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Andrew Reid

Canon rush to reassure investors as camera profits plunge 64%

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12 hours ago, drm said:

I would *love* to have a GFX-100. I won't buy it because it is $10k, but I would love to have one. At the other end, I have three BM Pocket4Ks. They are actually *very* good cameras at a silly low price. The lower-end price but high-spec gear is selling well and will likely do so for a good while.

The GFX-100 has been sold out since orders opened. It maybe $10k, but as a 100MP shooter at "only" $10k it's easily the cheapest game in town. 

Canon need to innovate not just in patents but with actual products. And as for why the choose to leave the smartphone sensor market to Sony and Samsung it's beyond me? 

I think today's dedicated cameras should be capable of doing all the clever tricks that smartphones and action cams can do... but much better... and they should do more of them. Not just computation, but optically also.

My smartphones and action cams can all do compelling hdr stills and video, where extreme highlights and shadows all appear exposed properly.... my dedicated cameras cannot. Always a struggle. There should be nothing that a smartphone can do imaging wise that beats a dedicated camera. Not even the cheapest dedicated camera. Or else why buy one? Which is of course exactly where we are today.

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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

They would have to sell it for 3500 Dollars max, and for that money they would probably loose money on each camera or just break even. They need money badly. So I don't think they will do it. It makes too much sense. Canon wants to milk the crap out of everything. They, like Nikon, better bring out the best FF Mirrorless camera ever known to mankind next or they are done.

And get off the daydream of charging twice the price for their Cine cameras than they are really worth. They have pretty much lost that market as of late. They have done some dumb ass crap as of late. Some clueless people at the top. It's sad really. Nobody wants to see any of these company's go belly up. I grew up with them. But the way the world is changing so fast there is going to be a lot of big name company's around the world go belly up.

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You have Sony crushing it on the sensor side, so that many competitors are using Sony sensors. Then, Sigma is putting pressure from the lens side with good products at a reasonable price. Then Panasonic coming in with advanced features & style (and others like BM & Fuji). 

Where is Canon's competitive advantage? In what area are they ahead of the others? I get that they have a huge installed base of SLR lenses (certainly not mirrorless), what else do they have where they lead? They have good AF, but so does Sony and some others (damn you Panasonic... :confused:) They have good colors, but others are catching up fast and with LOG, you can more easily adjust your colors. Hell, you can even make the Sony green skin look good...:joy:

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53 minutes ago, DBounce said:

There should be nothing that a smartphone can do imaging wise that beats a dedicated camera. Not even the cheapest dedicated camera. Or else why buy one? Which is of course exactly where we are today.

Well, given Canons move into industrial applications (along with other companies) I think consumer ILCs are doomed. Maybe the DSLR revolution has run its course. Now it’s the camera phone next.

People will start making films and documentaries on their phones.

35 minutes ago, drm said:

In what area are they ahead of the others?

Brand recognition and loyalty combined with a massive lens library.

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I don't think any of these companies are going to get into Smartphones. The cheaper ones in China are just going to rule the world down the line. They have all the knowledge and tech they need. Japan can not compete with South Korea and China, China can undercut anyone if they want to, or have to. Just competing with Apple and Samsung alone is an impossible task.

1 hour ago, Video Hummus said:

Brand recognition and loyalty combined with a massive lens library.

I think their old lens library  is a thing of the past. Most are not set up for modern Video Mirrorless. They are basically starting from scratch. So they have like what 5 modern lenses in the RF mount.  And half of them Nobody can afford. It will take years just like it took Sony. Nikon has the same problem,. A lot of their lenses is even more outdated. I think Canon and Nikon both waited Way to long to get into the FF Mirrorless game.

