Now that phones come with cameras built-in, why even bother with digital cameras? It’s a common refrain we think we hear way too often, because the fact is, real cameras like the pros use are miles beyond even the best mobile snapper in terms of quality. With that in mind, we don’t want you to waste your time these holidays capturing blurry Facebook moments,we want you grabbing album-worthy photographs you can look back on with pride. Herein, we take a look at some of the newest cameras available on the market and ask: cop, or drop?
Panasonic Lumix GX7
We all know the difference between DSLR cameras and point-and-shoot cameras. But Panasonic pioneered the micro four thirds system, which offers a mix of the point-and-shoot’s portability and the DSLR’s enviable quality. The Lumix GX7 is just the latest entry in the micro four thirds series. They’ve cleared up a lot of the noise issues that plagued previous cameras in the Lumix series, and the retro-influenced styling makes it look very, very cool. Add in lots of tiny features like a tilting electronic viewfinder and an upgraded low-light setting, making this is a definite cop from us.
Another brilliant camera in a pretty package, the X-E1 is advertised as having all the features and performance of the X-Pro1, but with a smaller, more stylish form factor. If only it were that simple. The fact is, the X-Pro1 is a lot bigger, and a good bit more expensive. Performance is going to have to suffer. However, Fujifilm packs a lot into the X-E1. It delivers picture quality that basically all but the most professional photographers will be happy with, and does it in a far smaller, lighter, easier to handle package. The downers are that the shooting is somewhat sluggish compared to other models in the same price range. That being said, the performance is top notch, as is the styling. A cop if you don’t need fast shooting.
The Pentax K-50 is advertised as being weatherproof, and the tough sealing on the body of the camera backs up that claim. A great all-weather option with durable construction so you don’t need to constantly stress over your camera, the K-50 is outstanding in that regard. However, in the one category that matters the most—image quality—the K-50 falls short. Colours show up skewed, image noise reduction is poor compared to similar models, and there’s a lack of sharpness and brightness that raises eyebrows. For most folks, the K-50 should do what they need, but if you’re spending this kind of money, you’re probably looking for something a little more special in terms of image quality. Falling a bit short, unfortunately the K-50 is a drop for us.