Panasonic FT7 vs Sony RX10 III
The Panasonic Lumix DC-FT7 (called Panasonic TS7 in some regions) and the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX10 III are two digital cameras that were announced, respectively, in May 2018 and March 2016. Both the FT7 and the RX10 III are fixed lens compact cameras that are based on a 1/2.3-inch (FT7) and an one-inch (RX10 III) sensor. The Panasonic has a resolution of 20.2 megapixels, whereas the Sony provides 20 MP.
Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.
Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Panasonic Lumix DC-FT7 and the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX10 III? Which one should you buy? Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their body size, their imaging sensors, their shooting features, their input-output connections, and their reception by expert reviewers.
An illustration of the physical size and weight of the Panasonic FT7 and the Sony RX10 III is provided in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three successive views from the front, the top, and the rear are shown. All width, height and depth measures are rounded to the nearest millimeter.
The FT7 can be obtained in three different colors (black, blue, orange), while the RX10 III is only available in black.
If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Sony RX10 III is notably larger (41 percent) than the Panasonic FT7. Moreover, the RX10 III is substantially heavier (229 percent) than the FT7. In this context, it is worth noting that both cameras are splash and dust-proof and can, hence, be used in inclement weather conditions or harsh environments. More than that, the FT7 is water-proof up to 31m and can, thus, be used for underwater photography.
Concerning battery life, the FT7 gets 300 shots out of its DMW-BCM13 battery, while the RX10 III can take 420 images on a single charge of its NP-FW50 power pack. The battery packs of both cameras can be charged via USB, which can be very convenient when travelling.
The adjacent table lists the principal physical characteristics of the two cameras alongside a wider set of alternatives. In case you want to display and compare another camera duo, you can use the CAM-parator app to select your camera combination among a large number of options.
|1.||Panasonic FT7||117 mm||76 mm||37 mm||319 g||300||Y||May 2018||449|
|2.||Sony RX10 III||133 mm||94 mm||127 mm||1051 g||420||Y||Mar 2016||1,499|
|3.||Canon SX740||110 mm||64 mm||40 mm||299 g||265||n||Jul 2018||399|
|4.||Canon G1 X Mark III||115 mm||78 mm||51 mm||399 g||200||Y||Oct 2017||1,299|
|5.||Canon SX730||110 mm||64 mm||40 mm||300 g||250||n||Apr 2017||399|
|6.||Fujifilm X-A5||117 mm||68 mm||40 mm||361 g||450||n||Jan 2018||399|
|7.||Fujifilm XF10||113 mm||64 mm||41 mm||279 g||330||n||Jul 2018||499|
|8.||Nikon W300||112 mm||66 mm||29 mm||231 g||280||Y||May 2017||389|
|9.||Panasonic TZ95||112 mm||69 mm||42 mm||327 g||380||n||Feb 2019||449|
|10.||Panasonic TZ90||112 mm||67 mm||41 mm||322 g||380||n||Apr 2017||449|
|11.||Panasonic FZ82||130 mm||94 mm||119 mm||616 g||330||n||Jan 2017||399|
|12.||Ricoh WG-6||118 mm||66 mm||33 mm||246 g||340||Y||Feb 2019||399|
|13.||Sony RX10 IV||133 mm||94 mm||145 mm||1095 g||400||Y||Sep 2017||1,699|
|14.||Sony RX0||59 mm||41 mm||30 mm||110 g||240||Y||Aug 2017||699|
|15.||Sony RX100 V||102 mm||58 mm||41 mm||299 g||220||n||Oct 2016||999|
|16.||Sony RX10 II||129 mm||88 mm||102 mm||813 g||400||Y||Jun 2015||1,299|
|17.||Sony RX10||129 mm||88 mm||102 mm||813 g||420||Y||Oct 2013||1,299|
|Notes: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.|
Any camera decision will obviously take relative prices into account. The manufacturer’s suggested retail prices give an idea on the placement of the camera in the maker’s lineup and the broader market. The FT7 was launched at a markedly lower price (by 70 percent) than the RX10 III, which puts it into a different market segment. Normally, street prices remain initially close to the MSRP, but after a couple of months, the first discounts appear. Later in the product cycle and, in particular, when the replacement model is about to appear, further discounting and stock clearance sales often push the camera price considerably down.
