Yes, it’s that time of the year again–the time to make up some useless list, make some silly presumption that everyone’s got the same photographic needs, treat photography like some steel cage/Ultimate Fighter match, and declare one camera as the one to rule them all. It’s time…cue drum roll and spotlights…to name the New Camera News 2013 Camera of the Year.
Runner Up: Nikon Df
We admit it– we at NCN have been a little harsh towards the Df. We know that it’s got a pretty killer sensor, and lots of fiddly manual controls that men of a certain age like to fondle. It probably takes nice photos. Scratch that, it probably doesn’t get in the way of you taking nice photos. But really, it’s as if someone took a really good BMW sedan and dressed it up to look like a car from Downton Abbey. So, as much as we admires the specs, we’re tired of wearing tails to dinner.
Runner Up: Sony A7/A7r
Sony has done what every photographer over the age of 40 has asked for ever since the first APS-C camera sullied their collection of heavy, manual focus, impossibly Ludditian vintage prime lenses–introduce a full frame camera that doesn’t require a fork lift. With the Sony A7 and A7r pair, greying photogs can now use their old primes at the focal lengths and fields of view that God designed them for. But many are quickly realizing, much to their chagrin, that A) that manual focusing is harder with their aging eyes and without split prism focusing screens, and B) that they actually did kind of like the convenience of zooms and auto focus. So with that epiphany, they head off to the Sony store to find out that Sony doesn’t really like making lenses; they much prefer the familiarity of silicon set in plastic or metal shells.
Close again, Sony, but still no cigar. And no, we don’t want an electronic cigarette.
Runner Up: Pentax K-3
The new Ricoh Pentax K-3 is the top dog in the world of APS-C DSLRs, with specs that would make a pro blush–24 megapickles, up to 8.3 FPS, improved AF, dual SD card slots, weather-resistant, cold-resistant, and so on and so on. The biggest criticism of the K-3 is that it’s not a Nikon D400 or Canon 7D Mark II. And that’s enough to make it a bridesmaid.
Runner Up: Olympus OM-D E-M1
We know that there is a small and vocal and ardent group of Olympus fans out there. We don’t care. Pound for pound it may be a good camera, but dollar for dollar it ain’t. And while the OM-D E-M5 was an unabashed Mini-me of the classic OM film cameras, the E-M1, with it’s glued on grip, now resembles Donkey from Shrek.
Runner Up: Panasonic GX7
Did you really think that a video camera was going to win? Next.
Runner Up: Leica M
Yes, we know–“technically” the Leica M was introduced in 2012, but really, Leica’s are as rare as hen’s teeth or unicorns driving Lamborghinis, so all intents and purposes, admitting it as a contender for NCN COTY isn’t a big deal; you aren’t going to buy it anyway. And if you do buy one, we daresay that you don’t give a rat’s ass as to what the hoi polloi think about your Precious, do you?
It didn’t win anyway, so no harm, no foul. We just wanted to poke fun of Leica.
New Camera News 2013 Camera of the Year
Seriously, could it really be any other camera? Announced in 2013 and finally available this year, this camera has the heart of a 2012 Sony wrapped in a body that looks like Lady Gaga and Miley Cyrus got drunk, did some twerking and whatnot, and then threw up. That’s how cool it is.