I am sure both Canon and Nikon have better high end ones in the works. But will anyone shell out the 3000 Dollars + to buy them? I think even Sony is going to have a hard time selling the Sony A7r mk IV to be honest at 3500. It is a good camera, but is it 1000, 1500 Dollars better than others out now. Yeah, but how much of it are people Really going to notice if they buy it. There is nothing super mind blowing in it, especially for video. Eye focus yeah, but. The s35 mode is nice but why buy a 3500 Dollar camera to shoot APSC a lot of the time. For 3500 Dollars now, or a bit more you can buy some pretty damn good dedicated used Cine cameras now.

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2 hours ago, webrunner5 said:

They would have to sell it for 3500 Dollars max, and for that money they would probably loose money on each camera or just break even. They need money badly. So I don't think they will do it. It makes too much sense. Canon wants to milk the crap out of everything. They, like Nikon, better bring out the best FF Mirrorless camera ever known to mankind next or they are done.

 

They should make a 1DXMK2 with full frame 4k and log and sell it for $2500. Would be huge probably the top selling camera.

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2 hours ago, thebrothersthre3 said:

They should make a 1DXMK2 with full frame 4k and log and sell it for $2500. Would be huge probably the top selling camera.

Meanwhile in the real world, they are more likely to release a 1DXMK3 with quad pixel AF. Full frame internal 4K 10 bit with Log, 24MP sensor, IBIS, improved DR and a price tag of $6999. And it will sell like hot cakes. Raw output or internal? I think not... this is Canon.

If the specs match this I’ll be preordering. But they better not pull a Canon on us🙄

 

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8 hours ago, Andrew Reid said:

It's the camera industry's "climate emergency" moment. Unless they take radical action and quick, they're going to sink under the murky water.

Sony's earnings are due on 30th July, so keep an eye on this page for those - https://www.sony.net/SonyInfo/IR/library/presen/er/

Also good reading, is Fuji's CEO and his book Innovating out of a Crisis - https://www.amazon.co.uk/Innovating-Out-Crisis-Fujifilm-Vanishing-ebook/dp/B00OFK46V0/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=Fujifilm+crisis&qid=1564310458&s=gateway&sr=8-1

This shows how the company diversified after the film camera era responsible for 60% of their income vanished over night.

They got back on track in digital and have done very well.

Very ironic that now one of their most successful and profitable lines is instant FILM!

The crux of the matter is that digital technology killed the film market and now the tech sector is doing the same to dedicated, stand-alone digital devices.

The tech sector doesn't just make money selling hardware, like smartphones... It's the apps and online services which are so important. The Japanese companies have so far failed to appreciate this. Blackmagic at least gets it - selling a camera to further uptake of Resolve and their other products. 

Most of the eco-system around cameras wouldn't even exist if it wasn't for Chinese companies. 

The software side is largely ignored by Canon and Nikon especially. Canon should, for example, have bought Adobe a LONG time ago. Look how profitable they are now, with their evil subscription model. 

Look how poor PlayMemories was by Sony. They do not have the staff.

Sony at least did enter the smartphone market, but aren't doing that well. No real USP or imagination. Just solid, well specced phones is not enough.

At least TWO of the dedicated camera manufacturers should also have entered the smartphone market in a big way, but they only so much as dipped their toes in the water and fussed around with wifi.

So what do they DO ABOUT IT now?? The ship has sailed. All consumers now have incredibly powerful computational imaging devices, connected services and software in their pocket. Camera makers must now look to how the market might evolve in 20 years with A.I. The work on the next gen processors must be done by Canon / Nikon / Fuji / Panasonic / Sony and not only by Apple or Samsung. We are talking cloud based, deep learning, mega-chips, able to apply artificial digital lighting in real-time, able to sense depth and build a 3D map of the entire scene in real-time, able to apply any lens focal length and depth of field convincingly without errors, able to perform with a small sensor in low light from an incredibly thin wafer of semiconductors in the pocket... And bring all that technology to the screen and consumer in an imaginative and beautiful way.

It's a big ask when Canon can't even get rid of the crop in 4K :)

Personally I think they are doomed in consumer market and we may even sadly lose Olympus and Rioch completely.

