This week the latest camera designs have been setting off flashbulbs on the catwalks of the Photokina cam show in Cologne. These were the highlights...
£1200 (with 18-55mm lens), www.pentaximaging.com
Using the K-7 as its base cake, Pentax has iced the K-5 with a new low-noise 16.3MP CMOS sensor, 7fps continuous shooting, 1080p video and on-board HDR image composition. And then poured water all over it, for reasons we can’t properly explain. Available mid-October.
Leica M9 Titanium
Not enough for you the prestige of owning a Leica… oh, no. You’ve got to have it made of titanium and leather. And designed by Walter de’Silva, who leads the design on Audi, Bentley, VW, Bugatti and Lamborghini cars. Only 500 are being made, released in November, after which you and 499 other people can smile extra smugly in your pictures.
Perhaps surprisingly, the Minox is the only dedicated 3D cam on this list. But wait – this dinky quad-lens concept needs no pricey 3DTV, bulky specs or lenticular tricks. Instead it shoots four simultaneous snaps on different perspective planes to create an eerie shift effect on a 2D display. Cool, but just a concept at this stage.
Samsung knows how to get noticed in camera land. Step one: rethink the way we use one of the planet’s oldest gadgets. So the NX100, an update to the NX10, uses new i-Function lens control to put all the settings from aperture to white balance on the focus ring. Step two: get OK Go to record their latest video on it.
Panasonic Lumix GH2
£tba (Oct), www.panasonic.co.uk
Panny’s new hybrid touch-control micro four thirds cam claims a world first – an interchangeable 3D lens. That MFT sensor’s rocking 16 million pixels, 60fps full HD and pulls focus in a tenth of a second, so it’s no slouch elsewhere either.
£tba (Feb), www.sigma-imaging-uk.com
You want video? Tough. There isn’t any. You want live view? Again, you’re SOL on that. Sigma’s latest is a camera enthusiast’s camera, with a triple-layered sensor for grabbing different parts of the colour spectrum. That sensor is a whopping 46MP, so if you were planning to take out a billboard for your holiday snaps, you’ve just found the right cam.
Fujifilm FinePix X100
£tba (Jan), www.fujifilm.co.uk
Apparently word has filtered down to Fujifilm’s design labs that retro rangefinder style is hipster cool at the moment. Hence this gorgeous 12.3MP, 35mm-equivalent fixed lens snapper getting dressed up as a Leica.
You could use the money this 31MP medium-format camera would set you back to buy quite a lot of things. A car, for instance. Or a deposit on a flat. Or a personal assistant for a year (well, almost). Even so, it manages to be cheap next to the Swedish cam maker's other wares. Our hot sweat turns cold thinking about it.
HDR (high dynamic range) photography is responsible for those colour saturated shots that look like they used to hang on Saddam Hussein’s living room wall. But it’s possible to use the effect more subtly to produce pictures with dramatic depth and tone. Casio’s 12.1MP ZR10, 7x zoom, 1080p-shooting is bringing HDR to the masses (who will create the former and post it on Facebook ad nauseam). No word on an actual release yet. Expect it some time in 2011.
Olympus (Zuiko lens)
Not so much a launch as a glimpse of what we might see later, this is an Olympus compact proudly sporting a Zuiko lens. Specs are light on the ground (it hasn’t even got a name yet), but expect some pretty serious resolution stats when this thing is properly unveiled next year.
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