Home Buyer's Guide 2013 Editors' Choice Awards
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2013 Editors' Choice Awards

Our annual collection of noteworthy gear and technology

Labels: Buyers GuideNextGear
This Article Features Photo Zoom




A TRIO OF HIGH-QUALITY, COMPACT GO-ANYWHERE CAMERAS

1. SONY CYBER-SHOT RX100
The large-sensor compact Sony Cyber-shot RX100 is the kind of camera we like to keep with us at all times. DSLRs have versatility and image quality, but they're not the most convenient to carry. The iPhone is convenient, but lacks versatility, and it's not ideal for making large prints. The RX100 fits right between. It has a 1-inch, 20.2-megapixel sensor and a 28-105mm (approximate 35mm equivalent) ƒ/1.8 Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T lens. The RX100 can shoot full HD video up to 1920x1080 at 60p, and the ISO range is 125-6400. List Price: $649. Contact: Sony, (877) 865-7669, www.store.sony.com.
2. SONY CYBER-SHOT RX1
If you want an even larger sensor, the newly announced stablemate to the RX100 is the Sony Cyber-shot RX1. This remarkable camera features a full-frame, 24.3-megapixel image sensor and an ISO range from 100-25,600. The RX1 has a fixed 35mm ƒ/2.0 Carl Zeiss Sonnar T lens. This camera may be the ultimate pro street shooter. The RX1 is a premium camera, and it costs a premium. List Price: $2,799. Contact: Sony, (877) 865-7669, www.store.sony.com.
3. FUJIFILM FINEPIX X100
The Fujifilm FinePix X100 is a large-sensor compact camera with a 12-megapixel APS-C sensor and a single-focal-length lens with an approximate 35mm equivalent of 35mm. That lens is a classic focal length for photojournalism, and it has a fast ƒ/2 maximum aperture. The X100 is small enough to have with you just about all the time. One of the coolest features is the hybrid viewfinder, which can be changed from optical to electronic via a thumb switch on the camera body. You can shoot 1280x720 HD video at 24 fps. List Price: $1,199. Contact: Fujifilm, (800) 800-FUJI, www.fujifilm.com.
AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-300mm F/3.5-5.6G ED VR ZOOM
Featuring a huge 16.7X zoom ratio, the AF-S DX Nikkor 18-300mm F/3.5-5.6G ED VR zoom from Nikon provides equivalent focal lengths of 27mm wide-angle to 450mm supertelephoto on a full-frame or 35mm camera, and it automatically crops to those DX focal lengths when attached to a full-frame Nikon DSLR, yet it measures just 3.3x4.7 inches and weighs 29.3 ounces. It focuses down to 1.5 feet at 300mm for a maximum reproduction ratio of 1:3 (0.32X). Three ED elements and three aspherical elements enhance performance, while VR II vibration reduction helps keep handheld shots sharp. List Price: $999. Contact: Nikon USA, (800) NIKON-US, www.nikonusa.com.
PORTABLE HARD DRIVE
Store up to 500 GB of images on the Flashpoint DataBank 500. With a transfer rate of up to 5 MB/sec., the drive can safely copy about 1 GB of data in about 3.5 minutes. It's compatible with most popular memory card formats and is small enough to be used as a portable drive out in the field. All image formats are supported, including RAW. When transfering files, the backlit screen lets you know the status, as well as remaining drive capacity and battery charge. Estimated Street Price: $199. Contact: Flashpoint (Adorama), (800) 223-2500, www.adorama.com.
ROTOLIGHT ANOVA LED
In short, the ANOVA LED from Rotolight is the ultimate in current lighting technology. Alongside all of the advantages of high-powered LED lights, like cool heat output and minimal power draw, the ANOVA also features WiFi networking, which means you can control and change settings from networked computers, as well as the Magic Eye application for remote control over brightness, system settings and color temperature from iPhones and iPads. The LED array also offers an adjustable color temperature range from 3150K to daylight at 6300K. Similar to an oversized ringlight, the output produces minimal shadows and an even spread of flattering illumination. You even can mount and use an unlimited number of ANOVA LED lights together. Estimated Street Price: $2,599 (LED); $2,820 (LED Flight Case Kit); $6 (Magic Eye app). Contact: Rotolight (R.T.S. Inc.), (631) 242-6801, www.rtsphoto.com.


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