Sony NEX-3N

Sony Alpha NEX-3N front

Sony NEX-3N overview

Sony NEX-3N is Sony's Entry-Level Mirrorless digital camera first announced on February of 2013. The camera has a 16MP, CMOS APS-C size sensor with a maximum resolution of 4912 x 3264.

Sony launched this model to improve the earlier Sony NEX-F3 (Read Full Comparison) & subsequently launched the newer Sony a5000 (Read Full Comparison) to improve this model.

The NEX-3N stands at #80 out of 117 in Entry-Level Mirrorless cameras & all round #370 out of 1465 for cameras in our list. Remember to try our Smart camera filter to get camera listings based on your personalized factors.

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Here is a diagram of different criteria used in the scoring system.

Sony NEX-3N history

The Sony NEX-3N has a history of related cameras. Listed below, you can check out all past and newer models along with main features.

ModelVisualizeResolutionSensor SizeMax fpsReleased
Sony-Alpha-a5100 front thumbnailSony a5100
NEX-3N vs a5100
24MPAPS-C6.0 fps2014
Sony-Alpha-a5000 front thumbnailSony a5000
NEX-3N vs a5000
20MPAPS-C4.0 fps2014
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Sony-Alpha-NEX-5T front thumbnailSony NEX-5T
NEX-3N vs NEX-5T
16MPAPS-C10.0 fps2013
Sony-Alpha-NEX-6 front thumbnailSony NEX-6
NEX-3N vs NEX-6
16MPAPS-C10.0 fps2013
Sony-Alpha-NEX-3N front thumbnailSony NEX-3N16MPAPS-C4.0 fps2013
Sony-Alpha-NEX-5R front thumbnailSony NEX-5R
NEX-3N vs NEX-5R
16MPAPS-C10.0 fps2012
Photography Glossary
Sony-Alpha-NEX-F3 front thumbnailSony NEX-F3
NEX-3N vs NEX-F3
16MPAPS-C6.0 fps2012

Sony NEX-3N Pros and Cons

Here is a collection of advantages and drawbacks of the Sony NEX-3N based on criterias which are typically viewed as crucial in a digital camera.

better than average battery (480 shots)
decent sized screen (3 inch)
does have HDMI port
has built in flash
has manual focus
high res video (1920 x 1080 resolution)
MP count decent (16MP)
saves RAW files
screen tilts up and down
sensor size is decent (APS-C)
swap lenses (Sony E mount)
lack of headphone port
lack of image stabilization
lack of mic port
lack of phase detect auto focus
lack of Time Lapse recording
no external flash support
pixelated screen (460 k dot)
screen isn't selfie friendly
very slow continuous shooting (4.0 frames/s)
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Sony NEX-3N Sensor information

The Sony NEX-3N is powered by the Bionz processor chip. The sensor size on the Sony NEX-3N is 23.5mm x 15.6mm (APS-C). The 367 mm² sensor has the capability to resolve 4912 x 3264 pixels using aspect ratios of 3:2 and 16:9.

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The CMOS sensor has 16MP and has a standard ISO range of 200 to 16000. RAW files are saved so you have more margin for error.

The graphic underneath shows the NEX-3N's sensor size in comparison to other popular sizes. The NEX-3N sensor has a crop factor of 1.5 and is pointed out in green.

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To get an understanding of different aspect ratios, you can refer to the graphic below.

Camera sensor aspect ratios

Sony NEX-3N dimensions

Sony NEX-3N weighs 0.59 lbs (269g or 9.49 ounces) & the dimensions of the camera is 110mm x 62mm x 35mm (4.3" x 2.4" x 1.4"). The weight of normal Entry-Level Mirrorless camera is 329g and the Sony NEX-3N is lighter as compared to other competitors.

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Here is a picture of the Sony NEX-3N alongside a soda so you're able to get a feel for its size.

Sony Alpha NEX-3N dimensions scale

The top view underneath will provide the button arrangement on the NEX-3N.

Sony Alpha NEX-3N topview buttons dials

Sony NEX-3N Lens information

The NEX-3N fits the Sony E mount and has 170 lenses available to buy. Here is a few of the lenses we have in our database that will fit the NEX-3N.

