Photokina 2018 Predictions

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Photokina 2018 is almost upon us and it's going to be an epic week. Running for six days starting on September 25th, in Berlin, this bi-annual photography show will be the last of its kind. Starting in 2019, Photokina will shift from being held once every two years in the fall for six days to becoming a yearly, four-day event that takes place in May. 

Even though Nikon and Canon have already introduced their new full-frame mirrorless cameras to the world in recent weeks, there's still plenty to be excited about. So, let's get down to our Photokina 2018 predictions. Will we be right? We'll find out next week, but here are our best guesses:

FUJI
X-T3.jpgFuji just announced the new X-T3 and even though it's not a full frame camera, its 26.1 MP X-Trans APS-C sensor with 4K/60p video capabilities are worth every penny of the $1500 price tag. Just because the X-T3 isn't full frame, doesn't mean that Fuji isn't thinking bigger... like much bigger.

It's been rumored for weeks that Fuji would be announcing a more compact Medium Format Mirrorless version of its legendary GFX G0S. The rumored GFX 50R is purported to be almost $2,000 dollars less than the GFX 50S's $6,500 price tag. It's supposed to have the same sized sensor, dual SD card slots, a rangefinder-style body like Fuji's X-E3, and fixed Electronic viewfinder. 

The other big rumor that's been floating around is that Fuji is thinking even bigger than the GFX 50S & R and that they might announce a 100MP version called the GFX 100S. That version, however, is rumored to only be in development with no clear release date or timetable. 

Fuji's Photokina Press Conference is September 25th at 5:30 am ET.



SONY
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Sony is the darling of the mirrorless world. It didn't happen overnight, but its commitment to steady upgrades and improvements over the last five years have lead it to the top of the camera world. The A7R III, A9, and A7 III are so good that even the new offerings from Fuji or Canon might not even matter or affect Sony's market dominance. 

If you notice there's one camera missing from that list of Sony's cameras and Photokina could be a perfect place to announce a new A7S III. 

The A7S II was a dominant video camera when it came out, namely because of its great sensor and low light capabilities. I call it a video camera because that's where the A7S II shined. It was like Panasonic's GH5. You can take pictures with it, but its video is so stunning why use it for anything else? I think if Sony wants to continue to dominate the market that they announce a brand new A7S III with an all-new sensor with a global shutter. The only knock on Sony video has been their rolling shutter. A new Global shutter like the one Sony said they were developing earlier in the year would make perfect sense and rocket the A7S III ahead of all other DSLR and Mirrorless handheld video cameras. 

Sony's Photokina Press Conference is September 25th at 4:00 am ET.



PANASONIC
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Like Fuji and Olympic, Panasonic has been content with making its most popular cameras with sensors smaller than full-frame. Its Micro Four Thirds sensors have driven the GH5 and GH5S to the top of the mirrorless video world. 

There are a few rumors however that Panasonic is entering the full-frame market. This is a no-brainer as Panasonic already makes the super 35mm 4K Varicam 35. That professional camera has come out of nowhere to be a direct competitor to RED and ARRI ALEXA. They already have the technology in-house and if they updated the GH6 or a new mirrorless with the Varicam 35mm technology and added 10-bit, 4:2:2 recording... what other camera would you buy to shoot video that costs under $3000 dollars?

Panasonic's Photokina press conference is on September 25th at 5:30 am ET


NIKON
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What could Nikon possible do at Photokina? It already announced its entry into the full frame mirrorless world with its Z7 and Z6 cameras and announced the Z mount, its first new lens mount in 50 years just a few weeks ago. What could they have left out?

I think Photokina will be Nikon's time to really show the world the capabilities of their new Z cameras, maybe announce a few new lenses or perhaps a few updates to its DSLR line. I know, I know, how could they, but truth be told, Nikon is still heavily involved in the DSLR game and it would be a good time to introduce perhaps a more affordable camera for the public. 

Nikon's Photokina Press Conference is September 25th at 10:15 am ET. 



CANON

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Canon is in the same boat as Nikon. Not two weeks after Nikon announced its Z series of cameras, lenses, and accessories, Canon did the same with its new EOS R Full-frame mirrorless camera. They too have a new mount, the RF mount and their new 30.3 MP camera sits right in between Nikon's Z7 and Z6 lines and is a camera that's made to shoot video just as well as it does stills.

The R underwhelmed some people when it was announced as it doesn't "look" like it can compete with the top of the line Nikon Z7 or Sony A9 & A7R III cameras (it actually can in a few ways, but more on that in our full review, soon!). Photokina could be Canon's chance to change people's minds and show how versatile and powerful this new system is going to be.

Canon's Photokina Press Conference is September 25th at 3:00 am ET.


OLYMPUS

Olympus has been quiet for quite a while and it seems that might continue for a little longer. They're not even holding a press conference this year at Photokina, so, that most likely means that they don't have anything exciting to add. It's been two years since they launched their flagship OMD-EM1 Mark II

It's a great little camera -- featuring, perhaps, the most rugged weather sealing and best IBIS of any mirrorless camera on the market -- but Olympus needs to up its video game (capabilities and AF performance) if it wants to compete with Sony and Panasonic. Unfortunately, it doesn't look like anything's coming this year. 

Olympus is hosting a Perspective Playground at Photokina that opens at 5:30 PM (Berlin time) on September 25th. This will give attendees a chance to play with various Olympus products. 


LEICA

For those of you who money is no object, Leica could surprise people with their announcement of their first full-frame mirrorless camera. This is just based on online rumor and speculation, which could include a collaboration with Panasonic. Maybe Panasonic is sharing its new full-frame sensor with Leica in exchange for better lenses? We'll all find out when Leica has their Photokina Press Conference on September 25th at 5:30 am ET.