News from Photokina 2012


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Main trends



Since the last Photokina, the convergence of video and photo is completely assumed and any cameras incorporate these two features, from compact to Pro SLR. Video is most often Full HD 1080p/30 with AF tracking and special silent lenses are even offered.
This AF development in video mode had completed AF SLR systems with a phase detection system with integrated AF on sensor itself. Sony Exmor sensors offer this technology in many Nikon, Pentax, Sony and maybe soon Hasselblad cameras.
If the race to pixel decreases slowly: 16 million pixels is now a basic value and 24 million pixels is quite common, progress in terms of their high sensitivity are real.

Basic functions are now covered for photographers, other functions/needs arise through internal modules or accessories:

  • The Wifi connection, social networks connection and so on.
  • remote control or camera use by Android ™, iOS or proprietary systems such as SONY allow the addition of third-party applications.
  • GPS becomes also common.

  • At last, the equipment categories are more and more crossover and we can now have DLSR cheaper than some compacts ou SLR without optical viewfinder and mirror ... the format of sensor with real or supposed benefits becomes a factor classification.

    stand Nikon

    stand Nikon




    Big Format



    Hasselblad HD5

    Hasselblad HD5




    Leica S

    Leica S




    The Hasselblad HD5 is a new camera with a new design, new features. This camera has a 60x60 mm sensor of 40, 50 or 60 megapixel sensor is twice larger than 24x36 sensor and has 33% more pixels than a Nikon D800. Some versions 50 and 200 million pixels are announced.
    Hasselblad HCD also has a 24 mm f/4.8 (equivalent in 35mm terms: 17 mm).

    While on his territory, this year Leica has few real news, proof perhaps that the systems are mature and respond to market.
    The Leica S keeps the 30x45 mm sensor of 37 million pixels but improves image processing unit, high sensitivity, shooting cadence, and has a built-in GPS and a predictive AF.
    Leica also presents new lenses : a Super Elmar M 24 mm f/3.5, a shift lens TS-Apo-Elmar 120mm f/5.6 and a Vario Elmar zoom 30-90 mm f/3.5-5.6 ((equivalent in 35mm terms: 24-70 mm).




    Full Format 135



    Nikon D600

    Nikon D600

    Canon 6D

    Canon 6D


    Sony Alpha 99

    Sony Alpha 99


    Hasselblad DSLR study with A mount

    Hasselblad DSLR study with A mount

    Nikon and Canon present, the same week, each other a full format DSLR compact camera than costs less than 2000 €. Nikon camera is already available, Canon one will be in December.

    The Nikon D600 is a camera with a FX full format sensor of 24 million pixels, 39 points autofocus module, Full HD video mode with uncompressed output, many built-in functions (flash, HDR) or optional (WiFi, GPS). This DLSR is the most compact in the range of 3 DSLR Nikon FX: D4 and D800 professional.

    The Canon 6D has a sensor of 20 million pixels, a WiFi module and a built-in GPS, the same image processor DIGIC 5 + than the 5D Mark III, but a 11-point autofocus module and not built-in flash. It completes the Canon 1DX and the professional Canon 5D Mark III.

    Sony also has a full-size DSLR: The Sony the STL-A 99 with a sensor of 24 megapixels and the system Translucent SONY based on a semi-transparent fixed mirror and an electronic viewfinder of 2.4 million pixels. This system has its supporters and detractors, but all the recent Sony Alpha DSLR XX adopt this system and Sony seems completely abandoned the movable mirror and optical viewfinder presents on Minolta or Sony DSLR Alpha XXX. Progress in electronic viewfinders make this system more attractive even if for the moment it can not, from my point of view, replace the comfort of an optical viewfinder. The Sony Alpha 99 is at the same price as the D800 and its Sony sensor 36 million pixels but with a performance closer than Nikon D600.

    Hasselblad was announced at Photokina that it want to develop a collaboration with Sony for SLR cameras based on Minolta / Sony Alpha mount. These cameras will probably have features and Translucent technology as A99 camera.




    Sony RX1

    Sony RX1




    Leica M

    Leica M




    Leica M-E

    Leica M-E



    Sony presents also a compact camera, the Sony RX1 , camera without an optical viewfinder but with a full format sensor and a 35mm f/2 fixed lens. Sony RX1 has a sensor of 24 million pixels and is announced at $ 2,800. It is positioned like the DP1 and DP2 Merill Sigma.

