Exmor CMOS sensor; the same sensor as the Sony a6100. In fact, technically speaking, the ZV-E10 resembles the a6100 more than the ZV-1, and should offer a comparable performance. The ZV-1 uses a smaller, 20.1MP 1’’ sensor. 

Secondly, the ZV-E10 is an interchangeable lens camera, compatible with Sony E-mount lenses. Combined with its larger sensor, this greatly enhances the versatility and performance capabilities of the camera in comparison to the fixed lens ZV-1.

For example, with a wide aperture lens like the Sony 35mm f1.4 GM (equivalent to 52.5mm on an APS-C camera) on the ZV-E10, you’ll generate a far shallower depth of field than possible with the ZV-1. Plus, in addition to nicely complementing the ZV-E10, full-frame E-mount lenses will continue to serve you if you later upgrade to an even more advanced video camera, such as the Sony a7R IV or Alpha 1.

The ZV-1 has a fixed ZEISS Vario-Sonnar T* 24-70mm f/1.8-2.8 lens. It’s a great quality lens, and even has a built-in neutral density filter for when you’re shooting in bright conditions. However, it simply cannot compare with the wide range of E-mount lenses available, albeit except in price. While you may be limited to a single lens with the ZV-1, at least that means you’ll never have to spend hundreds or thousands of dollars on another lens.

Stills & Video

The ZV-E10 has a maximum continuous shooting speed of 11fps. That’s less than the ZV-1’s 24fps, but not surprising given its larger sensor. Besides, neither camera is really intended for still photography. If you’re interested in both vlogging and still photography, we recommend the Sony a6100. It has similar specs to the ZV-E10 plus a built-in electronic viewfinder, a feature not available on both vlog cameras.

In terms of video, both the ZV-E10 and ZV-1 offer unlimited 4K recording with full pixel readout. However, thanks to its larger sensor, the ZV-E10 records significantly more data (and therefore, detail) while recording. Additionally, the larger sensor enables the ZV-E10 to record more effectively in low-light. The ISO has also been improved. The ZV-E10 has an ISO range of 100 to 32000, which can be expanded for stills to 50 to 51200.  The ZV-1 has an ISO range of 100 to 12800 for stills and video. 

While the a6100 offers these specs as well, it doesn’t offer the same cinematic color profiles as the ZV-E10 and ZV-1. Both cameras support HLG (Hybrid Log Gamma) and S-log 3/2, an important feature for vloggers that grade their work.

Similarly, both the ZV-1 and ZV-E10 feature a red recording lamp on the front of the unit. However, the latter also displays a red frame around the LCD screen to indicate when the camera is recording. It’s a small but welcome added touch.

Focus & Image Stabilization

The Sony ZV-E10 has electronic image stabilization
The Sony ZV-E10 | Courtesy of Sony

The ZV-E10 utilizes the same strong, hybrid autofocus system as the ZV-1, supporting Sony’s fast and reliable Eye AF functionality. However, the new camera also offers additional focus points on the sensor; 425 points to the ZV-1’s 315.

Both cameras offer the helpful Product Showcase feature. This allows the camera to automatically pull focus between your subject and a product when the product is held up in front of the camera. Though this feature is slightly more impressive on the ZV-E10, thanks to its larger sensor and shallower depth of field.  

When it comes to image stabilization, the ZV-1 has the edge. The camera uses both optical and electronic image stabilization, whereas the ZV-E10 only offers electronic image stabilization. However, we don’t anticipate that this will have a huge impact. Like the ZV-1, the new model’s autofocus should still work well with Sony’s wireless grip for stable recording while walking and talking into the camera.

Battery Life 

One of the biggest flaws of the Sony ZV-1 is its battery life. The camera uses NP-BX1 batteries, which offer a life of 260 shots when using the LCD screen, or just 45 minutes of video recording (up to 75 minutes if recording continuously).

Conversely, the ZV-E10 uses an NP-FW50 battery. This affords the camera a life up to 440 shots when using the LCD, or 80 minutes of video recording (125 minutes if continuously recording).

