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Andrew Reid

High Sony sales prompted Nikon full frame mirrorless camera development - Will Panasonic / Olympus follow?

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nikon-dslr-vs-sony-mirrorless.jpg

And now I truly believe Panasonic and Olympus must go full frame too.

The success of the Sony A7 series was the catalyst for Nikon's return to the mirrorless market after the failed 1 series experiment, and according to Nikkei the mirrorless market is forecast to eclipse the sales of DSLRs for the first time in 2018.

So as you can see, Nikon's hand was forced. Now Canon too will be forced to put one foot in the future rather than an entire leg in the grave.

Last year, of all units shipped, 7.5 million units were DSLRs, down 10% on the year, while 4 million were mirrorless, up 30%, according to CIPA.

In 2018 the number of mirrorless cameras shipped are forecast to exceed those of DSLRs. That's quite a trend going on.

We are looking at over 6 million mirrorless shipments vs DSLR down at 5 or even 4 million this year.

If the trend continues, DSLRs (and potentially their lenses) will be obsolete in a few years. That is big news.

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EOSHD Pro Color for Sony cameras EOSHD Pro LOG for Sony CamerasEOSHD C-LOG and Film Profiles for All Canon DSLRs

Well when Nikon and Canon do they will win over a lot of users in a instant. As the colour science is one of the most important aspects, and sony is surely not a competitor on that department. As well as lenses, as a lot of users are using EF glass. Because there are a lot of camera's using the EF camera mount not just canon.

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It's not just about sensor size. Some of these companies are gonna need to bring something different to the market. Whether that be something to do with the ergonomics, sensor design or lens design. I would love one of these companies to bring out a very compact full frame camera along with very compact, but still fast glass. I'm talking l39/r39 sized lenses.  Some of us aren't that interested in edge to edge sharpness or flare control etc.

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The typical enthusiast Sony user has Canon glass, and that's the most dangerous situation for Sony right now with the Canon mirrorless rival on the horizon. They haven't been very good at moving people off EF lenses onto their own FE range because it's been way overpriced.

They should have had a low-end, mid-range and high-end of lenses. Instead it's all a bit of a mixture, and a mess, with gaping holes in every price bracket. They tried to fill in some of the holes in the low-end with the 28mm F2 FE, 50 and 85... but forgot to do a 35! The 35mm F2.8 is mid-range and boring. The 35mm F1.4 is high-end and very expensive. But an affordable 35 is a basic requirement for every mirrorless camera.

When Canon brings out a Dual Pixel AF full frame mirrorless camera with native EF adapter that works flawlessly, and Sony is still relying on Metabones, that spells trouble to me...

Metabones have done a great job... But it will never work quite as well as the Canon system.

2 minutes ago, Inazuma said:

It's not just about sensor size. Some of these companies are gonna need to bring something different to the market. Whether that be something to do with the ergonomics, sensor design or lens design. I would love one of these companies to bring out a very compact full frame camera along with very compact, but still fast glass. I'm talking l39/r39 sized lenses.  Some of us aren't that interested in edge to edge sharpness or flare control etc.

Yep, totally agree.

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3 hours ago, Andrew Reid said:

I really question the need for a low resolution body. The A7S III should get a 24MP sensor with 6K video, concentrate on video features and new, adventurous ergonomics built around a built-in ND along with changes for better video handling, rather than aiming for better low light performance at ridiculously high ISOs nobody ever uses.

 

100% agree. AS LONG AS having 24mp allows for better video features. It seems difficult in today's tech to have 24MP + 4K60P ... ...
 

If Canikon releases an A7III copy (same video feature and quality, AF on par, stills on par, IBIS) I will buy it. In fact the Canon will have better AF for sure and probably worst video feature and still quality. Nikon will have better still quality (Dynamic Range as always) but AF is a question.   THEN I will buy it to replace my A7III. Why? Because in the past for DSLRs Sony was always behind and always the brand releasing good specs on paper but worst in real use. Honestly they did not change much when you see all the ergonomic cons of the A7. 

BUT NOW Sony will release an A7SIII with 4K60p, which for sure the Canikon won't do. So I will need this one for video and will be stuck with either having an A7SIII and the Nikon FF or stay completely with Sony. 

