RX1 fever - I just don't get it

There's a review of the camera at Luminous Landscape HERE.

Everybody goes on about this camera like its the holy grail, and for the life of me I can't understand why. All its supposed virtues strike me as serious disadvantages.

This is what puts me off.
  • Its WAY too small. Difficult to hold, change the controls. If you see a picture of it with a viewfinder you get an idea of just how small it is.
  • There is no grip on it. I have trouble with small cameras anyway, having one with nothing to hold on to just makes it unusable to me.
  • There is no built in viewfinder. There are two (expensive) alternatives - optical and electronic and with either of these fitted, the camera isn't an aesthetic triumph to say the least.
  • It has a fixed lens.
  • The fixed lens is a 35mm.
  • Its incredibly expensive.
  • Its a 35mm sized sensor, meaning that it will have limited DOF unless you stop the lens down.

As I said, many of the above "disadvantages" have people drooling. But not me. I've been seduced in the past by 35mm (equivalent) fixed lens compacts. I've bought a Fuji X100, Leica X1 and Leica X2. When I had them I didn't use them much, and sold all of them on. I just don't find a fixed 35mm (or equivalent) lens that useful. I don't subscribe to the idea that if you want to do "street photography" or something similar you HAVE to use a 35mm. Just because Cartier-Bresson did it, doesn't mean you have too. Or is that too radical a notion for the photographic internet sheep to comprehend?

Then there's all that guff about its small, its unobtrusive, you can put it in your pocket. YAWN!!! So what. There are plenty of small cameras, if you want to see some great street photography that isn't unobtrusive check out William Klein and if its in your pocket, how do you take pictures with it?

Is it some gadget style ikon? Well the vast majority of people will think you are using a cheap compact. Other photographers? Well they will have to be standing next to you to see it. Plus its not going to impress CaNikon man / woman. And lets get serious here, its got SONY written on it!!

I'm mystified as to the appeal of this thing. I'm sure it will take a decent picture. The sensor has to be similar to whats in the A99 and D600 and thats certainly capable of good results. But is it that much better than a NEX-7? From the D600 I had I would say that only at high ISO's will you notice a difference.

I also don't have this uncritical worship for a 35mm sized sensor. I have no real desire to run around shooting images with very limited DOF and I've always wondered what the attraction is. Do people somehow think it turns their images into art? Makes them look more "photographic?" Or is it because lots of other people say its "cool to shoot full-frame" ??

All in all I'm not convinced. I also doubt, at the price its being sold at, it will be a runaway success. Talking about the price, how on earth do they justify this? Think of a number and treble it? Close to £3000 for a fixed lens compact camera without a viewfinder. Even Leica don't take the p**s that much!

N.B. to see more on the cameras and lenses featured in this post click on the relevant labels (tags and keywords) below.

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