Those ultra-mysterious folks at Sony are finally starting to loosen their grip on info about the Japanese giant's entry into the growing market for compact interchangeable lens cameras. Having already witnessed some of the user interface and a few prototype bodies, we're now seeing the first shots of these new shooters in the wild. Spotted in an Asian pub (what is it with drinking establishments and hardware leaks?), the mirrorless NEX3 body reveals its name, an external flash attachment (with a proprietary connector, boo!), and a a chrome-finished 16mm F2.8 pancake lens. It doesn't look very pancakey to us, and indeed Sony Alpha Rumors claim it's bigger than the nearest competitors from Olympus and Panasonic, but apparently that's because Sony has included optical image stabilization in the lens, perhaps a worthy trade-off. Both new models are expected to sport the 14 megapixel ExmorHD sensor, though the NEX5 will record 1080p video versus the NEX3's 720p. We're told to expect a May 11 announcement for the pair, with what's being described as "very aggressive" pricing relative to their Micro Four Thirds competition. Let it be so.

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Sony gives NEX3 and NEX5 names to its first ultra-compact interchangeable lens cameras