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07.17

P18
ON THE P44
COVER

p06
4K
gaming

06 The Hot Four 44 Long-term test Sony Xperia XZ Premium


Xbox One X A phone for Matrix-style slow-mo stunts
Essential Phone 52 App:roved
DJI Spark More awesome apps to clog up your phone
Apple HomePod 54 Tested HTC U11
14 Vital stats Olympus Tough TG-5 Give HTCs new smartphone a big old hug
A rough camera with a smooth processor 58 Tested Nokia 3310 (2017)
18 Games E3 Special Its a dumbphone is that a smart idea?
The best upcoming time-killers spotted in LA
22 Apps
A man kissing a fish, and other essentials
24 Best of Apple WWDC17
Including an extra-cool (literally) iMac p30
26 Icon Astell & Kern A&Ultima SP1000 Richer P64
At last, a music player worthy of Loggins picture

30 4K TV buying guide
Youve waited long enough its time to up the
pixel count with a glorious Ultra HD telly
39 25 best things to watch in 4K
What you could be gawping at
47 Indoor Gaming
Its too hot to go outside so occupy your time
with these indoor activities
56 Instant upgrades Samsung Galaxy S8
How to pimp our favourite smartphone p58 62 The Stuff Top Ten of everything
60 Media hoard Nostalgia Your essential gadget-buying guide:
Warning: includes competitive tickling reviewed Smartphones, tablets, headphones, TVs,
74 Next big thing? Brains for your camera smartwatches, fitness trackers, laptops,
Your snappers about to get smarter consoles, games, hi-fi, DSLRs, smart home
64 How to buy a home cinema
Turn your lounge into a popcorn paradise
71 5-minute hacks
Be ultra-secretive with self-destructing texts

U F F
21 PAGES
OF THE BIGGEST
STORIES FROM
PLANET TECH

One for
the road
Few games make the most
of the One Xs monstrous
internals, but Forza
Motorsport 7 is a gorgeous
exception. Read more
about it on p18.

HOT
FOUR
#1
ONE TO THE
POWER OF X
Xbox One X
A wise man once said: No one man
should have all that power. The clocks
ticking, I just count the hours. Alas, the
noble poetry of Kanye West is now
entirely redundant thanks to Microsofts
new 4K games console. Why? Anyone
whos recently upgraded to a new 4K telly
will count the Xbox One X as essential.
Not only does this box come with so many
teraflops weve lost count of them; it also
doubles as an awesome home cinema
machine with an Ultra HD Blu-ray player
and support for Dolby Atmos. Thats
enough power to blow Sonys PS4 Pro out
of the sea, but it does come at a cost. At
$499, the One X is the most expensive
games console ever even more so than
the famously eye-watering PS3. Time
to mine another Kanye song for life
advice: Gold Digger, of course.
As hot as that summer when everyone
wore shutter shades
US$499 / microsoft.com





