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Best Camera of 2012: And the Winner is...

By dpreview staff on Jan 1, 2013 at 01:10 GMT

Just before Christmas we invited you, our readers to tell us what you thought was the best camera of 2012. This year was one of the busiest that any of us can remember, and saw serious new products from all the major manufacturers. This was the year of the groundbreaking 36MP Nikon D800, the incredibly ambitious Olympus OM-D as well as an all-new system cameras from Fujifilm, with the innovative X-Pro 1 and X-E1. Sony had an amazingly busy year as well, bringing us the great value SLT A-57 and the feature-packed SLT-A99, along with a host of NEX upgrades. Canon wasn't idle either, and consolidated its enthusiast-oriented DSLRs with the long-awaited EOS 5D Mark III and, at the end of the year, the EOS 6D. Meanwhile, Pentax revamped its popular K-5 with the new K-5 II and K-5 IIs and introduced its first large-sensor mirrorless interchangeable lens camera, the K-01 which was... interesting.

Our shortlist didn't contain the K-01, but we've gone over the figures, made a list and counted it twice, read most of the comments (and thanks to the majority of you who kept them constructive) and now we're ready to give you the results! So without further ado, with almost 15,000 votes and almost 1500 comments, here are the top three cameras of 2012, as voted by you, dpreview readers. 

In third place... Canon EOS 5D Mark III 

Canon's EOS 5D and 5D Mark II were hugely successful cameras, making the 5D Mark III one of the most anticipated new releases of the year. The 5D Mark III has a 22MP full frame sensor in a body that's based on the EOS 7D design, and with a 61-point AF system borrowed from the flagship EOS-1D X. Compared to its predecessor the Mark III is essentially a completely new model, with every major system upgraded and updated. 

When we reviewed the 5D Mark III back in March we praised its excellent Raw image quality, reliable metering and fluid ergonomics. Thanks to its greatly improved AF system and a few well thought-out tweaks to the rest of the feature set the 5D Mark III is in many ways the camera we wanted the 5D Mark II to be, and it was easily one of the top cameras of 2012. 

In second place... Nikon D800 / D800E

Purely from the point of view of specification, Nikon's D800 and its sister model the D800E drew a lot of attention in 2012. Successor to the venerable D700, the D800 tripled that camera's pixel count and included several features borrowed from the professional D4, at around half the price. The D800E variant offers improved resolution for $300 more, thanks to an innovative sensor design that has the effects of its anti-aliasing filter cancelled out. Both cameras offer a very compelling video specification, too. 

We were highly impressed by the D800 and D800E when we tested them in June, both by the performance of their 36MP sensors, and also their handling, which on the whole, improves upon previous models in some meaningful ways. Of all the cameras we tested during 2012 we kept going back to the D800 because of its addictive blend of excellent performance, solid image quality and pleasant ergonomics. This is one camera whose specification is unlikely to look out of date anytime soon. 

And in first place... The Olympus OM-D EM-5

Pipping the Nikon D800/E by one percentage point in the overall count, the Olympus OM-D EM-5 won out in this year's poll by a whisker. Although a very different camera to the D800, the OM-5 EM-5 is a seriously impressive product. With the launch of the E-M5, Olympus harks back to one of its most fondly-remembered camera systems - the Olympus OM range of 35mm SLRs. Initially the E-M5 looked like it might simply be an upgraded E-P3 with a built-in viewfinder, but in use it proved much more than that - probably the most competent enthusiast mirrorless camera so far.

When we reviewed the OM-D in April we commented on its excellent image quality which at that point set a benchmark for Micro Four Thirds cameras. As we'd expect from Olympus it's also an incredible customizable camera, and with the huge range of compatible Micro Four Thirds lenses available it's also one of the most versatile. About the only thing the OM-D can't do well is continuous autofocus, but if you can live with this limitation, it stands as one of the best cameras currently on the market, and a worthy winner of our poll.


Thanks so much for voting, for reading, and for commenting.

Barnaby Britton - reviews editor. 

Comments

Total comments: 1412
23456
pbailey4
By pbailey4 (Jan 2, 2013)

it is impossible to select a 'best' camera because best for one photographer may well be complete nonsense to another. The best camera will always be the one you have with you & not the one left at home! - so it may well be a iPhone or like my pocket scratched and dented Lumix FX35 that cost me £30 and delivers perfectly good A0 prints, but neither would earn their keep as pro portrait sport or wedding cameras.

as the song says 'love the one you are with'

1 upvote
Tape5
By Tape5 (Jan 2, 2013)

Let's see first we had - ''The best camera of 2012'' where the OM-D converts told us about their ecstasy with their cameras ( remind me not to ask you about the best restaurant in town ).

Now we get '' The best camera of 2012, and the winner is....'' so we are hearing it all over again. But I don't think this cat is dead yet. I suggest DPR go for a third thread..maybe even more....Let me see...how about...

''and for those who didn't get it the winner was....'' or
''transform your life into an utter state of content with .....'' or
''forget about the best, see what OM-D can do for you right now while stocks last''

2 upvotes
illy
By illy (Jan 2, 2013)

stone the non-believer.....he blasphemes

1 upvote
illy
By illy (Jan 2, 2013)

what's a momy?

4 upvotes
JEROME NOLAS
By JEROME NOLAS (Jan 2, 2013)

I am the winner!!! I got Samsung NX10 with 30mm/f2 pancake and LOL!

0 upvotes
AbrasiveReducer
By AbrasiveReducer (Jan 2, 2013)

My heart skipped a beat as I scrolled down. The fact that anybody cares enough about this sort of ranking to get upset about it is sad indeed. Imagine the death threats if no Nikon was on the list. Perhaps the reason Nikon does whatever they want is because they have such rabid brand worshipers. I own a lot of Nikon, and if the company was as good as the product, I'd probably be a fan, too.

