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Archive for 2017


Leica has a long history of making cameras and lenses. They entered the digital camera market initially by re-branding Panasonic cameras for which Leica made the optics anyway. Eventually they introduced a digital version of their famed M-rangefinder cameras to allow the superb Leica glass to be used digitally. They later added their own systems with the S Medium Format Digital Camera and the full-frame SL-system.

Leica M10

Today, DxO Mark revealed their score for the Leica M10, the newest digital rangefinder from Leica. This full-frame mirrorless is built around 24 megapixels CMOS sensor of unknown origin and paired with a Maestro II processor. Together these deliver an ISO 100 to 50,000 sensitivity range and 5 FPS continuous shooting. The camera is obviously fitted with a M-mount which the only MF-only mount for which cameras are still being developed.

The Leica M10 scores a paltry DxO Mark score of 86 which must be one of the most disappointing performances of all times, considering this is a $7000 USD Full-Frame camera. Putting this into perspective the latest full-frame DSLR scores 100 points. Even worse, the M10 scores less than a few APS-C cameras! The Nikon D7200 in particular gets a score of 87. Agreed that both these cameras are much larger yet the Sony A6500 manages an 85 score.

DxO Mark breaks down the M10 score into 24.4 bits of color-depth, 13.2 EVs of dynamic-range and 2133 High-ISO points. Compare this to the Nikon D850 that scores 26.4 bits, 14.8 EV and 2660 High-ISO points, betting it significantly by on all sides. The APS-C sensor in the D7200 fares rather well too with 24.5  bits of color-depth, 14.6 EVs of dynamic-range and 1333 High-ISO points. As we keep repeating in our reviews, physics cannot be beaten. Even a poor full-frame sensor like the one in the M10 delivers a much better low-light performance than the best APS-C sensor.

Image-quality is not everything and DxO only characterizes sensors. Leica lenses are legendary and the M-system has a certain prestige associated with it but consider this: You can get a Fujifilm GFX 50S Medium Format Mirrorless Camera for less!

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Fujifilm X-T20

An express review of the Fujifilm X-T20 was just published at Neocamera. This is an intermediate-level Fujifilm mirrorless which slots itself below the professional and weatherproof X-T2 yet above the simpler X-A10. The original X-T10 reviewed here delivered a spectacular performance comparable to the then-flagship X-T1 yet in a more compact and efficient design.

The Fujifilm X-T20 launced at CES 2017 in January takes the image processing pipeline of the flagship X-T2 and places it in a body identical to the X-T10. This is one rather compact APS-C mirrorless, yet not quite as small as the recently reviewed Fujifilm X-E3. Still, it offers the same 24 megapixels X-Trans CMOS III sensor as the X-T2 and pairs it with the same X-Processor Pro. Together these can shoot continuously at 14 FPS with an electronic-shutter or 8 FPS with a mechanical one, plus it can record 4K Ultra-HD video as can be seen right here:

The 24 MP APS-C sensor in the X-T20 offers a 325-Point hybrid autofocus system which combines Phase-Detect and Contrast-Detect AF. This camera offers a good number of features and an impressive number of controls for its size, including dual control-dials, plus dedicated EC, Shutter-Speed and Drive Mode dials. The body is equipped with a large 2.4 megapixels 0.39″ EVF with 0.62X magnification, 100% coverage and an Eye-Start Sensor.

Read the complete Fujifilm X-T20 review at Neocamera.

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Hot on the heels of several cameras beating DxOMark records, the new Sony Alpha A7R III ties for third place with a score of 100, matching the recent Nikon D850. This makes these cameras the highest ranked full-frame mirrorless and full-frame DSLR, scoring just under two Medium Format Digital Cameras, one mirrorless and one DSLR. This first tells us that the mirror just has no impact on image quality and sensor size is still king.

Sony Alpha A7R III

The Sony A7R III is a 42 megapixels Full-Frame mirrorless using a BSI-CMOS with a built-in 399-Point Phase-Detect AF system and mounted on a 5-axis image-stabilization system effective to 5.5 stops over hand-holding. It is capable of shooting continuously at 10 FPS and recording 4K Ultra-HD video. The A7R III is equipped with a class-leading 0.50″ EVF 3.6 Megapixels with 0.78X magnification, 100% coverage and an Eye-Start sensor, plus a 3″ LCD with 1.4 megapixels.

This mirrorless ranks third highest camera at DxOMark with a score of 100 which breaks down into 26 bits-per-pixel of color-depth, 14.7 EV dynamic-range and a whopping 3523 Low-Light points. While the first two numbers are close to its peers, the low-light score is simply stellar, beating by a significant margin the D850 which scores a respectable 2660 points.  This puts it in forth place just being the Sony A7S which has much larger pixels with 12 megapixels on a full-frame sensor. Cameras scoring better in low-light are unsurprisingly Medium Format models which have larger sensors.

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The aging Pentax 645Z made its appearance at DxOMark, slipping into the second place between the Hasselblad X1D-50c and the Nikon D850 with a score of 101. Its been a great year for digital camera image quality improvements yet the 645Z is already 3 years old! Although DxO Mark did not rank it until now, Pentax 645Z users surely new of its immense image-quality!

Pentax 645Z

The Pentax 645Z is the only Medium Format DSLR on the market. Its 50 megapixels CMOS sensor is 44x33mm, just like sensors the the Fujifilm GFX-50S reviewed here and Hasselblad X1D-50c. This one though has a reflex optical viewfinder and a legacy Pentax 645 mount that was hugely popular in the film days of Medium Format. This type of camera is designed for maximum image-quality thanks to a large sensor without an anti-alias filter. Pixels are correspondingly which also  maximizes dynamic-range and sensitivity to light. The 645Z has an ISO 100-204800 sensitivity range.

The DxOMark Score of 101 places right above the best performing DSLR which is what someone getting into Medium Format would expect. The scores breaks down into 26 bits of color-depth, 14.7 EV of dynamic-range and 4504 ISO score. There is probably slightly more read-noise in a sensor of the 645Z’s age which explains why both color-depth and dynamic-range fall behind the Nikon D850 and Hasselblad X1D-50c. Where the 645Z recovers and actually takes the crown is its best-ever 4505 ISO score.

Neocamera Blog © Cybernium


Every year …OK, not last year, read why here Neocamera chooses which digital cameras are the best in the market among competing digital cameras. This time we ran through all digital cameras introduced in 2016 and 2017 to decide which ones are deserving the title of Best Digital Camera of 2017 in their respective class.

Best Digital Cameras of 2017

The digital camera market overall has been shrinking, so this year we had to skip the ultra-compact category,with cellphones taking over their place. At the same time though, camera prices have been rising to compensate for lost volume. Plus, the average price is also shifting because there are fewer entry-level models to choose from. For this reason, this year we have also awarded Best Budget Camera os 2017 to lower-cost models that deliver exceptional value in the Travel-Zoom and Ultra-Zoom category.

The Premium Compact category that made a resurgence in 2015 remains with no choice but to pay the corresponding Premium price.  Among mirrorless and DSLRs, there are now offerings from $500 to over $5000, so both these types of cameras were divided into sub-categories to select the Best Digital Camera at every price-point.

Find out which are The Best Digital Cameras of 2017 at Neocamera!

Neocamera Blog © Cybernium



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