CES is finally over, and as expected, the show mainly focused on consumer electronics. Camera manufacturers mainly focused on the volume model (cheaper compacts) in general. Of course, Fuji was an exception by announcing what appears to be a brilliant pair of models – the X100s and X20. So what else is in the horizon past today?
Next big show to come is the CP+ which is going to be held in Japan, scheduled for late January. CP+ traditionally focuses more on the photography equipment so we may see some surprise there, and here are some speculations on what may come to us.
- Canon G2 X – obviously a successor to the G1 X, the G2 X should auto-focus much faster than the G1 X. The aperture size on the G1 X was also criticized in the past but there hasn’t been any rumors that suggest Canon will change this for the G2 X, unfortunately.
- Olympus E-P5 – the successor to the E-P3, this model should feature the same sensor as E-M5 / E-PL5 but with a body similar to the E-P3. It needs to feature a built-in EVF – without it, it is going to be too close to highly praised E-PL5. E-P3′s body + upgraded sensor + tiltable LCD, priced half way between E-PL5 and E-M5 would make it a nice package.
- Panasonic GX2 – this model is long overdue. GX1 has been on heavy discount for a while now, and many sites have speculated that GX2 release would be eminent but never really materialized. Perhaps Panasonic is saving it for the CP+. Unlike the Olympus E-P5, I don’t expect Panasonic to include a built-in EVF – that’s the job for the G5 and its successors. I do expect the GX2 to use the same sensor used by GH3 (which is likely to use the same sensor as Olympus E-M5). And by using a new more powerful processor, GX2 should be a pleasant camera for anyone who doesn’t need a built-in EVF. As usual, Panasonic will not include any form of image stabilization in the body.
- Panasonic GF7 – this one is a long shot since the GF5 isn’t that old yet. The big question is, whether they will use the GH3′s sensor in this value end model. Olympus has unified all of their M43 models with the same sensor, and if Panasonic does not follow this pattern, I’m not sure if GF7 will be competitive against Olympus E-PM2.
- Fujifilm X-Pro 2 – the predecessor X-Pro 1 is now getting a bit long on its tooth. It still features one of the best IQ amongst APS-C cameras, its little brother, X-E1 shines a lot brighter these days mainly because it does almost everything X-Pro 1 does but at a lower cost. X-Pro 2 will need to further distinguish itself from the X-E1, perhaps starting with higher resolution and faster refresh EVF, higher resolution LCD, new processor for faster AF, and some form of weather sealing. Its sensor is already a state of the art, and due to its proprietary format, its RAW files are still not well supported by popular photo editing/management tools. I’m not sure if they want to create more proprietary RAW formats, although a 24MP version of their X-Trans sensor might still make sense.
I don’t have any entries for Sony. They have been on gang busters recently by releasing excellent (class leading or near it) models such as RX100, NEX-6, and RX1. Perhaps they can surprise us again with the introduction of RX10 which obviously will use their APS-C sensor, perhaps tied with anther Zeiss lens. NEX-8 would be nice as well, as a successor to the NEX-7, which was rather well received to the public except for one issue – high ISO setting produced rather high level of noise. Plus, Sony hasn’t come up with a brand new APS-C sensor for a while now (Sony NEX-6 still uses the same sensor as significantly older and cheaper NEX-5N). But I have to admit neither are likely to happen by the end of Jan.