Recently Pentax announced their Q system - the smallest interchangeable lens camera system. Today Nikon announced CX system, which is essentially the same - small sensor, electronic viewfinder, interchangeable lens. But why?
I mean, micro four
thirds (m43) is well established and is developing very nicely as well -
new lenses and camera bodies were introduced just recently both by
Panasonic and Olympus who happen to be the main forces behind m43.
had an interesting offering with their GXR system. Samsung is
developing their own NX system and Sony are doing pretty darn well with
their NEX cameras.
All these camera systems have pretty large sensors.
In my personal and humble opinion - big DSLR
manufacturers (well, Pentax is not very big, but they do manufacture
DSLRs nonetheless) couldn't join forces with any of the above, probably
due to business reasons. So they had to work out their own offerings.
Now, it couldn't be large sensor compact camera thing, mainly because
that would undermine their own DSLR sales. Sony, whom I perceive as
Microsoft of electronics probably could sustain selling NEX for a bit of
loss, whereas now they're selling faster than hotdogs in Central Park,
New York. So, Pentax and Nikon produced a lot of marketing speak and
came up with camera systems with rather very small sensors.
Such systems may appeal to their target audiences. Imagine a
haute couture model pulling out of her purse a pink Pentax Q with this
or that lens, in matching color, naturally, and taking some shots of her
fellow models. That would be hip and fun.
At this moment it is my opinion that cameras like Canon S95,
Panasonic LX-5 or recently announced S100 are better option for portable
high quality (by today's standards) photography.
There is still hope out there, because the rumor mill has it that
Ricoh will work with freshly acquired Pentax to produce a large sensor
interchangeable lens camera system. Meanwhile, I will keep watching the
photographic world go round and around in a bit of a wonder...
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