Why didn't they do this from the start? Not that I would buy one, but it at least stacks up better against advanced compacts and the focal lengths of the lenses make sense. Make a tiny mirrorless system then cripple it needlessly. Stupid.
Gregm61: Panasonic definitely needed to be doing something. Their sensors s....., well....they're not good.
The sensors they provided to Olympus and used in their own older cameras are from years ago, and are not at all comparable to what they are using now. The G5 was good, and the G6 and GF6 look very good. Only slightly worse than the sensors Sony makes for Olympus.
Richard Murdey: Slightly disingenuous in the diagram they released.
It shows an organic layer, a bottom electrode, and a "protective layer" on top. For this to work, the protective layer actually has to be conductive, so it can function as a counterelectrode. Which means you are having to make transparent electrodes which has its own set of difficulties.
Photoconversion (light energy creates separated, mobile electric charge) is pretty hard to do in a single organic layer. I wonder if the photoconversion layer is actually composed of an organic solar-cell like multilayer structure or whether instead it works on the principle of photoconductivity.
(Sorry, its close to my day job. I actually wondered a while back whether anyone was thinking of making an organic image sensor. The idea has been kicking around for 60 years, but of course the process tools and materials available are vastly different now...)
Are the transparent electrodes used on LEDs applicable here? It's very much the same problem in reverse.
ogl: New Imaging Technologies (NIT) offers world class CMOS imaging sensors based upon a unique and patented pixel technology which provides intrinsic high dynamic range response of more than 140dB, no noticeable fixed pattern noise and operability without image artifacts to more than 90°C.
Given that models for two different photosites were presented, absolutely. The smaller is for phones, the larger for cameras.
FreedomLover: What about this ?
Clear Photos in Dim Light: New Sensor a Thousand Times More Sensitive Than Current Camera Sensors
May 30, 2013 — Cameras fitted with a new revolutionary sensor will soon be able to take clear and sharp photos in dim conditions, thanks to a new image sensor invented at Nanyang Technological University (NTU).
In any case, the amount needed for a sensor is incredibly tiny. This is not going to deplete the world's graphite supplies.
FrankS009: Interesting to see different sensor technologies being developed. Some will take market share, other perhaps superior in technology, will disappear as happened with colour TV. Do look forward to better sensors. Don't think it will happen in time for my next likely purchase - a Panasonic GX7, but we shall see.
Not too long ago that Panasonic was talking up that color splitting layer that would eliminate color filters. Combine this with that and you could have something very interesting.
viking79: I like to see the improvement in incident light angle. Mirrorless APS-C has issue with this, I would hate to see how bad a full frame mirrorless would perform in the corners with existing lenses. A sensor like this could help a lot.
Yes, but I find it telling that there are still microlenses. Not that they are bad, but they do suggest that light coming in at extreme angles is still an issue. The color filters and protective layer would still reflect considerable light striking at too much of an angle, even with modern coatings.
JackM: The people here and in the Leica forum making excuses for this camera are the definition of fanboy.
The absurdly slow lens. A fixed lens can generally have better specs than an interchangeable one, and this is far worse. From one of the world's great lens makers, that's inexcusable.
meland: The only thing Leica are perhaps guilty of is in bothering to send their press release on the X Vario to DPR and in doing so exposing themselves to the ridicule of people who have little understanding of Leica's real business and who naively think their opinion on photographic minutiae actually matters. It's a bit like trying to market a Riva launch to someone who lives in a council flat. This camera will probably sell quite well to its intended market. It's just that it's intended market isn't most of you, however some of you are unable to appreciate that.
The current X2 has not sold well. Why assume Leica buyers are stupid? They have disposable income, but that doesn't mean they want flawed products. The classic Leica rangefinders take nice pictures and allow for the use of great, classic lenses. This will probably take nice pictures, but only in limited circumstances, using a lens that isn't a classic. It is much closer to a faltering X2 than a current M.
Too expensive for most of us, but maybe about right for typical Leica buyers. The only real problem is that the lens is slow. A fixed lens with such a modest zoom range should be much faster than this. The RX100 is a reasonable model. Sure, it has a smaller sensor, but it's proportionally smaller overall, too. It's lens starts out at f/1.8 and ends at f/4.9. And that's a lens that reaches the equivalent of 100mm, not 70mm. Yes, Leica has high standards, but this lens is needlessly slow.
Prairie Pal: I do believe there are enough Paris Hiltons and rap stars in this world who are so clueless that they will buy several pimped out versions of this camera simply because they live in a world where absurdity=fashion. Because there is nothing left out there for them to throw their money at.... this camera will suffice. It is them that this concept was designed for.
Plus they don't take pictures. They pose for pictures. They pose for life.
lmtfa: Just the way to present a $7000 camera. A filthy dirty lens and hood paired with an unattractive mahogany wood. H, have you heard of rosewood. Sorry, this alone is a deal breaker for me! But they will sell to the elitist s to show the world that the riots were a flash in the pan.
I'm pretty sure that's not dirt. It's a marbleized finish, appropriate given the camera's garishness. At that price the hood should be carved from marble.
Kodachrome200: Been a professional photographer and Nikon loyalist for 10 years. Just got my GR, love it to death. Ming Thein is a big nikon shooter to. He just got his GR. The thing is if guys like me who have been shooting Nikon DSLRs all day long for a decade dont find the Coolpix preferable who is going to. I actaully found the coolpix to be bit fumply to shoot with. combine that with the fact the despite what ming thein said i cannot find a situation where it focuses faster than the GR. The GR does lose alot of its focusing prowess in really low light but it seems to me it will always be faster than the A.