5 upvotes
LarryK
By LarryK (Jan 2, 2013)

Well, Nikon did release some good cameras this year. That's not the case every year.

0 upvotes
Jim Evidon
By Jim Evidon (Jan 2, 2013)

I am not surprised by the results. The more I use my OM-D, the more impressed I am. Image quality is on a par with my Sony NEX5N and is superior to my Nikon D300. It is infinitely customizable and with the accessory grip it is a perfect fit in my large hands. It is not pocketable, but neither is the NEX unless you put the lens in another pocket. Both the NEX and the OM-D are superior products, but for features, the Olympus gets the prize.

11 upvotes
Pal2012
By Pal2012 (Jan 2, 2013)

Nex is completely pocketable using the 16-50, use the 16mmF2.8 etc

1 upvote
mas54
By mas54 (Jan 2, 2013)

Again, the 800/E is NOT a successor to the 700. It is an original. Second of all, there is a big difference between most-popular and best. When will this site return to some rational objectivity?

4 upvotes
LarryK
By LarryK (Jan 2, 2013)

I've been here a while and I've never seen rational objectivity.

2 upvotes
Mystery Gardener
By Mystery Gardener (Jan 2, 2013)

You would have to go back several years (approx 2004) when Phi Askew 'was' this site to get objective, rational and comparative camera testing. Advertising, mobile and gimmicks pretty well dominate now. Cheers :-)

0 upvotes
spencerberus
By spencerberus (Jan 2, 2013)

You never get objectivity when you ask people their opinion. Opinions are subjective. This is an opinion poll, nothing else.

5 upvotes
pdelux
By pdelux (Jan 4, 2013)

Well done Spencerberus

0 upvotes
DoctorJerry
By DoctorJerry (Jan 2, 2013)

The BEST camera is the one that you ALWAYS have with you. For some people it is the cell phone but for me it is the Sony NEX 6. It fits into my vest's pocket or most of my jacket pockets, it produces superb images in just about any kind of lighting and is quick to use. I compared the image quality with the OM and the NEX and saw little difference when the lighting was good, but the NEX was clearly better in subdued lighting, the kind I most often find when I want to take pictures.

2 upvotes
mugupo
By mugupo (Jan 2, 2013)

Despite Olympus OM-D EM-5 getting very good review it won't help the sales much, since they do almost no marketing. i don't see m4/3 camera display in bestbuy/target when most people can see them in person. It doesn't do well in video and isn't small is definite target to those who want the most control out of a camera without a lot of weight and get good image.

1 upvote
Roland Karlsson
By Roland Karlsson (Jan 2, 2013)

OM-D is almost invisible in Sweden.

0 upvotes
Cy Cheze
By Cy Cheze (Jan 2, 2013)

Time to commence nominations for "Best 2013 smartphone device equipped with apps for tax preparation, travel schedules, dietary planning, weather forecasting, music, movies, sports, medical diagnosis, social-networking, pet care, school homework guidance, web interface, low visibility navigation, and (incidentally) photo apps." Each functionality will get a 6% weight in the rating, with the final rounding factor goint to brand preference.

Camera competition will henceforth be conducted as a subset of antique shows and archaeological research. AARP members get a 10% discount.

"Wow, Gramps. You mean people actually carried aound things like that? How'd they connect them to their rotary phones? Was that also when they rode horses and wrote on paper?"

1 upvote
HeyItsJoel
By HeyItsJoel (Jan 2, 2013)

Smartass. You must have purchased a Sony.

0 upvotes
Mike_PEAT
By Mike_PEAT (Jan 2, 2013)

Especially now that DPR has a preview of the Nikon S800c powered by Android!

0 upvotes
Pal2012
By Pal2012 (Jan 2, 2013)

OM-D - Nice conspicuous paper weight!

3 upvotes
Innominate
By Innominate (Jan 2, 2013)

Not as good a door stop as the D800 though

14 upvotes
yudhir
By yudhir (Jan 2, 2013)

Wanted to see sony on the podium. Maby next year.

0 upvotes
Infared
By Infared (Jan 2, 2013)

Perhaps if Olympus starts making lenses for them.... :-)

4 upvotes
IrishhAndy
By IrishhAndy (Jan 2, 2013)

Come in Agent Barnaby.. The eagle has landed. Return to base and await further instructions.

Comment edited 45 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
mgblack74
By mgblack74 (Jan 2, 2013)

FF & m 4/3's have their place. Just like MF pros of the past used 35mm or 110 film cameras for personal shooting/travel/reportage. Polaroid was the Instagram of it's day. Bigger the image capture media size the better for ultimate IQ. Smaller formats are great for portability and fun, but creative flexibility is still limited.

1 upvote
Thorgrem
By Thorgrem (Jan 2, 2013)

Creative flexibility limited with an E-M5 (or other m4/3 camera). Lol. For most users it opened an whole new world of creative possibilities. Free of lugging around heavy and large equipment and enjoy shooting and creativity just like in the old OM film days.

8 upvotes
flipmac
By flipmac (Jan 2, 2013)

So, larger sensor (hence, larger body, lenses, bag, etc.), more creativity? LOL.

I couldn't bring my DSLR in certain arenas, clubs, and a bunch of other places. Haven't experienced such restriction w/ m4/3.

I brought my DSLR only once in a backpack while mountain biking and never wanted to do that ever again. I store my m4/3 in a saddle/frame bag on my MTB all the time when I hit the trail.

I can travel with an m4/3 body + 4 lenses without drastically increasing my luggage weight.

The wife never wanted to bring the DSLR so only manage to capture (family) events with a cheap P&S or phone camera.

The underwater housing for the E-M5 is small and affordable; can't say the same for the ones that are for D800 and other DSLR.

