IMO the NEX line is hampered by its need for almost-full-sized lenses for its APS-C sized sensor. The bodies are sexy and sleek, but you end up carrying what looks like a a Rebel kit lens on an ELPH body. You aren't really gaining that much compactness over a Canon Rebel, Nikon D3100, etc.
Better to go with Micro 4/3 IMO. That's definitely what I would go for if I were looking for a compact ILC. Nikon's 1 series is interesting, but I hate that they made the bodies look thinner than they actually are by using black plastic to mask the rear of the body. If the J1 were as thin as the colored plastic part (and a few hundred dollars cheaper), it might be more interesting to me. They're actually kinda porky when you hold one. m43 has an advantage in the number of lenses offered from different manufacturers and in price. The pancake primes and the collapsible 14-42mm are particularly nice and small. I saw the GF3 with lens for sale recently under $400 new. That is so cheap that I'm actually considering one for myself, despite my loads of Canon DSLR equipment (which I haven't been carrying around lately, because of the size/weight/hassle).
Another option would be something like the new Canon G1X which has a damn large sensor for a P&S. Pretty pricey though.
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Last edited by slashbinslashbash; 02-21-2012 at 10:26 PM.