These are Japan's 5 favorite camera brands… you won't believe who's first!

Camera brands

If we told you that Japan's favorite camera brand is Canon, you'd believe us. The same if we said it was Nikon or Sony. You might even believe us if we told you that Japan's most beloved brand is Olympus, or Fujifilm. But no… in fact, Japan's favorite camera brand is Pentax / Ricoh

That's according to the latest results in a survey being conducted by IT Media, asking Japanese consumers to choose their favorite digital camera maker. And despite the best Pentax cameras all being DSLRs, and facing quite a technological disparity compared to the likes of the best Canon cameras and best Sony cameras, that hasn't stopped Ricoh being Japan's most beloved brand in the camera industry. 

• Read more: The best camera in 2021 

The survey (spotted by Pentax Rumors) still has another ten days to run, closing on 27 May, but so far the results are pretty eye-opening. Almost a quarter of Japanese users say that Pentax / Ricoh is their favorite brand, with nearly a fifth pledging allegiance to Nikon. 

Surprisingly, Canon and Sony are a distant third and fourth, with a neck-and-neck 13.3% and 13.2% following respectively. And it's Olympus coming in at fifth, with 10.1% of votes, edging out Fujifilm's 9.7%. 

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Japan's favorite camera brands (updated 19 May)
Row 0 - Cell 0 Row 0 - Cell 1 Row 0 - Cell 2 Row 0 - Cell 3
1Pentax / Ricoh25.1%Row 1 - Cell 3
2Nikon19.7%Row 2 - Cell 3
3Canon13.3%Row 3 - Cell 3
4Sony13.2%Row 4 - Cell 3
5Olympus10.1%Row 5 - Cell 3
6Fujifilm9.7%Row 6 - Cell 3
7Panasonic4.8%Row 7 - Cell 3
8Sigma2.2%Row 8 - Cell 3
9Leica1.4%Row 9 - Cell 3
10Hasselblad0.3%Row 10 - Cell 3
11Other0.3%Row 11 - Cell 3

The second half of the table is very interesting, too – and doesn't portray a very loyal following for the L-Mount Alliance. Panasonic is the most unfashionable of the major consumer brands, with just 4.8% of votes, while Sigma scrapes in with 2.2% and Leica just 1.4%. 

Still, spare a thought for Hasselblad – which is so unloved in Japan that even the "Other" category matches it with a paltry 0.3%. 

Obviously this list doesn't really amount to a whole hill of beans. It certainly doesn't mean that the Canon EOS R5 and Sony A1 are huge failures, for example, though it does illustrate that there are people in the world who really do bleed Ricoh – and helps explain why the Pentax K-3 Mark III makes a whole lot of sense for at least one territory. 

And with Ricoh and Nikon at the top, it's interesting food for thought regarding the whole DSLR vs mirrorless camera debate as well.

Read more: 

Best Nikon cameras
Best Olympus cameras
Best Fujifilm cameras
Best Panasonic cameras
Best Leica cameras

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James Artaius

The editor of Digital Camera World, James has 21 years experience as a journalist and started working in the photographic industry in 2014 (as an assistant to Damian McGillicuddy, who succeeded David Bailey as Principal Photographer for Olympus). In this time he shot for clients like Aston Martin Racing, Elinchrom and L'Oréal, in addition to shooting campaigns and product testing for Olympus, and providing training for professionals. This has led him to being a go-to expert for camera and lens reviews, photo and lighting tutorials, as well as industry news, rumors and analysis for publications like Digital Camera MagazinePhotoPlus: The Canon MagazineN-Photo: The Nikon MagazineDigital Photographer and Professional Imagemaker, as well as hosting workshops and talks at The Photography Show. He also serves as a judge for the Red Bull Illume Photo Contest. An Olympus and Canon shooter, he has a wealth of knowledge on cameras of all makes – and a fondness for vintage lenses and instant cameras.