The list goes on. It seems that what's limited is your imagination.

Comment edited 4 minutes after posting
3 upvotes
bobbarber
By bobbarber (Jan 2, 2013)

Right, the fact that anyone can go out to 600mm on m43 limits creative flexibility.

There are many more options in FF where $$$ limits most people to certain focal lengths, right?

0 upvotes
LWW
By LWW (Jan 2, 2013)

Just to finish this comments thread off I wish to advise that I possess, use, can recite word for word each and every one of their user manuals of every camera ever manufactured. As such I expect all manufacturers will be contacting me to seek my recommendations for the design of their next and final models - as there will be no need for further updates beyond this point of perfection.
Just need to get my head around all this good gear and things like Instagram making good photos bad, and bad photos worse. Just where is this getting us, being led around by a virtual ring through our collective noses?

0 upvotes
Just Having Fun
By Just Having Fun (Jan 2, 2013)

GuptaD42 has the best post so far.

1 The mirror will soon be gone, replaced by either on sensor PDAF or some sort of hybrid.
2. Micro four Thirds IQ seems to be the best bridge between size and full frame, and finally has a competitive line up of small high quality lenses.
3. Most people take pictures with their phones and the IQ will only get better attracting more picture takers.

I should add, after using some of the best Nikon and Canon IS lenses as well as Sony OSS (SSS), nothing compares to the E-M5 5-Axis IS that works with any lens.

13 upvotes
Infared
By Infared (Jan 2, 2013)

I have a FF system and an MFT system. They complement each other nicely. If I had to choose only one...I would have a tough time deciding. There are so many pluses for both systems....I definitely agree with Gupta.
All casual shooters are using their phones. (and they are getting better and better)...
For more serious photographers, it is either give me great performing small compact true "system" (many quality lenses and bodies), or give it all to me, i.e. Full-Frame, knowing that there is a size and expense burden with that choice.
...so why did Canon make the "M"????? LOL!

1 upvote
sandy b
By sandy b (Jan 2, 2013)

The Oly is a great camera, No doubt about it,but the the reports of crop sensor death is greatly exagerated. Nikon alone will sell more D3200 and D7000 than the entire m4/3rd consortium line up. Easily.

1 upvote
PhotoPoet
By PhotoPoet (Jan 2, 2013)

quick question... those of you with Nikon D7000 or other "large" DSLR's that have switched...Understanding that there are differences... Do you miss your old companion?

0 upvotes
ARitchie
By ARitchie (Jan 2, 2013)

The moment I bought my first m43 camera (it was an ep1) I started leaving my Canon 5D at home. Now I have an omd and I can't remember the last time I used my 5d. So no, I don't miss the weight of my old companion and leaving home with all its heavy lenses.

7 upvotes
TPS88
By TPS88 (Jan 2, 2013)

When I was trying to decide what to replace my Nikon D70 with I purchased a Nikon D7000 and the Olympus OM D. They arrived within a day of each other. I took them out and shot identical scenes side by side for 1 week. some landscapes, some action (windsurfers), some nature (everglades wildlife) and some family photos. I kept the Olympus. The minute difference in IQ was not worth the size and weight advantage that the Olympus has. I don't hesitate to take it with me and I have captured some wonderful photos under low light or bright light. I'm not looking back.

5 upvotes
english_Wolf
By english_Wolf (Jan 3, 2013)

No.

0 upvotes
audijam
By audijam (Jan 2, 2013)

so.....cheaper the better. did i guess right?

0 upvotes
Olymore
By Olymore (Jan 2, 2013)

Er, no. No correlation between price and results.

4 upvotes
lxlex
By lxlex (Jan 2, 2013)

Here you's go. I fixed the title.

Best Editing Software goes to Adobe Photoshop V1256.7945.

Why all this hoopla over a user poll when nobody shows their pictures anymore without post editing. Fair enough if you are a pro for a magazine but please don't say wow my camera takes great shots when it's been edited to the max and doesn't look real anymore. What happened to capturing the moment? I also thing an unedited image is more pleasing to the eye and emotive. Photoshopped images are like what CGI is to movies or airbrushing is to models, you can pick it most of the time.

People say wow great camera then spend 30min-1 day doing an image in photoshop. Makes me wonder why camera manufactures even bother making good cameras! Just buy a camera that shots raw and go for your life in photoshop.

One good thing about this site is it shows pictures in review unedited (I hope?) so one can judge the camera performance!

Does anyone really care now it's all photoshopped?

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
8 upvotes
Bill Bentley
By Bill Bentley (Jan 2, 2013)

Image sharpness, proper composition and interesting subject matter cannot really be post processed. I agree that over the top HDR images have become far too common. However, for me, the goal of post-processing an image is to bring it to the way my eye (and mind) saw it when I shot it. The whole process of photography is what makes it a great hobby for me. The creative vision of the shot, the technical aspect of correctly capturing the shot, and then post-processing it. Plus I don't process ALL my images. Only the ones that I feel deserve the time and effort.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
3 upvotes
rfsIII
By rfsIII (Jan 2, 2013)

The world of photography has always been split between picture takers and picture makers. The takers like Cartier-Bresson wait and work for hours or days beforehand to capture just the right subject/moment/lighting and leave the processing to others. The makers like Rejlander, Dave Hill, and Jerry Ueslmann spend hours or days compositing, post-processing, and generally creating in the darkroom or on the computer. It's always been that way and no doubt will continue long into the future. I think it's just a temperament thing, some people have the patience to do the work before the shot, others can't wait to get the shot over but are willing to work for days afterward. And every shade of grey in between.

3 upvotes
gordon1000
By gordon1000 (Jan 3, 2013)

I think it is great to have tools such as Lightroom and Photoshop. They give people MORE creative freedom. With even a basic camera one can already take artistic photos, in the old days through film processing, scene and light manipulation(ie. wide lenses, filters, large apature, slow shutter speed and flash). It all depends on what one whats to show with their photo. As long as the result is what owners of the pictures intended why not?

0 upvotes
Falcon31
By Falcon31 (Jan 2, 2013)

As with all votings most people will be unhappy as their camera did not reach the top spot. I guess that max 20 % voted for the OM-D, so at least 80 % of the voters will be unhappy. Or not, because each individual selects the best camera for HIM/HER and not for mr. average that selects THE best camera. Think about what you want and need and pick the camera that suits your needs.

I am quite happy to have selected the OM-D over the D800. It is not a direct replacement for my D700 that I was initially looking for, but it has different qualities, small and portable are the main ones. I decided that I do not need 36Mp and the rest of the D800's improvements was not enough for me to switch.
Despite the small sensor of the OM-D I still like the night time landscapes I made with it. It is not the noise free low light performance of the D700, but usable enough for me for most of the cases. In the other cases I still have my D700.

Comment edited 11 minutes after posting
4 upvotes
Cy Cheze
By Cy Cheze (Jan 2, 2013)

I voted for the RX100, a camera which I do not own, mainly because $650 is too much to put at risk on a camera that, within one year, is liable to be supplanted, busted, or ridden with sensor dust. Were actual ownership or use to guide voter preference, phone cameras would certainly win. The OM-D EM-5 probably gave Olympus a bump in mirrorless market share, but not enough to offset the global collapse in P&S sales. Critical and popular acclaim have little correlation.

0 upvotes
emircruz
By emircruz (Jan 2, 2013)

Here's a quick pivot of the Results:

By Brand Top 3
1. Nikon 4429 Votes - 29.91%
2. Olympus 3576 Votes - 24.15%
3. Canon 239 Votes - 16.20%

By Sensor Size Top 3
1. Full Frame 8010 Votes - 54.10%
2. Micro Four-Thirds 3864 Votes 26.10%
3. APS-C 1837 Votes 12.41%

By Type Top 3
1. DSLR 7313 Votes - 49.39%
2. Mirrorless 4778 Votes - 32.27%
3. Fixed Lens 789 Votes - 13.01%

10 upvotes
bobbarber
By bobbarber (Jan 2, 2013)

How do you interpret these results? They can mean whatever you want.

"Most people favor FF! Mirrorless is on the way out."

or

"E-M5 won despite a clear bias towards FF cameras!"

etc.

1 upvote
GuptaD42
By GuptaD42 (Jan 2, 2013)

Seems to point to a future where we have
1. Relatively affordable, very high IQ FF cameras. Possibly mirrorless and hybrid AF systems that combine the best of PDAF and CDAF.
2. Micro four Thirds becoming the default quality compact camera, and also the prosumer choice with interchangeable lenses
3. Casual cameras all stick to phones, tablets, and whatever else new gadget will have decent casual cameras on them.

Interestingly, the maker pushing for FF is Sony. Despite the strong show by Nex APSC cameras, Sony does not have an entrenched market position in APSC DSLR market that still belongs to Canon and Nikon. Sony have figured out, correctly IMHO, that they can make the canikon buyers switch by offering them FF, high IQ, in quality cameras. Probably two different series/models - one at the high-end pro users and the other aimed at prosumer apsc DSLRs.

Sandwiched between M43 and FF, will APSC DSLR be the next category to die after the brutal boodbath in compact P&S cameras?

8 upvotes
duckling
By duckling (Jan 2, 2013)

And the inevitable conclusion is:
Nikon should join the Micro 4/3 consortium.

6 upvotes
ManuelVilardeMacedo
By ManuelVilardeMacedo (Jan 2, 2013)

Having a long day, huh...?

0 upvotes
LarryK
By LarryK (Jan 2, 2013)

Wow, APS-C took a drubbing. Okay by me, not enough serious lenses.

0 upvotes
joe Campo d2x
By joe Campo d2x (Jan 2, 2013)

thanks

0 upvotes
gordon1000
By gordon1000 (Jan 3, 2013)

I can imagine a Nikon employee using exact same pivoted result to show their bosses, hahaha.

0 upvotes
Stephan Kleinert
By Stephan Kleinert (Jan 2, 2013)

phew, people, get out and take some photos!

12 upvotes
Pat Cullinan Jr
By Pat Cullinan Jr (Jan 2, 2013)

What?

1 upvote
PerL
By PerL (Jan 2, 2013)

Those betting on a smaller format system may be happy with the outcome. But do they read the results right? Instead of going the way of the dinosaurs, FF cameras gets a big majority of the votes.
Interesting times ahead as FF tends to get chaper and more compact and m43 moves in to more ambitious but also more expensive territory.

2 upvotes
bobbarber
By bobbarber (Jan 2, 2013)

Another take is that a mirrorless camera won despite a predisposition to favor FF cameras.

I'm not sure any of us is reading the tea leaves exactly right.

2 upvotes
Mike_PEAT
By Mike_PEAT (Jan 2, 2013)

If I was an N or C owner voting near the end of the poll when Olympus was ahead, was I going to vote the full frame camera that has a chance of toppling Olympus, or was I going to waste my vote to vote for the APS camera I own that has no chance of winning?

1 upvote
PerL
By PerL (Jan 2, 2013)

@Mike_PEAT
First, I dont think many people are that childish. Second, the difference in numbers is so big (54 percent FF -26 percent m43) that such behaviour would not make any difference.

0 upvotes
rrr_hhh
By rrr_hhh (Jan 2, 2013)

@PerL

You have to look for the trend : not so long ago, mirrorless systems were barely known. Now they receive 1/4 of the votes : this is quite a lot and probably growing.