Ideally for me, as Andrew said I would love a 24mp camera with best video features 4K60p and so on from Nikon and one 46mp D850 like mirrorless. 
Best in class codec and profile, best in class ergonomics... Would be perfect. 
But A7S sales are very low in comparison to A7r and A7 so for sure Canikon will not do an A7s competitor. 

Frustrating to see that 1DX II is old today, yet it is the only FF with 4K60p and best FHD120p...

 

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What about Pentax? Kidding.

Canon bashing is a sport here, but I've said it all along, a good mirrorless offering from CaNikon will put a big dent in Sony's sales. Nikon is targeting enthusiasts and most rumors point to Canon doing the same - so they're both targeting the a7's. They don't have to win the spec wars, good ergos and great AF along with the best from their current sensors will slow the migration to Sony. We know Canon can do mirrorless AF, and Nikon had the first hybrid AF with the 1 series a full 7 years ago. The various Canon AF adapters only exist because so many are using Canon glass with Sony bodies. Give those people Canon colors/menus/ergos - plus a 35//2 that they miss on Sony bodies and you have a hit. Detail's that Sony ignores because there was no competition, but makes a camera much more useful - like fully articulating LCD, functional touchscreens (the 5d4's is so much better), time lapse/focus stacking functions and so on will be what separates them from Sony.

Nikon has shown they can crank out lenses at a pretty fast pace, focus that output on the Z mount (or whatever its called) with a fully functioning adapter to make it easy for DSLR shooters to add a mirrorless body to their kit and the monopoly Sony's enjoyed will come crashing down pretty quick. I keep seeing comments like "why would anyone buy into a system with only 3 lenses over Sony," but what people seem to forget is that the number of DSLR shooters is still many times greater than mirrorless, and a lot of them simply don't want to leave the CaNikon ecosystem or give up CPS/NPS. Also, I know they hate to tip their hand, but a roadmap of the lenses planned for the first year or so would help for early adopters. Show off the next 10 lenses in the system after launch and people will buy in, all that's needed in the first year or so is the zoom trinity and reasonably fast primes in the 24/35/50/85/135 fl's - that covers a lot of ground. Switching systems is hard and costly, especially if you're invested in lots of high end glass. 

Once the Nikon 45mp body is announced, keep an eye on used Sony bodies - I'm betting the number of a7r3's will spike, meaning good deals for bargain hunters. I've seen barely used copies on Fred Miranda for under $2400, I bet they hit $2k when pre-order fever starts on the Nikon.

These are good times, the bar will be raised across the board with competition from the big 2.

Chris

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12 minutes ago, wolf33d said:

100% agree. AS LONG AS having 24mp allows for better video features. It seems difficult in today's tech to have 24MP + 4K60P ... ..

A7 III is 24MP and it allows for the best video quality on any of the Sony mirrorless cameras, better than 12MP A7S II for instance due to oversampling.

The technology is there now.

And with quad bayer technology there's no need to reduce the megapixel count to improve low light performance or dynamic range.

As for 4K 60P from 24MP. GH5 is 2 years old tech and does 4K 60P from 20MP... The tech is done. In fact we'll be at 8K in no time.

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Andrew, I think Samsung will make big mistakes when they don't come back in camera business. Now they only have mobile phones and camerachips. Imagine what happen with their phone marketshare when Canon/Nikon/Sony are going to cooperate with mobile phone producers. How does it sound to you if you buy a mobile phone with a 'Canon inside' camera as second next to your Canon mirrorless. Same colourprofiles and art of menu. I am still happy with my NX1, but I love to see the news about all improvements. If i decide to buy Nikon FF mirrorless or A7SIII this autumn, the chance that I'll buy a Samsung camara again would be very very small. Note..., for filming I am not a Canon fan 😉

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Nikon have a rare opportunity here to sway hybrid video users with no video line to protect. If they manage to get decent (PDAF) video autofocus, a beefy (10-bit) codec or better yet raw with something like N-Log, i think a lot of heads may be tempted to switch. I kind of doubt we'll get all that cuz Nikon seems to always lag behind in video dept but who knows they might pull a Fuji and all of a sudden pack video centric specs. The new sub F/1 primes is also pretty enticing imo and could give an edge over Sony/Nikon offerings, especially if priced smartly..

