As we approach both our 25th anniversary and, it seems, the end of the site, we thought it would be appropriate to look back at the landmarks we’ve seen in camera development, the breakthrough cameras released during the time we’ve been covering the industry.
If the following list feels incomplete, it’s because we’re not trying to call out every noteworthy camera, but instead highlight the models we felt represented a significant step forward for digital camera capability. It’s a mixture of cameras that were the first to offer features that went on to become popular and models we felt were the first to do things well (a lot of those ‘firsts’ weren’t necessarily great cameras).
We’ve tried to avoid focusing solely on range-topping flagships that rarely ventured beyond the hands of professionals, both because it’s obvious that they’d represent the most that money can buy, and because we want to recognize those cameras with exciting new powers that made their way into people’s hands, and delivered enjoyment in return for a personal outlay.
In Part One we’ll look at the years 1998-2006, when digital photography was a rapidly changing landscape of experimentation and progress, with occasional peaks marking new solutions that would continue to this day. Part Two will follow the trail from 2008 to the present time.