Look in the right frame at the cameras receiving the most clicks. As I'm writing, the E-M5 tops the list receiving 5.6% of the clicks, well before the D600 (3.5%), while the D800 isn't even present in the list.

I think that people knows the D800 well enough, but less so the E-M5. That is why despite its review being now old news it is still receiving so any clicks and also : who is not interested by a light and small outfit able to take great pictures ?

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
1 upvote
PerL
By PerL (Jan 2, 2013)

@rrr_hhh
What I think we see are two trends - FF and m43 and they are closing in on each others turf, soon both competing for the same segment - the serious amateurs.

0 upvotes
Boris F
By Boris F (Jan 2, 2013)

After using OM-D for a few month, I can say, it isn't small. Many times I decided not to take it with me because this reason. I can't even imagine how I can drag with me a DSLR or FF DSLR.
BTW, 5-axis IBIS equal 4 stops, tested and verified.
http://www.camerastuffreview.com/olympus-lens-review/review-olympus-45-mm

Comment edited 14 seconds after posting
1 upvote
Mike_PEAT
By Mike_PEAT (Jan 2, 2013)

The OM-D is NORMAL sized, the size film SLRs used to be, and close in size to the film SLR I used for 20 years. Certainly a lot more usable size compared to the huge, bulky, heavy, oversized dSLRs that we had to choose from.

16 upvotes
gsum
By gsum (Jan 2, 2013)

It's also very beautiful, as was the OM4Ti. If only the Olympus engineers had overridden the marketing dept and not burdened the OM-D with a lot of useless 'features' such as in-camera processing, it might have been as good as the OM4Ti. Another classic example of less wold have been more. Nevertheless, the OM-D is a very fine camera.

2 upvotes
bobbarber
By bobbarber (Jan 2, 2013)

I agree with this comment.

I don't vacillate between m43 and APS-C or FF, I vacillate between m43 and compacts. Small is better. I made good 8x10 prints with my first 2 megapixel Kodak, and certainly by 7 megapixels I had all the resolution I needed.

People are hard-wired differently. I spent a day on the beach two years ago with my wife and a compact camera, and got some great pictures. Another guy on the beach had a huge Nikon DSLR and even huger lens slung around his neck. He had chosen to walk in his swimming trunks with something the size of a toaster banging against his chest.

That's not to denigrate the legitimate professional uses of such cameras, it's just to point out that some people like the "camera jewelry" aspect of a huge, expensive DSLR, thinking it makes them look professional, or rich, or knowledgeable, or whatever.

I've printed thousands of photos and know the quality I need in captures. m43 is more than enough for me. YMMV.

12 upvotes
tramontina
By tramontina (Jan 2, 2013)

Most of the time I bring my waterproof compact TG-1. Sometimes I bring the OM-D when going hiking. The DSLRs get to see the light only when doing jobs.

OM-D is certainly the best compromise of most aspects.

5 upvotes
YouDidntDidYou
By YouDidntDidYou (Jan 2, 2013)

Best Camera of 2012: And the Winner is...Olympus E-M5
There you go just in case dpreview had trouble saying it :p

16 upvotes
rrr_hhh
By rrr_hhh (Jan 2, 2013)

@ regardless and Pat Cullinan

The Chip.de website is not really trustful when it comes to cameras. They have very improbable scores. It has been discussed quite often. Rather thrust Photo sites.

0 upvotes
Pat Cullinan Jr
By Pat Cullinan Jr (Jan 3, 2013)

Dear rrr_hhh,

Thanks for the alert. I made a note.

0 upvotes
regardlese
By regardlese (Jan 2, 2013)

impossible et faux=

http://www.chip.de/bestenlisten/Bestenliste-DSLR-%C3%BCber-1.000-Euro--index/index/id/969/

0 upvotes
Pat Cullinan Jr
By Pat Cullinan Jr (Jan 2, 2013)

Thanks for turning me on to the Chip.de website. I filed it and will be making use of it, along with others.

0 upvotes
AndyGM
By AndyGM (Jan 2, 2013)

Barnaby made it very clear what he meant by BEST:

"So at the end of an incredibly busy year we want to know which cameras stood out for you."

He was not asking which camera of 2012 had the ultimate picture quality.

You could easily say that the result was a tie, because the difference in votes between 1st and 2nd was less than 200. This just goes to show that people have different priorities when they go looking for a camera.

To me, it seems there is a balance between image quality and capability/flexibility on one side and portability on the other. All of you moaning about the result need to grow up - you need to have the perspective to realise that the "sweet spot" of these opposing considerations may be in one place for you, but they WILL be in a different place for other people.

To state that other peoples opinion is invalid because they do not agree with you is gross arrogance.

23 upvotes
ManuelVilardeMacedo
By ManuelVilardeMacedo (Jan 2, 2013)

Oh God, there's enough stuff in these comments for a clinical psychiatry symposium...

12 upvotes
aaaja
By aaaja (Jan 2, 2013)

one only can take this poll with humour. AND it is allready 2013 - 'snow of yesterday' we would say in our country.

DPReview is in many aspects a intersting source for information - but most of the time. for me at least, a bit entertainment and definetly not when it comes to cameras and lenses - i found many valuable information about many aspects - software, gadgets etc..

unfortunately the site wants to be a source for serious (at last that is my understanding) - it is obviously hard to have material of interest to many on a daybase? so lets laugh about that grand endyear (-joke)

0 upvotes
draleks
By draleks (Jan 2, 2013)

Yesterday's snow is what we use for skiing. Last year's cameras are usually still competitive next year, especially since the prices tend to go down. I don't understand the point of your rant at all, DPReview is the most comprehensive and most technical source of information about photography hardware on the net.

7 upvotes
BBking83
By BBking83 (Jan 2, 2013)

@draleks It's not technical at all... Lenstip however, you might learn something there. They are a lot less bias there too.

