Has Sony done it? Have they produced a compact camera with professional quality results? It appears that they may have with the RX100. Certainly, sizewise, it fits the bill being only 3.5 x 5.8 x 10 cms in dimensions. It has a fixed zoom lens, the equivalent of 28-100mm. It has a pop-up flash. Those are all elements we associate with compact, shirt-pocket cameras. OK, the flash is crap, but what's new about that - all compacts have crap built-in flashes.
But the rest of it's features are what make it stand out. Firstly, the sensor is apparently the same as the Nikon J and V cameras, a 20.2 MP CMOS CX sensor which is four times the size of a typical compact. Worth noting is that the Nikon cameras are on the recommended camera list for Alamy. The lens is Carl Zeiss, always reassuring, with high speed autofocus. It appears that there is negligible shutter lag and that processing of the image is equally speedy, about one second. It can shoot at 10 fps. The aperture range is f1.8 to f11 and speed range from 30 seconds to 1/12000th of a second. It has aperture priority, shutter priority, program and manual. It shoots RAW and Jpeg, although, at the moment, only Sony's software can convert the RAW files. And for those who want to know, it videos at 1080p HD with stereo sound.
Here are a couple of reviews: Dpreview, where it is as yet only a preview, and Photography Blog which gives the RX100 full marks.