Couldn't agree more. I wrote a detailed analysis of the difference between Fuji and Kodak. Diversification was key as the CEO of Fuji explained in his book.

https://petapixel.com/2018/10/19/why-kodak-died-and-fujifilm-thrived-a-tale-of-two-film-companies/

However, unlike Kodak. Canon doesn't depend on a single line of product. The consumer segment of the imaging division only represents a small share of the Canon's profit (10-15%?). Therefore, Canon will survive the hit but they can only blame themselves for this. They stretched their brand and their outdated production line too far.
 

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No pro photographers I know feel the need to upgrade from their 5d3s to any of Canon's current offerings. Some do double duty with a medium format camera if they need something beyond the 5d3. Most hybrid shooters I know don't look beyond the A7 line. I still see a lot of the canon Cinema line out at work on wedding and event films, but that is a different category of buyer to those they want to get an EOS R. I'm not seeing much demand for canon mirrorless at all in the real world. This is totally observational though so take with a grain or several of salt.

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They stick with their 5D3 or 1DX2 because when compared to Canon's latest FF mirrorless there still isn't much reason to switch. They paid thousands, maybe even 10s of thousands, of dollars for their kit. If it works, and the clients like it, why switch? No major jump in DR, or speed, or anything really. Just different letters on the front of the camera.

1 hour ago, DBounce said:

Meanwhile in the real world, they are more likely to release a 1DXMK3 with quad pixel AF. Full frame internal 4K 10 bit with Log, 24MP sensor, IBIS, improved DR and a price tag of $6999. And it will sell like hot cakes. Raw output or internal? I think not... this is Canon.

This is much more likely than some crazy advance. PROs will go for what they recognize and are familiar with. 1DX3 would be a huge hit, much more than a EOS RX.

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Waiting for canon to drop grossly overpriced new C series Cameras soon , then I'll get one a year later when they cut the prices by 30%. they are just so stubborn and stupid despite everyone telling them the same things. No wonder the people at their NAB booth the last year or two have had dont give a F attitudes unles you want to buy a couple $100k  box  lenses. They are theur own worst enemy and are going to pull a Kodak if they don't cut prices and give people what they want....  said by owner of canon still cameras of 30 years,3 C series cameras, but i quit buying their lenses 10 years agi for being overpriced, mediocre performance for the price

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So how long does it take to be doomed? Seems like a longterm project... Just asking because I have the impression of reading the same comments since the launch of the 5DIII six (or even seven?) years ago. And yet Canons bankruptcy still does not seem on the horizon... 

But irony aside, some honest questions: How many Cameras do the members of this forum buy? How often do you upgrade? Did you upgrade from the 5DII to the 5DIII and to the 5DIV? From the 60D to the 70D to the 80D? From XT2 to XT3? From A7S to A7SII? I ask because I'm not convinced (but could be wrong of course) that the crowd of lower end professionals and ambitious amateurs using DSLRs and mirrorless ILCs for their video creations have that much impact on the overall market. Is it a loud crowd? I'd guess so. But is it as relevant for a Camera company as it thinks it is? 

I bought my first camera in 2008 and since then in total eight. Only four of them costed more than 1000, of those four only two costed more than 2000 (but those were dedicated video cameras). Am I an exception? 

Not saying Canon (or Sony) is doing everything right. But isn't the impact of Smartphones on sales for these kind of Cameras way bigger than that of video-oriented guys like we are? Would a Camera that fits all our video guys needs really be the turning-point for Canon?

Being offended because Sonys new 60MP Camera doesn't have intriguing video-specs seems kind of pointless. Asking for a 3500$ 1DXIII is nothing short of naive.

I agree with Mr. Reid that this is a decisive moment for Camera companies. But would internal RAW in 4K120p really be the solution to these companies problems? I'd say a big piece of the cake has gone to Smartphone companies forever, no matter what specs they put into their cameras.

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9 hours ago, Video Hummus said:

I think human kind will need a certain level of pain to change

Thats what people listen to the most and what happens when they don't listen to the ones who know.

