The UK?s compact system camera (CSC) market has experienced its worst drop in value since significant sales started in June 2009, say analysts.

CSC sales revenue fell 17% in September, compared to the same month a year earlier, reflecting ?intensifying price competition?, according to GfK Retail and Technology Ltd.

Though volume sales of CSCs dropped 1% in September, this segment is ?still a huge growth area?, says GfK, and should be seen against ?phenomenal growth of 314% in September 2010?.

Overall, UK consumers snapped up 7% fewer digital still cameras from January-September 2011 compared to the same period in 2010, triggered by a decline in sales of fixed-lens compact cameras.

However, 6% more SLRs were sold in September than the same month last year and unit sales of ?superzoom? compacts, with a 10x optical zoom or higher, shot up 61% in September.

?Value paints a darker picture, which is indicative of intensifying price competition, with the overall market falling by 8% in September,? writes GFK?s Aaron Harris in the latest GfK newsletter.

He adds: ?However, it?s not all doom and gloom, thanks to the changeable lens market. The SLR market is proving to be very strong, with extensive sustained growth.

?The SLR market has not had negative volume growth since May 2010, and year to date the segment is up 9%; 10% in Q3 and 6% in September.?

Though SLR sales revenue fell 1% in September, this was against a 20% increase in September 2010.

?The fact that value has also grown by 3% year-to-date, shows the strength of this market,? added Harris.

Commenting on the CSC market, Harris continued: ?Year-to-date values are still up, despite huge price reductions, and have grown by 36%.

Pentax and Nikon have both entered the market in 2011 and Fuji announced that they too will be releasing a CSC early in 2012.

?With CSC becoming more visible to the public through a number of campaigns, and more brands entering the market, growth should continue.?