The appearance reminds us of the single lens mirrorless OM-D. From this high-end compact camera, I can feel the manufacturer's determination because they employed the exterior design and operation of the flagship camera. In the symbolic pentaprism, it has an EVF with 100% coverage and a built-in flash. The zoom lens starts from useful 28mm and zooms up to 300mm (both in 35mm equiv.). While the optical zoom ratio is 10.7x, the fast lens has a constant aperture of F2.8. Of course, it also has a built-in 3-stop ND filter, so it invites you to shoot wide open. This compact package can be used in a variety of situations such as photo walk, landscape, or sports. Now, let's see how it performs.

( Photography : M.Ito / Text : KIMURAX )

I know you're waiting for wide open shots, but let's start from the aperitif. I stopped down a little. How do you like the sharpness that clearly draws the subject's edge lines? It's wonderfully clear and has a nice contrast. In terms of spec, the 12-megapixel 1/1.7-inch CMOS sensor is common for high-end models, so I think this high picture quality is also due to the great lens.

Although it's a compact digital camera, a high-end class body like this one has a wonderful noise reduction. Of course, if you become meticulous, you can find the noises, but it reduces them quite nicely. The photo above was taken at ISO400 and it has almost no problem. I even felt I could use ISO800 regularly. The shape of the shiny wine bottles is depicted with 3D plasticity. Because it has a constant f2.8 zoom lens, you won't be relying on high sensitivity very often. Still, it's always good to have some "insurance."

While the normal minimum focus distance is 10cm (at max wide) to 80cm (at max tele), the macro mode will let you shoot as close as 5cm to 60cm. How is this resolution? It realistically depicts the shape of the drop that is popping out. It's sharp wide open, yet bokeh is very smooth. In addition to the wide range of the zoom coverage, it has a great macro shooting capability, so you can depend on this camera. Thanks to this camera, shooting things around me becomes already so much fun and I’m sure you can’t stop shooting. So, be careful!

At 300mm (35mm equiv.). I shot the summit of the World Heritage. While some high-zoom lenses tend to lose its picture quality at tele end to the point we have to compromise, you don't need worry about it with the Stylus 1. It depicts clearly to the corners and it captures the layers of the sky, the Mt. Fuji, and the forest. This is more than excellent for the sensor size. I also appreciate the powerful anti-shake mechanism especially when I am shooting at tele end or shooting macro photography. Together with the bright lens, it lets me shoot with confidence. And, this is also due to the shooting style that I look into the EVF. Don't forget it has WiFi function, too. It enables smartphone remote controlling within the connection range. It can also send images to the smartphone so you can share them. It's impossible for a smartphone to zoom to this extent, so feel free to take the advantage of it.

This one was also shot at tele end. In a situation like this, we rely on exposure compensation and I used it, too. But, this one was shot without it and it has a great balance of light and shadow. The reflected light isn't saturated and well-controlled. Tonality is smooth for the sensor size and again this is a great depiction for a tele shot. I was also amazed by the AF that focused quickly without hunting. In this kind of situation, things like high fence interferes free shooting. This camera has a touch panel LCD that can be tilted by a maximum of 80˚ upwards and 50˚ downwards. This one was shot by reaching hands and it was so easy because I could check framing on the LCD while I was able to choose the angle freely.

It captured the gentle twilight atmosphere. It's sharp enough and it faithfully captured the matte texture and the shape of the statue. The sensor size is modest compared to other models with larger sensors (including single lens mirrorless cameras), this model generates great output by making the best use of it making no compromises.

Versatility and picture quality. This one body has everything you need.

This high-end camera is an excellent performer from wide end to tele end and the only situation it doesn't work is underwater :). It enables capturing of any subject any time you want and hence, you always want to carry it with you. My shooting went so smoothly thanks to the secure holding, the customizable control ring and the sub dial, the feeling of integration when looking into the viewfinder, and the quick AF. You can enjoy bokeh and powerful depiction with this compact body, so it'll be your great partner. Playing with the art filters must be fun, too. And, this can be a great sub camera and you don't have to carry the heavy telephoto lens. You'll know that this one body will do everything as you keep using it. Try it once to capture "the moment."

( 30.11.2013 )