Online review of Fuji X10

Dpreview have conducted a long awaited full review of the Fuji X10 Fuji’s take on a high end retro compact, and one that I tested around Christmas and that impressed me greatly.

From Dpreview:

“The question for anyone still on the fence about the X10 really comes down to priorities. If you’re looking for a truly pocketable large-sensor compact, you may be better served by considering the surprisingly small Sony DSC-RX100. If you’re set on a nearly APS-C sized sensor in a reasonably compact form factor, then the Canon PowerShot G1 X is very tempting. Yet the Fujifilm X10 can make a compelling case in its own right. It offers good image quality with a wide range of processing options, a fast zoom whose CA is very well-controlled, an impressively solid build quality and the types of external controls that will make any DSLR user feel at home when using the X10 as a second camera. The Fujifilm X10 combines retro-styled attractiveness with excellent build quality, a fast zoom lens and all the external controls you could want in a compact camera. The camera’s EXR sensor technology allows for impressive dynamic range and in combination with the X10’s relatively large sensor allows for very good high ISO performance”.

My Take:I

loved the Fuji X10 and seriously considered replacing my Panasonic LX3 with one. The Fuji offers some reasonable compromises to produce a camera that feels “special” and delivers great images. Whilst the likes of the Canon GX1 and Sony’s new RX100 may have stolen the limelight of late in the high end compact market, recent price drops have made the lovely Fuji X10 a camera worth considering. It looks gorgeous has pretty good handling and produces decent images.

Mark Baynham (July 2012)

When is less more? Online Review of the Panasonic TZ25

Dpreview conducted a test of Panasonic’s TZ25 compact travel compact the supposed lesser brother of the TZ30.Now I was impressed by the TZ30 so how does the TZ25 fair? Well the conclusion reached by Dpreview is certainly a bit of a surprise:

From Dpreview:

“The Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS15 is a compact ultra zoom camera that performs better than its more expensive sibling (the ZS20), though you’ll miss out on some of that cameras biggest features (zoom, GPS, 1080/60p video). Camera performance is very good. Photo quality is right up there with the PowerShot SX260 in the compact ultra zoom group. While it doesn’t have all the bells and whistles of the more expensive ZS20 (the omissionn of GPS being the most significant), the DMC-ZS15 produces better-looking images, while maintaining the robust performance, competitive feature set, and ease of use of its more costly sibling”.

My Take:

I found the Panasonic TZ30 to be an excellent compact travel zoom but unless you absolutely need the extended zoom range and GPS it seem very clear that the images from the TZ25 are actually a little better(ie less noisy) which is a surprise. Bearing in mind its actually cheaper,the Panasonic TZ25 represents the sensible buy out of the two.

(July 2012)

Nikon D800 (Online Review)

Dpreview have tested and reviewed the new Nikon D800 full frame DSLR which’s destined to do royal battle with Canon’s EOS 5D Mk3.

This new Nikon is designed to replaced the very well respected Nikon D700 and maybe even conquer the Canon 5D3 in the process. The Nikon D800 has certainly got tongues wagging with its medium format rivalling 35Mp sensor, so what does Dpreview say:

Dpreview: “In many ways, the D800 had a difficult act to follow in the 12MP D700, which was (and remains) one of the best all-rounders of any DSLR we’ve ever used. The demand of some Nikon users for a higher resolution model notwithstanding, there was not a whole lot we’d have wanted to see change in an updated model. Thankfully, Nikon’s approach to the D800 has followed a similar mode of thinking. A majority of the things we liked about the D700; its handling, sensible interface and very impressive high ISO performance have been retained in the D800.Despite its massive pixel count, the D800 is in many respects an evolutionary camera. This isn’t a bad thing. Nikon users coming from the D700 will feel largely at home with the D800, but where changes have been made they (usually) have the effect of improving the shooting experience compared to the older model.Fortunately, the D800 also excels in areas that require no extra effort on your part; notably its impressive high ISO performance, fast and accurate AF system and the wide dynamic range of its image files. These are attributes that most of us are likely to call on far more often than the need to view 20×30 prints at a very close distance. The D800 is a camera that consistently delivers high quality results, under a wide range of shooting conditions with a minimum of fuss. There’s not much more you can ask for in a photographic tool than that. Our admittedly minor complaints of the camera and its relatively slow frame rate don’t detract from how impressive a performer it is for all but pro sports/action photography. As such we’ve awarded it our highest honour, the Gold Award“.

My Take:

So It’s good, no surprise there. If you’re a current Nikon D700 owner, or someone looking to join the DSLR full frame family, or want a medium format camera capacity in a much more user friendly package the Nikon D800 is unrivalled, it is so clearly a superb well rounded  DSLR. Better than the Canon 5D3? Well its very close.I wouldn’t say no to either.

Sony Alpha 37 online review

Sony’s new entry level SLT camera, the Sony Alpha 37 has been reviewed by photography blog uk.The A37 is intended to do battle with the likes of the Canon 600D and Nikon 3200 so has does it fair? Well here’s a snippet from the review

” The Sony A37 is a compelling entry-level DSLR camera with features, still and video image quality, and overall performance that beat its main rivals. Only the small, low-resolution, non-articulating LCD screen detracts from an otherwise outstanding camera that will more than satisfy the needs of its target audience. The Sony A37 may sit at the bottom of Sony’s SLT line-up, but for many people this could be the only camera that they’ll ever need. We wish that the LCD screen was slightly bigger, had double the resolution and could be tilted sideways as well as up and down, but we’re struggling to think of anything else that’s negative to say about what is after all “only” an entry-level camera. This is simply one of the most capable beginner DSLRs on the market, and therefore fully deserving of our coveted Essential! award.”

My Take.

The Sony A37 is a rather impressive entry level camera.It offers a capacity that belies its entry level status and with such a great price should be seriously considered if your in the market for an entry level DSLR/SLT camera.

Fuji X-Pro 1 (On line review)

At last Dpreview have finally posted a very extensive Fuji X -Pro 1 review.

Amongst the conclusions

“The X-Pro1 is a logical evolution from the fixed-lens FinePix X100, and it shares many of that camera’s best attributes. The traditional dial-based control layout makes it a very engaging camera to use, and the clever hybrid optical-electronic viewfinder gives an immersive view of the world while providing as much or little exposure information as you like. Perhaps most importantly, the X-Trans CMOS sensor gives truly excellent image quality, particularly in combination with the stellar XF 35mm F1.4 R lens.We were hugely impressed by the X100’s image quality, and Fujifilm has scaled even greater heights with the X-Pro1. The camera’s JPEGs are little short of superb, with appealing colour rendition, lots of detail, and remarkably low noise even at high ISOs.With the X-Pro1 Fujifilm has built on the platform provided by the X100, and is beginning to look like a very serious contender at the high end of the camera market. In a way the X-Pro1 has no direct competitors; its optical viewfinder and traditional stills-focused control layout sets it apart from the likes of the Sony NEX-7, and of course it’s much less expensive than the camera it physically most resembles, the Leica M9-P, and operates rather differently too. This alone should ensure it a niche in the market, and we suspect many buyers will be delighted with it”.

My Take:

Simple. To my mind it must be presently the best high end compact cameras system out there. We know Fuji are releasing even more high quality optics to accompany it in the next 6 months, so the system is destined to grow and develop. Ok it has some quirkiness and at times it appears to lacks “speed” of operation but that misses the point totally. The Fuji X -Pro1 is designed for a certain old school style of photography and delivers in spades in that department. The Fuji X-Pro 1 is unrivalled in the £1,300 (Body Only) price range for sure.

(July 2012)