    Leica M replaces the Leica M9. The 24x36 mm CMOS sensor of 24 megapixels which replaces Kodak sensor, is designed by Belgian Cmosis and manufactured in France. It has a screen of 920,000 points and always a rangefinder ("Messsucher" in German indicated by the letter M). but now offers LiveView and Full HD video (1080p).

    A more "economical" camera, the Leica M-E complete the M series. It keeps the sensor of M9 and has no Liveview or video.



    Format APS-C

    Canon 650D

    Canon 650D

    Pentax K30

    Pentax K30


    Sony NEX 5R

    Sony NEX 5R


    Sony NEX 6

    Sony NEX 6


    Hasselblad lunar 500

    Hasselblad lunar 500

    The Canon 650D replaces the 600D and has a new CMOS sensor 18 million pixels that integrates hybrid pixel that allow phase correlation autofocus and advanced continuous Full HD video, a frame rate to 5 fps continuous shooting, climbing sensitivity to ISO 25600 and this is the first reflex with a multi-touch swivel screen, which contributes to its ease of use, including video. The 650D, announced Canon bestseller is sold $ 700 body only and $ 750 in kit with a zoom lens EF-S IS II 18-55 (October 2012).

    Pentax introduces the Pentax K-5 II which s its K5 expert DSLR with the same characteristics: stabilized CMOS APS-C sensor size of 16.3 million pixel, shooting rate of 7 frames per second, 100% viewfinder, a Full HD 25p video mode and a fully tropicalized body. Improvements include the new AF autofocus system SAFOX X, more responsive and the screen brighter and more durable. S version without low-pass filter is also proposed.

    Pentax K-30 is more interesting because it is the first digital SLR camera which with its 81 joints protection and associated with WR lenses, is resistant to water splashes, dust and low temperatures down to minus 10 ° C. It has like the K-5, the same stabilized CMOS sensor APS-C size 16.3 megapixel, optical 100% viewfinder and a burst rate of 6 frames per second, dual power Lithium-ion battery or 4 batteries AA, all of that with a adventurer look.

    The Sony NEX-5R is an evolution of the NEX-5N. It has a CMOS sensor Exmor APS-C 16.1 million pixels, a new hybrid AF called FastHybrid that combines phase detection (99 point) and contrast detection (25 point), sensitivity up to ISO 25600, a BIONZ image processor, a 180 ° swivel rear screen, WiFi (hotspot or connected mode) and the ability to access an online application store SONY PlayMemories Camera Apps, where you can buy new functions for the digital camera. It looks a bit like Google Apps or Play Store.
    Eventually Sony PlayMemories Camera Apps must offer free or paid features for ten cameras. Picture Effect+, Pro Bracket, Photo Retouching are already available.
    If this feels good on paper, we do not see the interest of a new application store with owner Sony. The future will show whether interesting applications will be available or if it is just to pay features that were previously included in the camera.
    The Sony NEX-5R is proposed at $ 750 in kit with 18-55mm zoom (October 2012).

    The Sony NEX-6 contains elements of NEX-5R : processor, sensitivity, AF FastHybrid technology, WiFi, application PlayMemories Camera Apps and add a burst mode up to 10 frames per second, a Full HD video AVCHD Ver. 2.0, a XGA OLED high resolution viewfinder (the same as NEX-7), Xtra Fine LCD touch screen 180 ° swivel (3", 921,600 points), two knobs and a new settings Multi Accessories hot shoe.
    Sony drops Minolta hot shoe from STL-A 99 and NEX-6, returning to standard ISO hot shoe with additional contacts for multiple accessories Sony. New flashes are modified accordingly. The NEX-6 is a credible alternative to the NEX-7 with an electronic viewfinder sensor but less powerful. It will be proposed at the price of $ 1000 in kit with the 18-55 mm zoom (November 2012).

    Hasselblad introduces the Lunar 500 , its first fruit of the collaboration with Sony. This camera with E mount is based on the NEX 7 redesigned by the Swedish brand. Specifications are those of the NEX-7: APS-C sensor 24 million pixels, a burst rate of 10 frames per second, Full HD video up to 28 Mbit/s, 910 000 dots swivel screen, electronic viewfinder OLED, integrated flash and a hot shoe.
    The machine is customized with handle made of carbon, wood or other for a starting price of $ 5,000.