The size of the sensor inside a digital camera is one of the key determinants of image quality. All other things equal, a large sensor will have larger individual pixel-units that offer better low-light sensitivity, wider dynamic range, and richer color-depth than smaller pixels in a sensor of the same technological generation. Furthermore, a large sensor camera will give the photographer more possibilities to use shallow depth-of-field in order to isolate a subject from the background. On the downside, larger sensors tend to be more expensive and lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.
Of the two cameras under consideration, the Panasonic FT7 features a 1/2.3-inch sensor and the Sony RX10 III an one-inch sensor. The sensor area in the RX10 III is 314 percent bigger. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 5.6 and 2.7. The sensor in the FT7 has a native 4:3 aspect ratio, while the one in the RX10 III offers a 3:2 aspect.
Technology-wise, both cameras are equipped with BSI-CMOS (Backside Illuminated Complementary Metal–Oxide–Semiconductor) sensors.
Despite having a smaller sensor, the Panasonic FT7 offers a higher resolution of 20.2 megapixels, compared with 20 MP of the Sony RX10 III. This megapixels advantage comes at the cost of a higher pixel density and a smaller size of the individual pixel (with a pixel pitch of 1.18μm versus 2.41μm for the RX10 III). However, it should be noted that the FT7 is much more recent (by 2 years and 1 month) than the RX10 III, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that make it possible to gather light more efficiently.
The Panasonic Lumix DC-FT7 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 80 to ISO 3200, which can be extended to ISO 80-6400. The corresponding ISO settings for the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX10 III are ISO 100 to ISO 12800, with the possibility to increase the ISO range to 64-25600.
Consistent information on actual sensor performance is available from DXO Mark for many cameras. This service assesses and scores the color depth ("DXO Portrait"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports") of camera sensors, and also publishes an overall camera score. The table below summarizes the physical sensor characteristics and sensor quality findings and compares them across a set of similar cameras.
|2.||Sony RX10 III||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||23.1||12.6||472||70|
|4.||Canon G1 X Mark III||APS-C||24.0||6000||4000||1080/60p||23.8||13.2||1649||81|
|13.||Sony RX10 IV||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||22.0||12.2||408||63|
|15.||Sony RX100 V||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||22.8||12.4||586||70|
|16.||Sony RX10 II||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||23.0||12.6||531||70|
|Note: DXO values in italics represent estimates based on sensor size and age.|
Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. The two cameras under consideration both have sensors whose read-out speed is fast enough to capture moving pictures, and both provide the same movie specifications (4K/30p).
Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The two cameras under review are similar with respect to both having an electronic viewfinder. However, the one in the RX10 III offers a substantially higher resolution than the one in the FT7 (2359k vs 1170k dots). The table below summarizes some of the other core capabilities of the Panasonic FT7 and Sony RX10 III in connection with corresponding information for a sample of similar cameras.
|1.||Panasonic FT7||1170||n||3.0 / 1040||fixed||n||1/1300s||10.0||Y||Y|
|2.||Sony RX10 III||2359||Y||3.0 / 1229||tilting||n||1/2000s||14.0||Y||Y|
|3.||Canon SX740||none||n||3.0 / 922||tilting||n||1/3200s||10.0||Y||Y|
|4.||Canon G1 X Mark III||2360||n||3.0 / 1040||swivel||Y||1/2000s||9.0||Y||Y|
|5.||Canon SX730||none||n||3.0 / 922||tilting||n||1/3200s||5.9||Y||Y|
|6.||Fujifilm X-A5||none||n||3.0 / 1040||tilting||Y||1/4000s||6.0||Y||n|
|7.||Fujifilm XF10||none||n||3.0 / 1040||fixed||Y||1/4000s||6.0||Y||n|
|8.||Nikon W300||none||n||3.0 / 921||fixed||n||1/4000s||7.0||Y||Y|
|9.||Panasonic TZ95||2330||n||3.0 / 1040||tilting||Y||1/2000s||10.0||Y||Y|
|10.||Panasonic TZ90||1166||n||3.0 / 1040||tilting||Y||1/2000s||10.0||Y||Y|
|11.||Panasonic FZ82||1166||n||3.0 / 1040||fixed||Y||1/2000s||10.0||Y||Y|
|12.||Ricoh WG-6||none||n||3.0 / 1040||fixed||n||1/4000s||1.0||Y||n|
|13.||Sony RX10 IV||2359||Y||3.0 / 1440||tilting||Y||1/2000s||24.0||Y||Y|
|14.||Sony RX0||none||n||1.5 / 230||fixed||n||..||5.5||n||n|
|15.||Sony RX100 V||2359||n||3.0 / 1229||tilting||n||1/2000s||24.0||Y||Y|
|16.||Sony RX10 II||2359||Y||3.0 / 1229||tilting||n||1/3200s||14.0||Y||Y|
|17.||Sony RX10||1440||Y||3.0 / 1229||tilting||n||1/3200s||10.0||Y||Y|
One feature that is present on the RX10 III, but is missing on the FT7 is a top-level LCD. While being, of course, smaller than the rear screen, the control panel conveys some of the essential shooting information and can be convenient for quick and easy settings verification.
