Hey Ron - Nice article...thanks mate.
One comment. I notice only one of the cameras you highlighted includes an optical viewer...at least that's the way it looks in the images. I recently upgraded from my old Canon (with optical viewer + LCD screen) to a Panasonic Lumix which only has an LCD viewer. Even though the LCD screen is quite a bit larger than that of the Canon I still struggle to see the subject clearly, outside on a bright sunny day it is nigh an impossibility.
I would never again buy a camera which did not include an optical viewer.
Just a thought,
P.S. I do wear my glasses when using the camera....LOL
You mentioned your older digital had optical+LCD viewers - that was pretty standard back back when these cameras became more accepted. Users expected a viewfinder and the manufacturers provided them. As the little cameras got smaller, the optical viewfinder simply took up too much room in the case. With the prices dropping at the same time, new users were not put off by having only an LCD to view. Coupled with ever larger LCD's, the cameras were produced without anything to look through!
My first digital was a Nikon 990; about $1000 in 2000-2001, with all of 3.34 megapixel resolution - absolutely top of the line for a prosumer camera. After thirty years of shooting film cameras, one of the absolute necessities was an optical viewfinder for this old photographer. Of course, those early digitals didn't have an LCD viewer, but I would have had the same reaction you did with your Panasonic!
The cameras I used to illustrate the article were chosen for their overall quality/price ratio. I don't use them or need them, but not everyone is used to budgeting for gear the way I do.
any updates on this thread? Would like to get your suggestions on some good to buy mirrorless cameras