Andrew Reid

How to save the consumer camera: DON'T!

79 posts in this topic

EOSHD Pro Color for Sony cameras

I did enjoy his video and comments, though like you, I didn't agree with all of his points. It's almost like he's saying young people are too stupid or lazy to use a battery charger, and don't even know what an SD card is or something. It would be nice if all cameras had the option of USB charging and if firmware updates could be installed wirelessly like they already can be on some devices. But those two ideas (which may very well be adapted by most manufacturers in the very near future), like many of his other suggestions, aren't what it will take to get young people interested in real cameras.

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All these things are nice. USB charging, wireless file transfer, etc. However they will not save the consumer market one jot.

What average joe with a smartphone wakes up in the morning and says to himself "today I will run eagerly to a camera store and buy a Sony because it has Wifi, USB charging and a touch screen menu!!"

They are just not interested. SO Let them bugger off is the crux of my article.

jonpais, hyalinejim and hansel like this

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The only reason cameras like Canon's IXUS series are still around is optical zoom. People like to get in there. Otherwise... I don't really see the use. Might as well make smartphones with collapsable zoom lenses (which actually was a thing, my sister in law has one) or just accept it already and actually 'get in there' if you want to get all up in there.

In general folks don't pixelpeep that much. They're just using it to boast about their great lives on social media anyways, where it's the context and not the photography in itself.

So indeed, by all means, scrap those lines of dinkie toys cameras and focus on the people that do care. Make their wishes come true (my three primary reasons for stepping up was: poor performance in lowlight, terrible manual focus and overal parameter control).

Still though, there's some legit point being made for... how does one go from smartphones to more serious cameras if they don't know any better and don't like to learn too much?

I think the first to really make efforts in that direction is YI, with their mirrorless M1. Most of the camera is controlled by the touchscreen and easy going menus, they have a real-time low energy bluetooth module to allow for easy sharing. There even are so called 'master guide templates' that recommends poses and settings... looks like that's the new step-up from a smartphone. Once they're adjusted, they can go take it from there. But that does mean that the more advanced cameras also still need a little way to go, to actually make it attractive to step-up and not make it much of a big deal. More touchscreens, more easy menus and more connectivity!

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12 minutes ago, Cinegain said:

I think the first to really make efforts in that direction is YI, with their mirrorless M1. Most of the camera is controlled by the touchscreen and easy going menus, they have a real-time low energy bluetooth module to allow for easy sharing.

NOOOO. It is not going to make any difference.

It doesn't matter if the camera connects to Facebook and prompts you to upload on pain of death when it detects your presence in the house, like a camera-style HAL... The will of the people just is not there. They have their smartphone for that.

They do not know or care about F-stop, lenses, mounts and least of all separate devices that cost extra money and need an extra pocket. What's more they certainly don't care about the Sony PlayMemories store or the WiFi pairing and crappy touch screen implementations and a crappy OS you can't even bring up Facebook on.

12 minutes ago, Cinegain said:

But that does mean that the more advanced cameras also still need a little way to go, to actually make it attractive to step-up and not make it much of a big deal. More touchscreens, more easy menus and more connectivity!

NO. NO and NO!! It. Will. Not. Make. Any. Difference.

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Couldn't hurt either though. Being stuck in tradition is what keeps me from getting another Nikon or any DSLR for that matter. Mirrorless. With peaking, zebras, etc. With awesome liveviews and EVFs, what you see is what you get. With menus that are more like the ones you'd find on a Blackmagic. Canon refused a vari-angle screen, because it wouldn't look rigid enough. Bullshit. You've got to keep heading forward and adapt. Though, indeed not neccessarily to cater the youngsters and no0bz. Just for the sake of making it an easier/funner experience. Can't hurt now, can it? Do love my dials and things though, so it's more of an optional thing to offer choice. Same as menus you could have set to an advanced mode.

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Peaking, zebras, etc. are for enthusiasts.

Remember the difference between us and the rest. We care. They don't.

So it is time to say to them, fine, keep your smartphones, maybe some of you will come round to the idea of having a proper camera and some will not, but in the mean time we are not going to make any money persuading you with touch screens and wifi shit.

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Good points. Does it mean that we are going to loose the Pet and Food mode ?
 

Not sure about the Canon cycle though. As you said with the 5Dmk2, the 5Mk4 was so boring that I decided to continue with my 6D. Canon is it's own enemy here. Sony is on the opposite side, releasing way to much unfinished product every years. So far the only thing that prevented me to buy a Sony camera was the lack of battery life, lack of good lenses and quality issue (overheating, etc.). With the new G-master lens serie and Sigma entering into the FE mount dance, the lens situation is changing. As soon as they put their stuff together I'll be very happy to ditch Canon for Sony.

I also don't mind spending $2k for a GH5 given all the great features (4k60, 10bits, dual stab, etc) but I will not go above $3k if the market goes crazy with "medium format" (which one?) and > $5k prices.

That being said, this is my personal point of view and I'm not sure what people like me represent in the sales charts.

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The consumer and prosumer market is shrinking. Smartphones took over. And they will get better and better. In the future a cellphone will be able to record 8k 12-bit 444, there will be software that will perfectly emulate all possible combinations between lenses and sensor sizes, they will have IBIS and DIS and DPAF, global shutter, 3d, VR, etc. And they will cost the price of pencil. Everyone will be able create, there will be a ton of crap but also there will be some masterpieces, but it will be very difficult to find them in the middle of so much crap. Democracy, massification and standardization, of everything. Technocracy versus Art.    

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There's some way to go before smartphones are as ergonomic to hold / grip as a mirrorless camera. Perhaps they need a cage, haha.

No matter how good the software gets they will always be behind in terms of optics and low light performance too.

I am impressed with depth effect from Apple but again, by no means is it capable of reliably working in every situation. You have to be within a certain distance of the subject for it to work. It will never work at longer distances because of the small sensor not delivering enough depth separation for the software to know which parts to blur and which parts to keep sharp.

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Hey, I still have my AE-1 and the 50mm/1.4! (it's in the video, for whoever haven't seen it).

I thought we all knew that it is dead, I do not understand why to make it a big deal now.

Seriously, except my professional friends, I do not know many that have system cameras right now, or any kind of dedicated camera whatsoever (I have seen a few old people, holding a 10 years old point and shoot, sometimes) and why should they? For better DR? For 4K video? For better AF in 1.8f on a 85mm lens? Come on guys..

We are here because we care (for whatever reason we care), but we are like the 0,01%of the whole world (that we care! not here..).

In the end, there are so many more pictures, and most importantly, videos taken every day.

Let's leave the work to real professionals, the industry is just correcting itself of the previous crazy hedonistic decades of the end of history.

 

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I am sorry Andrew, i stoppeed reading when u wrote : "maybe Canon's the future" ... U probably spend too much time alone with your perfect expensive camera. On one side u are talking about people using old 5d ii, enthusiasts not willing to pay more than 2k for camera yet u say canon's expensive 4 year old uninmovative trash cycle is the future... Wow, liks u dont agree with tony's ideas i dont with yours and franklu what havebyou been smoking ? Some canon sponsorred weed? 

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Those two QX cameras from Sony a few years ago might have been a hit if they hadn't made them the size of a can of coke and stripped a load of features off them. 

 

Seemed the perfect way to let someone who was ostensibly a casual smartphone photographer to have a bit more performance for holidays and special occasions.

And for pros too actually so they could have something on them all the time if the need arose.

But, being the size of a can of coke (albeit a mini bar one) kind of negated that, as did culling a lot of features.

If something like that had become a hit and become the ubiquitous way of offering consumers a special occasion cameraphone (which is all they want really) then manufacturers could have kept their offerings completely separate and, ahem, focused on the needs of each user instead of constantly trying to shoehorn features up and down their ranges.

The one that would be absolutely ideal would be this one but it would rely on 

a) More phone manufacturers offering the clip on concept

and

b) It not being abysmal quality.

How Hasselblad have lent their name to something that actually downgrades the capture quality of the phone its connected to is beyond me

But if they got it right then I think that due to the way people live their life with their phone welded to them it would be the product that would put most consumer cameras to bed once and for all.

 

qx100_lifestyle-001.jpg

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5 minutes ago, Tim Sewell said:

Bear in mind that without the consumer market to give a ROI your GH7 is going to cost you eight grand.

I'll be honest, I'd want V-Log in it for that price.

Mind you, if it was eight grand we'd probably all be a bit keener on extracting every last drop of use and performance out of what it did do rather than fixating on what next week's version from another manufacturer might have in it. 

Sometimes stuff being too cheap is a problem all of its own.

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5 hours ago, jonpais said:

It's almost like he's saying young people are too stupid or lazy to use a battery charger, and don't even know what an SD card is or something.

The biggest problem is that most young people aren't into computers.  And without computers... there's nowhere to put the files that are on an SD card.

Hell... most average consumers of any age don't have a good grasp on the idea of files and folders anyway.  And that's a big part of dealing with files that a traditional camera generates.