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I'm not sure how much of this is a full frame thing though. Does Fuji now also need to go Full Frame? They seem to be going quite well in the Mirrorless market. 

I see plenty of people using Mirrorless but the minority are using Full Frame cameras.

Sure, in our circles of users that shoot video, the A7 series is hugely popular and a small number of pros photographers are making the switch  but does this make up most of the sales? I genuinely don't know but the article you posted didn't list Sony Full frame as the reason did it?  It actually stated that users wanted something better than their phone but without the bulk of a DSLR.

Either way, In terms of Mirrorless, I think Fuji are the ones who have really nailed the whole system. Fantastic colour science, compact bodies that are actually a joy to use and small affordable lenses that give up nothing in image quality to the best from Canon or Nikon and are built like the best from Leica.

In the age of people wanting to post high quality images instantly, Fujis SOOC Jpegs are among the finest.

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22 minutes ago, Tone1k said:

I think Fuji are the ones who have really nailed the whole system. Fantastic colour science, compact bodies that are actually a joy to use and small affordable lenses that give up nothing in image quality to the best from Canon or Nikon and are built like the best from Leica. 

- Only thing that is stopping me from jumping on a Fuji is that all their lenses are fly by wire. And that I'm already heavily invested in solid Canon EF glass.

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30 minutes ago, Tone1k said:

I'm not sure how much of this is a full frame thing though. Does Fuji now also need to go Full Frame? They seem to be going quite well in the Mirrorless market. 

I see plenty of people using Mirrorless but the minority are using Full Frame cameras.

Sure, in our circles of users that shoot video, the A7 series is hugely popular and a small number of pros photographers are making the switch  but does this make up most of the sales? I genuinely don't know but the article you posted didn't list Sony Full frame as the reason did it?  It actually stated that users wanted something better than their phone but without the bulk of a DSLR.

Either way, In terms of Mirrorless, I think Fuji are the ones who have really nailed the whole system. Fantastic colour science, compact bodies that are actually a joy to use and small affordable lenses that give up nothing in image quality to the best from Canon or Nikon and are built like the best from Leica.

In the age of people wanting to post high quality images instantly, Fujis SOOC Jpegs are among the finest.

When Canon, Nikon have their FF Mirrorless cameras out I think Fuji is going to be in big trouble. You know Canon, Nikon will probably both make a APSC sized one also. I see negative Fuji growth, not positive down the road.

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3 minutes ago, User said:

- Only thing that is stopping me from jumping on a Fuji is that all their lenses are fly by wire. And that I'm already heavily invested in solid Canon EF glass.

Fiji's Fly by wire lenses don't feel like fly by wire at all. They have definite hard stops and I use the DOF scale to focus manually quite often with great results. 

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10 minutes ago, Tone1k said:

Fiji's Fly by wire lenses don't feel like fly by wire at all. They have definite hard stops and I use the DOF scale to focus manually quite often with great results. 

Everything is subjective, but good to know. Thanks :)

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35 minutes ago, webrunner5 said:

When Canon, Nikon have their FF Mirrorless cameras out I think Fuji is going to be in big trouble. You know Canon, Nikon will probably both make a APSC sized one also. I see negative Fuji growth, not positive down the road.

Don't know. Sony almost abandoned their APS-C line, A6500 is kind of long in the tooth, no good APS-C lenses. Nikon and Canon could got to the same way. Fuji could be the king of APS-C format.

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1 hour ago, webrunner5 said:

When Canon, Nikon have their FF Mirrorless cameras out I think Fuji is going to be in big trouble. You know Canon, Nikon will probably both make a APSC sized one also. I see negative Fuji growth, not positive down the road.

Nah, Fuji has the GFX.... You know it's APC for compactness or medium format for everything else these days 😉 

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I don't think Panasonic should jump on the FF bandwagon. I think their smaller sensor is their unique selling point. The GH5s sensor has proven you can squeeze high iso/low noise performance out of a smaller sensor and this is only the beginning really. I think the smaller sensor allows them to push video tech faster - like the GH5 have 4k60p, who knows what is capable in the GH6 but I think the FF cameras will always be playing catch up to the smaller sensors cameras in that regard simply because they can process that information faster. Chuck a speedbooster on and problem solved.

