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Sony and Konica Minolta powers, activate!

Sony and Konica Minolta powers, activate!

What do you get when you mate a gazelle with a camel? I don't know, but if animals were cameras, you might get a Sony/Konica Minolta digital SLR. The two companies announced today that they've joined forces to create such a beast.

Konica Minolta's existing digital SLRs, the Maxxum 7D and the recently announced 5D, carry forward the long Minolta tradition of appealing to serious photographers with solid camera technology, a utilitarian approach to design, and the regard for aesthetics of a station-wagon designer. Sony, of course, is the company that makes the pretty cameras (OK, it's made a few weird-looking ones too) and appeals to the masses by putting rock stars in its ad campaigns.

If these strange bedfellows get it right, they'll create a camera that turns the heads of avid photographers and fickle consumers alike: something that marries Sony design sensibilities with Minolta functionality, is compatible with a new line of high-end Zeiss lenses along with Minolta and KM glass, and incorporates KM's optical-stabilization system. Or they could create a monster and alienate everyone.