What makes a Compact Camera !!!


Liverpool / UK
It may be a daft thing to ask on our Serious Compact site... but let me tell you how I came around to the question....

I was out at the weekend, doing a bit of street photography, when 2 'photographers' (man & wife) walked past with HUGE Dslr's on HUGE Manfrotto tripods with HUGE accessory bags over their shoulders... I thought the lady was going to collapse, and the guy didn't look too clever either....

And there was me with my little LX5 !!! I was too amazed to even take the photo...

Anyway... my memory went back to my film days... I once thought of getting a Pentax 6x7 medium format, but having borrowed one for a trial.... thought better of it, as although I'm a BIG guy, it seemed HUGE to handle anywhere other than a studio.

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I think you'll agree HUGE is a good description...

But a lot of Dslr's are as HUGE now......

My carry around camera was a 35mm Pentax LX (Aww loved that camera)... but no one would ever have described it as a compact camera in the early 1980's, when I bought it from new... however, after researching and comparing the dimensions of the LX to that of the Lumix LX5, the Pentax LX would definitely fit into the 'compact' category.

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So you see my dilemma... is it 'compact' in comparison to the big boys so to speak...:eek:


Hall of Famer
Yes, on this site we've always used the term loosely to mean compact in comparison to the mid-sized DSLRs. As you said, a lot of DSLRs are huge now.

We're not the only one to use the term "compact" this way. A recent cover of Pop Photo: