The Photography Show is the largest photography event in the UK, with 30,000 photo-fans attending it annually to see what camera and accessory manufacturers have got to offer. We recently toured the halls of the Birmingham-based event to take a look, so read on to see what took our fancy.

This year there was a noticeable absence of a headline attraction at the show. Last year the event was one of the first chances photographers had had to go hands-on with the Nikon D5, D500 and Canon's 1D X Mark II, previous years have also seen flagship cameras on show before their public release.

That said, there were a couple of cameras on display at the event before they appear on the shelves of your local camera store. We got the chance to try out Canon's upcoming mid-range trio of the 800D and 77D DSLRS, and the mirrorless M6, which are all due out next month. We'll be writing up our hands-on impressions of those cameras shortly.

Recently-released cameras which were proving popular with visitors included Fujifilm's medium-format GFX 50s, as first seen at Photokina. This was wowing people with the clarity of its giant 50-megapixel sensor and top-notch lenses, even if they only had the opportunity to shoot Fujifilm's slightly odd medieval-inspired models posing in front of a wall of flowers.

Other cameras drawing people's attention included the Panasonic GH5 (an obvious hit with videographers), and the Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II, which after spending some more time with is seriously tempting us to consider mirrorless alongside, if not replacing, our trusty DSLR.

New lenses were equally likely to have photographers drooling, with glass on show including the new IRIX 11-mm full-frame optic (which is so wide it could almost take in the whole show in one shot). Sigma's new trio of Art lenses were also present, albeit entombed in a glass case. Nikon and Canon were also showing some big (but old) guns in the form of a Nikon 2000-mm F11, and the super-rare Canon 1200-mm F5.6.

However, some of our highlights of The Photography Show 2017 included seeing projects we've followed from early-on come to fruition. In particular we were pleased to see Adaptalux available to buy after recently shipping to Kickstarter backers. Foldio360 and Palette are other Kickstarter projects which it's nice to see make it from crowdfunding and into the real world.

Interestingly, there was significantly less focus on smartphone photography than we have seen in previous years. In terms of devices, the Kodak Ektra – a photo-focused smartphone – was the sole offering on show. There were less photography smartphone accessories too, with the BitPlay iPhone cases, which add a physical shutter button and a screw mount for lenses, about the best we came across.

There was significant interest in drone and VR tech on display, too. But while DJI had its offerings like the Mavic flying around in a display cage, it was the quirky-looking PowerEgg which seemed to be getting all the attention. On the VR front there were several talks about the implications 360-degree shooting is going to have on the field of photography, though 360-degree cameras were thin-on-the-ground, with the Ricoh Theta cameras still the most noteworthy.

Proving that photography is not just about the gear, there were also a number of photo opportunities for visitors to exercise their shutter-fingers, along with talks and demonstrations from seasoned professionals.

You can check out the products mentioned, and some of our other favorites from the show, in our image gallery. The Photography Show was held at the NEC in Birmingham (UK) from March 18-21, and is expected to make a return next year.

View gallery - 74 images