ModelVisualizeFocal LengthApertureStabilizedWeight
Samyang-20mm-F1.8-ED-AS-UMC-Sony-E lensSamyang 20mm F1.8 ED AS UMC20mmf/1.8497g
Sigma-24mm-F3.5-DG-E-Mount lensSigma 24mm F3.5 DG24mmf/3.5 225g
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Sony-Distagon-T-FE-35mm-F1.4-ZA lensSony Distagon T FE 35mm F1.4 ZA35mmf/1.4 630g
Sigma-28mm-F1.4-DG-HSM-A-Sony-FE lensSigma 28mm F1.4 DG HSM A28mmf/1.40g
Sigma-100-400mm-F5-6.3-DG-DN-OS-Sony-FE lensSigma 100-400mm F5-6.3 DG DN OS100-400mmf/5-6.3 1135g
Samyang-50mm-F1.2-AS-UMC-CS--Rokinon-50mm-F1.2-ED-AS-UMC-Sony-E lensSamyang 50mm F1.2 AS UMC CS50mmf/1.2375g
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Sony-FE-24mm-F2.8-G lensSony FE 24mm F2.8 G24mmf/2.8 162g
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Sony NEX-3N Connectivity

The NEX-3N has the following connectivity:

  • USB Yes
  • HDMI Yes

Cameras that have NFC or Bluetooth compatibility can be controlled wirelessly through smartphones. You are able to copy files and oftentimes change settings without the hassle of connecting directly with the camera.

Several apps also give a Liveview and click the shutter if you aren't close to the camera. If the camera includes a HDMI port, it can be hooked up to an external screen. Virtually all cameras enable you to charge the battery with the USB port.

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Sony NEX-3N Video information

The maximum video quality on the Sony NEX-3N is 1920 x 1080 and you can record in MPEG-4 and AVCHD file format. 1080p quality delivers a great balance between video quality and file size but FULL HD won't give you any room to crop. The body doesn't feature a microphone or headphone port so you have got absolutely no control over the audio. It is probably best to buy a different model should you require decent audio for your videos.

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Sony NEX-3N Weather Sealing

There is no weather proofing on the Sony NEX-3N so you have to be cautious in wet and dusty conditions.

Sony NEX-3N Screen and Viewfinder

The Sony NEX-3N has a 3" tilting screen having a resolution of 460k dots.

Please be aware that the screen has no touch support.

Sony Alpha NEX-3N screen and viewfinder Photography Glossary

The ViewFinder details for Sony NEX-3N are as follows:

  • ViewFinder None

Viewfinders can be very helpful during sunny outdoor conditions which can easily make the camera screen washed out and very difficult to see.

Sony NEX-3N Shutter information

Sony NEX-3N has the capability to shoot continuously at 4.0 frames/s. The highest shutter speed is 1/4000 sec.

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Sony NEX-3N Flash and Hot shoe information

Sony NEX-3N comes with just integrated flash with missing external flash ability. The maximum flash sync is 1/160 sec.

Sony NEX-3N Autofocus information

Sony NEX-3N comes with only Contrast Detect Autofocus & does not have Phase Detect Autofocus. Phase Detection autofocusing is a lot faster and precise as compared to Contrast Detect autofocusing.

The Sensor has 25 focus points to pick from. Sony NEX-3N has got manual focus in case it is needed during low light or you need more precise control on focus.

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Sony NEX-3N Battery life

The battery (NPFW50) on the Sony NEX-3N is fashioned to last for 480 photographs as per the CIPA measurements which is higher than standard for its class. The general Entry-Level Mirrorless camera battery life is 343. Fujifilm X-S20 comes with the highest possible (750) battery life within this group of cameras.

Listed below is a list of Entry-Level Mirrorless cameras which have the strongest battery life:

Sony NEX-3N for different types of photography

The following chart presents a overview of the Sony NEX-3N for different types of photography. To understand more, browse to the specific section underneath.

Portrait photography with Sony NEX-3N

The Sony NEX-3N receives a score of 66 which is very good, meaning that it is a very decent choice for portrait images. Taking portraits favors heavily to sensor resolution, RAW support & capability to work with off-camera flash.