All I'd conclude is that Ricoh shouldn't send cameras to reviewers before they're finalized, but I doubt they did. I'd be surprised if the production cameras are meaningfully different.
AbrasiveReducer: I understand the comparisons with the Ricoh, which I'm sure is every bit as good, but this will be very difficult for fans to accept. (It really is 28Ti vs. GR-1 all over again, if anyone here goes back far enough).
But I don't see any comparison with the Fuji at all. Whatever their differences, the Nikon & Ricoh are "wide angle" cameras. The Fuji has an ever so slightly wide angle lens that many people consider a true "normal" because that's what it is.
The experience may be different, but I don't doubt they're intended to be competitors. They've opted for a wider lens for versatility (cropping always being possible) but neither Ricoh or Nikon are marketing these as wide angle specialty cameras (not from their ads, so far).
random78: It would also be interesting to have a comparison with the RX100 in the review. While at first glance it might seem to be in a different class due to different sensor size and zoom lens, in reality it can be a direct competitor. At its 28mm end its lens is f1.8 so in terms of DOF control and low light it should be similar to a f3.2 APS-C lens. That makes it fairly close to GR and Coolpix A specs. And it is even more compact. An an RX100 owner I am curious if I would see any real gain in going from RX100 to one of these two.
Random, I'm not saying everyone can make this comparison, I'm saying you can, since you already know what the RX100 is like. As for the rest of us, DPR hasn't given us a head-to-head comparison, but they've written detailed reviews and conducted tests. I agree that it would be sort of nice to have these compared head-to-head, but I don't really expect such dissimilar cameras to be matched up.
photo perzon: Ray Sachs wrote:
"The bigger deal is that, even with the use of the proper updated ACR color profiles, the Ricoh doesn’t handle colors as well as the Nikon IMHO, but creates files that are better than the Nikon for B&W conversions. Ming Thein raised this in his review and I initially doubted it and figured a lot of it was down to the color profile being updated. But the more I work with both cameras, the more I think he was on to something. The Nikon colors are just dead on. The Ricoh colors don’t have anything like the red issues that they had without the ACR profile, but the blues and greens still seem off to me. On some shots I can get them right with a fairly simple WB adjustment, but sometimes I’m left scratching my head and on some back to back landscapes, just couldn’t come close to getting the Ricoh raw files to my liking."
Lots of posts in the Ricoh forum fixing blues & greens with extensive PP, with many tries.
Even Ricoh fans conclude Ricoh is for B/W and Nikon for color.
Oh, boy. I guess you need a magician's certificate, with triple honors, to make the GR's colors right. Ming Thein is a highly competent professional who is hired by some of the fussiest people on the planet to photograph luxury goods accurately. It my be true that it needs arcane skills to make the GR colors correct, but if it's true it means Ricoh screwed them up monstrously. Which I don't really believe, as the pictures are quite nice from both. It's very easy to see a $300 difference if that's what you're expecting to see.
AnHund: A silver medal is ridiculus. The image quality you can get out of this camera is outstanding. Wonder if you set it to macro mode - in good light the AF is very good. Check reviews by Ming Thein, Ken Rockwell, Steve Huff etc.
I'm very fond of Camera Labs, for those who haven't given them a read. They give more coverage to inexpensive csmeras than most sites, and their reviews are written like this one, as a head-to-head wjth one or two other cameras. They don't do lab testing, but their real world comparison shots are things of beauty. I'm also very fond of Luminous Landscape, Michael Reichmann's very personal site that emphasizes the artistry of photography as much as the gear. He only publishes user reports, but he and his fellow contributors are highly experienced and demanding. Reichmann's also a wonderful photographer whose work is always worth seeing.
Also very good is The Online Photographer, not really a gear-oriented site, but a great place to read smart people discussing all aspects of photography. Sometimes even evaluating gear.
Steve Huff only writes about cameras he likes. He gets sent plenty of cameras that he tries, sends back, and never writes a word. He's a one-man show and can't write about everything, so he opted to write about the cameras that excite him. He's quite upfront about what he does. The only time you'll get criticism is when he is disappointed by a Leica, because he does cover them in depth.
Ming Thein doesn't write about all cameras, either, but he seems to choose to write about cameras that have some novel characteristics. Thom Hogan covers all serious Nikons, with limited coverage of other mirrorless models. He's a wonderful resource. Ken Rockwell is a gasbag and not worth reading, ever.
ybizzle: Just compared the JPEG high ISO (1600-6400) between the A, GR, and X100S and the X100S destroys these cams. Glad I went with the X100S for the same price as the A. Plus you get a hybrid view finder and faster lens!
I'm mystified by the camp that insists the X100S has dramatically better IQ. Why would it? Fuji doesn't make the world's best sensors. Check out the X10. It is no better than compacts with smaller sensors. Fuji is a definite step behind Sony and licensees (Toshiba). Tbe X-Trans scheme helps control moire, but at the expense of some loss of sharpness. There ain't no free lunch. Now that raw converters are doing a decent job we're seeing what these sensors can do, and the results are nice, but far from perfect. Meanwhile, here are two cameras with great sensors and no aa filters and no funky decoding needed. They should be a hair better if the lenses are good, and they seem to be. The legendary status of the X100 seemingly has the ability to cloud minds and block logical thinking. Amazing!
knize10: At last, what took so LONG ?
I, too, thought it was very timely. Neither of thesr cameras has been out for long. I like that you wrote the two reviews partly as a comparison, though I would have found it more useful as a single article. I know separate reviews will be more convenient for people in the future, so your decision was reasonable, but I do so enjoy a good head-to-head between similar cameras. Your advanced compact roundup of last year was/is extremely useful. I'd like to see a similar roundup of entry-level mirrorless (or all available under some price point.)