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4K TV BUYING GUIDE

THE CINEPHILE SAVER


You dont believe the home cinema hype you
can get a similar setup for a third of the cash.
Only the nerdiest cork-sniffers will be able to
tell the difference anyway, wont they?
N
JARGOE R
BUST
NOW NOW
ADD ADD
W H AT THIS THIS
IS
QLED? SAMS U NG Q E5 5 Q7 F
The Q in US$2 6 0 0 / samsung. c om
Samsungs
QLED tellies
refers to the
quantum dot Gs OLED TVs have in the realms of detail and sharpness SONOS SONY
PLAYBASE PS4 PRO
tech its been
hawking for
the past few
years. Only this
L reigned supreme
around these parts
for some time now.
But this year Samsung
too. So while Deadpool is a joy to behold,
more heavyweight fare like The Crown
holds up well too. The Q7F digs up every
last ounce of nuance from Queen Lizs
US$699 /
sonos.com
US$399 /
playstation.com
time its been has something special exasperated sitdowns with grumpy As much as they Until Microsofts
further up its sleeve, and thats a new name old Winston. In a nutshell, the Q7F is a supercharge your next Xbox lands,
finessed to for its top-end tellies: QLED. No, theyre more bombastic alternative to the truer televisions audio this is the most
ensure even not as good as OLED sets, but they are picture youll get from an OLED. skills, soundbars powerful games
brighter cheaper and thats a big deal. are a bit of an console you can
pictures and This 55in model costs less than LGs Youre gonna need a bigger sound eyesore. Rather buy. That means
improved lowliest 2017 OLED, which should leave Elsewhere, performance is pretty much than sitting in Uncharted 4,
viewing angles. you with enough cash to get the fancy par for the course for a premium telly. front of your telly, Horizon: Zero
Still, QLED sets kit weve shot surrounding it, or a years Sound is so-so due to a thin 45mm Sonoss new Dawn and FIFA
do rely on a worth of Netix with several pennies to frame that leaves little room for a soundbase sits are all at their
backlit LCD spare. So the benets of going QLED are substantial built-in speaker setup. underneath it best when played
panel, which pretty self-explanatory. Youd best add a soundbar. and will hook on this chunky
means they Samsungs interface remains stellar, up to any Play:1, black lump.
cant match Bright young thing though, and has been boosted even 3 or 5 speakers While we wish
OLEDs Where QLED TVs excel above all others further for ease of use, with simple you might own it had a built-in
superior is their brightness. This Q7 is capable integration for services like Amazon, already. Although 4K Blu-ray
contrast levels. of producing 1500 nits, which is a lot of Netix and Google Play Movies & TV. it delivers an player, theres
And while light for your eyes to behold. This means Finding something to watch on this set impressively no denying what
QLED sets look shows lmed in High Dynamic Range is no trouble at all. big sound, the a step up the Pro
awesome and such as Iron Fist and The Grand Tour are Playbases treble is from a standard
are generally supremely punchy with vivid colours often strays into PS4 so long as
cheaper and and pure, bright whites. Were not sure TECH SPECS annoyingly shrill youre playing a
brighter than Clarkson will be too pleased about the Screen 49in 3840x2160 QLED with HDR territory. Thats game thats been
their OLED denition aorded to his frown lines, but OS Tizen 3.0 enough to cost it specially patched
foes, contrast thats his problem. Connectivity HDMI (x4), optical out, a fth Stu star. for it.
is king of the Although explosions are what this USB (x3), aerial, satellite, Ethernet, Wi-Fi
TV market. Samsung was born for, this telly excels Dimensions 109x63x4.5cm, 14.8kg STUFF SAYS STUFF SAYS

A great soundbase The PlayStation
[ Picture Getty]

STUFF SAYS let down by one your 4K TV truly


sonic aw deserves
Costs less than an OLED and is very nearly as good

34

4K TV BUYING GUIDE

THE GOLDILOCKS SET


You dont want to blow the budget, but
you dont want to miss out on the latest
and greatest telly tech either heres
how to find that just right middle ground
N
JARGOE R
BUST
NOW NOW
ADD ADD
THIS THIS S
W H ATL UI -
B
4K Y?
S O N Y KD-55X90 0 0 E RA
U S $ 15 0 0 / sony. c om
This one is
a bit of a
Ronseal job:
ot everybodys got built-in 20W speakers have got you CAMBRIDGE PANASONIC 4K Blu-rays
AUDIO DMP-
N ve grand to spend
on turning their living
room into a rival for
the local multiplex, but
covered, with a crisp sound thats still
able to unearth subtler details in more
taxing situations. But if its big booms
you want, youll need to plug it into
TV5 V2
US$440 /
cambridgeaudio.
UB900
US$500 /
panasonic.com
allow you to
play movies
in 4K and HDR.
The real
for less than a third something more meaty (see right). question here
com
of the price you can still get a serious Weve said it is whether you
screen thatll make your movie nights You talkin to TV? Beware: not before but its should start
the envy of the cul-de-sac. The Android TV OS isnt the most all soundbases worth repeating a 4K Blu-ray
The Android-powered KD-55X9000E intuitive out there, but its responsive and soundbars that a disc will collection,
needs a bit of work when you get it out enough that you wont nd yourself are created always oer bearing in
of the box, but once youve got the local jabbing at the remote waiting for it equal. Some are better 4K than mind players
dimming and dynamic contrast settings to catch up with your commands. The merely gloried a stream, at least cost up to
under control and disabled unnecessary majority of the catch-up and streaming boomboxes but until your internet $500 and
processing modes (Reality Creation, apps are present and correct, plus the despite being a connection is discs tend to
Motion Flow and X-tended Dynamic Google Play Store allows you to add bit bland to look stronger than sell around the
Range), this Sony handles 4K/HDR others, including Spotify and Tidal if at, version two an ox and more $30 mark.
content with aplomb. you fancy giving your eyes a rest. Its of Cambridge reliable than the While pixel
also got Googles voice control, activated Audios TV5 summer. From junkies will
The darker knight via a mic on the remote, but its not the passes its the strands of be able to
Picture quality is superb, with its grasp most user-friendly. audition without somebodys hair appreciate the
of detail and colours giving the image As it stands, for this price, theres not breaking sweat. to the insect upgrade from
a truly layered feel. While its not an much more you could want from the A pair of 6cm splats on the standard
OLED, its abilities with dark details are X9000E. Its a steal for 4K pursuers. drivers and two windscreen of Blu-rays, youll
impressive and it doesnt fail to impress 16cm subwoofers the car theyre spend less and
when you want it to get more punchy coupled with a driving, textures get more from
with the colours. Even in HD its highly TECH SPECS new DSP mean are effortlessly 4K streaming
adept, which is impressive when you Screen 49in 3840x2160 LCD with HDR you get an apparent when services such
consider the upscaling is creating about OS Android TV all-round top playing from as Netflix and
95% of the image. Connectivity HDMI (x4), USB (x3), performer. this Panasonic. Amazon.
For the nightly news or the odd late- optical output, Ethernet, Wi-Fi
night episode of Game of Thrones the Dimensions 109x63x6.2cm, 12.6kg STUFF SAYS STUFF SAYS