The reported shutter speed information refers to the use of the mechanical shutter. Yet, some cameras only have an electronic shutter, while others have an electronic shutter in addition to a mechanical one. In fact, both cameras under consideration feature an electronic shutter, which makes completely silent shooting possible. However, this mode is less suitable for photographing moving objects (risk of rolling shutter) or shooting under artificial light sources (risk of flickering).
Both the FT7 and the RX10 III have zoom lenses built in. The FT7 has a 28-128mm f/3.3-5.9 optic and the RX10 III offers a 24-600mm f/2.4-4.0 (focal lengths in full frame equivalent terms). Hence, the Sony provides a wider angle of view at the short end, as well as more tele-photo reach at the long end than the Panasonic. The RX10 III offers the faster maximum aperture.
The FT7 writes its imaging data to SDXC cards, while the RX10 III uses SDXC or Memory Stick PRO Duo cards. Both cameras can use UHS-I cards, which provide for Ultra High Speed data transfer of up to 104 MB/s.
For some imaging applications, the extent to which a camera can communicate with its environment can be an important aspect in the camera decision process. The table below provides an overview of the connectivity of the Panasonic Lumix DC-FT7 and Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX10 III and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
Mic / Speaker
|1.||Panasonic FT7||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
|2.||Sony RX10 III||Y||stereo / mono||Y||Y||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|3.||Canon SX740||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y|
|4.||Canon G1 X Mark III||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||Y|
|5.||Canon SX730||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||Y|
|6.||Fujifilm X-A5||Y||stereo / mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y|
|7.||Fujifilm XF10||-||stereo / mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y|
|8.||Nikon W300||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y|
|9.||Panasonic TZ95||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y|
|10.||Panasonic TZ90||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
|11.||Panasonic FZ82||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
|12.||Ricoh WG-6||-||mono / mono||-||-||micro||3.0||-||-||-|
|13.||Sony RX10 IV||Y||stereo / mono||Y||Y||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|14.||Sony RX0||-||stereo / mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y|
|15.||Sony RX100 V||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|16.||Sony RX10 II||Y||stereo / mono||Y||Y||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|17.||Sony RX10||Y||stereo / mono||Y||Y||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
It is notable that the RX10 III has a microphone port, which can help to improve the quality of audio recordings by attaching an external microphone. The FT7 does not feature such a mic input.
Both the FT7 and the RX10 III are recent models that are part of the current product line-up. The RX10 III replaced the earlier Sony RX10 II, while the FT7 followed on from the Panasonic FT6. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Panasonic and Sony websites.
So how do things add up? Is there a clear favorite between the Panasonic FT7 and the Sony RX10 III? Which camera is better? The listing below highlights the relative strengths of the two models.
Reasons to prefer the Panasonic Lumix DC-FT7:
- More compact: Is smaller (117x76mm vs 133x94mm) and thus needs less room in the bag.
- Less heavy: Is lighter (by 732g or 70 percent) and hence easier to carry around.
- Water-proof: Is rugged and sealed and can thus be used for underwater photography (up to 31m).
- More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced category (70 percent cheaper at launch).
- More modern: Reflects 2 years and 1 month of technical progress since the RX10 III launch.
Advantages of the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX10 III:
- Better image quality: Features bigger pixels on a larger sensor for higher quality imaging.
- Richer colors: The pixel size advantage translates into images with better, more accurate colors.
- More dynamic range: Larger pixels capture a wider spectrum of light and dark details.
- Better low-light sensitivity: Larger pixels means good image quality even under poor lighting.
- Better sound: Can connect to an external microphone for higher quality sound recording.
- Better sound control: Has a headphone port that enables audio monitoring while recording.
- More detailed viewfinder: Has higher resolution electronic viewfinder (2359k vs 1170k dots).
