Print 26 comment(s) - last by nocturne_81.. on Sep 12 at 2:51 AM

$3,000 for a fixed lens camera

A new digital camera has leaked from Sony called the RX1. The fixed-lens camera appears to be very compact yet has very impressive specifications for a “pocketable” camera.
The rumors claim that the camera will have a full-frame sensor and will sport a Carl Zeiss 35mm F/2.0 compact lens. Speculation points to price tag of around $3,000, which seems like a lot for camera that doesn't support interchangeable lenses.
The only details we know are from the photographs. The camera has a hot shoe for flash or other accessories, a pop-up flash, and a control wheel on the top for aperture and other settings.
This digital camera is expected to compete against the Fuji X100 and the Leica X2. The official announcement of the camera is expected to happen on Wednesday, September 12.
Would you buy a $3,000 digital camera without support for interchangeable lenses?

Sources: Sony Alpha Rumors, Engadget

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Would not with or without
By ipay on 9/10/2012 11:09:07 AM , Rating: 2
Would you buy a $3,000 digital camera without support for interchangeable lenses?
Wouldn't buy one that did for that much green -- don't need such a camera. But I understand why some do need such a camera; one of my friends has a ~$55,000 digital camera in his studio.

RE: Would not with or without
By anactoraaron on 9/10/2012 11:31:18 AM , Rating: 2
one of my friends has a ~$55,000 digital camera in his studio.

Wha? What camera would that be? Not that I doubt that there are camera bodies that cost that much... but Nikon's flagship (albeit aging flagship) D3X is only 8 grand...

RE: Would not with or without
By bug77 on 9/10/2012 11:35:21 AM , Rating: 2
There are better cameras then Nikon and Canon.
But I still don't see someone needing this one from Sony.

RE: Would not with or without
By anactoraaron on 9/10/2012 12:23:09 PM , Rating: 2
Better for still studio photos, maybe, yes. I personally have never used a camera from Hasselblad (and likely never will) so I can't give an informed opinion on their quality (high price doesn't always mean quality). I do see that they have an official Ferrari endorsed camera though (I wonder how much they had to pay to do that).

I don't see anything they sell that has a faster shutter than 1/800th so they may be better for studio work (again I have never used one), but for action there are faster shutter cameras that fill that use better.

'Better' varies on usage, so to say "there are better cameras than Nikon and Canon" isn't something I completely agree with.

RE: Would not with or without
By bug77 on 9/10/2012 12:29:15 PM , Rating: 2
For pro cameras, a larger sensor IS better. That's not to say anyone would go around taking vacation snapshots using one.

RE: Would not with or without
By Jeffk464 on 9/10/2012 12:53:38 PM , Rating: 2
Not just for pros, if you really want professional looking nature scenes like the pros you need the big lens and sensor. Our point and shoots or phones work pretty well for good family pics and what not, but they just really hold out for those spectacular shots.

RE: Would not with or without
By anactoraaron on 9/10/2012 1:04:11 PM , Rating: 2
For pro's that want to freeze action to say, be able to count the stitches on a baseball, 1/800th isn't going to cut it. (looking at Hasselblad here)

Like I said, usage determines which camera is better.

RE: Would not with or without
By bug77 on 9/11/2012 3:44:53 AM , Rating: 2
Actually, it could. With a larger sensor, you can go with ISO 400 or ISO 800 and get no noise at all. But that's just theory, in practice sports events are packed with Nikons and Canons. Not sure if because of shutter speed, the need for zoom (larger sensors have a wider FOV, quite the opposite of what you need for sports) or just plain cost.

RE: Would not with or without
By aliasfox on 9/11/2012 10:02:24 AM , Rating: 2
big frame, slower shutter is good for stills and low light - the hasselblad would be great for capturing outdoor evening scenes or really minute detail, for example.

a faster shutter like that available on SLRs (especially nice ones) is good for stopping motion, especially in good light (F2.0 lens on 1/6400 shutter at ISO 800 at an effective focal length of 400mm, for example).

RE: Would not with or without
By ipay on 9/10/2012 11:41:31 AM , Rating: 2
It's a Hasselblad. Don't remember the specific model.

RE: Would not with or without
By Nortel on 9/10/2012 11:52:59 AM , Rating: 2
camera body would be cheap. the digital backs are what cost money. P65+ back was $35,000 last time I checked.

RE: Would not with or without
By SuckRaven on 9/10/2012 12:07:11 PM , Rating: 2
He probably has a medium format camera from Hasselblad, like the HD4-60 or something a bit fancier maybe, like the HDR-200MS. These cameras cost in the $40k region, give or take. Or if he does video, it's probably RED camera. Anyways, this is like comparing apples and diamond-encrusted oranges.

It's conceivable that a professional with funding (not his own) or money to burn personally could use such a "point and shoot" pocket-ish sized camera alongside his regular gear, as a supplement.

But yeah...the lack of interchangeable lenses really is the Achilles' heel of the RX1. For the price, I would still go with a D800, or if it wasn't over 1k more expensive, the 5D Mark III.

