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Lines Blur For Interchangeable-Lens Cameras

LAS VEGAS – Typically camera makers have used International CES as a showcase for point-and-shoot cameras, but with interest still waning for cheap models, several companies are rolling out the heavier interchangeable-lens camera artillery.

This year, DSLR camera bodies are getting even smaller as mirrorless compact system cameras (CSCs) add more professional features, blurring the lines of distinction between the two concepts.

The following is a glance at what some of the top camera brands are planning to roll out to kick off the year.

Nikon’s new “mass-market” DSLR model D3300 is compact and light-weight and will feature a 24.2-megapixel CMOS sensor with no optical lowpass filter for heightened sharpness and clarity. The camera has 5 fps burst shooting, 11-point AF system and FullHD 1080/60p video recording, and also offers strong low-light shooting with an ISO range from 100 to 12,800 (which can be bumped to 25,600).

An Expeed 4 image-processing engine further helps improve low-light images and overall performance. The camera will accept the optional WU-1a adaptor for Wi-Fi connectivity to mobile devices.

An enhanced guide mode now guides user through retouching images, and five new special effects — easy panorama, photo illustration, super vivid, pop and toy camera — are added for creative effects.

The D3300 will ship with a new 30 percent smaller and 25 percent lighter 18-55mm F/3.5-5.6G VRII kit lens at a price to be announced.

Also being added to the lens lineup is the AF-S NIKKOR 35mm F/1.8G FX-format lens.

Samsung is showing the NX30 mirrorless CSC.

The NX30, which ships in the first quarter at a $999 suggested retail, including an 18-55mm kit lens, features a pro-quality 20.3-megapixel APS-C sensor, an advanced hybrid autofocus system, a wide ISO range 100 to 25,600), and 9 fps continuous shooting.

The camera also includes a compact DSLR-like body design, with an articulating and rotating 3-inch Super AMOLED touchscreen monitor, a 2,359K-dot electronic viewfinder, and built-in Wi-Fi connectivity with nearfield communications (NFC) support. Video is captured in up to FullHD 1080/60p with stereo sound.

Sony is unveiling a new strategy for interchangeable-lens cameras, bringing together its DSLR and mirrorless NEX lines under one Alpha brand.

At the same time, the company is unveiling the new concept a5000 mirrorless CSC with a 20-megapixel APS-C sensor, up to 16,000 ISO light sensitivity, 17 built-in picture effects, built-in Wi-Fi/NFC capability with camera apps, built-in flash and an NEX-5T-like grip.

Scheduled to ship in March at a $599 suggested retail, the a5000 will include a 16-50mm power zoom kit lens.