Mirrorless Camera Reviews

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Edited by George Schaub  |  Sep 02, 2014  |  0 comments

The Fujifilm X-A1 is the “little sister” of the X-M1. Both cameras have nearly the same design and technical features but use different sensor technology. The X-M1 uses Fujifilm’s X-Trans CMOS sensor while the X-A1 is equipped with a 16MP sensor with the Bayer RGB pattern, although it should be mentioned it is APS-C size. The different sensors are the main reason for the lower price of the X-A1, making it one of the least expensive X-type cameras with a detachable lens system.

Edited by George Schaub  |  Jul 15, 2014  |  First Published: Jun 01, 2014  |  0 comments

The Fujifilm X-E2 is a compact system camera with a “retro” design that offers 16MP resolution. Compared to its forerunner, the X-E1, changes include an electronic viewfinder with extremely high resolution. The small OLED display of the X-E2 has 2.36 million RGB dots and shows a brilliant, very crisp reproduction of the viewfinder image, images in review mode, and menus. The combination of the high-resolution monitor, the electronic magnifier (“viewfinder loupe”), and the focus peaking function are very helpful when working in manual focus mode.

George Schaub  |  Jun 27, 2014  |  First Published: May 01, 2014  |  0 comments

Starting with the 2014 CES trade show, held at the turn of the year, and continuing through press time for this issue, we’ve seen a goodly number of new products come to the fore. All this is only the start—this being a photokina year we’ll see a whole new round of products, including CMOS-sensor medium formats, with prices to match, coming our way. I trust that this report will give you a good sense of what’s here and what’s coming down the pike. So, here are my quick picks of those products that caught my eye, plus a snapshot of some of the trends.

Edited by George Schaub  |  Jun 24, 2014  |  First Published: May 01, 2014  |  0 comments

The Sony A7 and A7R are the first mirrorless system cameras with a full-frame sensor. The A7 offers a sensor size of 35.8x23.9mm and a resolution of 24MP, while the A7R has a slightly larger sensor at 35.9x24.0mm and 36MP resolution. Both cameras use the E-mount lens system that was introduced with Sony’s NEX cameras. Because NEX cameras use APS-C-sized sensors all previous E-mount lenses have smaller image circles, thus the full-frame models require new E-mount lenses, which cover the larger image circle of a full-frame sensor.

Edited by George Schaub  |  May 15, 2014  |  First Published: Apr 01, 2014  |  0 comments

The GX7 is the latest model of Panasonic’s GX series and replaces the GX1. This Micro Four Thirds (MFT) camera has a new sensor with 16MP resolution and a lot of modern features, such as the WLAN system. The camera design has a stylish, somewhat retro look and design.

Edited by George Schaub  |  May 13, 2014  |  First Published: Apr 01, 2014  |  0 comments

The Nikon 1 AW1 is the first digital compact system camera that can be used for diving or other active sports without an additional protective case. Protected by a stainless steel front cover, all function elements, card slots, and interfaces are protected by sealed covers. While the 1 AW1 can be used with all lenses of the Nikon 1 system, using it underwater and in similar adverse conditions requires the use of special lenses. Nikon offers a standard kit lens with a focal length of 11-27.5mm (29.7-74.25mm, 35mm film equivalent) that is protected by sealing gaskets and therefore can be used underwater. The second underwater lens is the 1 Nikkor AW 10mm f/2.8.

Edited by George Schaub  |  Apr 21, 2014  |  First Published: Mar 01, 2014  |  1 comments

The new Olympus OM-D E-M1 is the follower of the first OM-D, the proper and full name having been the “OM-D E-M5.” The E-M1 incorporates many of the E-M5 advantages, the famous five-axis image stabilizer being one of them. This image stabilizer is based on sensor-shift technology and allows the user to shoot a stabilized image with every lens system mounted to the camera.