Young people are all about the smartphone, SnapChat, Instagram, etc.  That's what photography is to them.  And it's actually pretty remarkable that the same device you take pictures with (the smartphone) is also the device that stores them, shares them online, and backs them up to the cloud.  They don't need to move photos from one device to another.

A person who has only ever taken pictures with a smartphone won't like to deal with SD cards and computers for general consumer photography.  It's almost like a person who grew up with digital cameras never wanting to deal with film.

But like Tony said... there will always be enthusiasts and professional who rely on "real" digital cameras.  For the average consumer though... it's done (or it never was)

Personally... I'll still lug my DSLR around to take pictures at dance competitions.  And shoot RAW and edit in Lightroom.

But I rarely see parents with DSLRs or even point-n-shoots anymore. It's a smartphone world for kids and parents.

Below is an example at an outdoor dance competition under a tent with terrible lighting.

My photo is on the left shot with a DSLR and external flash... and someone's smartphone photo is on the right:

1AwDl58.jpg

I know which one I prefer... but the average consumer doesn't know or care.  

It's easier for them to just snap a pic with their smartphone than to deal with a separate camera, memory cards, a computer, software, etc.

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It's not just the cameras people use, but now how people watch videos and what the content is.  Instead of beautifully produced movies with professional lighting, many people are happy with cat videos on Youtube.  I have a friend who watches a lot of videos on a Samsung phone.  He says he does not miss a big TV in his living room.  Look at MTV and music videos.  Professionals argue about stabilization, proper skin tones, etc. but music videos are often full of shaky footage, amateur special effects, weird colors etc.  Made by amateurs or often professionals creating video that looks like an amateur took it.  

I am mostly a still photographer, but working on getting into video production.  It's becoming more common for my clients to ask if I will use a filter (like Instagram) on the pictures to give them some "character".  Sometimes they tell me that the pictures are too sharp and I can download an app to soften them, etc.

And occasionally clients think they can create their own videos and still pictures. I was creating catalog pictures for a fashion accessory company. They kept telling me that my rates were too high. Finally, the owner said one his employees would take some pictures and see how they came out.  He just got a new iPhone.  Although I can see a big difference in quality, the owner of the company either cannot or it is more important to him to save money.

A new era is coming and perhaps only high end clients will be demanding top quality work. Some others will be hiring a kid with a phone or just creating their own videos and pictures.  

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5 hours ago, Michal Gajdoš said:

I am sorry Andrew, i stoppeed reading when u wrote : "maybe Canon's the future" ...

Damn so close to the end of the article. One day you will bother to read the last 1%.

Had you done that, you'd have read that I described Canon as "boring", that they will in future struggle to sell us the next improvements, that their approach to apps and Magic Lantern was complete wrong, and that it "pains me" to see the enthusiast market moving to higher-end longer release cycles as pioneered by Canon with the 5D line.

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U probably spend too much time alone with your perfect expensive camera.

Actually I am spending 90% of my time right now with a Panasonic costing under $800. Alas you were not to realise that, because you just seem to make assumptions without knowing very much and never ask or bother to find out what the person who writes EOSHD is really doing behind the scenes.

Quote

On one side u are talking about people using old 5d ii, enthusiasts not willing to pay more than 2k for camera yet u say canon's expensive 4 year old uninmovative trash cycle is the future... Wow, liks u dont agree with tony's ideas i dont with yours and franklu what havebyou been smoking ? Some canon sponsorred weed? 

Geeez.

What an idiot and a troll.

Carry on and you will be banned. Final warning.

****************

 

2 hours ago, Michael Scrip said:

But I rarely see parents with DSLRs or even point-n-shoots anymore. It's a smartphone world for kids and parents.

Exactly, and good riddence to them. It's GREAT for the people who are actually interested in photography and picking up the skills necessary.

No longer do we have the masses convincing the manufacturers that there is money to be made in crappy low-end DSLRs with food and baby modes.

Look how much more they have concentrated on enthusiasts since the consumer market shrank.

Look how many great enthusiast cameras we've got now and how many mid-range models have stepped up to be better featured.

Quote

Below is an example at an outdoor dance competition under a tent with terrible lighting.

My photo is on the left shot with a DSLR and external flash... and someone's smartphone photo is on the right:

1AwDl58.jpg

This is also a good illustration of why pros have a bright future.

Before, everyone and his cat was shooting photos like the one on the left with their own Rebel DSLRs.

Now they are stuck with the crap on the right and have to pay someone to do better.

They have all sold their old cameras on eBay!

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