A soundbase A real gem of
STUFF SAYS with plenty to a picture no
say for itself buffering required
A more than worthy companion for a Netflix binge

37



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TOP TENS SMARTPHONES 62

1 HOT
BUY
Samsung Galaxy S8
US$760 / samsung.com

You dont need us to tell you that the Galaxy S8 is a bezel-less thing of
wonder. Just look at it: glorious! And beneath that gorgeous facade
lies an equally sumptuous blend of power and performance. With
enough oomph to run any app you please, and a point-and-shoot
camera to rival both the iPhone 7 Plus and the Google Pixel, this really
is an astoundingly good comeback after Samsungs Note 7 woes.
Wed have accepted nothing less.

Stuff says
The OnePlus is still a bargain, but its no match for the

Prices quoted are for handset only unless otherwise stated


Galaxy S8

BARGAIN OnePlus 3T
2
BUY
US$460 / oneplus.net

This phone is just like the old OnePlus 3,


aside from its higher price and a few little
extras that dont really change how it is to
use or, crucially, where it sits relative to its
pricier rivals. In other words, it continues to
be the best choice for shrewd buyers.
Stuff says
Not quite as bargain-tastic any more, but the
3T still packs a punch

Apple iPhone 7 Plus Apple iPhone 7


3 from US$770 / apple.com
Looking a bit like last years model, the Plus also gets
a dual-lens camera on top of waterproofing smarts.
7 from US$650 / apple.com
Forget the headphone furore; the iPhone 7 is a slick
update packed with worthwhile new features.

NEW HTC U11 Huawei Mate 9


4 from US$615 / htc.com
This glass-backed beauty aims to please with a
squeeze - and it takes a mean photo too.
8 US$625 / huawei.com
A 5.9in display in a body no bigger than an iPhone 7
Plus? Yes please! The dual-snapper is ace, too.

Huawei P10 Plus Sony Xperia XZ Premium


5 US$760 / huawei.com
A true flagship phone that gives you plenty of power,
a great screen and one of the best cameras going.
9 US$735 / sonymobile.com
Sonys back with a flagship to rival the best of em. A
4K screen, with a 960fps slow-mo camera to boot.

