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Smallest SLR available?

Smallest SLR available?

Old Dec 5, 13, 7:56 am
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Smallest SLR available?

Basically I experimented with SLR's (Canon 500D) and loved it but never found them to be practical. I sold mine a couple of years back and now I want one again as you simply can't get the quality from a point and shoot camera.

Using a Canon S95 right now which is handy and takes some good pictures but I hate the lag that I get from pressing the button to the camera clicking the picture. Often 1-3 seconds in which time if the person moves the picture comes out blurred. With SLR it was instant.

What is the smallest SLR or even a point and shoot camera available now which would take SLR equivalent pictures? I also want to try out slowing the shutter at night time and blurring out the back grounds on pictures. A fast shutter is a must though for normal point and shoot pics.
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Old Dec 5, 13, 8:28 am
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I think you should look at either a mirrorless body with an APS-C sensor - good write-up here, or one of the tiniest SLR's like a Canon Rebel SL1.

A mirrorless like a Canon M, Sony NEX-5N, Fuji X-E1, etc., will weigh somewhere in the .6 to .8lb range, with batteries, without lens, and in the 4.5"x2.5"x1.5" size neighborhood.

The SL1 is .9lb and 4.6"x3.6"x2.7" - 2.5x the volume (though lenses would be the same size on each and would greatly reduce the % variation). But you do get certain benefits of an SLR that a mirrorless still doesn't have.

Last edited by CPRich; Dec 5, 13 at 8:38 am
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Old Dec 5, 13, 11:41 am
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For point and shoot... the Sony RX1 is expensive but it has a 23.8 x 35.8 sensor and yet 4 1/2" x 2 5/8" x 2 3/4". For about half the price, the Nikon Coolpix A has a 16x24mm sensor at a similar sized but thinner body 4.4 x 2.6 x 1.6" .
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Old Dec 5, 13, 3:05 pm
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Rumors are that a new Nikon 1 version will be introduced in January. That could mean good deals on the current version.

Has anyone here used the Nikon 1? I have a Panasonic FZ200 that I take everywhere, but it leaves a lot to be desired in low light, shutter response, etc. Thinking of trying mirrorless. I feel a case of NAS coming on.
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Old Dec 5, 13, 4:42 pm
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Thanks all. I am not that savvy with camera's. I want to do the following -

Take slow shutter pics at night time
Have the camera automatically blur out the back of pictures.
Take a quick picture without any lag.

Will a mirrorless do this?
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Old Dec 5, 13, 4:49 pm
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Originally Posted by CPRich View Post
The SL1 is .9lb and 4.6"x3.6"x2.7" - 2.5x the volume (though lenses would be the same size on each and would greatly reduce the % variation). But you do get certain benefits of an SLR that a mirrorless still doesn't have.
What can a SLR do that a mirrorless can not?
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Old Dec 5, 13, 4:57 pm
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Originally Posted by SeAAttle View Post
Rumors are that a new Nikon 1 version will be introduced in January. That could mean good deals on the current version.
The current one is selling for 265. Half price from 549. Is that normal or due to the new model coming out?
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Old Dec 5, 13, 6:51 pm
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The newer versions of mirrorless (ILC) cameras are virtually as capable as equivalent DSLRs in much smaller and lighter packages. You have to go into the pro models (5DmIII, D800, D4, etc) to exceed what is possible with an Olympus, Panasonic, Sony or Fujifilm ILC. Canon and Nikon are currently behind the curve in this area and I wouldn't consider them until they market better models. The two market leaders are in in a bit of a bind in this. They see the handwriting on the wall but they also know that a really capable ILC in their line-up will take sales away from the lucrative DSLR lines. What to do, what to do?

A number of renowned professionals have made the switch to ILC and are not looking back. After talking with a couple of them, I have switched for travel, too. I haven't missed either the DSLR or the weight and bulk they represent.
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Old Dec 5, 13, 7:00 pm
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Originally Posted by abmj-jr View Post
The newer versions of mirrorless (ILC) cameras are virtually as capable as equivalent DSLRs in much smaller and lighter packages. You have to go into the pro models (5DmIII, D800, D4, etc) to exceed what is possible with an Olympus, Panasonic, Sony or Fujifilm ILC. Canon and Nikon are currently behind the curve in this area and I wouldn't consider them until they market better models. The two market leaders are in in a bit of a bind in this. They see the handwriting on the wall but they also know that a really capable ILC in their line-up will take sales away from the lucrative DSLR lines. What to do, what to do?

