Never one to accept common formats, Sony has taken a popular idea (micro four-thirds cameras) and made it its own with the new Sony Alpha NEX-5 Camera ($700). Sporting an 14.2 megapixel APS-C sensor and a new E-mount lens system, the NEX-5 is currently the world's smallest interchangeable lens digital still camera, offering a ton of high-end features like 1080p video recording, ISO 12,800 sensitivity, 25-point autofocus, a tiltable 3-inch LCD screen, and some tricks borrowed from the company's point-and-shoots, like hand-held twilight mode, auto HDR, and the awesome sweep panorama. Best of all, it takes standard SD cards (yay!) as well as Memory Stick Pro Duo cards, so you can finally use all those relics you have lying around from before your iPhone replaced your PSP.
Ah Leica, you tease us with your incredible rangefinders like the M9, but still find time to make some semi-affordable pocket cams for the common folk. The Leica V-Lux 20 ($700) is the latest in this line of svelte shooters, packing a 25-300mm equivalent, 12x optical zoom Leica lens, a 12.1 megapixel sensor, built-in GPS for geotagging, a three-inch LCD display, and a rock-solid build. Of course, you can pick up a Panasonic Lumix ZS7 sporting a similar — whereby "similar," we mean "exactly the same" — feature set for roughly half the price, but surely that Leica logo is worth the extra $350. Right? Right?