1 upvote
Couscousdelight
By Couscousdelight (Jan 2, 2013)

(...)DPReview is the most comprehensive and most technical source of information about photography hardware on the net.(...)

Seriously ?
What about testing dynamic range with Jpegs, like DP does ?
The "Net" is not restricted to english speaking website, maybe DPreview is the best testing site in English (but i don't think so)...
For me, the force of DPR is the community, not the tests, which are on a average level, with some bias.
I prefers to read camera tests (like "Chasseurs d'Images" ones) which are only concerned about photography, the kind of test where video performances don't change the rating of a photographic tool. :)

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 5 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
acahaya
By acahaya (Jan 2, 2013)

Obviously the world as we know it didn't end on 21 but on 31 of December ;-)

Get a grip everyone, this is just a poll and what it shows us is that we are lucky to have so many intesting choices. Best for me doesn't have to be best for you and the result shows that this year affordable, portable and good enough for most situations is a little bit more attractive than best IQ but expensive, large and heavy.

19 upvotes
G L
By G L (Jan 2, 2013)

Very well said!

1 upvote
Thorgrem
By Thorgrem (Jan 2, 2013)

Some people seriously need to talk to a psychologist. Make an appointment and bring your own reactions on paper.

Comment edited 18 seconds after posting
9 upvotes
GaryJP
By GaryJP (Jan 2, 2013)

Sorry DPReview, but I don't even think that the invention of this "poll" gives the site any credit. Just increases the reputation for encouraging fanboyism by soccer moms and retired dentists this place already has. And if anyone doubts that, they should just read the comments below.

4 upvotes
bobbarber
By bobbarber (Jan 2, 2013)

And you personally have credibility... why?

4 upvotes
gbvalli
By gbvalli (Jan 2, 2013)

Up to me, it's not possible to judge together cameras with different viewfinder type. OM-D is loved from fans of electronic viewfinder, but not so from those who prefer the optical one . Perhaps it would be better to diversify the match, establishing 2 or 3 categories .

0 upvotes
ManuelVilardeMacedo
By ManuelVilardeMacedo (Jan 2, 2013)

Because everybody chooses a camera according to viewfinder type, right?

7 upvotes
revio
By revio (Jan 2, 2013)

@gbvalli

This was a POLL, not a competition or a test of what was the best camera of 2012!

By your logic, it would be possible to have dozens of catogories, and then this poll would be very uninteresting, AND it would not even give a clue to which camera DPR´s readers as a whole thought was "their" best of 2012...

Comment edited 27 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
emircruz
By emircruz (Jan 4, 2013)

When i switched to mirrorless, i also bought an external electronic viewfinder. After a year, I rarely put it on. The LCD seems to be bright enough has focus assist (magnification) during MF and real time exposure display. The camera is also light enough for me not to worry about shaking it. I only put the EVF on if its very bright outside.

0 upvotes
monodrift
By monodrift (Jan 2, 2013)

So many hurt little egos here.
Certainly entertaining to read, however :)

9 upvotes
illy
By illy (Jan 2, 2013)

this has proven to be more fun than the off topic forum

3 upvotes
MarcLee
By MarcLee (Jan 2, 2013)

Anyone who feels themselves defined by a camera brand has a sad and fragile ego. Hurt or not.

9 upvotes
onkelboffen
By onkelboffen (Jan 2, 2013)

"hurt little egos here."

The crux.

0 upvotes
Pat Cullinan Jr
By Pat Cullinan Jr (Jan 2, 2013)

Little egos? Not big as whales? I have the greatest of them all -- 120 feet long, 200,000 pounds. Far too big for the living room sofa, where I park my 900-pound brain.

0 upvotes
VadymA
By VadymA (Jan 2, 2013)

DPR, please change the title to "The Most Interesting Camera of 2012", because this is what this poll is really about. I don't have any of the listed cameras but I voted OM-D because to me it was rather a head turned in 2012 and I think it deserved its place fair and square. Is it the Best Camera out there? Probably not. But we are just DPR Readers, not the camera experts. This is Our poll, Our opinion, Our fun way to pick "The Camera of 2012". Those who believe otherwise and come here with angry comments only make fools of themselves.

8 upvotes
waitformee
By waitformee (Jan 2, 2013)

The word Best is very subjective. Wild life shooter and a wedding photographer has different best in their heart. So whose is best?

0 upvotes
gordon1000
By gordon1000 (Jan 2, 2013)

Agree, for average consumer like me it is Best value for the buck.

0 upvotes
tramontina
By tramontina (Jan 2, 2013)

I think it's rather pointless to be overly precise on something so light such as this poll. Like the result/title will cause any global economic shift.

2 upvotes
Andy Crowe
By Andy Crowe (Jan 2, 2013)

I think "Readers' favourite camera" would be the most literal title.

2 upvotes
G L
By G L (Jan 2, 2013)

I have a m43 camera and the EM5 is what I would like to have. So I voted for it.

Just one remark: If Nikon had not the D800 and the D600 in the competition they might have won.

But anyway, the EM5 is a camera of which many people think it is a very good compromise between capability, size and prize. It really is an achievement to bring all these features in such a small package. The EM5 deserves this win.

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
4 upvotes
waitformee
By waitformee (Jan 2, 2013)

I am a sony supporter... When I see this EM5. I am shocked. So immediately I went to try this EM5. All I can say is that for that size and that price, it deserves to win.

9 upvotes
gordon1000
By gordon1000 (Jan 2, 2013)

It does have a Sony sensor....

2 upvotes
revio
By revio (Jan 2, 2013)

??? How could Nikon have won if they´d NOT had the D800 & D600 in the "competition"? (which was no competition, but a POLL, by the way!) ;-)

0 upvotes
G L
By G L (Jan 2, 2013)

Well if only the D800 were in the poll some of the D600 voters ( 7.8% ) may have voted for the D800.

