Posts Tagged ‘system cameras’
The Panasonic GF3 is even smaller than its predecessor, the GF2, by approximately 16.7% in size and 16.2% in weight, measuring 107.7 x 67.1 x 32.5mm and weighing 222g without a lens attached or battery inserted. With a pancake lens like Panasonic’s own 14mm f/2.5 fitted, the GF3 is about the same size as a typical fixed-lens compact camera, even though it boasts a much bigger sensor. The GF3 is not much bigger than the LX5 compact, mostly through the lack of a shooting mode dial and several other external controls, and the adoption of touchscreen technology.
Importantly this significant reduction in size makes the GF3 smaller than the diminutive Sony NEX 5 and 3 compact system cameras, which additionally suffer in comparison by not having a built-in flash unit. Indeed, Panasonic claims that the GF3 2 “breaks the record of being the world’s smallest and lightest system camera”, although the newly-announced Olympus E-PM1 gives it a run for its money. If you’re looking for the smallest possible compact system camera, then the Panasonic GF3 certainly fits the bill.
The main changes versus the GF2 – apart from the obvious size/weight reduction and design overhaul – include the omission of the flash hot-shoe / accessory terminal and the rear-mounted thumb-wheel, and the inclusion of a scroll wheel around the four-way pad, a first on a Panasonic Lumix G Micro System camera. Another change to the user interface is that the Up button is now dedicated to exposure compensation rather than ISO sensitivity, which may dismay some enthusiasts.
The mechanical button for the pop-up flash has also been retained, although its position changed somewhat along with that of the flash itself. The top-mounted controls – including the shutter release, movie record button, power switch and dedicated intelligent Auto button – have been reshuffled and grouped more tightly together, but otherwise remain essentially the same both in appearance and functionality. The GF2′s stereo microphones have given way to a more modest monaural mic.
The DMC-GF3 has a significantly raised and curved vertical area on the front-right of the body which acts as a handgrip, allowing you to hold the camera with three fingers whilst operating the shutter button with your forefinger. This works in tandem with the useful rubberized thumb-rest on the rear. The GF3 sports a new design characterised by clean lines, gentle curves and a polished exterior. Whilst still not as charismatic as the retro Olympus Pen models, the GF3 is a handsomely futuristic camera with more of an obviously electronic feel to it, and is also extremely well-built despite its mid-range price-point, with a high quality aluminum body, lens mount and tripod socket.
Further building upon the existing PEN range, the OLYMPUS PEN E-P3 is a high performance compact system camera based on the Micro Four Thirds System standard. As the flagship camera of the PEN series of new generation system cameras, the E-P3 is aimed at camera enthusiasts looking for a camera which combines traditional style and functionality along with advanced imaging capabilities and high responsiveness. Like previous models in the PEN series, the E-P3 maintains key SLR advantages such as high performance and high image quality and its remarkably compact design has been made possible by the elimination of the quick-return mirror and the reflex prism.
The E-P3 auto-focuses faster than any interchangeable lens camera on the market and utilises the powerful new ‘FAST’ AF auto-focus system. FAST AF combines MSC (Movie & Still Compatible) lens technology, double-speed detection capability of the new Live MOS sensor, a new focusing algorithm and a dedicated focusing processor within the TruePic VI engine. The new AF system sports a 35ne AF pattern which covers nearly twice the screen area of previous PEN cameras enabling enhanced AF detection. Each autofocus zone is also smaller for more precise point focus and enhanced AF tracking capability.
Review Summary: Pentax produces a small-sensor digital camera with interchangeable lenses, a first for the digital camera industry. It’s early to tell, but we think the Pentax Q could give both the enthusiast digital cameras like the G12 and the compact system cameras a run for their money, provided it’s not too small for the average user.
Pros: Interchangeable lenses that are also light and compact. Very small size that’s easy to take anywhere. Still has physical controls where other companies seeking small designs have opted for other solutions with a steeper learning curve.
Cons: Small buttons and small size might be too hard to use for some. Image quality is bound to trail other compact system cameras, especially low light shots.
eleased via the slider just behind it. It takes a little practice to release the flash without your fingers getting in the way. Next to that is the Playback button, something we’d have preferred to see on the back, but admittedly there’s very little room on the Pentax Q. The hot shoe looks relatively massive on the Q, compatible with Pentax’s current line of flashes, however large. Five holes mark the position of the speaker. The small power button is right of that, and the gunmetal shutter button rises fairly high from the camera body, offering a very soft half-press with a clean break at full press for a very good feel.
The Mode dial sits atop and dictates the shape of the small fingertip grip, just as the Rear dial describes the shape of the rear thumbgrip. Strap lugs are molded into the top plate of the Pentax Q, presumably also of magnesium alloy.
Tightly fitted into the small chassis is the 460,000-dot, 3-inch TFT LCD with a 170 degree viewing angle. Unlike the Sony NEX-C3 and Panasonic GF3, two cameras also pushing the size barriers for interchangeable lens cameras, the Pentax Q doesn’t take the minimalist approach to the camera’s interface to eliminate buttons. Instead they take the approach that’s worked for pocket digital cameras for years: small buttons; no scroll wheels, soft buttons, or touchscreens. I can see some objecting to the use of such small buttons, but those who don’t like small buttons have no business looking at a camera this small to begin with. Most of the buttons are recessed and stiff enough to avoid accidental activation, yet they yield to gentle, inward pressure with a soft click. The four outer navigation buttons are beveled upward from the center out for easier tactile differentiation from the other buttons, which are admittedly quite close.
Nikon is naturally keen to build on the success of recent Nikon DSLRs, and the company understands that in order to compete in today’s competitive market an SLR has to be much more than just a camera. It must be a complete imaging system that allows images (or movies) to be captured in a range of styles and adjusted without having to connect to a computer.
A DSLR must encourage its users to experiment and educate them about their hobby. Since the advent of the compact system cameras, there’s also increasing pressure for DSLRs to be made smaller and more portable despite their incredible specification.
Excellent photo quality with a good noise profile, a streamlined shooting design for both photo and video, and a broad, practical feature set contribute to the Nikon D5100‘s strengths.
The Fujifilm FinePix S1600 is a new super-zoom digital compact camera that looks and feels like a DSLR. Featuring a 15x zoom lens with a 28-420mm focal range, 12 megapixels and a 3 inch LCD screen, the Fujifilm S1600 offers full manual photographic control for the more experienced user and an Automatic Scene Recognition mode for beginners. For movie makers the S1600 has the must-have feature of 2010, high-definition 720p video recording at 30fps. Dual Image Stabilization, an electronic viewfinder, ISO 64 up to ISO 1600 at full resolution, high-speed shooting up to 20 frames at 8 fps (at 3 megapixels), Tracking Auto Focus and Panorama Shooting mode complete the S1600’s main specifications
he Fujifilm FinePix S1600 is a 12.2 Megapixel bridge camera. The Fujifilm S1600 features manually adjustable controls but unlike the DSLR or (Micro Four Thirds) system cameras the camera has a single fixed lens.