LG G6 HTC U Ultra
6 US$710 / lg.com
One of the most visually unique phones out there,
and it holds its own against strong competition.
10 from US$625 / htc.com
HTCs glass smartphone is a stunner to look at and
almost as lovely to live with.
63 TABLETS, FITNESS TRACKERS TOP TENS

1 HOT
BUY
1 HOT
BUY

Apple iPad Pro 9.7


from US$599 / apple.com
Garmin Vivoactive HR
US$250 / garmin.com

The iPad Pro 9.7 takes everything we loved about Apples Garmin has a frankly bewildering array of fitness trackers and
original 12.9in Pro tablet, makes it a lot more portable, and outdoorsy GPS watches, but the Vivoactive HR is the one you
then even adds in a few cool extras of its own. The True Tone really want. Its packed to the gills with long-lasting, easy-to-use
display, for example which changes intensity and colour and rewarding fitness cleverness. That means it contains the
balance automatically based on ambient conditions is an daily step and sleep tracking that you can get in other bands
absolute marvel, while the 12MP shooter is frankly overkill costing under a ton, but also the optical heart-rate monitor,
for those brave enough to use it out and about. Its expensive, touchscreen display and smartphone notifications that youd
yes, but quality comes at a price. normally pay more for.
Stuff says Stuff says
Incredible power, superb features and flawless Not super-stylish, perhaps, but crammed with sensors,
design: the iPad Pro 9.7 is pure tablet perfection sports and stamina: a fab all-round fitness tracker

Apple iPad Mini 4 Fitbit Flex


2 from US$399 / apple.com
Just the right size for a portable
entertainment hub, plus itll last three days.
2 US$80 / fitbit.com
Fitbits cheapest wrist strap pack a lot of tech
into a comfy band. Worst best on iPhone, though.

HOT
BUY Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 8.0 Apple Watch Series 2
3 US$300 / samsung.com
A top 8in Android tablet that packs loads of
fab features into a small, lightweight design.
3 from US$369 / apple.com
Apples addtion of GPS and waterproofing make
the Watch well worth it as a fitness tracker.

Google Pixel C BARGAIN


Moov Now
4 4
BUY
from US$500 / store.google.com US$60 / moov.cc
Turns out the future of laptops looks a lot Not just a tracker but a trainer, offering guided
like Googles Android hybrid tablet. workouts with voice coaching.

Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 9.7 Misfit Shine


5 US$500 / samsung.com
With a brilliant screen and serious stamina,
this is our favourite full-size Android tablet.
5 US$99 / misfit.com
The Shine is a $99 tracker that feels anything
but cheap. Its app isnt great, however.

Presidio CLEAR
SUPERIOR DROP PROTECTION
FOR MACBOOKS

EET)
4F
(1.22m

TEL: +971 4 883 0405 FAX: +971 4 883 04066 EMAIL: SUPPORT@MONSTERME.COM AVAILABLE IN ALL LEADING RETAILERS
TOP TENS HOW TO BUY 64

HOW Everyone deserves a room


thats used for nothing but
TO BUY A movie marathons its an
expensive investment, but a
HOME CINEMA perfect retreat from the family

Subwoofer
Lumens The speaker that
The measure of how provides the bass for
much light a projector that blockbuster audio,
emits. A lumen score often using its own
of between 1000 and built-in amp.
2000 is ideal.

JARGON
BUSTER

HDR
High dynamic range
gives your picture
greater contrast and
a deeper colour
palette.

CINEMA PARADISO SPECIAL SOURCES

1 Pet project 2 Screen time 3 Youre 4 Picture 5 Lets get


If youre after a Projectors surrounded! picker physical
full-on home cinema might offer the most Picture sorted? Now So youve got the Everyone may be
experience youll cinematic experience, you need to get some setup now, but what streaming these
want a projector over but their need for blockbuster sound. are you going to days, but for the very
a TV a 100in picture total darkness is You could just buy a watch? You could best 4K picture you
will put any telly to a pain. If youd rather single soundbar, and upgrade to the higher need to be playing
shame. Just bear in have the convenience for that wed suggest tiers of Netflix Ultra HD Blu-rays.
mind itll be pricey, of a normal telly, LGs the Sonos Playbar, (US$9.99/month) That means getting
especially since 4K Signature OLED but for 3D sound like and Amazon Video a suitable player and
the lamp will need Wallpaper TV is you get at the ($5.99/month) for Oppos is a cracker.
replacing from time so thin you can fool multiplex youll need a 4K content, but you Get this:
to time. Go for Sonys yourself into thinking 5.1 setup. Step want an experience Oppo UDP-203 US$830
VPL-VW550ES and its just a projected forward the ATC C1 to rival the multiplex, / oppodigital.com
you get a 4K and HDR image on the wall. 5.1, which includes right? Then youre
display. Itll set you At 65in, the LGs four stand-mounted going to want to
back 0ver 12 grand, display is smaller speakers and a plonk down on a new
but you will get to than a projectors, but bass-booming collection of UHD
avoid the noisy teens you are guaranteed subwoofer. Its a Blu-ray discs. Check
at the cinema. a gorgeous picture. steal at the price. out our feature on
Get this: Get this: Get this: the best 4K content
Sony VPL-VW550ES LG OLED65W7 ATC C1 5.1 US$4583 over on p55 to get
US$12,620 / sony.com US$16,300 / lg.com / atcloudspeakers.co.uk you started.

