Noise and JPEG processing, low ISO sensitivities

The Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 II delivers excellent JPEG quality through ISO 400, with just a little bit of detail degradation by ISO 800.
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Photo by: Lori Grunin/CNET / Caption by:

Noise and JPEG processing, higher ISO sensitivities

You can see artifacts at ISO 1600 in shadow areas (look at the text in the shadow under the bill), but properly illuminated areas still look pretty good.
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Photo by: Lori Grunin/CNET / Caption by:

RX100 vs. RX100 II, ISO 200

The RX100 II renders cleaner JPEGs at all ISO sensitivities than the RX100.
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Photo by: Lori Grunin/CNET / Caption by:

RX100 vs. RX100 II, ISO 1600

At ISO 1600 you can see a significant improvement in image quality over the RX100.
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Photo by: Lori Grunin/CNET / Caption by:

ISO 100 JPEG

ISO 100 is in the expanded range for the RX100 II, but the image quality looks about the same as ISO 200.

(1/80 sec, f6.3, multi metering, AWB, ISO 100, 40mm)
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Photo by: Lori Grunin/CNET / Caption by:

ISO 200 JPEG

Images look pretty natural, with no oversharpening problems.

(1/80 sec, f4.5, multi metering, AWB, ISO 200, 28mm)
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Photo by: Lori Grunin/CNET / Caption by:

ISO 400 JPEG

The camera delivers excellent detail resolution at ISO 400.

(1/50 sec, f2.8, center metering, AWB, ISO 400, 28mm)
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Photo by: Lori Grunin/CNET / Caption by:

ISO 800, raw vs. JPEG

You can start seeing a little mushiness in ISO 800 JPEG shots, but there isn't much you can do to clean them up in the raw file without exchanging softness for grain. You do gain back some detail using raw, though.

(1/40 sec, f3.2, center metering, AWB, ISO 800, 28mm)
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Photo by: Lori Grunin/CNET / Caption by:

ISO 1600 JPEG

Depending upon scene content, ISO 1600 can be quite usable. You can see some artifacts around the text edges and the texture of the pattern is lost in places, but it's still quite acceptable.

(1/60 sec, f3.5, center metering, AWB, ISO 1600, 28mm)
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Photo by: Lori Grunin/CNET / Caption by:

ISO 3200 JPEG

At ISO 3200, large areas look fine but you lose a lot of detail.

(1/60 sec, f4, spot metering, AWB, ISO 3200, 62mm)
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Photo by: Lori Grunin/CNET / Caption by:

ISO 3200 JPEG

ISO 3200 JPEGs are fine for viewing scaled down.

(1/60 sec, f4, spot metering, AWB, ISO 3200, 62mm)
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Photo by: Lori Grunin/CNET / Caption by:

Color

The camera delivers attractive and only slightly oversaturated colors. It lacks a neutral option, which at this price I really expect to have.
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Photo by: Lori Grunin/CNET / Caption by:

Effects

I still think Sony has some of the nicest in-camera effects. Shown here: Illustration (left) and Watercolor (right).
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Photo by: Lori Grunin/CNET / Caption by:

Flash

The tilting flash is invaluable for quickly controlling intensity and direction. On the left is the normal straight-on flash; on the right, flash tilted up.

(1/60 sec, f1.8, spot metering, AWB, ISO 1600, 28mm)
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Photo by: Lori Grunin/CNET / Caption by:
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