| The perfect digital camera
It's 2007 and I'm totally frustrated with the camera manufacturer's lack of understanding
that the professionals want use
small format cameras. I'm in my late 50's and will never again carry a
heavy camera but I still want to capture professional quality images. Give
me a small format camera that doesn't compromise image quality. I don't care what the cost is.
I'm pleading with Nikon to put an APS size sensor in a compact
point and shoot. Give me a built in zoom lens starting at 24mm, an articulated LCD and a hot shoe.
Give me the tools to shoot the highest quality images possible and let me
put it in my pocket (or wear it on a belt pouch) and carry it everywhere.
And it's not just the aging professional. The forums are filled with posts about image quality
and a lot of those photographers would also spare no expense to purchase a
camera capable of the highest image quality.
Nikon has always been innovative in their
compact camera design. The introduction of the Nikon CoolPix 990 in April
2000 brought about
the most significant change in my photography since I started shooting in
the early 1970s. Between digital (as in no film cost) and the swivel body
design which allowed for shooting at unique angles, photography was new
and exciting again for me. That was the last time I ever picked up my film
cameras except to sell them on eBay a few years later.
| In 2002 Nikon released the CoolPix 5000 and I found my
(then) perfect camera. Small form factor,
articulated LCD that replaced
the swivel body design of the earlier CoolPix models, a 28mm-85mm zoom,
five megapixels and stunning image quality. I reviewed the CoolPix 5000
for Shutterbug Magazine.
| In November 2005 I finally retired my CoolPix 5000 for
the already discontinued CoolPix 8400. Eight megapixels, a 24mm lens at the
wide end of the zoom, and an articulated LCD for creative shooting angles.
The CoolPix 8400 had been released in the fall of 2004 and was only
available for about a year.
| Features I'm looking for are high
megapixel APS size chip, like that found in the D2X or D200, articulated LCD to
make it easier to hold the camera to get sharp pictures,
wide angle built in lens starting at 24mm or at the very least 28mm, and
if it's a Nikon, the ability to shoot with the wireless CLS system. In Nikon's rush to try and outsell the Canon Powershot
G7 with their CoolPix P5000, they compromised on too many features that I consider a necessity.
Where has Nikon's innovative vision gone.
In the race to bring DSLR cameras to the masses, which Nikon is extremely
successful in their D40 and D40X, it seems they are not investing in
creating a professional quality small format point and shoot which would
have to sell for more than the D40. They
obviously do not understand the needs of aging professional photographers
like me who can afford to pay for quality. So until they can design a camera with higher
quality image capabilities, I'll stick to the CoolPix 8400. I'm even
having the CoolPix 8400
converted to shoot infrared and have purchased all the
accessories Nikon manufactured to be part of the CoolPix 8400 system.
| Thom Hogan has a
similar article on
his web site and is offering to design a high quality pocket
camera for any manufacturer that is interested. And there are many threads
on the forums about photographers looking for a camera that can produce
the highest quality images possible. Where are the manufacturers and why
aren't they paying attention, instead of designing identical mediocre