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Samsung is looking prescient, they recognized that the camera sector was facing massive change, making it a bad place to launch a 'me too' product.

Canon lags in the sensor space and in the software arena., which are the technologies driving the changes in the relatively stagnant imaging market. Canon is pursuing a rational corporate strategy in response, to maximize the returns from this fading sector to invest in more promising industrial markets. So it is unreasonable to expect massive new product investments here, rather a continuation of the existing policy of low cost, cautious and incremental development. The new mount exemplifies this tack, zero new technology, just a repackaging of the existing capabilities, hyped as a 'mirrorless breakthrough'.

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36 minutes ago, Michi said:

I'd say a big piece of the cake has gone to Smartphone companies forever, no matter what specs they put into their cameras.

So maybe they should focus on video specs then, because a video guy isn't going to buy a smartphone for his video projects. You can buy almost any stills camera today and be happy with it if you find your smartphone camera photos acceptable.

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I think that smartphones are a huge part of the changing market. People are certainly switching to smartphones from other types of cameras. The question is from what?? 

So, I had an idea to investigate further. Keep in mind that this is *purely* anecdotal and may not apply to the overall market. I pulled this list of most commonly used cameras from flickr.com and sorted them by the average number of daily users.

NINE of the top ten cameras were Apple iPhones. The Canon 5D MIII comes in at #7, with the Nikon D750 close behind at #11. Eleven of the top 20 were smartphones. The first point/shoot camera is #68. So, the P&S cams have been completely killed by phones. The DSLRs? Not so much. But, mirrorless is a blip on the radar so far.

Here are the top 15. I attached the entire list as a PDF.

What do you guys think?

image.png.046aa4da3db4826038dccd3fe3919e75.png

 

  

 

Camera usage on Flickr - 2019-07.pdf

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7 minutes ago, Video Hummus said:

So maybe they should focus on video specs then, because a video guy isn't going to buy a smartphone for his video projects.

Yes they are. In masses. Even BBC has a few guys that use iphones as A-Cams and even more that use them as B-Cams. No way there‘s enough volume in the video centric market to replace what has been lost to smartphones. 

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13 minutes ago, Michi said:

Yes they are. In masses. Even BBC has a few guys that use iphones as A-Cams and even more that use them as B-Cams. No way there‘s enough volume in the video centric market to replace what has been lost to smartphones. 

On the other hand people make more and more videos and use more and more cameras than ever.

They are just too many options.

Imagine how many action cams/drone cams/360-VR cams/video cams/dSLRs/mirrorless are sold every year, and how many minutes of video are produced, and go back to 85-95-2005 and 2015 and do the maths.

Video creation is almost a mandatory skill nowdays, go check how many Steenbecks were sold in 85 and how many professional editing suites are used right now.

I know, because I remember!

What the smartphone crowd did back then? Nothing, they didn't shoot much video. There were 1 video camera per family or even in the greater family (there was always an uncle!). In poor places in the 80s were just 1 or a few cameras per village/area.

It is not the end of the moving images, is the peak of it. It is so much, that is becoming pointless, in a way.

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9 minutes ago, Kisaha said:

On the other hand people make more and more videos and use more and more cameras than ever.

They are just too many options.

Imagine how many action cams/drone cams/360-VR cams/video cams/dSLRs/mirrorless are sold every year, and how many minutes of video are produced, and go back to 85-95-2005 and 2015 and do the maths.

Video creation is almost a mandatory skill nowdays, go check how many Steenbecks were sold in 85 and how many professional editing suites are used right now.

I absolutely agree with you. But I don‘t think this contradicts what I said .

My point is that putting better video specs into Cameras with stills oriented form and ergonomics will not compensate for the sales lost to smartphones. The cake got bigger, but the slice for MILCs and DSLRs is getting proportionally smaller. And from my POV it’s not because of technical reasons. Just like offering 96kHz 24bit WAVE support could not turn around the decline in sales of portable music players (not the best comparsion but you get my Point).

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