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View Poll Results: Should camera companies make compact cameras bigger, not smaller?
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In the iPhone age, make compact cameras bigger, not smaller
Old 09-27-2018   #1
aizan
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In the iPhone age, make compact cameras bigger, not smaller

Whither the coat-pocketable camera, the perfect complement to one's cameraphone?

You can carry it in your coat or your shoulder bag for year-round convenience. It leaves room for the controls. It doesn't leave out features you want, such as a fixed, built-in rangefinder-style EVF, a tilting or fully-articulated LCD, or *shudder* a built-in flash. It doesn't overly limit the speed or zoom range of the lens. The grip isn't too shallow.

Camera companies shouldn't try to beat cameraphones at their own game. The compromises only lead to disappointment. Note the shrinking and still viewfinder- and tilting LCD-less Ricoh GR III, the slippery and tight-belted Sony RX100 series, the squinty-ish Panasonic LX100 II and GX9.

I repeat: In the iPhone age, make compact cameras bigger, not smaller!
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Old 09-27-2018   #2
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Interesting perspective.

What about the opposite, make it smaller than Smart Phones with better controls for the intermediate user. Three cameras/lenses (25, 50, 105) laid out so that you can add lenses & hood, 15 MP or so, no less, a great LCD. Two dials to controls, configurable focus points, a couple of buttons you can assign controls (like cycling through focus points, ISO adjustments) to.

If I want bigger I'd got iPad Pro next generation for the big LCD or EX-3.

And Water Resistant!

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Old 09-27-2018   #3
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At one time I considered buying a smartphone just for the camera. But the phones are too big and their cameras are comparatively poor.
The new Ricoh GR III looks about right. I would like to see an even smaller camera with an apsc sensor and an e-35mm lens but until then I'll pay Ricoh their asking price for the GR III.
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Old 09-27-2018   #4
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I fail to see the lack of options if you want a big camera. Why would you like to get rid of the few options we have for small cameras with big sensors?
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Old 09-27-2018   #5
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The new Zeiss ZX1 is a 800g ‘compact’ camera that answers your dream.

The Ricoh GR and Leica CL/TL series are much more in align with what I’m happy with.
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Old 09-27-2018   #6
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I fail to see the lack of options if you want a big camera. Why would you like to get rid of the few options we have for small cameras with big sensors?
Does reducing options reduce anything other than the firmware core?
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Old 09-27-2018   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FrozenInTime View Post
The new Zeiss ZX1 is a 800g ‘compact’ camera that answers your dream.

The Ricoh GR and Leica CL/TL series are much more in align with what I’m happy with.
Or the Sony RX1 series (ZX1? Really, Zeiss couldn't have picked a more original name?).

That said, my RX1RII does cause an unsightly bulge in my jacket pocket and I wouldn't be averse to a Ricoh GRIII when it comes out.
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Old 09-27-2018   #8
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I don't find the cameras too big necessarily but the lenses sure are.
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Old 09-27-2018   #9
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Originally Posted by FrozenInTime View Post
The new Zeiss ZX1 is a 800g ‘compact’ camera that answers your dream.
i just saw that !!!
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Old 09-27-2018   #10
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Need biggy? What is wrong with X100 series?
I want digital Minox 35. One rotary switch for ISO, one dial on the lens for the aperture manual and auto, another dial for focus scale. Shutter speed by camera. Or by another switch. Optical VF.
Battery where film was. Screen, meh, not nessesary.
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Old 09-27-2018   #11
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X100 is coat-pocketable—this is the size range i'm talking about.
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Old 09-27-2018   #12
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There are billions of cameras, and phones with cameras, in the world. They come in many sizes, from tiny to huge.

Over 14 trillion photos are taken every year.

Seriously, no one needs to make any new cameras of any size for a looooong time. At least they don't need to make any more cameras for photographers. For the gear hound addicts and the people who just want to own the latest electronic marvel, these are people who probably want, but don't need, new cameras.

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Old 09-27-2018   #13
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Interesting recently, with a non-photo friend on the way to Africa for safari. "I hear the phone cameras are great now, we'll just use that."

I told them: You need a telephoto, you don't want to carry anything bigger than fits in your pocket, get a P&S with a zoom, at least 10x. Better 30x. A little research finds pocketable P&S cameras with 30x zoom for $250 or less. Good ones. They bought one. And, I bought one.
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Old 09-27-2018   #14
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I like my iPhone. It is my compact camera. I can carry it in my pants or shirt pocket. It’s always there. No bag needed with stuff. It does a lot of things well. I can send a photo immediately to folks if I want to and I’ve got cell service.

