Is there any compact camera (for example about the size of the Olympus xz-1) having ASP-C (or similar size) sensor?

If not, is there any technical reason? Because I think it would be a really nice product: great quality and fits in your pocket. Maybe using a retractable lens there is not enough room for the the camera-sensor distance required by ASP-C?


4 Answers 4


For a long time there were no large or even medium size compacts but now they are starting to appear in numbers, with cameras like the Sigma DP1, Fuji X100 leading the way. Most of these cameras are on the large side and feature prime lenses.

There are a number of interchangeable lens compacts with a variety of sensor sizes from the very small pentax Q (5x crop), Nikon 1 (2.8x crop), micro 43rds (2x crop) and Sony NEX, the largest of the lot (1.5x crop).

Recently Canon announced the G1 X, with a m43ish size sensor and more traditional compact features and handling.

Sadly most customers of compacts aren't concerned with lowlight image quality (daylight image quality is good, even with a small sensor, and deep DOF makes these cameras easier to use)

There's no technical reason for the relative scarcity of large sensor compacts, after all one time most compacts used 35mm film, so a full frame pocket camera is possible. The main difference is that 35mm compacts tended to have prime lenses, and the ones with zooms were very slow (f/5.6-f/8).

Nowadays people are more than willing to trade sensor size for zoom range. You simply can't make a fast 20x zoom for a large or medium sensor and get the thing in your pocket!

  • \$\begingroup\$ Thanks for you exhaustive question. G1 X is perfect, except for its price :) \$\endgroup\$
    – Paolo
    Commented Apr 26, 2012 at 9:20

Like, perhaps, a Fujifilm XX100

12 megapixel. APSC.

This essentially meets your spec. The others below are getting a bit closer to SLRs.

specifications here

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Also look at:


Then see NEX5 and NEX 3.

And [Olmpus](Start here and work down :-).


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And Olympus

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There are a few. How many depends where you make the cut-off between large and small sensors. The catch to why none of these options are pocket size is that the lens must be proportional to the sensor size, so a bigger sensor simply requires a bigger lens.

Here are the smallest fixed lens cameras with sensor crop of 2.7X or less. Note the Canon G1 X is the only one with a zoom lens, the other ones have prime lenses.

Do the same for interchangeable lens cameras and you have more choice because the size goes not include a lens. Here are the smallest such camera weighing less than 300g. Note that Micro Four-Thirds gives you 5 lenses shorter than 3cm in length. This means one of the smallest kit you can get would be something like a Panasonic GF3 plus small lens.


The sony RX1 has a full frame sensor and is about the size of the FUJI X100S. It sits on the compact camera category, but, just like other large sensor compact cameras, it is significantly larger than most compact cameras.

Sony RX1 http://cdn.cnet.com.au/story_media/339341551/RX1_1.jpg


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