NOW AN AMPLIFIER A STREAMER


If youre buying an unpowered The Nvidia Shield TV offers 4K
ADD surround sound system, youll streaming from your favourite
THESE need a home cinema amp to
fuel those speakers. Wed go
apps while also being able to cast
4K HDR games such as Mass
for Denons AVR-X2300W Effect Andromeda from your PC.

LEARN MORE ABOUT HOW TO BUY ONLY THE BEST GADGETS BY VISITING: STUFFMIDEAST.COM
TOP TENS TVs 66

1 HOT
BUY
LG OLED55C6V
US$3000 / lg.com

A truly stunning television. LGs OLED panel can go blacker than most
TVs and will dazzle your senses with its brightness; it offers sharply
etched detail, excellent viewing angles and solid HD upscaling. It also
boasts support for both HDR standards HDR10 and Dolby Vision
so youll be able to watch compatible content from Amazon, Netflix
and UHD Blu-rays regardless of which format wins out in the future. If
youve got the money, this is the 4K TV to own.

Stuff says
Packed full of tech, with jaw-dropping performance to send
you into TV reverie

Samsung UE60KS8000
2 US$1600 / samsung.com

This set sprinkles extra stardust on top of its


4K and HDR brilliance in the form of
Quantum Dot tech, which claims to offer
over a billion colours. An impressively refined
performance, and the benefits of a top-of-
the-range TV at a fraction of the price.
Stuff says
A real winner, and significantly cheaper than
some of its rivals

HOT
BUY Sony 55X93D Panasonic TX-58DX802
3 US$2000 / sony.com
This Sony ticks every box for a thoroughly
modern TV. You get the full 4K and HDR package.
7 US$1600 / panasonic.com
One of most stylish tellies weve seen in ages,
with a great 4K HDR picture and punchy sound.

LG OLED65E6V Panasonic TX-65DX750B


4 US$5600 / lg.com
A regal TV that excels across the board. There
are few better you can buy at any price.
8 US$2100 / panasonic.com
This 65in Panasonic is tempting, but falls slightly
short on brightness and colour bit depth.

Samsung UE55KS9500 BARGAIN


Hisense 55K321
5 9
BUY
US$2100 / samsung.com US$750 / hisense.com

Stunning performance for the money, Even if its Full HD picture quality leaves a little
proving theres plenty of life in LCD yet. to be desired, this Hisense is still a bargain.

LG OLED65G6V LG 55LA850W
6 US$7500 / lg.com
A superb specimen of technology and design,
with one of the best pictures weve ever seen.
10 US$3000 / lg.com
Excellent picture and clever, app-stuffed smart
TV hub. Shame about that crazy pricetag.
TOP TENS LAPTOPS 68

1 HOT
BUY
Apple MacBook Pro
from US$1400 / apple.com

It can be easy to focus on what this entry-level version of the


MacBook Pro doesnt have: its missing the new Touch Bar for a
start, and is down on ports and power compared to the next model
up. But its also cheaper, and has the same diminuative form and
truly gorgeous screen. It also has the brilliant second-gen butterfly
keyboard. In fact, youre better off sparing your wallet and forgetting
about the Touch Bar. Its just not worth the extra cash.

Stuff says
The standard 13in Pro is beautiful, compact and apleasure
to work on

HOT
BUY Dell XPS 13 (2016)
2 from US$800 / dell.com

The original XPS 13 was already a great


lightweight laptop, but now Dell has given it a
Windows 10 refresh. If the last one was the
thinking persons Ultrabook, this is that and
a whole lot more. With improved battery life
and performance, its hard to beat.
Stuff says
An excellent Windows 10 Ultrabook, small in
size and great in stature

Asus Zenbook UX390UA Dell XPS 13 2-in-1


3 from US$1820 / asus.com
Asus has made potential MacBook Air buyers think
twice. Theres little else out there thats better.
7 from US$1100 / dell.com
Our favourite Ultrabook gets a hybrid hinge...but
this isnt as good a deal as the standard laptop.