My wife’s relatives just on her Moms side had a family reunion in July. I made a group photo with my iPhone. There is around 100 people in the photo. Hand held the phone.
Here is a link to the photo on Facebook:

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Here is another photograph for your perusal, a photo of my wife’s aunt Beth who is in her mid-eighties age:


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Old 09-27-2018   #15
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Methinks Fuji currently has this best covered. It makes big cameras for those who need them, but also smaller apsc system who need smaller kit.
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Old 09-27-2018   #16
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"The perfect complement to one's cameraphone" is not a compact camera as they do the same job - take snaps. At least for me and everyone I know. None of my friends and family have used a point-and-shoot for years...! A "proper" camera is the right complement - the Sony A7R II for me.

I used the Canon G or S series for many years but sold my last after it sat unused gathering dust for 2 years. My phone has totally taken its place - I've a Samsung S7, and in pro camera mode it allows full manual control and even shoots DNG raw files. The image quality is shockingly good and more than enough for holiday pics. Once postprocessed they're as good as any compact's images!

I can understand people wanting a small camera like a Sony X100F - however, that's not a "compact camera" but a small "proper" camera. A compact camera, aka a point-and-shoot, is by definition a simple camera for snapshots - now built into our phones, which also do kinds of other useful things...

The compact camera is dying and I don't mourn it. Less stuff to carry!
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Old 09-27-2018   #17
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IMO phones are getting too big too. The smallest one can still buy new is the iPhone SE.
In the early 2000s the smaller the phone meant the better the phone...
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Old 09-27-2018   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ColSebastianMoran View Post
Interesting recently, with a non-photo friend on the way to Africa for safari. "I hear the phone cameras are great now, we'll just use that."

I told them: You need a telephoto, you don't want to carry anything bigger than fits in your pocket, get a P&S with a zoom, at least 10x. Better 30x. A little research finds pocketable P&S cameras with 30x zoom for $250 or less. Good ones. They bought one. And, I bought one.
Thank goodness they listened to you. On the other hand, it would have been an opportunity for a good laugh at their expense and a solid I-told-you-so.

A non-camera acquaintance asked my advice for a first camera, before a trip to America. I suggested the Canon G1X, as it was the best solution to what they wanted at that time. Instead, the salesperson at the shop talked them into buying a Nikon D5500 or something with the kit lens.

When they were at the airport, I saw that the LENS AND BODY WERE SEPARATE in the camera bag. They didn't even attach the body to the lens! This is how 'non camera' these people were.

They barely used that camera, and mainly used their cellphones instead. Goddamn waste of money.
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Old 09-27-2018   #19
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[quote=RichC;2837385
I used the Canon G or S series for many years but sold my last after it sat unused gathering dust for 2 years. My phone has totally taken its place - I've a Samsung S7, and in pro camera mode it allows full manual control and even shoots DNG raw files. The image quality is shockingly good and more than enough for holiday pics. Once postprocessed they're as good as any compact's images!
[/quote]


I have a Samsung Note 8, and while the images are pretty decent, they aren't in the same league as a 1" sensor compact. The images are better than the old Canon S or G 4mp, 7mp and 10mp cameras from 2002-2008, but not like a modern compact. Low light photos are not very good at all, not when you're used to a m43 camera like the Panasonic GM1, or the LX10.
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Old 09-28-2018   #20
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I"m happy with the size of the Fuji X-H1. Much better ergonomics than the X-T models.
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Old 09-28-2018   #21
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Isn't a big "compact" camera a contradiction in terms?

My initial enthusiasm for Micro 4/3 due to the small size of the cameras and lenses waned with the increases in features, lens speed and size.

Personally I would prefer better ergonomics with smaller size. I don't really see the attraction of increasing the size of a camera to add features when I don't use most of the features already there. I'd like to see a camera company make a serious camera for photography only. Thus far only Leica has done this but the cost makes it an abstract choice for most of us.
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Old 09-28-2018   #22
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Quote:
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Does reducing options reduce anything other than the firmware core?
Huh? .......
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Old 09-28-2018   #23
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Huh? .......
Does disabling deep dive menus, and the features they control, for example, make the camera physically any smaller? Or does is just make the software smaller?
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Old 09-28-2018   #24
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Does disabling deep dive menus, and the features they control, for example, make the camera physically any smaller? Or does is just make the software smaller?
I`m not sure, but I think you misunderstood my original post. I was saying that there are many big cameras out there to choose from, so why would we want the few smaller cameras we have to be bigger?
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Old 09-28-2018   #25
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I`m not sure, but I think you misunderstood my original post. I was saying that there are many big cameras out there to choose from, so why would we want the few smaller cameras we have to be bigger?
I am all for smaller cameras and lenses. I am just not sure that simply disabling features is going to get us there, or that increasing features is what has gotten us where we are now. For example, I think the newly introduced Zeiss ZX1 is all wrong.
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Old 09-28-2018   #26
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For example, I think the newly introduced Zeiss ZX1 is all wrong.
I agree with that...
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Old 04-11-2019   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FrozenInTime View Post
The new Zeiss ZX1 is a 800g ‘compact’ camera that answers your dream.