    Canon M

    Canon M





    Fuji XPRO-1

    Fuji XPRO-1






    Fuji XE-1

    Fuji XE-1

    Canon has finally unveiled its Canon EOS M, the first hybrid camera (mirrorless camera with interchangeable lenses) from the world leader in Photography. It incorporates many components or features from the EOS 650D like APS-C CMOS 18 million pixels sensor, the new autofocus system with phase correlation that uses some of the sensor photodiodes to operate AF, the rear screen of 1.7 cm and 1.04 million points and a supersonic wave cleaning. The new Canon mount called EF-M has a 18 mm backfocus and a diameter of 58 mm. EF ring is available that allows to keep all the automatisms of the EF lens mounted on it and keepin the 1.6x multiplier of the Canon range. No built-in flash, but instead a hot shoe on the top plate and a SpeedLite 90EX flash is viable for $ 150.
    The EOS M is announced with two lenses available: a zoom 18-55 mm f/3.5-5.6 IS and a 22 mm f/2. It will be available in black, white, silver or red in kit with 18-55 mm EF-M for about $ 800 (October 2012).

    Already known since April, The Fujifilm X-Pro1 , hybrid camera has a X-Trans CMOS sensor of 16 millions of pixels without low-pass filter and a new lens mount called Mount X. Five Fujinon lenses are available : a 14 mm f/2.8 (equivalent in 35mm terms: 21 mm), a 18 mm f/2, a 35mm f/1.4, a 60 mm f/2,4 Macro and a zoom 18-55 mm f/2 Standard OIS (equivalent in 35mm terms: 27-88 mm). Other lenses should follow.
    As the X100, it has a "vintage" look and a hybrid optical/electronic viewfinder.
    At Photokina Fujifilm introduced the Fujifilm X-E1 with an electronic viewfinder, integrated flash and an "affordable" price : $ 700 for body only or $ 1,400 for kit with zoom Fujinon 55mm XF18-F2.8-4 R LM OIS versus $ 1,700 for the X-Pro 1 body only (October 2012).


    4/3" Format and lower

    Olympus OM-D E-M5

    Olympus OM-D E-M5

    Panasonic Lumix GH3

    Panasonic Lumix GH3




    Olympus Pen E-PL5



    Olympus Pen E-PM2




    Olympus Pen E-PL5



    Olympus Pen E-PM2


    Panasonic Lumix GH3 is a tropicalized camera with a new Live MOS sensor micro 4/3" of 17.20 million pixels (effective 16.05), recording videos in Full HD 1080p 60, 50, 30, 25, 24 fps, uncompressed HDMI output, a microphone input 3.5 mm.
    the photo side of this camera includes sensitivity up to ISO 12,800, a rate of 6 frames per second or 22 frames per second up to 4 million pixels, OLED electronic viewfinder of 1.744 M points, an 3" OLED swivel rear screen of 610 000 points, WiFi.
    Its price of $ 1,300 body only or $ 1,800 in a kit with the 14-140mm zoom (October 2012) seems to reserve it for the professional market.

    After the success of the Olympus OM-D EM, rejuvenating its offer of micro 4/3 hybrid cameras with two new compacts : the PEN Lite E-PL5 and PEN Mini E-PM2 with a 16 megapixel sensor, probably made by Panasonic, a TruePic VI image processor and a touch screen of 460,000 points. Autofocus and trigger can be performed from the screen, the E-PL5 costs $ 700 with the retractable zoom 14-42mm and E-PM2 $ 600 (October 2012) with the same zoom.

    On September 28, Sony paid 50 billion yen ($ 643 million) to acquire 11.46% of Olympus.
    Olympus is a camera manufacturer but is also medical equipment and world leader on endoscopes with nearly 70% market share.
    Panasonic has not concluded with Olympus. The target of this alliance is to improve the competitiveness of Sony and Olympus activities digital camera, especially on compact cameras. It will enable Olympus to improve its financial situation after the recent financial scandal and probably have access to Sony sensors.

    Canon G1X

    Canon G1X



    Sony RX100

    Sony RX100



    Pentax Q10

    Pentax Q10

    Just before presenting the OES M, Canon had completed its G series with G15 and Canon G1X with a camera body and functions almost identical to G12 G15 but with a large CMOS sensor (ratio 4/3) of 14x18.7 mm (14.2 Mpx). This sensor is slightly larger than the 4/3" sensors of Olympus Pen or Panasonic G with interchangeable lenses, the G1X enables HDTV video 1080 to 24 frames per second. Its non-interchangeable lens is a 4x zoom 15.1 to 60.4 mm f/2.8 to 5.8 ((equivalent in 35mm terms: 28-112 mm).
    The price of Canon G1X is $ 650 (October 2012).