Asus ROG GX800 Apple MacBook Pro 15in with Touch Bar
4 from US$6550 / asus.com
4K-ready with an 18in screen to match. A
gaming beast with all the bells and whistles.
8 from US$2600 / apple.com
A flawed masterpiece, but one thats packed
with power and is fantastic to use.

Apple MacBook Microsoft Surface Book


5 from US$1400 / apple.com
Aside from an extra hours battery life, the current
MacBook isnt that different to the previous one.
9 from US$1600 / microsoft.com
Shorn of its initial bugs, the Surface Book is
a lustrous Windows hybrid with luxe appeal.

HP Spectre 13 BARGAIN
BUY Lenovo Yoga Book (Android)
6 from US$1250 / hp.com
One of the worlds thinnest laptops - but this
machine still has serious power to spare.
10 US$570 / lenovo.com
A gorgeous hybrid packed with ideas, including a
keyboard that doubles as a drawing pad.

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TOP TENS DSLRs, COMPACT CAMERAS 72

1 HOT
BUY
1 HOT
BUY

Fujifilm X-T2
US$1599 / fujifilm.com
Sony DSC-RX100 IV
US$949 / sony.com

The X-T2 is an excellent lesson in how to upgrade an already Yes, admittedly its rather expensive for a compact, but then
great gadget. The X-T1 was itself a brilliant camera, so Fuji the high frame rate, fast burst mode and 4K video recording
gave it superb video and autofocus skills to go with the arent to be sniffed at. You probably wont be using them every
already top weatherproof build. Sure, its pricey, but its also day, but theyre great options to have at your fingertips. The
worth every penny. What youre getting here is a camera RX100 IV is also a premium point-and-shoot that offers all the
that approaches high-end DSLRs for speed and rivals flexibility and all-round performance you could ever need. If its
pretty much any camera for image quality, so its a truly a compact camera youre after, and your budgets big enough,
superb all-rounder. then this is the one to go for.

Stuff says Stuff says


A dream of a camera that barely strays from perfection A pocket rocket compact with almost no compromises:
from start to finish and has brilliant 4K video skills the perfect companion for your system camera

Sony A7R II Panasonic Lumix LX100


2 US$3199 / sony.com
The A7R II combines impeccable build
quality with a class-leading full-frame
2 US$799 / panasonic.com
This is one of the most capable premium
compacts on the market. It can capture
sensor, 5-axis image stabilisation, a huge 4K footage, but its superb stills and HD
ISO range, super-fast autofocus, an excellent video performance are what make the
viewfinder and 4K video recording. Panasonic stand out.
Stuff says Stuff says
The finest camera Sony has ever made A star performer when it comes to the basics

Canon EOS 80D Sony RX10 III


3 US$1199 / canon.com
Even a child would get great results with the
80D its the photographic equivalent of
3 US$1499 / sony.com
One of the best all-rounders weve ever
seen, capable of handling everything you
playing FIFA 17 as Barcelona, on full auto could ask of it with aplomb. If youre looking
mode, against Burnley. This takes the hard for a high-performance camera without the
work out of getting fantastic photos. hassle of interchangeable lenses, this is it.
Stuff says Stuff says
If you want simplicity, you wont get much better The best bridge camera you can get

BARGAIN
BUY Fujifilm X-T10 Panasonic Lumix FZ1000
4 US$799 / fujifilm.com
The X-T10 beats most other choices at
any price. It also handles beautifully.
4 US$899 / panasonic.com
Incredibly versatile a fixed-lens camera
capable of shooting fantastic stills and video.

Canon EOS 5DS Fujifilm X70


5 US$3699 / canon.com
A fantastic piece of kit that any pixel-peeping
SLR fan will get heaps of enjoyment out of.
5 US$699 / fujifilm.com
A very nice little camera with a big sensor
delivering excellent image quality.

FOR UP-TO-DATE NEWS AND FULL REVIEWS OF ALL THE BEST NEW CAMERAS, VISIT STUFFMIDEAST.COM

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