But really it is not that important

0 upvotes
parttime
By parttime (Jan 2, 2013)

The 'top cameras' section of this site is a good place to check a cameras popularity.

The OM-D has been;
- in the top 5 for receiving the most clicks in reviews and specs for several month
- the top camera for uploaded pictures to galleries for several weeks
- in the top 5 for several weeks for uploaded pictures to challanges.

Think about that, people seem to love their OM-D's because they actually take pictures with it!

20 upvotes
Jo2trs
By Jo2trs (Jan 2, 2013)

Thom Hogan awarded OMD EM5 as the Sansmirror serious camera of 2012 on his website and he uses this camera most of the time. But of course, he still the number one Nikon guy!

Comment edited 10 minutes after posting
7 upvotes
DigitalVista
By DigitalVista (Jan 2, 2013)

Well there you have it. The Oly and MFT forum members have spoken with their ballot stuffing ways and this is their best camera.

Can we delete all the fake accounts now and stop all the clicking?

Thanks!

Comment edited 13 minutes after posting
1 upvote
DigitalVista
By DigitalVista (Jan 2, 2013)

Sorry, I meant to say "with their mobilizing ways", sorry for that.

1 upvote
emircruz
By emircruz (Jan 2, 2013)

Interestingly, the O-MD review is getting the most views right now. Very good for m43.

5 upvotes
Infared
By Infared (Jan 2, 2013)

That is just all of the angry CaNikoSonyan poll-losers secretly learning about a great camera. ;-)

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
6 upvotes
keeponkeepingon
By keeponkeepingon (Jan 2, 2013)

It's still a mystery that dpreview would create an article such as this without at least linking to the results.

Also, if the K-01 is not in the poll, why is it mentioned in the front page article summary? The IQ is great and the current cost is 1/2 the price of the cameras on the list and 4 times cheaper than any of the winners. It's like slamming a Kodak P&S on the front page of a 5D review. What's the point?

http://www.dpreview.com/polls

Olympus OM-D EM-5 23.3% (3457 votes)
Nikon D800/E 22.1% (3273 votes)
Canon EOS 5D Mark III 14.4% (2133 votes)
Nikon D600 7.8% (1156 votes)
Sony Cyber-shot RX100 7.1% (1056 votes)
Fujifilm X-Pro 1 6.2% (914 votes)
Sony Cyber-shot RX1 5.6% (831 votes)
Sony Alpha SLT-A99 4.2% (617 votes)
Pentax K-30 3.3% (485 votes)
Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH3 2.2% (328 votes)
Canon EOS 650D / Rebel T4i 1.8% (266 votes)
Sony Alpha SLT-A57 1.2% (172 votes)
Olympus PEN-Lite E-PL5 .5% (79 votes)
Olympus Stylus XZ-2 iHS .3% (40 votes)

5 upvotes
kai0815
By kai0815 (Jan 2, 2013)

thanks, I couldn't find the link to the results myself!

0 upvotes
adrianf2
By adrianf2 (Jan 2, 2013)

What's the problem with the Mongolian Freight Truckers association?

2 upvotes
Shamael
By Shamael (Jan 2, 2013)

Your title is false. It should state, "camera of the year among those you asked us to select one". If there had been a list of all cameras offered on the market and that had earned a gold or silver award from DPR, it could be a possible reality. Now, offering us a bundle of a few cameras and asking us to select the camera of the year will end by leaving all those who ow one of those cameras make the poll. The others did not take part of it. I ow a NEX-7, so what is my interest to select a camera of the year among those I do not ow or know what they do or can do. So far, let's say that much more people ow a OMD than those who ow a D800 or a 5D3. The later 2 have probably earned points from a few who do not ow it but just judge by the quality of the pictures they see online from those boxes.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
1 upvote
Shamael
By Shamael (Jan 2, 2013)

All of those cameras shoot top quality pictures and some of the selection like the A99 are to short time on the market to give a correct opinion. So, think what you want about this poll. On the other side, Olympus OMD is a runner, a camera that has it almost all, handsome, light, water resistant, and makes huge pictures. If most voted for it, is that most of the voters ow it, and comparing a 1200$ camera to a 4000 and more $ class is anyway unfair, just a few can afford that.

2 upvotes
Olymore
By Olymore (Jan 2, 2013)

That's funny. I've been reading comments that Canikon outsells Olympus by a huge factor, now I'm being told that it won because it has sold well.
Slight contradiction there.

0 upvotes
marianco
By marianco (Jan 2, 2013)

B.S.

0 upvotes
Anastigmat
By Anastigmat (Jan 2, 2013)

I have 2 words for the results of this poll: ballot stuffing.

6 upvotes
Mike_PEAT
By Mike_PEAT (Jan 2, 2013)

How can there be ballot stuffing if you can only vote once?

Some people have suggested people should only be allowed to vote for the camera they own, but in that case I'd get two votes since I own two of the camera I voted for (the one that won).

4 upvotes
waitformee
By waitformee (Jan 2, 2013)

if you think people vote more then once (with multiple accounts) for EM5 then what makes you think that people will not vote more than once for nikon & canon & sony? Respect the decision of others. If one day, others commented that your photo are lousy then your photos are lousy to THEM. As long as in your heart your camera is the best then your camera deserves YOU.

8 upvotes
fl00d
By fl00d (Jan 2, 2013)

I have 2 words for you: consummate retard.

1 upvote
LWW
By LWW (Jan 2, 2013)

Ballot stuffing, or could be bruised ego, or sour grapes, or maybe buyer remorse, or just wish I was in the in crowd thingy!

1 upvote
sgoldswo
By sgoldswo (Jan 2, 2013)

On what basis do you say that?

