Camera Grand Prix 2021 / CJPC

Camera Grand Prix 2021 -outline-

The Camera Grand Prix is held every year by the Camera Journal Press Club (CJPC, Japan, President Yuichiro Fukuda), an association of technical editors from magazines and websites specializing in photography and cameras. The CJPC, established in September 1963, has seven members from the media as of April 2021. The selection committee, organized under the CJPC’s Camera Grand Prix Executive Committee (Chairman Koji Nagahara), screens the best products for the following four awards among those introduced on the Japanese market during the previous fiscal year from April 1, 2020 through March 31, 2021 for the Camera Grand Prix 2021.

The Camera Grand Prix "Camera of the Year" is awarded to a still camera recognized as the best of all marketed during the period. The "Lens of the Year" is given to the best lens launched on the market, while the "Readers' Award" is determined by the general camera users’ votes on the CJPC website (the voting period this year was from February 25 through April 11, 2021). In addition, the CJPC members select the "Editors' Awards" to cameras, lenses or other photography-related products, excluding the ones awarded the "Camera of the Year" and the "Lens of the Year", in consideration of the products' popularity, topicality, and innovativeness.

The selection committee is comprised of the CJPC members, chief editors (or representatives) of the CJPC member publications, external members entrusted by the Camera Grand Prix Executive Committee, and other special members such as academic experts, technical writers, professional photographers, and representatives from photo-related organizations, in addition to the TIPA (the Technical Image Press Association), an association of photo- or image-related magazines, which now has 24 member organizations and photo journalist clubs from the countries mainly in Europe. In total, 49 people were involved in the selection process this year. The reasons for choices stated here were composed by the Camera Grand Prix Executive Committee, based on the selection committee members’ opinions.

Camera of the Year
The Camera Grand Prix 2021 Camera of the Year is to be awarded to the Sony "α1", manufactured by Sony Corporation.

Lens of the Year
The Camera Grand Prix 2021 Lens of the Year is to be awarded to the Panasonic "LUMIX S 20-60mm F3.5-5.6", produced by Panasonic Corporation.

Readers Award
The Camera Grand Prix 2021 Readers Award is to be given to the Canon "EOS R5", manufactured by Canon Inc.

Editors Award
The Camera Grand Prix 2021 Editors Awards are to be given to the Canon "RF 800mm F11 IS STM / RF 600mm F11 IS STM" produced by Canon Inc., Hasselblad "907X 50C" produced by Hasselblad AB and Epson "Pro Selection SC-PX1VL/SX-PX1V" produced by Epson.

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Camera of the Year
Sony α1

Reasons for choice
The Sony α1 sports an effective 50-megapixel high-resolution sensor for a blackout-free 30fps ultra-high speed continuous shooting to establish a new standard. Its real-time "eye auto-focus" system responds to the eyes of birds in addition to the eyes of human beings and animals and its practicality and stability in continuous shooting are especially noted. Considering its high levels of functions leads to high evaluations of "giving joys of photography to capture the subjects ever dreamed of " because the camera is one and only existence. Its movie function can record approx. 30 minutes of 8K/30p movie.

In addition, the camera makes possible the flash sync for its electronic shutter and at the same time raises the flash sync speed for its mechanical shutter and thus the camera is welcomed as the "ultimate all-round camera" to set the new standards of professional-use cameras. Though it is the flagship of Sony's 35mm format mirrorless cameras, the camera dimensions are as small as previous α cameras and may be used conveniently along with previous models. The α1 definitely represents the basic concept of smallness for the Sony cameras.

Lens of the Year
Panasonic LUMIX S 20-60mm F3.5-5.6

Reasons for choice
The Lumix S 20-60mm F3.5-5.6 zoom lens has a character of covering the 20 mm super-wide angle range in addition to its light weight of approx. 350 grams to be highly evaluated as a "new normal zoom lens" while the similar compact and lightweight normal lenses of other makes have wide-angle limits of 24 mm or 28 mm.

In addition to the zoom range, the lens also features a closest focusing distance of only 15 cm to give a dramatic wide-angle photograph. The selection committee members also note the high picture quality for a popularly-priced normal zoom lens.

Readers Award
Canon EOS R5

Reasons for choice
The Canon EOS R5 is a versatile camera with a high resolution and a high-speed continuous shooting capacity that jumps up in specifications from the earlier EOS R line mirrorless cameras. Many readers have commented "the camera shows Canon's strong will". The following are some reasons from the readers excerpted and edited by the Camera Grand Prix 2021 Executive Committee.

