The Fall’s Most Exciting New Cameras

Fall is an exciting time for photography and it’s not just because of the scenery that comes with the season. The newest enthusiast and professional cameras tend to arrive on shelves in the fall and, even if you’re not in the market for a new shooter, the latest gear announcements are worth a peak just to see what new technology is being introduced.

While a lot of new announcements are mediocre updates, the fall of 2014 has brought in several new cameras that are more than marginal. Canon has released a new DSLR with amazing burst speeds, while Nikon has announced the first full frame DSLR with both a tilting LCD screen and Wi-Fi. All mediocrity aside, here are the most exciting cameras hitting the shelves this fall.

Canon EOS 7D Mark II

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DSLRs have a lot of equipment inside that has to move every time an image is taken, so burst speeds of three to five frames per second are pretty typical until you hit the $4,000+ price range. Canon’s EOS 7D Mark II is boasting a 10fps burst speed, a huge accomplishment for a DSLR that’s priced under $2,000.

The speed is making sports photographers take note, as well as shooters who often photograph active kids. To accomplish such high speeds, Canon has built-in not one, but two processors. Shutter speed is also quick at a maximum of 1/8000th of a second.

The speed isn’t the only plus on the camera either, the Canon EOS 7D Mark II sports a 65-point autofocus system as well. As you’d also expect from Canon, there’s 1080p HD video at 60fps with smooth autofocusing. All of these features are wrapped up in a durable magnesium alloy body.

Perhaps the biggest downside to the 7D Mark II is that the price is closer to that of a full frame camera, yet it only offers an APS-C sensor. The speed clearly points it towards sports shooters however, and the crop sensor means it’s easier to achieve telephoto zoom lengths over a full frame.

The Canon EOS 7D Mark II is expected in stores November 28 for a list price of $1,799 USD. Pre-orders are currently available through several online retailers.

Nikon D750

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The announcement of the Nikon D750 took many by surprise, it’s been years since the D700 was introduced without any updates in between. The highlighting feature is that it’s the first to offer Wi-Fi and a tilting screen in a full frame DSLR, but it has several other features boasting image quality and getting the camera high marks in early reviews.

The tilting LCD and Wi-Fi are more usability features than image quality changers; they’re paired with a lightweight body and an excellent battery life of 1,230 shots. Dual control wheels, two SD card slots, and a second screen at the top of the camera also look to make this new shooter fun and easy to use.

It’s not all about usability, however. The D750 uses the same processor that’s inside the D810 and D4s. It doesn’t quite have the resolution of the D810 and still uses the optical low pass filter, but it also sits at about $1000 less. The D750 actually has a faster burst mode than the D810, thanks to the slightly smaller resolution, with a 6.5fps burst mode (the D810 has a 5fps burst). The D750 also offers 1080p HD video at a smooth 60fps.

For not a whole lot more cash, the D750 offers quite a few more features than the D610. It’s available now for a list price of $2,296.95 USD.

Samsung NX1

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It’s hard to pick out one headlining feature of the new Samsung NX1, since the mirrorless camera has quite a bit going for it. Backlit sensors are nothing new, their design improves the light gathering ability of the sensor, making them better in low light conditions. But backlit sensors are typically reserved for cameras with sensors an inch or smaller. The NX1’s APS-C sensor is backlit—technology that could potentially expand to more camera models in the future.

4K video isn’t brand new to cameras, but in the past, recording shots of this resolution has required extra recording equipment. Samsung has built a compression method that keeps the resolution but reduces file sizes, so 4k video can be recorded directly to the SD card. Again, a new feature by Samsung that may expand to other models in the future.

Last but not least, the NX1 has a 15fps burst mode. Since mirrorless cameras don’t have as much equipment to move as a DSLR (hence the name mirrorless) they’re typically faster, but 15fps with an APS-C sensor is unheard of. The Nikon 1 line rivals this speed, but is able to do so because the one inch sensor means much smaller files to process.

The NX-1 is heading to shelves and online retailers on October 27, listed at $1,499.99 USD

Noteworthy Compacts

Manufacturers have also introduced a handful of compacts hitting the market this fall:

  • The Canon G7 X is a smaller version of their popular G1X Mark II advanced compact. It sports a one-inch sensor, an f/1.8 lens for solid image quality, and a 180 degree tilting touchscreen with Wi-Fi for selfie enthusiasts. This small shooter became available on October 17th and starts at $699 USD.CanonPowershotG7X
  • The Panasonic Lumix LX100 is a retro-style, advanced compact, with a Micro Four Thirds sensor and an f/1.7-2.8 lens. It’s turning heads with a leaf-style shutter that achieves shutter speeds of 1/16,000 and burst modes up to 6.5fps. There’s no automated modes, so it’s not for the average consumer. It’s available November 1st for $899.99 USD.Panasoniclx100

New gear announcements are always exciting, but what’s really generating buzz this fall are the new features that could become more widely available (and more affordable) a few years down the road. Canon’s idea to use two processors creates faster burst speeds. Nikon has managed to fit both a tilting LCD screen and Wi-Fi into a full frame DSLR that’s smaller than the older models. Samsung proved backlit sensor design isn’t just for the small shooters anymore.

This fall sees a few dozen new cameras heading to stores, but a handful have features that make them more than mediocre updates that can give you a good idea where camera technology is headed.

Tell us in the comments which ones are you excited about?

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