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The 12 most exciting cameras of 2022

The photographer's curse is a gnawing feeling that, no matter how good your current kit is, a crucial missing piece is just around the corner. Yes, your camera is better than almost every photographic tool from the past 150 years, but the cameras of 2022? They're destined to hit 'Peak Photography' and elevate your almost-great Instagram feed to new heights. Even when we know it's a mirage that somehow doesn't dampen the fun of camera future-gazing. And there are good reasons to believe that 2022 will be another great year for camera launches. Aside from the grim realities of chip shortages, we have fully-cooked mirrorless systems from Canon, Sony, Nikon and Panasonic all competing for our attention, not to mention fresh innovation from the likes of Insta360 and Alice Camera. Against all the odds, 2021 was a vintage year for new cameras, even if that hasn't yet been reflected in shipments and sales. That momentum is likely to continue into 2022, with the year looking particularly exciting for hobbyist shooters. Now that the big players have established their pro bodies – like the Canon EOS R3 , Sony A1 and Nikon Z9 – it's time for that innovation to filter down to more affordable cameras.
We have Fujifilm ready to join the stacked-sensor game with the long-awaited Fujifilm X-H2 , Panasonic finally ready to unleash the Panasonic GH6 for video shooters, and OM System preparing to channel the innovative spirit of Olympus with a new launch of its own. Add a sprinkling of intriguing new players and you have the recipe for another year of defiant innovation in the post-cameraphone era.

Honorable mentions to cameras that are missing from our list include the Fujifilm Instax Mini Evo (due to launch globally in February 2022), the rumored Sony A9 III, and a long list of future smartphones, including the Google Pixel 7 and iPhone 14 Pro . We've also avoided conjuring up rumored dream cameras that have no current basis in reality. So with that in mind, it's time to begin the slideshow. Starting in reverse order, here are the most exciting cameras of 2022... The 12 most exciting cameras of 2022: 12. Leica M11 Okay, Leica cameras are mainly exciting to those with bulging Bitcoin wallets, but even for non-CEOs, there's something reassuring about the stubborn traditionalism of the M-series. The Leica M11 isn't yet official, but it's an almost-certainty given recent leaked images – and it could divide opinion if rumors are to be believed. The latest whispers from the likes of Leica Rumors suggest the M11 will have a new 60MP full-frame sensor, with modes for 50MP, 36MP and 15MP snaps to help manage your file sizes. More controversially, it seems Leica will be removing the baseplate design that's been a staple of M-series cameras since 1954. On the old Leica M3, you'd remove this baseplate to load film into the camera's base. This unusual design stayed on later models like the digital Leica M8 in 2006, even though it made changing the battery and memory card a faff. But it seems Leica is now sensibly updating it on the M11 with a similar design to the Q2. One thing will stay the same though – the M11 will be pricey, like its $6,495 / £5,599 / AU$9,699 predecessor. 11. OM System camera
Aren't Olympus cameras dead? Yes, officially deceased since the announcement in October that the new owners of Olympus' imaging arm would be releasing models under a fresh 'OM System' brand. However, the spirit of the company, whose cameras date back to 1936, may live on if the hype coming from OM System proves correct. The company has promised that it's "developing a new interchangeable lens camera" for the Micro Four Thirds system that will "bring photography to the next level." Interestingly, OM System says it will improve image quality "through the use of computational photographic technology." This is slightly ironic, given that Olympus effectively blamed smartphones for the demise of its cameras. Not that OM System will be entirely new to computational photography. Olympus cameras have previously pioneered software tricks like Live ND, which composited multiple images in-camera to create a slow-shutter effect. And it's this heritage that OM System is planning to build on with its new release. What will the camera look like? It's not clear yet, but there's a clue at the bottom of the image above.
10. Nikon Z f The least likely camera in this list to see a 2022 launch is also one of the most exciting. The formula demanded by Nikon fans is simple: take the glorious design of the Nikon Z fc , which was inspired by the 30-year-old Nikon FM2, and apply it to a full-frame mirrorless camera. Then call it the Nikon Z f and start printing money. It sounds simple, but will Nikon do it in 2022? All we have to go on is Nikon's response to our gentle prods back in August, when it told us: "Depending on how the Z fc is received by the market, and on customer demand, we will continue to explore ideas for future models." In the words of Lloyd Christmas, "so there's a chance." The good news for those hoping for a Nikon Z f – its most likely name, given it'd be a 'fusion' of old and new, but go beyond the 'casual' aspirations of the Z fc – is that sales of the Z fc appear to be strong. In July, Nikon released a statement warning of delays to Z fc shipments due to demand outstripping supply – although it's possible this was also due to reduced production capacity. A 2023 launch is perhaps more likely, but Nikon could surprise us. 9. DJI Mini 3 For many photographers, drones have taken one of the hotly contested spots in their camera bags. A drone's ability to combine unique angles with increasingly impressive quality (in good light, at least) makes them very handy allies, and one of the most popular models in recent years has been the DJI Mini 2 . A palm-sized 4K drone that's about the same size as a mid-range zoom (and at 249g, much lighter), the Mini 2 is ideal for roaming photographers and YouTubers. Having been released in November 2020, it's also potentially due an upgrade in 2022 – and that's exactly what the rumor mill suggests will happen. A Twitter account called DealsDrone , picked up by DroneXL , has confidently predicted that the DJI Mini 3 will be launched in April 2022. This isn't based on any particular leaks, so right now we'll file it under hearsay. But a DJI Mini 3, with new features like a 4K/60p mode and ActiveTrack focusing, would certainly be a welcome arrival. And given that the DJI Mavic 3 has now launched, our money is on that happening sometime in 2022.