- Larger viewfinder image: Features a viewfinder with a higher magnification (0.70x vs 0.45x).
- Easier setting verification: Features a control panel on top to check shooting parameters.
- More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (1229k vs 1040k dots).
- More flexible LCD: Has a tilting screen for odd-angle shots in landscape orientation.
- Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/2000s vs 1/1300s) to freeze action.
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (14 vs 10 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- Better light gathering: Has a lens with a wider maximum aperture (f/2.4 vs f/3.3).
- Wider view: Has a wider-angle lens that facilitates landscape or interior shots.
- More tele-reach: Has a longer tele-lens for perspective compression and subject magnification.
- Longer lasting: Gets more shots (420 versus 300) out of a single battery charge.
- Better lighting: Features a hotshoe and can thus hold and trigger an external flash gun.
- Easier device pairing: Supports NFC for fast wireless image transfer over short distances.
- More heavily discounted: Has been around for much longer (launched in March 2016).
If the number of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the RX10 III is the clear winner of the contest (20 : 5 points). However, the pertinence of the various camera strengths will differ across photographers, so that you might want to weigh individual camera traits according to their importance for your own imaging needs before making a camera decision. A professional wedding photographer will view the differences between cameras in a way that diverges from the perspective of a travel photog, and a person interested in cityscapes has distinct needs from a macro shooter. Hence, the decision which camera is best and worth buying is often a very personal one.
How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Panasonic FT7 and the Sony RX10 III place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Travel-Zoom Camera and Best Superzoom Camera listings whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.
In any case, while the comparison of the spec-sheets of cameras can offer a general idea of their imaging potential, it remains incomplete and does no justice, for example, to the way the FT7 or the RX10 III perform in practice. At times, user reviews, such as those published at amazon, address these issues in a useful manner, but such feedback is on many occasions incomplete, inconsistent, and unreliable.
This is where reviews by experts come in. The table below provides a synthesis of the camera assessments of some of the best known photo-gear review sites (amateurphotographer [AP], cameralabs [CL], digitalcameraworld [DCW], dpreview [DPR], ephotozine [EPZ], photographyblog [PB]). As can be seen, the professional reviewers agree in many cases on the quality of different cameras, but sometimes their assessments diverge, reinforcing the earlier point that a camera decision is often a very personal choice.
|1.||Panasonic FT7||..||+||..||..||3.5/5||3.5/5||May 2018||449|
|2.||Sony RX10 III||5/5||+||..||84/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Mar 2016||1,499|
|3.||Canon SX740||..||+||3.5/5||..||4/5||4/5||Jul 2018||399|
|4.||Canon G1 X Mark III||5/5||+||4/5||79/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Oct 2017||1,299|
|5.||Canon SX730||..||+||..||..||4/5||4/5||Apr 2017||399|
|6.||Fujifilm X-A5||..||+||4.1/5||..||4/5||3.5/5||Jan 2018||399|
|7.||Fujifilm XF10||..||..||4/5||75/100||4/5||4.5/5||Jul 2018||499|
|8.||Nikon W300||..||+||..||..||4/5||4/5||May 2017||389|
|9.||Panasonic TZ95||..||+ +||..||..||4.5/5||..||Feb 2019||449|
|10.||Panasonic TZ90||..||+ +||..||..||4/5||4/5||Apr 2017||449|
|11.||Panasonic FZ82||..||+ +||..||..||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jan 2017||399|
|12.||Ricoh WG-6||..||..||..||..||3.5/5||3.5/5||Feb 2019||399|
|13.||Sony RX10 IV||5/5||+||..||84/100||4.5/5||5/5||Sep 2017||1,699|
|14.||Sony RX0||..||..||..||..||3.5/5||4/5||Aug 2017||699|
|15.||Sony RX100 V||4.5/5||+ +||..||83/100||4/5||4.5/5||Oct 2016||999|
|16.||Sony RX10 II||5/5||+ +||..||82/100||4.5/5||4/5||Jun 2015||1,299|
|17.||Sony RX10||5/5||+||..||80/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Oct 2013||1,299|
|Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.|
The above review scores should be interpreted with care, though. The ratings were established in reference to similarly priced cameras that were available in the market at the time of the review. Hence, a score should always be seen in the context of the camera's market launch date and its price, and rating-comparisons among cameras that span long time periods or concern very differently equipped models make little sense. Also, kindly note that some of the listed sites have over time developped their review approaches and their reporting style.
