Advice Wanted Suggestions for compact everyday carry camera?

Jock Elliott

Hall of Famer
Location
Troy, NY
To replace my G12. Priority will be given to candidates who have some level of weather protection (more is better).

Some sort of view finder is a necessity.

Cheers, Jock
 

MiguelATF

Hall of Famer
Location
Talent, Oregon (far from the madding crowd)
Name
Miguel Tejada-Flores
If you can find one, I highly recommend the relatively compact, small-sensored Fujifilm X30. It is compact, high quality, has an extremely functional EVF, a fine zoom lens, and is beautifully built. I acquired one myself a few years ago and keep appreciating it more and more, the more I use it.

Also worthy of consideration is another small-sensored discontinued but excellent all-purpose carry-everywhere camera, the Olympus Stylus 1 (or its newer sibling, the 1S0.

The Stylus share mini-DSLR styling cues with its Olympus sibling the E-M5, while the X30 embraces the rangefinder-style body look of some other fine Fuji cameras. Also, its earlier siblings, the X10 and X20, are fine cameras as well.

Supposedly one can also occasionally acquire lightly used G12's in good shape, if one is patient. Actually, truth be told, the cameras I am recommending, the Stylus 1 and the X30, are getting harder and harder to find these days, but are worth looking for.
 
Location
Switzerland
Name
Matt
If buying used is an option, you can try out quite a few models, among them the G15 or G16 ... or, indeed, loads of nice models from yesteryear ...

The problem is that the current market isn't rich in really interesting models with the specifications you mention.

There's only one compact which mates competitive IQ with usable weather sealing: the Canon PowerShot G1X III. But it has a shorter, slower zoom, is a tad bigger and certainly no speed demon. A good camera overall - just a bit underwhelming as a top-tier product (which it claims to be, being a G1X). I still like mine - sort of; however, it doesn't offer any major size advantages over a Z 50 with the tiny Z 16-50mm zoom - and the Nikon smokes it in almost every aspect, and certainly IQ. But - the Canon sports weather sealing and still packs smaller. Plus it's been a reliable companion for years now - most solidly build compact camera I've ever held (and there have been a few).

The only somewhat (but not really!) compact camera with some sort of weather sealing is the Sony RX10 (I or II). But that's a bridge camera - a smallish one for its zoom range, but still ...

If you forgo weather sealing, the situation is much better, used or new.

My personal recommendation: A camera I'd take a good hard look at (and one that sometimes almost makes me myself swap my G1X III for - but I'm held back by the fact that it's not sealed!) is the Canon PowerShot G5X II. I like most things about that camera - it may not be as polished as the Sony RX100 V, VI and VII models, but I find its feature set to be better balanced, and I like the fact that is has a fast 24-120mm-e lens. It's pocketable, and it has a lot in common with the venerable S series I still miss ...

There are other models - the Sony RX100 series, the Panasonic ZS*00 cameras (of which I still find the ZS100 a bit better balanced - somewhat less ambitious, less over-the-top). But I'd still pick the G5X II over any of them (and also over its stablemates, the G7X III and G9X II).

Finally, Jock, you're a bridge camera guy - I'll state here that owning the Panasonic FZ1000 has virtually prevented me from buying any other 1" (or smaller) sensor camera since its acquisition ... Of course, by that time, I already owned the G1X III, so maybe it's inappropriate to mention this here, but I find the FZ1000 unbeatable in terms of its price/performance ratio. Nothing else in this price range comes close (including most beginner DSLRs - because they can't begin to match the range). In fact, the camera itself comes dangerously close to a do-it-all, at least in good light ...

M.
 
Then there’s of course the Olympus Tough cameras. Never looked into those, but apparently the TG6 even has the Olympus Pro capture mode :)

Some of the other “tough” cameras (eg from Ricoh) might be interesting too.
There’s probably a trade off in image quality, but those cameras would be winners in portability and weather resistance…
 
Location
Switzerland
Name
Matt
Wow ... I actually forgot to mention the LX100 II. I loved the LX100 when I owned it - I only let it go because of ... its lack of weather sealing, and its tendency to trag its feet on switch on (well, the pull of the G1X III's APS-C sensor was real, too). But handling and results were really pleasing, and the II is a fine camera. It's a bit of an in-between because of its size, though - it's not the most compact compact, so to speak. But yes, definitely worth a thought, in spite of its shortish zoom.

M.
 

Jock Elliott

Hall of Famer
Location
Troy, NY
Then there’s of course the Olympus Tough cameras. Never looked into those, but apparently the TG6 even has the Olympus Pro capture mode :)

Some of the other “tough” cameras (eg from Ricoh) might be interesting too.
There’s probably a trade off in image quality, but those cameras would be winners in portability and weather resistance…

Based in part on your suggestion, I think for the time being, I'll carry my Fuji XP90.

Here are couple of quick snaps taken yesterday with it:

XP90 skies 001.JPG
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XP90 skies 002.JPG
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Same shots, romanced with Luminar 3:

XP90 skies 001 B.jpg
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XP90 skies 002 B.jpg
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Its chief characteristics are: small and waterproof.

Cheers, Jock
 
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