Sony, Panasonic to unveil new digital SLRs next week

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Sony and Panasonic will both unveil new digital SLR (single lens reflex) cameras next week, the companies said Wednesday.

Sony's camera, a new member of its "alpha" family of cameras, will be shown at a company event that is scheduled to take place in Tokyo on Wednesday.

Sony didn't offer any other information about the camera but it's likely to be the long-anticipated high-end camera in the alpha line-up. Earlier this year Sony said the camera will have a full-frame sensor -- an image sensor the same size as a 35mm film frame -- with a resolution of 24.6 megapixels and image stabilization to reduce the effects of camera shake.

Two days later Panasonic will show the successor to the DMC-L10 at a Tokyo news conference. Panasonic said the new camera "offers unique features to set a new trend in digital SLR photography" but didn't reveal any information about the camera.

The DMC-L10 was launched in September last year at the Photokina camera show in Germany and was the second digital SLR to be presented by Panasonic. The new camera will become the third Lumix digital SLR and is likely to be a main feature of Panasonic's Photokina line-up.

Likewise, the new Sony alpha camera will be a key item on its Photokina booth.

Photokina begins in Cologne on Sept. 23.

The digital SLR is becoming increasingly competitive with long-time leaders Nikon and Canon facing stiff competition from newcomers including Panasonic, Sony, FujiFilm and Olympus. The most recent new digital SLR, Nikon's D90, was announced in August and brought a feature not present on other models: the ability to record high-definition video.

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