HWM+HardwareZone.com Tech Awards 2011 Editor's Choice - Part 1


Best Mirrorless Camera

Best Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera

Mirror-less interchangeable lens camera - try saying that three times fast! Other names have been suggested for this young, two-year old category of cameras which do away with the traditional mirror system in DSLR cameras, thus 'mirror-less' (and smaller camera bodies too). Panasonic likes to call theirs 'system cameras' and others use the term EVIL cameras for Electronic Viewfinder Interchangeable Lens.

Unfortunately though, until a name sticks, we'll just use the standard definition for now. 2010 was the year the mirror-less camera scene exploded, with Samsung and Sony joining the party Olympus and Panasonic started. For this award, we focus on entry-level models priced around the S$1000 price range.

Nominees:

  • Olympus E-PL1
  • Panasonic G10
  • Samsung NX100
  • Sony Alpha NEX-3

And the Winner Is...

The Sony Alpha NEX-3 shoots amazingly clear and detailed photos, thanks to its APS-sized, 14.2-megapixel CMOS sensor. Initially, many people lamented about its user interface: most picture adjustments involve digging into the menu. But a subsequent firmware update brought about a tweaked UI that reduced this hassle. As a pick-up-and-shoot camera, the NEX-3 delivers unbeatable performance. And it comes at a very sweet price too.

Scoring Breakdown

 Criteria/Model Olympus E-PL1 Panasonic Lumix DMC-G10 Samsung NX100 Sony Alpha NEX-3
Physique 8.0 9.0 8.0 9.0
Features 7.0 9.0 8.0 7.5
User-Friendliness 7.0 9.0 8.0 7.0
Performance 8.0 8.0 7.0 9.5
Value 8.0 8.0 7.0 9.0
Overall 7.5 8.5 7.5 8.5
Price S$998 (with 14-42mm kit lens), S$1,348 (with 14–42mm and 40-150mm kit lenses) S$899 (with 14-42mm kit lens), $1,399 (with 14-42mm and 45-200mm kit lenses) S$949 (with 20-50mm kit lens) S$899 (with 18-55mm kit lens), $999 (with 16mm and18-55mm kit lenses)

For more details on how we selected our winners, check out the full reviews and articles listed at the References section at the end.