Sunday, July 22, 2012

Canon Makes Ready to Release Another Blasé Camera

Under normal circumstances it's down right impossible to ignore a new, unannounced camera, especially if it's from one of the majors, in this instance Canon. Especially if the images are sitting in someone's Flickr stream. But after looking at the images on line and reading the minimal amount of specification information, my reaction to the new camera is "so what?"

It looks to be based on an APS-C class sensor, although some rumors have said it would re-use the Canon G1-X's sensor, Canon's 18mm by 14mm 4:3 aspect ration sensor (µ4/3rds is 17mm by 13mm). I believe it is APS-C because 22mm x 1.5 gives us 33mm, which is in the classic 35mm domain (Olympus' M.Zuiko 1:2.8/17mm is equivalent to 17mm x 2 or 34mm).
The zoom to be announced with the the body is identical, focal-length wise, to Sony's. Scrutinizing the lens in larger format, the filter size is 52mm, larger than Sony's zoom's 49mm filter size. That means this so-called compact zoom will be larger than Sony's, which was large enough.

I don't know if that's a metal mount or silver plastic at the base of the zoom. As I mentioned I don't know the apertures, but considering that the entrance lens is noticably larger than Sony's I would hope that it's maximimum apertures might run f/2.8 to f/4, rather than the typical (from all parties) f/3.5 to f/5.6. An extra stop of light-gathering speed at both ends would be nice to have. The 22mm (35mm equivalent) is a stop faster than the equivalent M.Zuiko, and a full stop faster than Sony's 1:2.8/16mm (24mm equivalent). Of course, the Sony lens has a much wider field of view than the Canon, but still, Sony could have produced an f/2 vs f/2.8, just like Olympus could have certainly produced an f/2 17mm instead of an f/2.8. Everybody seems to be in the mode to build cheap and charge dearly, including Olympus and Panasonic.

It is interesting to see this camera and its peripherals. This explains the step fall in prices for the Olympus E-P2, E-PL1, and E-PL2. Those cameras had hung at fairly high retail until April, when the prices took a step dive. Considering how Canon charges a pretty penny for mediocre results (the G1-X started at $800, and is now down about $100 to $700), I have a pretty good idea that it will come in around the $800 price range for the body and a lens.

Perhaps Canon will surprise me and release this camera as weather-sealed, with a magnesium internal body and some compelling feature to make me want to own one. I doubt that very much. And simply stamping "Canon" on the exterior isn't compelling enough either. If that were the case I'd be owning and using Canon DSLRs, and that ain't gonna happen, not in my lifetime.

Well, let's wait and see what turns up officially on Monday. I can wait. Really, I can.

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