A number of renowned professionals have made the switch to ILC and are not looking back. After talking with a couple of them, I have switched for travel, too. I haven't missed either the DSLR or the weight and bulk they represent.
Thanks. That's good to know. May I ask what you use?
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Old Dec 5, 13, 7:19 pm
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Originally Posted by onlysuites View Post
What can a SLR do that a mirrorless can not?
Really good fast continuous tracking AF of rapidly and unpredictably moving subject matter. That's pretty much it.
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Old Dec 5, 13, 7:54 pm
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Originally Posted by SeAAttle View Post
Rumors are that a new Nikon 1 version will be introduced in January. That could mean good deals on the current version.

Has anyone here used the Nikon 1? I have a Panasonic FZ200 that I take everywhere, but it leaves a lot to be desired in low light, shutter response, etc. Thinking of trying mirrorless. I feel a case of NAS coming on.
I have a Nikon 1 V1. The camera itself is not bad but the lens and lens line up are not great. Nikon overprices their 1 system equipment by a lot too.

Micro 4/3 is a much better system. Great lens line up. Terrific image quality. I love my Olympus E-M1. But you can get good deals on the OM-D E-M5 which is also a fine camera but it doesn't handle as well as the E-M1. The Panasonics are well-regarded too...if you really want tiny the new Panny GM1 is very small.
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Old Dec 5, 13, 9:00 pm
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Originally Posted by flyboy60 View Post
Really good fast continuous tracking AF of rapidly and unpredictably moving subject matter. That's pretty much it.
That's certainly the biggest one. If you're trying to shoot sports, a MILC likely isn't going to cut it.

You're also limited to viewfinders that either are not TTL and have the resulting paralax issues or are electronic and look a bit odd (IMHO) with some lag/delay/jitter/etc. I suspect this has gotten better over time.

Shutter lag was still an issue when I tried them, but that may also have improved.
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Old Dec 5, 13, 9:37 pm
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Originally Posted by SeAAttle View Post
Thanks. That's good to know. May I ask what you use?
I tried the Sony NEX for almost a year and used it for a pretty major photo trip to Hokkaido in September and October. The images I got were completely acceptable and the decrease in weight and bulk over my DSLR system was striking. That said, there were a few functionality issues that bugged me. It has a funky menu arrangement, rather mediocre view finder, limited flash options and most importantly for an outdoor guy like me, it is not weather sealed. Those things may not bother someone else, especially if they prefer using the LCD to compose and don't go out to shoot in the rain. A month ago, I sold it all and am now in the "break-in phase" with the Olympus OMD-EM system, which so far seems to cure all of those problems.

This is an example from that Hokkaido trip.


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Old Dec 6, 13, 4:33 am
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Originally Posted by glennaa11 View Post
I have a Nikon 1 V1. The camera itself is not bad but the lens and lens line up are not great. Nikon overprices their 1 system equipment by a lot too.
Thanks for all your help. I think a Mirrorless is what I need and have narrowed it down to the Nikon 1.

Two questions on this -

1. There seems to be around a $150 differance between J1 and J3. Is the extra worth it when for me 10 Mill Mega pixels will be enough as I am not looking at blowing pictures up. Is the HDR worth it? I don't intend to take a lot of pictures per minute so the 10 that the J1 offers me is enough.

2. I read that the Nikon 1 uses a smaller sensor then the others? What are the negatives in this?

Any other advantages/disadvantages for Nikon 1? Which one of the 1's would you recommend? There are so many S1, J1, J2, J3????
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Old Dec 6, 13, 5:08 am
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Originally Posted by onlysuites View Post
...
2. I read that the Nikon 1 uses a smaller sensor then the others? What are the negatives in this? ...
That and the issues identified by Glen upthread are the main drawbacks. The smaller, P&S-size sensor is a problem and image quality suffers as compared to other ILCs. It really doesn't deliver any better IQ than many point-and-shoots, and doesn't match the really good ones.

Last edited by abmj-jr; Dec 6, 13 at 5:13 am
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