"Almost all specs are utmost and the camera is well balanced."
"Magnificent functions."
"Marvelous specs for the compact camera body that fits well in hands."
"Excellent picture quality and easy operation."
"The camera symbolizes the paradigm shift."
"Despite the high resolution of approx.45 megapixels, the camera has a high noise durability. In addition to the high resolution, the auto-focus speed and image stabilization capacity are well balanced on a high level."
"After an intensive research of mainly all cameras before the purchase, I think the camera to be the best in the technical innovations and the camera body quality."
"The camera symbolizes the Japanese cameras to come."
"I am attracted by its versatile performance representing the EOS 5 line cameras."
"It has a marvelous auto-focus performance surpassing the mirrorless camera standards."
"It is a great step forward in its performance and external design done by a traditional camera firm."
"Stunning performance for its eye auto-focus system."
"In my practice, I am moved by the accuracy of focusing."
"Though I have not used yet, its public evaluation is high."
"The camera is aggressive and the future evolution is highly expected."
"Its astonishingly high resolution and auto-focus system to catch the eyes of birds."
"I am frankly moved by the potential of Canon."
"The camera is just exciting."
"It is really a good product though it is expensive for the average camera enthusiasts."
"I think that the camera changes the paradigm of the full-frame mirrorless camera market dominated by Sony."
"It is an epoch-making camera that symbolizes the paradigm shift from DSLRs to mirrorless cameras."
"It is a magnificent evolution by its eight-step image stabilization and a rapid continuous shooting of 20fps."
"I prefer the color rendition of Canon digital cameras."
"The camera is a fine product for its external designing and ease of operations (such as positions of buttons) and its performances (like an auto-focus tracking and etc. suitable for the traditional Canon camera users and thus I can easily switch and operate."
"As I have used Canon digital cameras that are easy to handle, I welcome the 8K movie function. It saves time because the camera gives an easy closeup by the crop from the 8K picture and thus eliminates the use of other cameras.The camera will be better if the overheat problem is solved. Now I have used a compact fan attached on the camera for the cool-down."
"The camera is a multi-function camera in the reasonably priced range and is an aggressive product in the Canon 5 line cameras."
"It is an EOS line mirrorless camera and a product in the Canon 5 line. I am really satisfied with its sharp-edge performances, material qualities and appearances."
"Frankly, I have wondered which is the best between the EOS R5 and Sony α1. Finally, I voted for the long-awaited Canon camera."
"I have been moved by the debut of the camera as good as the EOS 5D line DSLRs only two years after the introduction of the EOS RF system."
"The camera is well-balanced and it is the best camera for serious photographers though its price is too expensive."
"It is a mirrorless camera that shows Canon's seriousness. Canon has an aggressive attitude to maintain the market share."

Editors Award
Canon RF 800mm F11 IS STM / RF 600mm F11 IS STM

Reasons for choice
Due to the challenging product development concepts to limit the specs to a minimum by adopting the collapsible lens barrel and omitting the diaphragm unit, these RF super-tele lenses materialize the new frontier of the "compact, lightweight and low-price genuine-made super-tele lenses." They are highly evaluated as the lenses showing Canon's enthusiasm and viewpoint in photography.

Though the use is limited in sufficient available light situations, the lenses give the opportunity of enjoying the wild bird photography with a full-frame 35mm camera while walking around. Each of the lenses is priced only for approx. 100,000 Japanese yen to provide the chance of purchase by the pocket money or as the New Year's present.

Editors Award
Hasselblad 907X 50C

Reasons for choice
The 907X 50C is highly applauded because of the versatile usage for its digital camera back to fit the conventional Hasselblad V line cameras and a thin camera body combined with newest X line AF lenses. Not only its external appearance but the excellent designing approach include the graphical user interface utilizing the touch panel. In addition, the high material quality to satisfy of owning the camera that "touch the minds of camera enthusiasts as its external appearance reminds them of the historical Hasselblad SWC camera."

Editors Award
Epson "Pro Selection SC-PX1VL/SC-PX1V" Printers

Reasons for choice
The SC-PX1VL/SC-PX1V ink jet printers come in the "Supplementary RAW A2 size printer that has a space factor of a Supplementary RAW A3 size printer and the Supplementary RAW A3 size printer downsized by approx. 30 percent from conventional printers." The design concept is just simple as "the same installation spaces give the larger prints than before". The newly developed inks provide higher quality of black density and blue colors are also highly evaluated. The external appearance comprising straight lines and practical print head illuminations raise the motivations of creative print work.

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