Other camera comparisons
Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? In case you would like to check on the differences and similarities of other camera models, just use the search menu below. As an alternative, you can also directly jump to any one of the listed comparisons that were previously generated by the CAM-parator tool.
- Canon 5DS R vs Panasonic FT7
- Canon 5DS vs Sony RX10 III
- Nikon D4S vs Sony RX10 III
- Nikon D7200 vs Panasonic FT7
- Nikon L840 vs Panasonic FT7
- Olympus TG-4 vs Panasonic FT7
- Panasonic FT7 vs Panasonic GH5 II
- Panasonic FT7 vs Sony A900
- Panasonic FZ200 vs Sony RX10 III
- Panasonic GF5 vs Sony RX10 III
- Panasonic GM1 vs Sony RX10 III
- Sony RX10 III vs YI M1
Specifications: Panasonic FT7 vs Sony RX10 III
Below is a side-by-side comparison of the specs of the two cameras to facilitate a quick review of their differences and common features.
|Camera Model||Panasonic FT7||Sony RX10 III|
|Camera Type||Fixed lens compact camera||Fixed lens compact camera|
|Camera Lens||28-128mm f/3.3-5.9||24-600mm f/2.4-4.0|
|Launch Date||May 2018||March 2016|
|Launch Price||USD 449||USD 1,499|
|Sensor Specs||Panasonic FT7||Sony RX10 III|
|Sensor Format||1/2.3" Sensor||1" Sensor|
|Sensor Size||6.17 x 4.55 mm||13.2 x 8.8 mm|
|Sensor Area||28.0735 mm2||116.16 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||7.7 mm||15.9 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||20.2 Megapixels||20 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||5184 x 3888 pixels||5472 x 3648 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||1.18 μm||2.41 μm|
|Pixel Density||71.80 MP/cm2||17.18 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||Anti-Alias filter||Anti-Alias filter|
|Movie Capability||4K/30p Video||4K/30p Video|
|ISO Setting||80 - 3,200 ISO||100 - 12,800 ISO|
|ISO Boost||80 - 6,400 ISO||64 - 25,600 ISO|
|Image Processor||Venus||BIONZ X|
|DXO Sensor Quality (score)||..||70|
|DXO Color Depth (bits)||..||23.1|
|DXO Dynamic Range (EV)||..||12.6|
|DXO Low Light (ISO)||..||472|
|Screen Specs||Panasonic FT7||Sony RX10 III|
|Viewfinder Type||Electronic viewfinder||Electronic viewfinder|
|Viewfinder Field of View||100%||100%|
|Viewfinder Resolution||1170k dots||2359k dots|
|Top-Level Screen||no Top Display||Control Panel|
|LCD Framing||Live View||Live View|
|Rear LCD Size||3.0inch||3.0inch|
|LCD Resolution||1040k dots||1229k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Fixed screen||Tilting screen|
|Shooting Specs||Panasonic FT7||Sony RX10 III|
|Focus System||Contrast-detect AF||Contrast-detect AF|
|Manual Focusing Aid||no Peaking Feature||Focus Peaking|
|Max Shutter Speed (mechanical)||1/1300s||1/2000s|
|Continuous Shooting||10 shutter flaps/s||14 shutter flaps/s|
|Electronic Shutter||up to 1/16000s||up to 1/32000s|
|Fill Flash||Built-in Flash||Built-in Flash|
|Storage Medium||SDXC cards||MS or SDXC cards|
|Second Storage Option||Single card slot||Single card slot|
|UHS card support||UHS-I||UHS-I|
|Connectivity Specs||Panasonic FT7||Sony RX10 III|
|External Flash||no Hotshoe||Hotshoe|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||micro HDMI||micro HDMI|
|Microphone Port||no MIC socket||External MIC port|
|Headphone Socket||no Headphone port||Headphone port|
|Wifi Support||Wifi built-in||Wifi built-in|
|Near-Field Communication||no NFC||NFC built-in|
|Body Specs||Panasonic FT7||Sony RX10 III|
|Environmental Sealing||Waterproof body (31m)||Weathersealed body|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||300 shots per charge||420 shots per charge|
|In-Camera Charging||USB charging||USB charging|
117 x 76 x 37 mm
(4.6 x 3.0 x 1.5 in)
133 x 94 x 127 mm
(5.2 x 3.7 x 5.0 in)
|Camera Weight||319 g (11.3 oz)||1051 g (37.1 oz)|
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