The Sony a9 has been named “Camera of the Year” by in the prestigious Camera Grand Prix 2018 held by the Camera Journal Press Club (CJPC), a 55-year-old coalition of 10 of the most influential photography and camera publications in Japan.
The award honors the best camera products introduced into the market over the previous fiscal year (for the 2018 prize it covers from April 1st, 2017 to March 31, 2018). 53 people involved in the industry (e.g. editors, experts, reporters, photographers) were involved in this year’s selections.
Sony Wins the Top Prize
The Sony a9 was selected as the best of all cameras released over the past year, and the camera received high praise from the committee:
“It is surely an epoch-making camera, indicating further possibilities of cameras in the future,” CJPC writes. “It has changed the concept of a mirrorless camera, convincing us that some images, both still and moving alike, can be captured only with this camera. Fits for professional use.
“Many members of the selection committee highly appreciated the innovative quality.”
Olympus Snags ‘Lens of the Year’
The Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 17mm f/1.2 PRO lens was named Lens of the Year.
“Realizing both outstanding resolution and high-quality bokeh, this super-fast lens provides the widest angle as of today in the Olympus max F1.2 lens lineup,” CJPC writes. “While the lens angle is handy in use, a moderate depth of field is also available with the maximum F1.2 aperture. The quality and quantity of its bokeh, realized through the company’s technological experiences, is great enough as a full-blown camera, giving a beautifully blurred, feather-like image.
“The lens does deserve any photographer’s trust. […] A finest lens for an utmost depictive quality.”
Nikon Top Among Readers and Editors
The Nikon D850 DSLR received the Readers Award and Editors Award in this year’s Camera Grand Prix.
“A perfect product as a DSLR with an optical viewfinder and quick-return reflex mirror, deserving to be called a masterpiece in the history of cameras,” CJPC states. “Rather than concentrating on a specific feature, it presents balanced performance as an all-rounder, suitable for various genres and fields, including the press, sports, portraits, railways and landscapes. The meticulously designed operability is another attraction, with which you can shoot smoothly as you like. D850 shows the finest essence of SLRs with most sophisticated functions and usability.
“Any photo lover would admire this model.”
Panasonic Also a Favorite of Editors
The second Editors Award was given to the Panasonic LUMIX G9 PRO mirrorless camera.
“[The G9] marks a great development with significant improvements in its functions, to be a full-fledged high-end still camera,” CJPC says. “Admirable enough to feel the maker’s earnest attitude toward photography, with a high degree of perfection as a Micro Four Thirds System model, suggesting a vision of more practical cameras in the future.
“This is an ambitious camera handy for a wide variety of photo opportunities with great functions of fast continuous shooting and accurate auto focus.”