0 upvotes
photobeans
By photobeans (Jan 2, 2013)

Congrats to Olympus. It is a worthy pick to be camera of the year. Here's why I choose m43 cameras and why some of you just don't understand. 2 young kids with diapers, water bottles, extra shirts, snacks, paper towels, etc.. all in the same bag with my m43 camera+2 lenses ;which weigh about the same as one larger Nikkor zoom lens combined!

Comment edited 7 minutes after posting
18 upvotes
backayonder
By backayonder (Jan 2, 2013)

Leave the kids with their Gran and get the Nikon D800? Only joking get the D600.

2 upvotes
tramontina
By tramontina (Jan 2, 2013)

Try the TG-1- the only camera that successfully eclipse my OM-D in utility (the other 2 DSLRs occupy the drybox most of the time). Last week I dipped it in the sea to shoot my son's first beach outing.

1 upvote
DigitalVista
By DigitalVista (Jan 2, 2013)

Err no, what you want is the NEX.

3 upvotes
fl00d
By fl00d (Jan 2, 2013)

Right because there soo much to choose from in native lenses...
NEX has been hamstrung the entire time for lens selection so no, they do not want a nex.

4 upvotes
Ubilam
By Ubilam (Jan 2, 2013)

Blah, blah, blah... so much drool and dribble posted. Nobody posting here has any of these 'winners' anyways!

0 upvotes
pdelux
By pdelux (Jan 2, 2013)

LOL ok so no body has a 5d or D800 or OMD or any denomination of these 3.

even so why would it matter?

0 upvotes
Ignat Solovey
By Ignat Solovey (Jan 2, 2013)

I have 1D Mark IV with respective set of lenses and accessories, and use it in a way it should be used. I know all these three cameras, as I took very close look on them. I know 5d3 inside out (excellent camera, but not 1 in just three ways), and I have enough people around me with either D800 (not E though, hard to buy one in Moscow, Russia) and EM-5 (which I wouldn't tag OM as dedicated OM-4 user and owner of many original OM lenses). Though I didn't vote :)

Comment edited 5 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
Mike_PEAT
By Mike_PEAT (Jan 2, 2013)

For the record I own TWO OM-Ds!

3 upvotes
illy
By illy (Jan 2, 2013)

unfortunately the record is scratched and keeps repeating the same thing over and over and over......

2 upvotes
Ubilam
By Ubilam (Jan 3, 2013)

I own THREE OM-Ds! Not one of them is any good. Illy said so.

0 upvotes
Henning W
By Henning W (Jan 2, 2013)

I was a rather reluctant convert to m43, but now it's become my main travel and casual photo system. The OM-D is definitely the class of the genre for still photography, and I'm delighted with mine. Whether it's the best camera of 2012 is debatable, but this is a unscientific poll, and the results are not unreasonable.

I have two other digital systems, as well as a number of recent fixed lens cameras, and while no camera does everything, the OM-D does really a lot well. My FF SLR stuff is reserved for those things that truly need it, and my other system is Leica, which lives in it's own world, and is not likely to be displaced any time soon. I've printed up to 22x30 from the OM-D, and some of those prints replaced Mamiya and Hasselblad 645 film images. The technical quality was comparable. Should I aim higher with my casual and even some of my professional work?

My FF DSLR is used for system capability not available with the OM-D, not for technical quality.

15 upvotes
Rocky ID Olympian
By Rocky ID Olympian (Jan 2, 2013)

@Pal2012

"babhahahahaha"

"kid"

"Focusing? Really? The OM-D cant handle focussing on kids playing, sports nor any other demanding situation.

Give me a break."

"Total BS get a clue or get your eyes checked."

Geezz, you do talk like a God of photography.

Your photos in you gallery are not as big as your head nor your mouth. You have no photos of kids playing, you have some lousy car racing shots.

Its a free to talk forum, but at least back your mouth with equal works of photos.

4 upvotes
Pal2012
By Pal2012 (Jan 2, 2013)

What are you some kind of stalker?

Send me another measage like that again you weird pervert!

7 upvotes
Pal2012
By Pal2012 (Jan 2, 2013)

Oh, and yes, your nice pictures of flys are certainly of higher ilk than my vintage race car pictures. ZZZzzzzzz ZZZZzzzzzzz

6 upvotes
DigitalVista
By DigitalVista (Jan 2, 2013)

Wow, why so much hating there Rocky?
And so your pictures in your gallery are professional P&S examples? Wow, thank you.

2 upvotes
Vlastik
By Vlastik (Jan 2, 2013)

Focusing, really good also for moving subjects and kids especially when FPS is on (High frame rate)

0 upvotes
Rocky ID Olympian
By Rocky ID Olympian (Jan 2, 2013)

@digitalvista, me hating? Never commented harsh on people before. Just annoyed by pal2012 comments looking down on people. See he doesnt like it either when I do that to him.

0 upvotes
Albert Ang
By Albert Ang (Jan 2, 2013)

If Nikon's camera is voted to be the best, Canon fanboys will bash it.
If Canon's camera is voted to be the best, Nikon fanboys will bash it.
If non-Nikon/Canon camera is voted to be the best, both Canon and Nikon fanboys will combine their forces and bash that camera :)

22 upvotes
sandy b
By sandy b (Jan 2, 2013)

You forgot the bashing of anything canon-nikon by everyone else. Plent of bashing for all, step right up.

1 upvote
AmaturFotografer
By AmaturFotografer (Jan 2, 2013)

Makes my day!! ahahaha..

0 upvotes
armandino
By armandino (Jan 2, 2013)

Albert Ang,
best post I have seen in a while on this site. I am going to bed with a big smile on my face!

1 upvote
arvinoculus
By arvinoculus (Jan 2, 2013)

Yes, I agree T3 - Different people, different needs.

0 upvotes
Total comments: 1412
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