RE: Would not with or without
By Jeffk464 on 9/10/2012 12:47:31 PM , Rating: 2
Would you buy a $3,000 digital camera without support for interchangeable lenses?

Hell, to the no.

RE: Would not with or without
By Jeffk464 on 9/10/2012 12:48:15 PM , Rating: 2
Maybe $600 for something like that.

RE: Would not with or without
By SPOOFE on 9/10/2012 12:58:41 PM , Rating: 2
For $600 you can probably get the sensor. Just sayin'.

RE: Would not with or without
By nocturne_81 on 9/12/2012 2:51:43 AM , Rating: 2
Nikon and Canon reach the 'pro-sumer' level at best with their offerings. There's an entire realm of what is truly 'professional' far beyond small-formats like 35mm and apc-sized clones.

It's confusing, though.. Having been a serious-amateur photographer years before the digital evolution, I certainly know better. Nowadays, though.. most think that all it takes to be a 'professional' photographer is a mid-range dSLR, a macbook, and a copy of Adobe Lightroom.

They don't even teach Photoshop in most photography courses any more, opting instead for Lightroom due to it's cheaper price and, well -- 90% of students just aren't capable of anything more complicated. Personally, I think any 2 year course should have a required solid year of film-based photography classes prior to touching digital, just to teach the necessary basics that make the rest seem like a piece of cake (spend hours developing one roll of film into prints, you'll learn quick not to just take hundreds of snapshots and instead focus on taking one good picture). One recent graduate I know doesn't even know how aperture and shutter speed affect exposure..

A reputation move
By SPOOFE on 9/10/2012 12:40:50 PM , Rating: 3
This isn't a product Sony is building to move in volume; this is a product Sony is building to mention in all their brochures to make their overall "brand" seem more impressive. When the Sony brand is more impressive, that carries over to all their products, including the sub-$100 P&S's.

RE: A reputation move
By Jeffk464 on 9/10/2012 12:57:09 PM , Rating: 2
Don't know why but sony has a hard time producing the best in category. They are the same way with audio, I'm not really impressed with them as a whole.

RE: A reputation move
By SPOOFE on 9/10/2012 1:00:25 PM , Rating: 3
They got complacent. They built a "good name" in the 70s and 80s, and rested on that through the 90s. Now they want to build a "good name" again, and they need something other than the "race to the bottom" products to do that, even if it's products that don't really sell in significant numbers.

Sensor Wars?
By EricMartello on 9/10/2012 3:03:22 PM , Rating: 3
Basically we've shifted away from "more MP is bettar!" to "bigger sensorz plz"...but it's still just as narrow-sighted as gauging a camera by one bullet point alone.

This camera may take nice pictures but for $3,000 the value proposition just isn't there, and without the ability to swap lenses you'll never really benefit from the larger sensor.

You can buy a Nikon D800 and a 50mm f/1.4 lens for $3,500 or if you want to stay compact, you can get a really nice MFT body and lenses for $3,000 or less.

If I were Sony I'd be doing R&D on curved photo sensors that allow more surface area within a given form factor. Imagine something like a micro 4/3 camera with a convex or concave sensor that equates to 35 mm film, or a 35 mm form factor that equates to medium format. This is tech that Sony should be pioneering, perhaps with support from Nikon, for the next generation of digital cameras.

RE: Sensor Wars?
By mi1400 on 9/11/2012 1:31:23 AM , Rating: 2
perhaps sony has build this cam for spy agencies... so no one could label them like McAfee of providing backdoor's though this is not backdoor but again only agencies would like to spend 3,000 for some random item in their footsoldier's pocket.

Why would you....
By mmntech on 9/10/2012 5:49:36 PM , Rating: 2 $3000 for this when the Canon 5D Mk II is flitting with the $2000 mark with lens.

RE: Why would you....
By BifurcatedBoat on 9/10/2012 6:12:59 PM , Rating: 3
Because you can't fit a 5D MkII in your pocket.

Some say the best camera you own is the best one you carry around with you.

By Slaimus on 9/11/2012 2:58:17 PM , Rating: 2
The reason it is so expensive is that its competition is even more expensive. The Leica M9 full frame portable is well over $6,000.

RE: Perspective
By SPOOFE on 9/11/2012 5:08:55 PM , Rating: 3
Sony WISHES it had Leica's reputation.

Street shooters or 3rd cameras
By aliasfox on 9/11/2012 10:09:47 AM , Rating: 2
Best for professional photographers who want to do street shooting with the best results. It's an environment that's not necessarily welcoming of the guy who has a huge camera, lenses, etc. A pocketable/near pocketable camera is much more discreet, and most people would pass it off as 'just another tourist.'

It could also be could as a 'last resort' camera on a pro photographer's bag. If the photographer lost/broke his lenses, or his batteries are all dead, or both his primary and spare bodies are unusable for whatever reason.

All that said, $3k is a pretty penny. If someone were willing to go APS-C or m4/3, there are options <$1k that could serve similar needs without the expense - though you would lose out on low light. A full frame sensor and F2.0 lens would be pretty sick at a wedding (for example).

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