8. Panasonic GH6 A dead cert for a 2022 release, the Panasonic GH6 has already been officially announced. In fact, it's the only model in this list that was also in our 'most exciting cameras of 2021' preview this time last year, which shows how long we've been waiting for the video camera. But we'll eat one of our lens caps if it doesn't arrive in 2022. Strangely, we saw a Panasonic GH5 Mark II arrive this year, but that camera is aimed more at live-streamers. The true successor to the classic Panasonic GH5 , which landed way back in January 2017, is the GH6, and it's shaping up to be another popular choice for those who have been priced out of full-frame video cameras like the Sony A7S III . Right now, all we know is that the GH6 will have a speedy new sensor that'll support 5.7K/60p video shooting and that it'll capture 4:2:2 10-bit Cinema 4K/60p video internally. Both of those things will be popular with filmmakers looking to shoot crisp video that can be color-graded afterward. But the big question is whether it'll stick to the slightly underwhelming Depth by Defocus (DFD) autofocus system, or finally switch to a hybrid phase-detect setup. Hopefully, we won't have to wait long to find out. 7. Canon EOS R5c Sorry, Panasonic – the GH6 might turn out to be a real zinger of a camera, but it doesn't quite match the prospect of a video-focused version of the Canon EOS R5 . That's exactly what we're expecting from the Canon EOS R5c, which is now rumored to be launching "in the first quarter of 2022," according to the reliable Canon Rumors . First, the good news: thanks to active cooling, the EOS R5c has been tipped to offer unlimited 8K/30p video recording, which would be a major improvement on the photography-focused, and often rather toasty, EOS R5. It's also been tipped to have a Digic X processor, the Canon EOS R3 's multipurpose hot-shoe (for powering accessories like XLR mics), and a full-size HDMI port. Less exciting is the EOS R5c's likely price tag, which will probably be higher than the EOS R5's $3,899 / £4,199 / AU$6,899 asking price, but mercifully less than the Canon Cinema EOS C70 ($5,499), according to Canon Rumors. It's also only expected to be available in limited quantities after its announcement, so be prepared for a Squid Game-style battle at the checkout. 6. Alice Camera The Alice Camera, an Indiegogo project that's due to ship in April 2022, is an exciting prospect for a few reasons. Firstly, it's a new camera that hasn't been made by the traditional photography stalwarts, which is very rare indeed. But it's also bringing genuinely new ideas to the table, thanks to its combination of Micro Four Thirds hardware, computational photography and a mount for your smartphone. The idea is simple: bring the slick menus, connectivity and multi-frame processing of smartphones to a mirrorless camera with a larger sensor. Rather than competing with the best camera phones , the Alice Camera wants to be the choice for creators who are looking to upgrade to a more powerful system for video and photos. Its maker thinks traditional cameras are stuck in the past when it comes to interfaces and social media uploads, and it has a good point. But while the idea is simple, the big question is whether a startup can pull off the more complex execution. Having been recently bolstered by a fresh round of funding, the makers of Alice Camera told us about its AI color enhancement algorithms and AI autofocus, which "uses deep learning to understand what to focus on and how to focus on it". It's fascinating stuff that we're looking forward to trying out when it makes its belated bow this year. 5. Canon EOS R1 Canon has been keen to stress that the Canon EOS R3 , its new mirrorless powerhouse, isn't its 'flagship' camera, but instead sits between the Canon 1D X Mark III (above) and Canon EOS R5 . So which Canon camera will get that highly prized flagship status? The rumors are pointing towards a Canon EOS R1, which is strongly tipped to be arriving in 2022. According to Canon Rumors , the EOS R1 will be a mirrorless equivalent of its 5D-series DSLRs – all-rounders that are suited to pretty much any shooting situation, from landscapes to sports and wildlife. So far, the only speculation is that it could have an even higher resolution than the 45MP EOS R5, and will likely shoot 8K video. Whatever the ultimate specs, expect it to be Canon's answer to the Sony A1 . The only thing dampening our excitement is the EOS R1's potential price tag. It isn't expected to begin shipping until the last quarter of 2022, according to Canon Rumors, and will likely cost more than the Canon EOS R3 ($5,999 / £5,879 / AU$8,599). On the plus side, that gives us plenty of time to sell our car. 4. Nikon Z30 The arrival of the Nikon Z fc in June somewhat dampened previous speculation about a new entry-level mirrorless camera, which the rumor mill tentatively called