With smartphones taking over the low-end compact camera market, manufacturers have been striking back with feature-rich top-tier compacts. These cameras out-perform the smartest of phones by offering much better image quality, useful zoom ranges and the ability to capture Raw files. Several of them also offer Wi-Fi, letting you make use of your phone's connectivity to publish while you're out-and-about. The truly pocketable design of these cameras gives you no excuses to leave your gear at home.
Don't let the point-and-shoot appearance of these cameras fool you. They may not have the same level of control as the full-fledged enthusiast models, but they offer very similar image quality. Here are the five models that will make your smartphone jealous:
- Canon PowerShot S120
- Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100
- Fujifilm XQ1
- Nikon Coolpix P330
- Panasonic Lumix DMC-LF1
In the following pages, you'll find what we liked and didn't like about each camera, and links to our test scenes and real-world galleries to give you a sense of how it performs in a variety of situations.