With the recent release of the new Nikon D800 and Canon 5D Mk.III cameras (£2600 and £2900 respectively), we are becoming inured to the high prices of top end DSLRs.
What caught me by surprise however was seeing a “special Olympic edition” of the Panasonic Lumix DMC-S3 camera on the John Lewis website for only £49.
Surely some mistake? A major brand, 14 Megapixel, 28 -112 mm zoom lens, with HD movies thrown in as well. How can they do it for £49?
It can’t be up to much? Well, one review I found quickly says “The 14.1 megapixel sensor produces good image quality, with noise readily apparent at ISO 400 and much more obvious at ISO 800 along with smearing of fine details, with the fastest speed of ISO 1600 being something of a last resort.”
So it has quality limitations (of course) – but at this sort of price what else would we expect?
So how soon will we see digital cameras in the price range of “single use’ film cameras – or perhaps given away with a year’s subscription to a monthly photo magazine? And cameras in mobile phones are improving rapidly.
One thing seems clear – there is little excuse now for not carrying a camera of some sort.