    The Sony RX100 is a compact with an Exmor CMOS sensor (13.2 x 1 8.8 mm) of 20 megapixels. The bright lens is equivalent in 35mm terms of 28-100 mm f/1.8 to 4.9. It has a diaphragm with 7-blades circular. The RX100 also allows the HDTV video 1080-50 fps. It has panorama mode by freehand scanning, artistic filters, built-in flash, 1,228,800 points rear screen and 10 fps burst mode (without AF).
    The size of the sensor is the same as used in Nikon 1 cameras. The design is also quite close of Nikon J1.
    The RX100 is proposed for $ 650 (October 2012).

    Pentax introduced a slight reshaping of its small compact interchangeable lens, the Pentax Q10 replaces the Pentax Q sensor and maintains a compact 1/2, 3 inches sensor of 12.4 million pixels. Minimum sensitivity increases from 125 to ISO 100.
    The Pentax Q10 is available for $ 500 in kit with a 28-84 mm zoom equivalent (October 2012).


    Compact and others



    Leica D-Lux 6

    Leica D-Lux 6

    Leica V-Lux 4

    Leica V-Lux 4

    Leica introduced the Leica D Lux 6 with a CMOS sensor of 12 megapixels (10 MP effective) and a stabilized zoom lens ASPH DC-Vario-Summilux 4.7-17.7 mm f/1.4-2.3 ((equivalent in 35mm terms: 24-90 mm), it is the clone of the excellent Panasonic LX7.
    The Leica V-Lux 4 is the clone of the Panasonic Lumix FZ-200 and therefore has a CMOS sensor of 12 million pixels, a 24 x zoom ASPH Vario-Elmarit 4,5–108 mm f/2.8 (e(equivalent in 35mm terms: 24-600 mm).






    Nikon Coolpix S800C


    Nikon Coolpix S800C

    Samsung Galaxy camera

    Samsung Galaxy camera


    Apple Iphone 5

    Apple Iphone 5

    Among many compacts presented two models operate on Android.
    The Nikon Coolpix Q800C has a 1/2.3" CMOS sensor with 16 million pixels, optical zoom 10 x with electronic and Lens-shift stabilizations 4.5-45mm f/3.2-5.8 (equivalent in 35mm terms: 25-250 mm) and 8 elements in 8 groups. It is complemented by a 4x digital zoom. It has 3.5" OLED touch screen of 819,000 pixels with anti-reflecting treatment. It has 1.7 Gb of internal memory, Full HD video (1080p) in stereo, 17 scenes modes, HDR function, horizontal and vertical panorama mode, In-Camera image editing functions.
    It is available in black or white for $ 350 (August 2012).

    The Samsung Galaxy Camera with a name refereeing to Galaxy smartphones is halfway between the two worlds : it has not only WiFi, as coolpix S880C, but also 3G/4G LTE connectivity which allows (with telephone subscription) to share photos and videos autonomously but don't allow phone calls. It works with Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, the latest version valuable. The photo part is provided by a Backlight CMOS sensor of 16 million pixels, a stabilized zoom equivalent to 21 x 23-483 mm f/2.8 to 5.9 in 135 format, video up to 120 frames per second.
    The price of Samsung Galaxy Camera is $ 500 (October 2012).

    The camera which will be probably the most sold and the most used was not present at the Photokina but was presented worldwide one day before, the 12th of September.
    The Apple iPhone 5 is only a phone, a smartphone, but also a camera with a 8 MPix backlit sensor, a 4 mm/ f 2.4 lens (equivalent 33 mm in 135 format) with five lenses including a saphir front glass. It as also a FaceTime front camera of 1.2 Mpix (1280 x 960). its sensitivity rises to ISO 3200, shooting up to 3.6 frames. iPhone 5 also has an original panorama mode and video Full HD 1080p (1920 × 1080).
    The Iphone 5 is available in black or white and starts from $ 199 in US with subscription (October 2012).


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    Created September 24th 2012, Updated October 15th 2012
    V1.1 © Pierre J.