Pro video blog…Produced by Philip Johnston DoP/Editor


As of yesterday I have passed my thoughts onto Sony about the poor fuinctionality of the Rocker Switch on the NX70. As I own two NX70s which are great camcorders I have the right to speak out on behalf of not only myself but everyone world wide who has noted this problem. Quite frankly this should have never passed quality control but with all the problems in Japan we were lucky to get NX70s at all.

Adam Welz from New York :

“I’ve been considering buying an NX70 to use alongside my NX5 – but the sample unit I tried out at B&H in New York a few days ago had a very unfriendly zoom rocker. It was impossible for me to get an even or slow zoom.

No matter how hard I tried, I could not stop the zoom from jumping in speed as it went through the range. It also went from zero to 60mph in no space at all.”

Sony are good listeners and the good news is the up and coming firmware update due in early 2012 if there is anything Sony can do to fix this via software you can bet your bottom dollar they will. To get round this I use a set of mini rails from Genus and attach a Manfrotto 521i lanc zoom control to the left side of the camera, this by passes the use of the rocker switch but it’s a workaround and one I would prefer not to have to do.


BREAKING NEWS: My retailer here has confirmed Sony have “a software upgrade pending to slow the fast Zoom down. The problem is caused by the *waterproofing* of the rocker mechanism.”

Will have more details soon…


Having been working in the video business since 1988 I have amassed a great amount of knowledge of both the kit and production values over the last 30 years.

8 thoughts on “Sony’s NX70 Rocker Switch…”Taking the bull by the horns”

  1. It’s just rather shocking that they’d ship it with such a flaw.

  2. It is a pity that such a great camera as the NX70 can have such a major flaw.

    Phil, what’s the best way to contact Sony UK about this? I’ve heard (via that the firmware update will indeed fix the zoom, but the more noise we make, the better.

  3. I think Sony are on top of this one, a reply confirming the update from Sony would be nice. Sony read this blog so I have no doubt that our concerns will be noted.

  4. Yeah,..just got an NX70 last week. The rocker IS extremely bad. I’m totally shocked that this issue got past the designers AND the field testers. Didn’t anybody at Sony operate or test the zoom before it went into production? (not one single person?)

    It’s easily the WORST zoom switch I have ever seen in either a pro camera or even a consumer market camera.

  5. I don’t want to disappoint anybody (me inklusive!), but today I have been asking Sony UK if they really plan to do an firmware upgrade for the NX70 rocker switch, this was the reply:

    “Dear Christian,

    thank you for your email. Unfortuantely we can only advise that we are not aware of any upcoming upgrades for this issue at this stage.

    Kind regards

    Nina Collins”

    Assistant Manager – PrimeSupport Operations
    Professional Solutions Europe, a division of SONY Europe Limited, a company registered in England and Wales
    Registered Office: The Heights,
    Surrey, KT13 0XW
    Registered company number: 2422874
    TEL 00800 7898 7898
    FAX 01256 683830

  6. Sony UK are only telling you what they know as from today, they can’t second guess Japan and take it from me as a man with TWO NX70s with TWO crap rocker switches I will be on the case, Japan is listening.

  7. Today I got a telephon call from an Austrian Sony member and he also confirmed, that Sony is going to improve the zoomswitch. He explained again that the problem is because of the water-proof design of the rocker switch; so lets see what they can do, but it gives me hope to buy this cam the next weeks…

  8. The zoom rocker is hardly the end of it…

    Doesn’t it bother anyone that:
    In Full Auto mode, and using the view finder, if you wish to apply exposure compensation, you must open the LCD and muddle with the touch screen? And not only does opening the LCD turn off the finder, but the exposure comp puts a black mask on the top half of the screen, and a huge, non-functional exposure gradient display on the bottom. Plus and minus buttons spaced a thumb-width apart with a numeric value would have been entirely sufficient – or make the gradient swipable with your finger as a means of adjustment.

    A very simple software fix that Sony SHOULD apply in their firmware update – when the rear switch is set to Full Auto, and the lens switch is set to Iris, and AE is set to ON, then the lens ring is adjusts exposure compensation. And remove the poorly thought out black mask from the display – maybe, just maybe we’d like to see the adjustment we are applying!!!

    In Manual Mode, the NX70 is completely missing the very useful “Exposure” mode that has been available on all Sony HDV FX, V and Z series cameras for the last 6 years. For those not in the know, Iris = Exposure links gain to the iris setting such that when you run out of iris, as you continue to turn the lens ring, gain will be boosted. This is a really useful option for “run & gun” shooters in situations where light is changing rapidly, such as moving from sunlight to shadow and back again. Since Sony advertises the NX70 as a run & gun shooter’s camera for all weather conditions, WHY, WHY not make it easy to use & handle while running & gunning???

    Again, this would be SUCH a SIMPLE software fix, and it would make the camera soooo much easier to use in fast moving situations. This could have been such a great little camera, but alas, it’s ruined by poorly thought out & poorly tested software decisions.

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