Edited by George Schaub  |  Apr 18, 2014  |  First Published: Mar 01, 2014  |  2 comments

The Fujifilm X-M1 is an extremely compact system camera that uses Fujifilm’s 16MP X-Trans CMOS sensor. The camera offers very high image quality due to its special RGB filter array which differs from the standard Bayer RGB pattern. The pattern on the APS-C-sized X-Trans sensor resembles the random pattern of grain of analog film and reduces image noise. The interpretation of this RGB pattern isn’t very easy, but the most current versions of Adobe’s Photoshop Camera Raw plug-in and Adobe’s Lightroom are able to convert this pattern correctly.

Edited by George Schaub  |  Mar 28, 2014  |  First Published: Feb 01, 2014  |  0 comments

The GF6 is the latest model of Panasonic’s ultra-compact GF series. It is based on a Micro Four Thirds sensor and lens mount system and offers a resolution of 16MP.
The camera doesn’t offer a viewfinder system, but does have a large, touch-sensitive swivel LCD screen with high resolution (1,040,000 RGB dots). All camera functions can be controlled with the four-way control field, which is also a setup and navigation dial, but there are also many functions that can be controlled with the touchscreen in a very handy way.

George Schaub  |  Mar 12, 2014  |  1 comments

The hybridization of cameras and phones has produced various manifestations of late, one being the Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom, reviewed here a few months back, which looks like a smartphone with a camera/lens grafted onto it’s front. The Galaxy NX comes at this combination from the other direction, a decidedly camera-like design with built-in Android functionality, sans phone capability, but with all the other amenities and accouterments included. And there’s no confusing this with a smartphone, what with it being 3x5.5x2.25 inches in size, the benefit being a very large back display, 4.77” on the diagonal and width to height ratio of 2.5 x 4 inches.

Edited by George Schaub  |  Mar 07, 2014  |  First Published: Jan 01, 2014  |  0 comments

The Olympus E-P5 has a classic viewfinder camera design but doesn’t have an optical or electronic viewfinder. It does have a swivel monitor which can be folded up- and downward and offers very high resolution (1,037,000 RGB dots). Its 3:2 aspect ratio shows additional information on both sides of the viewfinder image, which has an aspect ratio of 4:3 when taking images in the highest image resolution setting. By pressing the “OK” button in the center of the control field additional parameters are shown as overlays on the right-hand side of the live view image.

Edited by George Schaub  |  Jan 31, 2014  |  First Published: Dec 01, 2013  |  1 comments

The NX300 follows the company’s NX210 and updates many features. Its new WLAN system, for example, now supports 2.4GHz and 5GHz systems for better data transfer. (Note: 5GHz systems eliminate interference better than the older 2.4GHz standard.) The free Wi-Fi connection can be used with remote control software on Android or Apple iOS smartphones, for auto backup on the PC, and for various mobile link functions, like sharing images by e-mail or in social networks.

Edited by George Schaub  |  Jan 28, 2014  |  First Published: Dec 01, 2013  |  0 comments

As a member of the G Series, the G6 is styled like an SLR system, in contrast to the GF models, which are styled like compact cameras. The G6 offers a high-resolution viewfinder system with an OLED screen that has 1.4 million RGB dots. In addition, it has a swivel LCD screen with 1.04 million RGB dots, which allows for comfortable shooting, especially in video mode. The LCD screen is touch sensitive and is very helpful for handling and making settings.

Edited by George Schaub  |  Jan 03, 2014  |  First Published: Nov 01, 2013  |  0 comments

The Leica M is a large and robust rangefinder camera with a magnesium-alloy chassis with top and bottom covers cut from brass blocks. All elements are carefully sealed against dust and moisture and overall offers the handling, feel, and touch one has come to associate with Leica M cameras of the past.

Edited by George Schaub  |  Nov 22, 2013  |  First Published: Oct 01, 2013  |  0 comments

The Nikon 1 J1 was Nikon’s first Compact System Camera (CSC), introduced in 2011/2012. The new J3 has a new image sensor with higher resolution (14MP instead of 10MP) and some additional features. It is still a very compact camera and just about the smallest CSC system now available.

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