The Origin of the Camera Grand Prix 2018 Winners


Camera Grand Prix 2018 is a premier event which focuses on celebrating the best cameras and lenses around the world. The event was sponsored by Camera Reporters Club and held in Tokyo in on June 1st, 2018.

A total of 56 cameras and 72 lenses were nominated. The grand prize was won by “Sony α9”. The best lens award was won by “Olympus M. ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 17 mm F 1.2 PRO”.

The best reader’s choice award was by “Nikon D850” and “Panasonic LUMIX G9 PRO“ won the camera reporter club award.

Each camera has an origin story and the developers of these cameras took the stage to share their stories.

Camera Grand Prix 2018 Grand Prize: Sony α9

“Development started over three years ago,” says Tanaka Kenji, senior general manager of Sony Imaging Products & Solutions, Inc., the first business unit of the Digital Imaging Headquarters. “I felt there was potential in mirrorless cameras”

There was one other issue with cameras and that was a weakness with moving objects. Addressing these issues became the first version of the α9.

In addition, “To process large data at high speed, the world’s first image sensor was indispensable,” said Yasufumi Machitani. “We spent a lot of time developing the sensor and verifying the performance by incorporating it into the camera.”

Camera Grand Prix 2018 Lens Prize: Olympus M. ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 17mm F1.2 PRO

This year Olympus also won the lens award. It has won the first place, three years in a row.

Micro Four Thirds lens has a short focal length, and it is difficult to produce a blurred effect naturally.

“Why do we have to work with a disadvantage, was the question the development team aimed to solve,” said Mr. Masato Miyata, group leader of the Olympus Corporation Optics System Development.

Camera Grand Prix 2018 Best camera award selected by Readers: Nikon D850

The D850 was awarded the Best Camera Award by Readers and Camera Press Club Award as well. There was an online poll that decided the reader’s choice award and the D850 was in first place from day one of voting.

The D850 features a high pixel count and high speed, and one defining factor was the development team retained the sound of the shutter in the camera.

“We continued to modify parts until just before manufacturing,” says Hirotaka Ikegami, general manager of development management department, Nikon Corporation.

“Although silent photography was possible with the help of an electronic shutter, we retained the sound in the shutter. It is also one of the pleasures of photographers and I would like to continue product development that touches the people who use it.”

Camera Grand Prix 2018 Camera Reporter Club Award: Panasonic LUMIX G9 PRO

Though Panasonic celebrated its 100th anniversary this year, the camera division is only 18 years old. “I wanted to challenge a camera maker with history,” he said, Yosuke Yamane of Panasonic Corporation’s Imaging Network Division Business Division.

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