These Awesome Cameras Launched 10 Years Ago. Are They Still Good?

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The year is 2011: and the camera world is only starting to really lose ground to the smartphone world. But the interchangeable lens camera market is still holding strong. Fast forward to 2021, and things are different. Point and shoots have been nearly wiped out. And the only things that mostly matter are interchangeable lens cameras. Lots of them are full-frame too. But the aesthetics older cameras deliver are still cherished by those looking for nostalgia. Luckily, The Phoblographer was still cutting its teeth in 2011. And we’ve got some reviews that you’ll be very interested in. Dive into a look at these cameras from 2011.

Sony NEX 7: A Step Forward

Is It Worth It?: The Sony NEX 7 was, at one point, a favorite camera of mine. Sony packed a lot of megapixels onto an APS-C sensor. Further, they made it small, feel great in hand, gave it a viewfinder, and made some awesome lenses to go with it. If you wanted to shoot anything, this was one of the most perfect cameras you could get your hands on at the time. Also, the autofocus was pretty good. And today, it will still use Sony’s newest E mount lenses. Best of all, it represents a time when Sony had a very particular look to what came from their sensors.

However, there are much better cameras on the market now. Sony even found a way to put a full-frame sensor into a camera almost as large. It’s called the Sony a7c. This is one of those cameras from 2011 that I’d leave behind unless you really want that look.

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Ricoh GXR with Leica M Mount Module: One of the Coolest Cameras from 2011

Is It Worth It?: The Ricoh GXR system was very odd. It was a body with interchangeable sensors and processors. Quite honestly, I liked the idea. Paramount amongst the system was the GXR with a Leica M mount module. The combination of sensor and lenses provided a very bright, vibrant color. 

Honestly, I’d probably still get one today just for the fun of it. Additionally, this is one of those cameras from 2011 that had a unique look to it.

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Samsung NX200: Paired with Great Glass!

Is It Worth It?: The Samsung NX200 was very much a product of its time. Camera manufacturers were getting into the mirrorless camera world and were staking their claim. It was tough for any of us to take Samsung seriously back then. But they eventually matured in an excellent camera system before giving the industry the Irish Goodbye. They made one of my favorite 85mm f1.4 lenses of all time. That thing was absolute, pure magic.

We never finished a full review of the camera. And indeed Samsung made better ones in the years later.

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Leica M9-P: One of the Most Enduring Cameras from 2011

Is It Worth It?: The Leica M9-P is honestly the only camera on this list that gets a resounding, 100% yes. The Leica M9-P was basically a stealthy version of the Leica M9. The Leica M9 remains a cult classic, so much so that Leica even let us use their sponsorship dollars to write an article supporting it recently. This thing has a CCD sensor that delivers images that look like chrome film. Seriously, go pick one up. This has to be on of our favorite cameras from 2011.

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Olympus EP3: The Fastest of Cameras from 2011

Is It Worth It?: The Olympus EP3 started what we thought was a revolution. At the time, it was the fastest mirrorless camera to focus. I even remember it today. Using the touchscreen, it was so fast to tap a subject, have the camera focus, snap the picture, and look at it with joy. 

I think the Olympus EP3 is still worth it today because of the sensor. This was from a time when they used Kodak’s sensors. Those had a unique look that was positively beautiful.

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Fujifilm X100: The Most Important of the Cameras from 2011

Is It Worth It?: The original Fujifilm X100 is still earning photographers some awards today. This was the camera that really got the tech and photo world excited about retro looks. It influenced so many other cameras to come. And today, the X100 series is still highly revered by the photo press. 

But with that said, I don’t think I’d get the original. The X100V is a million times better. However, we have to say that amongst all cameras from 2011, this has to be one of the most important.

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Chris Gampat

Chris Gampat is the Editor in Chief, Founder, and Publisher of the Phoblographer. He also likes pizza.