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focusing manually
megapixel count decent (16 megapixels)
decent sensor size (APS-C)
exports RAW files
can't use external flash

Sony NEX-3N Street photography advice

Coming in at a tremendous score of 77, the Sony NEX-3N is a awesome pick to use in street photography. A very good street photography camera gives a fine balance of image quality plus portability.

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has a tilting screen
decent sensor size (APS-C)
supports RAW files
no image stabilization

Sony NEX-3N Sports photography highlights

A average sports photography points total of 54 means the Sony NEX-3N is fairly adequate for shooting sports. A camera needs to have very good tracking and fast shutter speeds for sports photography.

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good megapixels (16 megapixels)
nice sensor size (APS-C)
great battery life (480 per charge)
slow frames per second (4.0 fps)
no image stabilization
doesn't have phase detect auto focus

Sony NEX-3N as a Travel photography camera

Size is very critical in selecting a travel camera. All round, the Sony NEX-3N gets a above average 71 for a travel camera which makes it a good option for your vacations.

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great battery life (480 CIPA)
good MP (16 megapixels)
flash built-in
no Time Lapse function
display is not selfie friendly

Sony NEX-3N Landscape photography advice

If you are planning to purchase a camera for landscape photography, the most important aspect is going to be image quality. The Sony NEX-3N and it's nice score of 70 for a landscape camera is a respectable option amongst it's rivals.

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manual focus
interchangeable lenses (Sony E mount)
screen is a good size (3 inches)
megapixel count good (16MP)
sensor size is good (APS-C)
exports RAW files
good battery power (480 CIPA)
lack of image stabilization
doesn't have Timelapse function

Sony NEX-3N Vlogging information

A camera for vlogging preferably should offer a articulating display screen, mic input and preferably image stabilization. Taking all things in to account, the Sony NEX-3N is simply not appropriate for vlogging as it gets a awful score of 28.

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video resolution high (1920 x 1080 pixels)
display isn't selfie friendly
no image stabilization
missing microphone socket

Sony NEX-3N Alternatives

If you want alternatives to the NEX-3N, below is a number of the top rated cameras which fall in to the category of Entry-Level Mirrorless.

The line graph listed below will give you a summary of the NEX-3N vs it's highest ranking competitors listed above.

These are some more cameras you might consider as alternative options. To review a comprehensive comparison, go to the "compare" link.

Photography Glossary


General Information
Brand Name
Sony Alpha NEX-3N
Entry-Level Mirrorless
Body design
Rangefinder-style mirrorless
Sensor Information
Sensor type
Sensor size
Sensor dimensions
23.5 x 15.6mm
Sensor area
Sensor resolution
16 megapixels
Anti aliasing filter
Aspect ratio
3:2 and 16:9
Highest resolution
4912 x 3264
RAW pictures
Highest native ISO
Min native ISO
Manual focus
AF touch
Continuous AF
Single AF
AF tracking
Selective AF
Center weighted AF
AF multi area
AF live view
Face detection focusing
Contract detection focusing
Phase detection focusing
Number of focus points
Lens mount
Sony E
Available lenses
Focal length multiplier
Screen type
Screen size
3 inch
Resolution of screen
460k dot
Selfie friendly
Touch function
Viewfinder Information
DXO scores
DXO All around score
DXO Color Depth score
DXO Dynamic range score
DXO Low light score
Slowest shutter speed
30 seconds
Maximum shutter speed
1/4000 seconds
Continuous shooting speed
4.0 frames/s
Shutter priority
Aperture priority
Manual exposure
Exposure compensation
Custom WB
Image stabilization
Inbuilt flash
External flash
Auto exposure bracketing
White balance bracketing
Maximum flash sync
1/160 seconds
Multisegment metering
Average metering
Spot metering
Partial metering
AF area metering
Center weighted metering
Video features
Video resolutions
1920 x 1080
Highest video resolution
Video file format
Mic jack
Headphone jack
USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
Environmental seal
Water proof
Dust proof
Shock proof
Crush proof
Freeze proof
269g (0.59 pounds)
110 x 62 x 35mm (4.3" x 2.4" x 1.4")
Battery life
480 photographs
Battery form
Battery Pack
Battery model
Time lapse recording
Type of storage
SD/ SDHC/SDXC, Memory Stick Pro Duo/ Pro-HG Duo
Storage slots
Launch price