August 17, 2017

The Year's Best Cameras and Lenses, According to European Pros

Sony, Panasonic, and Tamron dominate this year's EISA Awards.

The European Imaging and Sound Association (EISA) is an association of over 50 photo, sound, and multimedia magazines across Europe, and it’s been offering up awards for the best in audio and video products for over 40 years. The awards place an emphasis on consumer products, but there are categories for pro and prosumer; now that the gap between professional and consumer-level tech is increasingly narrowed, their choices seem more relevant than ever.

One of 2017’s most anticipated cameras—the Panasonic GH5—nabbed a spot, as did a Tamron lens, which we’ve called “a cheaper alternative without the sacrifice.” The products in this year’s lineup of most useful to indie filmmakers (and EISA’s words about them) are listed below.

For the full lineup, check out the EISA site.

Best Camera:

Sony α9

Sony a9

The Sony α9 is a groundbreaking mirrorless camera that in many ways surpasses traditional DSLR rivals. Thanks to an innovative design, the 24.2 million pixel full-frame image sensor captures up to 20 frames per second in full resolution with no EVF blackout and offers completely silent, vibration-free shooting at up to 1/32,000th second. The new super-fast autofocus system, with 693 phase detection AF points covering 93% of the image area, ensures that even fast-moving subjects are in focus. The 5-axis image stabilization allows a 5-step slower shutter speed. The oversampling process and full-frame pixel read-out result in excellent 4K movie quality.

Best Photo & Video Camera:

Panasonic Lumix GH5 

The Panasonic DC-GH5 focuses all the brand’s know-how in both photo and video. The body is well balanced, weather resistant and has an excellent electronic viewfinder. With a 20.3 million pixel Four Thirds sensor it delivers good picture quality up to ISO 3200, with excellent autofocus and internal stabilzation. In video it provides an excellent compromise between image quality, features and price and allows recording up to 4K/60p 4:2:2 10-bit onto the memory card without recording time limitation. With high-end features such as a high-speed 6K Photo mode, slow motion, automatic focus transition, Vlog and an XLR module for sound recording, the GH5 offers endless possibilities for creative video production.

Best Professional Compact System Camera Lens:

Sony FE 70-200mm F2.8 GM OSS

The Sony FE 70-200mm F2.8 GM OSS is an impressive lens covering the most popular angles for sports and action photography. Sharpness is extremely high and evenly distributed with almost no visible fall-off towards the edges. Sharpness is retained across the zoom range, even with tele-converters. It features a floating focusing system, implemented in an α zoom lens for the first time, that contributes to an impressive minimum focusing distance of merely 0.96m. The 11 rounded aperture blades ensure a beautiful bokeh, while the autofocus speed is super quick, in particular with the very fast Sony α9. Finally, the FE 70-200mm F2.8 GM OSS is built for heavy use under all weather conditions.

Best Professional DSLR Lens:

Canon EF 16-35mm F2.8L III USM

Credit: Canon
The Canon EF 16-35mm F2.8L III USM has been long awaited by many professional photographers and exceeds expectations. It’s better built than its predecessor and gives astounding sharpness over the entire image, even at its full opening of F2.8. At 16mm it actually outperforms many ultra-wide-angle prime lenses. Distortion is low, while the anti-reflective coating very effectively reduces ghosting and flare. The Canon EF 16-35mm F2.8L III USM is built for everyday professional use and delivers an image quality that will satisfy even the most demanding users.

Which cameras or lenses would you award for 2017? Let us know in the comments.      

Your Comment

2 Comments

GH5 doesn't do 4K/60p 4:2:2 10-bit onto the memory card. It outputs that over HDMI but does up to 30p 10bit 4:2:2 10bit to the cards. 10bit 60p can be had at 1080p.

August 18, 2017 at 6:18PM

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The categories are "Best Camera" and "Best Photo and Video Camera"?? That's like having categories in automotive like "Best Car" and "Best Driving Car".

August 21, 2017 at 6:42PM

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