Body size vs Sensor size, are we overpaying mobility?

Started Nov 16, 2013 | Discussions thread
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boogisha Contributing Member • Posts: 591
Body size vs Sensor size, are we overpaying mobility?

I`m a mere beginner in the world of digital cameras, so please feel free to correct me if/where you find needed.

That said, while I`m waiting for my local store to get Canon PowerShot S120 in their stock (399€), I noticed Canon EOS 1100D (Rebel T3) 18-55 IS II kit for 370€. Now, that made me thinking - S120 has a 1/1.7" size sensor, while 1100D has an APS-C size sensor (almost 8x the size of S120`s one).

With all due respect to S120 being a new (and maybe currently heavily overpriced) camera, and putting aside many improvements and features that it brings simply because of being more up-to-date, and being aware of the fact that "more advanced" technology is needed to produce smaller parts, I`m curious - are we still (by far) overpaying a "luxury" of having a "pocketable" camera (which can be carried around without a hassle)?

I understand that these two cameras fall into completely different categories and areas of interest/usage, and thus they have some major differences, but I`m interested in this from a more theoretic aspect, or from a practical one in terms of production cost / end-user price.

Are today`s high-end compacts (like Canon S120) more restricted by the current technology (or the price to invent one), or maybe by sole (money-driven) decisions of companies that make them, delaying the progress as much as possible in order to drain money for a longer period without actually doing much work for it? Are compact cameras sensor-crippled on purpose, not to compete with DSLR market? What do you think?

I do realize that, in the end, it`s the money that makes the world go round, but it sometimes makes me a bit sad to see how it influences (slows down to a crawl) technology evolution... Competition is a key factor here, but only if there are (were) no deals between the companies, having everyone producing the best they can. Sweet dreams, I guess.

Looking at Sony RX100 II with its 1" sensor (still small in comparison to mentioned APS-C one, but almost 3x times bigger than 1/1.7" sensor) and the effect it has on the image quality, I`m really eager to see what will the next iteration(s) of Canon S series compacts bring... and when.

I know that there are by far more factors that make a good image quality than sensor size alone (lens, processor, etc.), but for this topic I would like to hear opinions on the sensor size only (or mostly, at least) - do you also have a feeling that we are more and more getting crumbs from what could have otherwise been a pretty nice loaf?

p.s. If I missed the correct forum to post this, please move as appropriate.

 boogisha's gear list:boogisha's gear list
Canon PowerShot A75 Canon ELPH 300 HS Canon PowerShot S120 Canon PowerShot G7 X
Canon EOS 1100D (EOS Rebel T3 / EOS Kiss X50) Canon PowerShot S120 Sony RX100 II
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