Sound Recording

The ZV-E10 has a built-in 3-Capsule Directional Microphone
The Sony ZV-E10 and ZV-1 cameras share the same, built-in 3-Capsule Directional Microphone | Courtesy of Sony

The ZV-E10 is equipped with the same built-in 3-capsule directional microphone as the ZV-1. Surprisingly reliable for a built-in microphone, it’s optimized to record voices directly in front of the camera, while blocking out ambient sounds. In other words, it’s ideal for vlogging. Like the ZV-1, a wind screen is included with the new camera. 

Both the ZV-E10 and the ZV-1 also have a Multi Interface hot shoe, enabling them to support a Digital Audio Interface. This means they can record audio digitally via a compatible microphone, instead of using a conventional analog microphone.

Audio transmitted via analog technology faces a greater risk of noise and signal interference. This is not an issue when recording via digital audio on the ZV-1 or ZV-E10. Compatible devices include Sony’s wireless microphone for vloggers, the ECM-W2BT

Price 

The Alpha ZV-E10 (body only) is available for pre-order now for $698 in both black and white, or $798 with a 16-50mm f/3.5-5.6 kit lens. The ZV-1 is currently priced $749.99, and also available in black and white.

Given the new camera’s capabilities, that’s a great value price. However, keep in mind that you’ll also need to purchase one or more E-mount lenses to take full advantage of the camera’s capabilities.

Other Features

The features listed above represent the biggest differences between the Sony ZV-E10 vs ZV-1. However, the new camera also offers several other advantages.

These include the addition of a headphone jack, a higher maximum shutter speed, additional exposure compensation stops, additional transition speed and shift sensitivity settings, and a new USB-C (USB 3.1 Gen 1) port. That’s in addition to the Micro USB port also found on the ZV-1.

Check out our side-by-side spec comparison below to more closely compare the differences between the Sony EV-10 vs ZV-1.

Sony ZV-E10 vs ZV-1 Spec Comparison 

Sony ZV-E10Sony ZV-1
Price$698.00 $749.99
Camera TypeInterchangeable lens digital cameraFixed lens digital camera
Lens/Lens MountInterchangeable Lens System
E-mount
Fixed ZEISS Vario-Sonnar T* 24-70mm f/1.8-2.8 lens
Sensor SizeAPS-C (23.5 x 15.6mm)1'' (13.2 x 8.8 mm)
Sensor TypeExmor CMOS sensorBSI Exmor RS® CMOS sensor w/ DRAM
Resolution24.2MP20.1MP
Image ProcessorBIONZ XBIONZ X
Continuous Shooting SpeedUp to 11fps with AF/AE trackingUp to 24fps with AF/AE tracking
Video4K video recording (oversampled from 6K) with full pixel readout, no pixel binning4K video recording with full pixel readout, no pixel binning
Color ProfilesYes (Off / PP1-PP10) Parameters: Black level, Gamma (Movie, Still, Cine1-4, ITU709, ITU709 [800%], S-Log2, S-Log3, HLG, HLG1-3), Black Gamma, Knee, Color Mode, Saturation, Color Phase, Color Depth, Detail, Copy, ResetYes (Off / PP1-PP10) Parameters: Black level, Gamma (Movie, Still, Cine1-4, ITU709, ITU709 [800%], S-Log2, S-Log3, HLG, HLG1-3), Black Gamma, Knee, Color Mode, Saturation, Color Phase, Color Depth, Detail, Copy, Reset
Image StabilizationElectronicOptical and Electronic
ISO RangeStill images
ISO 100-32000 (ISO numbers up from ISO 50 to ISO 51200 can be set as expanded ISO range.), AUTO (ISO 100-6400, selectable lower limit and upper limit)

Movies
ISO 100-32000 equivalent, AUTO (ISO 100-6400, selectable lower limit and upper limit)
Still images
Auto (ISO100–12800, selectable with upper/lower limit), 100/125/160/200/250/320/400/500/640/800/1000/1250/1600/2000/2500/3200/4000/5000/6400/8000/10000/12800 (Extendable to ISO64/80), Multi-Frame NR: Auto (ISO100–12800), 100/200/400/800/1600/3200/6400/12800

