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|Category:||Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera|
Top 10 Best Compact System Cameras - Updated - Top 10 Best Compact System Cameras, Mirrorless Cameras, Interchangeable Lens Camers, call them what you will, these compact cameras produce SLR quality images and are seriously worth your attention.
The mirrorless camera market, or compact system camera as most people now call it, is certainly interesting, providing DSLR sized sensors, in compact styled cameras, with a much more rapid refresh cycle, which has seen a number of new cameras introduced each year. Here we highlight the best of the bunch, starting with Number 1:
Number 1: Samsung NX200 - The Samsung NX200 is the latest mirrorless compact system camera from Samsung and features a high resolution 20.3 megapixel CMOS sensor, high speed shooting at 7fps and high image quality. Buy online from £499 with kit lens.
"The Samsung NX200 has the second highest resolution available of any compact system camera available, with a 20.3 megapixel APS-C sensor, this is higher than many Digital SLRs and yet it manages to produces images with low noise levels."
2. Panasonic Lumix GH2 - (Joint 2nd) - High quality camera designed to look like a Digital SLR, with a more compact size and excellent handling. Lots of external controls. 5fps shooting, ultra fast focusing, popular for video use with Full HD recording. The Penasonic Lumix GH2 is available for £1039 with 14-140mm lens.
3. Olympus PEN Lite E-PL3 - (Joint 2nd) - Compact, stylish, high quality images, high speed focusing, swivel screen, mode dial, 5.5fps shooting. The Olympus PEN Lite E-PL3 is available for £449 with kit lens.
4. Olympus PEN Mini E-PM1 (Joint 2nd) - Even more compact and stylish with high quality images, high speed focusing, and 5.5fps shooting. The Olympus PEN Mini E-PM1 is available for £389 with kit lens.
5. Olympus PEN E-P3 (Joint 3rd) - Premium built, tough metal bodied camera with high quality touch screen, high speed focusing, and the ability to change the grip on the camera (officially!). The high price may put some people off, and 3fps continuous shooting is looking a little slow compared to some of these other mirrorless cameras. The Olympus PEN E-P3 is available for £699 with kit lens.
6. Panasonic Lumix G3 (Joint 3rd) - The Panasonic Lumix G3 is a compact SLR styled camera with a 16 megapixel sensor, and high resolution 1.44million dot electronic viewfinder and 3 inch swivel touch screen, it's also Panasonic's best seller compact system camera ever. The Panasonic Lumix G3 is available for £479 with kit lens.
7. Sony NEX-5N (Joint 3rd) - The NEX-5N updates the Sony NEX-5 with a 16 megapixel sensor, updated design and new touch screen, as well as keeping the metal body, full HD video recording, and is available for £529 with kit lens.
8. Nikon 1 J1 and V1 (Joint 3rd) - The Nikon 1 Series was introduced this year to a wave of online discussion, due to the camera having a 1inch 10 megapixel sensor, smaller than all other CSC cameras (apart from the Pentax Q), however the compact sensor enables 60fps shooting and other features. For handling the V1 is preferable, but with a real shutter rather than electronic and built in viewfinder it commands a higher price than the more compact J1. The Nikon V1 is available for £629, the J1 available for £449.
9. Samsung NX11 (joint 4th) - 14mp, with sharp images and good image quality, slightly higher noise than expected considering the APS-C sensor, but the bargain price (around £339 with kit lens) and DSLR styling would be good for anyone looking for an outdoor camera.
10. Panasonic Lumix GF2 (joint 4th) - Compact, somewhere in between a GF3 and a GF1, the GF2 still features a flash hot-shoe, built in flash, and manual control. The Panasonic Lumix GF2 is available for £319 with kit lens.
These almost made it onto the list, and are still worth looking at...
Sony NEX-C3 (5th) - The Sony NEX-C3 is the latest entry level NEX system, featuring a plastic body and 720p video. The APS-C sized sensor is 16mp. The Sony NEX-C3 is available for £399 with kit lens makes it one of the cheapest new Sony NEX cameras available.
Panasonic Lumix GF3 (6th) - Compact Panasonic - smallest Micro Four Thirds camera with built in flash, and one of the cheapest new Panasonic Lumix G cameras available, priced at £379 with kit lens.
And the Pentax Q (7th) - The smallest sensor of any mirrorless camera, it uses a compact camera sensor, which means it doesn't benefit from the large sensors featured in the other cameras, although it does benefit from small lenses. The price is quite high at £599 with kit lens.
Don't forget to pick up a bag for it to protect it - have a look at our complete guide to bags. If you want a memory card for your camera, have a look at our complete guide to memory cards.
Read our updated Top 10 Best Mirrorless Compact System Cameras.