The best of the best from the Photokina 2014 show in Cologne
Photokina 2014 was packed with exciting announcements this year, whether you’re looking for a new camera, body, lens or accessory. You can read all our coverage of the show on our Photokina 2014 page. To celebrate the great tech announced at the show, we’ve decided to hand out four awards to our favourites, one for best camera and three more best of Photokina awards.
With so many great products to choose from, it was tricky to pick just which deserved to win. The winners had to show innovation and also be products we feel people will want to buy over the next year. These aren’t final reviews of course, based only on showfloor impressions, but these are the products we’re most keen to get in our labs. So without further ado here are the award winners.
BEST CAMERA 2014: Samsung NX1
Blurring the lines between digital SLR and compact system camera further than ever before, the NX1 has so many premium features it’s difficult to justify a bulky DSLR when Samsung has squeezed so many features into its new flagship CSC. 4K video capture is the headline feature, but even if you’re more a dedicated stills person, there’s lots to like.
The removal of the low-pass filter should sharpen up results from the pixel-packed 28-megapixel sensor. There’s a whopping 205 phase detect autofocus points, and the claimed focus speed is staggering quick, there’s also burst shooting at up 15fps. It feels great to hold too, with a chunky grip and well positioned controls. WE can’t wait to give it a full test soon.
For more details read our Samsung NX1 CSC review – hands on.
BEST OF PHOTOKINA: Panasonic CM1
The CM1 was the real surprise of the show and a very welcome one at that. Panasonic doesn’t has only made a couple of smartphones before, and those were a few years back, but it looks to have a winner on its hands with the CM1 smartphone-camera hybrid. It’s an Android smartphone that packs in a comparatively massive 1in sensor, which sits behind a bright F2.8 lens. That will give it a huge advantage over any other camera phone on the market, with results that could rival the incredible Sony RX100 III.
It’s no slouch as a phone either, with an up-to-date Snapdragon 801 chipset, 4.7in Full HD display and LTE/4G support. Sadly we’re not sure when it will come to the UK yet, or at what price, but a launch sometime next year looks likely. We await the CM1 with huge anticipation.
For more details read Panasonic introduces DMC-CM1.
BEST OF PHOTOKINA: Canon 7D Mk II
This new DSLR is a major upgrade over the original 7D, the model at the top of Canon’s APS-C range, and it should be after nearly a five-year wait for a replacement. The new sensor has a relatively modest 20.2-megapixel resolution, but the standout spec is the 65 AF points, all of which are the more senstive cross type. Furthermore you get phase-detect autofocus in live view mode, letting you focus as quickly when composing using the screen as you would with the viewfinder. A continuous 10fps shooting mode, back ed by a huge buffer makes this a great camera for capturing action.
Autofocus during video capture is now also available, along with a clean HDMI output for those who want to capture the best possible video. It’s all looking very exciting and we can’t wait to get one in for full testing, it looks like the Nikon D7100 may be about to lose its crown.
Read more in our Canon 7D Mk II review – hands on.
BEST OF PHOTOKINA: Fujifilm X100T
Fuji’s latest improves on what was the best compact camera we’ve reviewed with the first of its kind electronic rangefinder that has the potential to transform manual shooting. It provides a digital zoomed-in focus area in teh corner of the optical viewfinder, giving you the best of both worlds – the instant update and clarity of an optical viewfinder, with the manual focusing precision of an EVF.
In most other respects it’s similar to its award-winning predecessor, the Fujifilm X100S, except with a few rejigged button placements and dial controls – all welcome tweaks to an already brilliant camera. We’ll be looking at doing a full review sometime in November.
For more information read our Fujifilm X100t review – hands on.
Congratulations to all our winners. We look forward to bringing you further coverage and reviews of all these fantastic new devices throughout the coming year.