the Nikon Z30. But according to Nikon Rumors , a camera that sits below the Nikon Z50 and Nikon Z fc is still en route, and we're penciling it in for a release in 2022. Of course, the global chip shortage could intervene, but there is a definite gap in Nikon's camera lineup for an affordable, beginner camera. In January this year, it surprisingly discontinued DSLRs like the Nikon D3500 , which has historically been a popular choice for anyone looking to upgrade to their first 'proper' camera. Right now, the Nikon Z50 arguably fills that gap in its mirrorless lineup, but it's over two years old, and a video-friendly version – potentially without a viewfinder – could be a popular choice for hybrid shooters on a budget. Nikon still needs to flesh out its DX-format lenses for the Z-mount, but a Nikon Z30 launch would be the perfect opportunity to do just that. 3. Sony A7R V Baffled by the absence of Sony cameras in this list so far? There are a couple of reasons for this. First, it's been a stellar year for new Alpha launches, with the Sony A1 , Sony ZV-E10 and Sony A7 IV all arriving in 2021, along with the Sony FX3 cinema camera. Rather than launch a new Sony RX100 series compact camera, it also launched the Sony Xperia Pro-I smartphone. But another major factor is the global chip shortage, which is rumored to be pushing back Sony's camera launches for 2022 . The two cameras in its lineup that are in need of refreshing are the high-resolution Sony A7R IV (launched in July 2019) and sports-focused Sony A9 II (which arrived in October 2019). And sure enough, the two big rumored launches for 2022 are the Sony A7R V and Sony A9 III. Both are highly anticipated by pro snappers, but we think the Sony A7R V is the slightly more exciting prospect, given how impressive the A7R IV's all-rounder talents already are. There have been wild rumors about its possible specs, including 8K/30p video powers, 20fps burst shooting and a new flip-out screen. But we're trying not to get too excited, given that Sony Alpha Rumors thinks new Sony cameras will arrive in the second half of 2022 at the earliest. 2. Fujifilm X-H2 While Canon, Sony and Nikon have all focused their attention on full-frame mirrorless cameras, Fujifilm has been quietly refining its line of X-series cameras with smaller APS-C sensors. These offer a blend of size, power and affordability that remains a fine alternative to full-frame powerhouses. In 2022 the range is expected to move into its next generation with the Fujifilm X-H2. The long-awaited successor to the Fujifilm X-H1 from 2018, the X-H2 is likely to deliver a new, stacked APS-C sensor for a boost in burst shooting, autofocus and video powers. Stacked sensors, which have appeared in recent flagship full-frame cameras like the Sony A1, Canon EOS R3 and Nikon Z9, offer faster read-out speeds than backside-illuminated chips, which should theoretically make the X-H2 the most powerful X-series camera so far. But some confusion about the camera has arisen from recent rumors that it's likely to arrive in two versions ; one with a 40MP resolution and another with a 26MP sensor. Will one of these versions have the current 26MP X-Trans IV sensor, or is it a new 26MP sensor? And does this affect previous speculation that the X-H2 will cost less than $2,500? It's not yet clear, but we're looking forward to finally getting some clarity on one of the most highly anticipated cameras of 2022. 1. Canon EOS R7 It's been fun watching Canon, Sony and Nikon duke it out this year to see who can make the best, money-no-object mirrorless camera. But not many car enthusiasts own McLaren supercars, and the likes of the Sony A1 and Canon EOS R3 are similar propositions for photographers. In 2022, it's time to see some of that technology filter down to a more affordable camera for the masses – and that camera could be the Canon EOS R7. A word of warning: the rumors so far don't conclusively point to the 'EOS R7' name for Canon's expected mid-range RF-mount camera. But we're using that as the most likely moniker for a model that is probably in the works for next year. As the pretty reliable Canon Rumors recently claimed, "Canon is 'definitely' releasing an APS-C RF mount camera in 2022." Earlier speculation about this camera, which dates back to December 2020, suggested that it could be a baby version of the Canon EOS R6 , offering sports and wildlife shooters powerful burst-shooting and 4K video in a lightweight camera. Canon certainly needs to flesh out the APS-C lens options for its RF-mount and the recent arrival of the Canon RF 16mm f/2.8 STM ($299 / £319 / AU$549) suggests that is happening. If it's priced as aggressively as that lens, the Canon EOS R7 could be one of the most popular launches of 2022. Full Article Link with More reviews - Click Here

The 12 most exciting cameras of 2022
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