I'll be meeting with key manufacturers next week at the Photo Marketing Association show in Anaheim, California. I've got a list of questions. Do you?
As I prepare to schlep across the country to attend the annual PMA convention (which has been moved from mutually inconvenient-but-fun Las Vegas to simply inconvenient-for-East-Coasters Anaheim) I have to ask myself, “why am I doing this?” After all, most of the big announcements and product introductions have already been made over the last several weeks. Three camera makers—Canon, Leica and Pentax—won't even have booths on the show floor (although Pentax will be in the building). Why bother?
The answer is, of course, to get my hands on the new products, share my first impressions here, and hopefully to get insights and inside information about what's coming to the world of photography (although I may not be allowed to share all of this info right away due to non-disclosure rules). I get to walk visit the little booths in the back of the show, where I'm always looking for the Next Great Gadget. (Last year, it was Honl light modifiers. The year before, it was Eye-Fi.)
I also get a chance to sit down with reps from the major manufacturers and gain insights into the world as they see it, and hopefully provide my feedback about their products. I get to ask them questions.
So, I'm putting together a list. Feel free to add your own question, and maybe, if it's a good one, I'll add it to my list. Hopefully, I'll get some useful answers that I can share with you.
1. Any simple, low-cost, bare-bones DSLRs designed for photo students in the works? You know, the kind that just lets you take pictures, has easy-to-access manual everything, no fancy bells and whistles, video or modes that students or experienced photographers don't need?
2. Is there any reason why an entry-level camera with HD Video can't have a microphone jack? Why must this essential feature only be found on high-end DSLRs or EVF cams with interchangeable lenses?
3. Are Olympus, Panasonic, and Samsung offended by the EVIL (Electronic Viewfinder Interchangeable Lens camera) acronym—possibly the worst photo product acronym since “Single-Use Camera” was shortened to SUC—that's making the rounds on the Internet? Do they have a an alternative abbreviation that is just as memorable but less devilish?
4. Would camera makers mind if I use the acronym EVIL on a regular basis?
5. Will EVILs overtake the photographic industry and if so, is this actually a good thing? Are makers of APS cameras going to announce their own EVILs? (Besides Samsung, which has already announced theirs.)
6. What's up with all these 14MP compact cameras? Dozens have been introduced in recent weeks. Hasn't anyone paid attention to my rants about megapixel madness?
7. Do backlit CMOS sensors really make as much difference in image quality, as claimed? Are all these recently-announced 14MP compact digital cameras using them? Show me the comparison photos!
Got a question you're dying to ask a specific camera company, or just a general question for all of them? Leave it in the comments and I might ask a rep at the show!