...
Looks really nice. Sounds like it will cost similar to a Leica Q2 (~$5k). The leaf shutter is interesting (but only 1/1000 s). For $5k, I might consider the Fuji GX50 route (but consider the lens cost...). In the latter case so much for compact.
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Old 04-11-2019   #28
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Easiest solution for OP: Take a Ricoh GR III or a Zeiss ZX1, or whatever, and add a phone to it! Use the large rear LCD as the smartphone desktop. as well as for the camera.
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Old 04-11-2019   #29
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To be honest, I think the camera manufacturers are way ahead of you. Bigger sensors in bigger bodies (or "semi-professional" bodies) has been their MO for awhile. As soon as the iphone took off... They didn't really have a choice did they?



As far as presenting something big as the new compact; an easy challenge for modern marketing. Selling conformity as vibrant individualism is old hat for them, after all.
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Old 04-12-2019   #30
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Honestly, Sony just needs to make an APSC version of the RX1R II about the size of the Ricoh GR. Despite it being a Sony, I think it would do well.
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Old 04-12-2019   #31
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I think that for compact cameras to remain somewhat relevant they need to offer things you can not get from a phone. So greater zoom ranges, bigger sensors tuned more for bad light and lossless files are some areas that could help. I won't now use a camera without some form of eye level viewfinder and am surprised more makers don't offer this especially on expensive models.
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Old 04-13-2019   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aizan View Post
X100 is coat-pocketable—this is the size range i'm talking about.
Does coat-pocketable mean that it fits in a coat pocket, or that is comfortable and practical to keep in a coat pocket?

The X100 series fits in my coat pocket... just. Without the hood. Is it comfortable? No way! It’s too heavy, causes my coat to sit uncomfortably, and is a PITA to get in and out.

I think the X100 size is a great size, small but comfortable to hold. I think it is the sweet spot for a bigger sensor compact camera. Likewise the RX1 series. I find the RX100 series start to get to small to be comfortable, and a bit to big and awkward to fit in a pocket.
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Old 04-13-2019   #33
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Does coat-pocketable mean that it fits in a coat pocket, or that is comfortable and practical to keep in a coat pocket?
I think for some, as long as it fits, they are good to go. But for others, just because it fits doesn't mean it's comfortable. I hate when I have something big and heavy in my pocket and it swings and sways with my stride while walking.
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Old 04-14-2019   #34
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Im going to be the dissenting voice here. The ultra compact camera is designed to perform 1 or 2 functions. Take photos or shoot video. As a result, the interface is refined for these activities. A phone has many tasks to perform and this impacts the camera interface. I would gladly move to a phone however i find them fiddly and slow to operate/respond. Compared to something like the GR... Well, im in the GR camp to date.
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Old 04-14-2019   #35
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You know, the perfect cameras already exist. They were made in the last century, they are in any size you want, they give you much better pictures than digital, and you can still buy them.
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Old 04-16-2019   #36
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You know, the perfect cameras already exist. They were made in the last century, they are in any size you want, they give you much better pictures than digital, and you can still buy them.
How do you determine 'much better' exactly?
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Old 04-16-2019   #37
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A friend of mine has a working wet plate studio in Gettysburg. He images a lot of period reenactors, and maintains a Costume closet that ordinary folks can dress 19th century. His main camera is an Anthony studio 8x10 on a large stand. One time he had a family who dressed up for a tintype. The snooty 10 year old know it all daughter pointed to the camera and said “What’s That!”?!! “. “A Camera” was the reply. She assumes a disbelieving stance and says “Nuh uh! Where’s its phone???”
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Old 05-19-2019   #38
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I would say that it is more important to make the compact cameras "better" overall. Use better lenses and better software. Have DNG images and higher resolution images. The size should not be too small. The camera should fit easily in the hand.
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Old 05-19-2019   #39
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The Ricoh GR III gets it as right as can be expected IMO. Jacket pocketable and high quality. It's not perfect, but it is closer than most. The latest Sony RX100 VI seems cool on the surface, but then the 24-200mm zoom is F4 by 40mm. Couple that with a 1" sensor usable to about ISO 800, it is a great sunlight camera and an ok still life low light camera (due to IS). For me, that is not enough. I would love to see more cameras made in this sector and made with the one big advantage digital has over film in mind; HIGH ISO APSC or larger sensors. I'm hoping we still will.
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Old 05-19-2019   #40
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..
I want digital Minox 35. One rotary switch for ISO, one dial on the lens for the aperture manual and auto, another dial for focus scale. Shutter speed by camera. Or by another switch. Optical VF.
Battery where film was. Screen, meh, not nessesary.
And breaks after one use?
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