Movies
Auto (ISO125 Level–ISO12800 Level, selectable with upper/lower limit), 125/160/200/250/320/400/500/640/800/
Fast Hybrid AF (phase-detection AF / contrast-detection AF)YesYes
Eye AFYesYes
Exposure Compensation +/- 5.0EV (1/3 EV, 1/2 EV steps selectable) +/- 3.0EV, 1/3EV step
Screen3'' flip-out, vari-angle touch LCD3'' side-articulating touch LCD
Recording MediaMemory Stick PRO Duo, Memory Stick PRO-HG Duo,Memory Stick Micro (M2), SD memory card, SDHC memory card (UHS-I compliant), SDXC memory card (UHS-I compliant), microSD memory card, microSDHC memory card, microSDXC memory cardXAVC S (100 Mbps)] SDXC/SDHC Memory Card (UHS-I U3 or higher); [XAVC S (60 Mbps/50 Mbps)] SDXC/SDHC Memory Card (Class 10 or higher); [AVCHD/Still image] Memory Stick Duo, Memory Stick PRO Duo, Memory Stick PRO-HG Duo, Memory Stick Micro, Memory Stick Micro (Mark2), SDXC/SDHC/SD Memory Card (Class 4 or higher), micro SDXC/SDHC/SD Memory Card (Class 4 or higher)
Memory Card Slot1 Multi slot for Memory Stick Duo / SD memory card1 Multi slot for Memory Stick Duo / SD memory card
Microphone JackYesYes
Headphone JackYesNo
USB PortsSuperSpeed USB Type-C™ (USB 3.1 Gen 1 compatible) and Micro USBMicro USB (USB 2.0)
USB ChargingYesYes
Multi Interface ShoeYesYes
Battery & Battery LifeNP-FW50
Still Images:
Monitor: approx. 260/approx. 130 min., Monitor (when Auto Monitor off is set to 2 s): approx. 410/approx. 205 min.(CIPA standard)
Movies
Actual Recording:
Approx. 80 min (LCD monitor) (CIPA standard)
Continuous Recording:
Approx. 125 min (LCD monitor) (CIPA standard)
NP-BX1
Still Images:
Approx. 440 shots (LCD monitor) (CIPA standard)
Movies
Actual Recording:
Approx. 45 min (LCD monitor) (CIPA standard)
Continuous Recording:
Approx. 75 min (LCD monitor) (CIPA standard)
Dimensions (W x H x D)Approx. 4.55 x 2.53 x 1.76'' (115.2 x 64.2 x 44.8 mm) (from grip to monitor)Approx. 4.15 x 2.36 x 1.71'' (105.5 x 60.0 x 43.5mm)
Weight (with battery & memory card)12.1 oz (343g)10.4 oz (294g)

The Verdict

The Sony Alpha ZV-E10
The Sony Alpha ZV-E10 | Courtesy of Sony

Offering a larger sensor, the versatility of interchangeable lenses, and several other advantages, the Alpha ZV-E10 is definitively the stronger camera. For established vloggers looking to enhance the quality of their content through advanced technical capabilities, it’s well worth the upgrade.

The camera is compact, easy to use, and affordably priced, so it’s a great option for new vloggers too. However, if you’re trying to stick to a tight budget, the ZV-1 may be the better choice. With a fixed lens, you won’t have to spend much more than the initial $748 price tag in the long-term. Although we do recommend investing in a few extra batteries. 

That concludes our comparison of the Sony ZV-E10 vs ZV-1. The new vlog camera is available for pre-order now, and is due to start shipping to customers in late August.

2 COMMENTS

  1. Nice review, thank you.
    The biggest difference is the ZV-1 fits in a pocket. The ZV-E10 does not. They’re not really comparable cameras since they’re a different class with point & shoot vs removable lens.

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