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The Best Pro Digital Cameras You Can Buy, A Series On The Best We'd Recommend.
by the Tech-edge E-zine Staff and Review Panel
Written by Keith Benicek, Editor
June 16th, 2004

The absolute hottest trend in technology today is the digital camera. America, Europe and all of the Asian market has raced towards photos made of pixels, rather than molecules of silver bromide. Even the king of film Kodak has abandoned the traditional camera for an all-digital product line.

Here in the “states”, most Digital Photographers are on their second, third, forth and perhaps even their fifth digital camera, as the technology has progressed at a blinding pace. Personally, I’m on my eight digital after having started with the first ever consumer digital, the Apple Quick Take 100 in February of 1994.

Oh, I started out in film cameras with a hand-me-down Kodak Brownie Bullet in 1959 (I still have it too!). I was hooked on cameras and I trained with my uncle, the great fashion photographer Frank Misek, “head photog” for SB & D in Chicago. Of my collection of 20 some professional cameras, my favs are my early Hasselblad 500C, a 1935 CONTAX I F and my old faithful Olympus OM-1.

With so many incredible digitals being built by an amazing number of manufacturers for the advanced (prosumer) and professional photographers, just how do you know what to buy? Certainly, we can’t test every one in short order. But based on exchanges of user stories and analyzing printed specifications, we’ve chosen a small number to test by our “Prosumer” and Professional Photographer review panel to present in this multi-segment article.

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All of the included cameras are used in real-world applications by our seven-member review panel comprised of “Prosumer” and Professional Photographers. We have two “advanced camera enthusiasts” who shoot art or nature images, two press/magazine photographers, fashion and product photography professionals and a special events photographer that shoots weddings and corporate media, to graduations. These are all working photographers that make money with their work and know what a good versatile camera is.

After the “Pros” use them and provide us with their reports, our own Tech Lab engineers measure, prod, poke and shoot benchmark images with each camera under various conditions. The expected durability and quality of construction and materials is also observed and analyzed as part of the review.

I’m also part of the mix too. As I get to use the camera last and because I’m the “old fart” that still pines over the wonders of 25, 50 or 75 year old film cameras which I’ve used that are older than I am. I also like to give an opinion on the handling of the digital cameras as an effective photographic tool.

Please enjoy the series and we hope that you return for each segment, as another top-level digital camera is added to our gallery.bar

- Sony Cyber-shot DSC-F828 - Now
- FujiFilm S2 Professional - July
- Olympus Camedia E-1 - Late July
- Surprise - August
- Surprise - September

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