I'm shooting with a GH5/speedbooster XL and a new A7iii with mc-11 - both using my canon L glass. Much prefer the GH5 for video. that 10bit is amazing.

What Panasonic should be doing is keeping their m43 mount cause there is some amazing compact glass for it but do what JVC did and chuck a Super 35 sensor in there. Imagine that with a speedbooster. All the benefits of a faster, smaller sensor but full frame look.

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12 minutes ago, 64mulford said:

I don't think Panasonic should jump on the FF bandwagon. I think their smaller sensor is their unique selling point. The GH5s sensor has proven you can squeeze high iso/low noise performance out of a smaller sensor and this is only the beginning really. I think the smaller sensor allows them to push video tech faster - like the GH5 have 4k60p, who knows what is capable in the GH6 but I think the FF cameras will always be playing catch up to the smaller sensors cameras in that regard simply because they can process that information faster. Chuck a speedbooster on and problem solved.

I'm shooting with a GH5/speedbooster XL and a new A7iii with mc-11 - both using my canon L glass. Much prefer the GH5 for video. that 10bit is amazing.

What Panasonic should be doing is keeping their m43 mount cause there is some amazing compact glass for it but do what JVC did and chuck a Super 35 sensor in there. Imagine that with a speedbooster. All the benefits of a faster, smaller sensor but full frame look.

This! I opted for the MFT system with the GH2 back in the day because I would be able to keep lenses small (which is the real thing that keeps a camera set-up compact). Of course you can frankenrig things up when the situation asks for it. Of course we haven't exactly been wow-ed by the sensor performance throughout the years. The GH4 you'd still have a hard time pushing past ISO800, but as you said, since we've seen leaps in improvement, mostly in terms of high ISO noise performance and color. Dynamic range with V-Log L and HLG has gained a slight advantage, but that's really the area where it still needs a bit of a way to go. I'm confident however that the next generation will leave little to complain about on a sensor performance level. You could argue that they need to change tactics when it comes to C-AF, but that's just not much of a dealbreaker to me personally. But it's of course a missed oppertunity getting people on board who do think it is.

And Panasonic/Olympus just know how to make epic camera bodies. Both GH5 series cameras and the E-M1mkII have a weathersealed grippy camera body, vari-angle touchscreen, nice menus, tons of customization, dual cardslots, full audio interface, awesome batterylife etc, to me it honestly doesn't get much better than that. And again, great lens ecosystem to go with it with a wild range of lenses in all sorts of sizes and quality for all sorts of budgets (same actually for the camera models; in comparison: Sony has seen 2 generations of mirrorless APS-C where there was just the 1 body (and not without issues)).

Back to the topic title. The DSLR market is dying. All they need to do is take their APS-C/FF line-up, drop the mirror and OVF and stick on a new mount. Of course, mirrorless is also greatly related to innovation, so IBIS, 4K60p, LOG, elaborate focus & exposure aids and overlays are definitely the way to go here. But in essence, they aren't really changing their game too much, it's just about ditching traditional DSLR for mirrorless. When it comes down to Panasonic/Olympus, they're already doing mirrorless and I'd even go to say that they do it well. I agree that the smaller sensor is a USP of the system and do not think them jumping FF as well needs to be a thing. But of course, the more options the better...

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2 hours ago, Márcio Kabke Pinheiro said:

Don't know. Sony almost abandoned their APS-C line, A6500 is kind of long in the tooth, no good APS-C lenses. Nikon and Canon could got to the same way. Fuji could be the king of APS-C format.

Current EOS-m stuff isn't going anywhere, even if they just keep the Sony strategy of cranking out new bodies with few additions to the already sparse lens lineup. Canon claims to be #2 in mirrorless - and that's without any high end stuff. They've just been reported to be #1 in Japan eclipsing Olympus, again with pedestrian offerings from an enthusiast standpoint. CaNikon and even Sony will keep APS-c because that's where the volume is, look at Amazon's best sellers - its all cheap plastic DSLR's with kit zooms. Sony says the a6000 is its best selling ILC ever. That's the entry point into ILC's or what casual shooters call a 'real camera'. Plus I'm willing to bet Nikon does a mirrorless version of the d500 after the FF cameras are released, something for the crop sports/wildlife shooter - a market I'm surprised Sony has always half-assed with the a6300/6500.

Chris

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