Jump to content

Nikon could leave camera market


Andrew Reid

Recommended Posts

4 hours ago, barefoot_dp said:

You're far less cynical about Apple than I am. They won't make/sell anything unless (a) there is mass consumer appeal, and (b) everything about it requires compulsory proprietary integration for both hardware and software. Both of these things are inherently at odds with the professional photo/video production industry.

I know plenty of stills photographers who would be devastated if Nikon went under, but not a single videographer.

 

No I think Apple is in it for the money. Their $10,000 Mac Pro and $6,000 monitor and $1,000 for a stand isn’t for mass consumers. It’s just economics; the high price reflects the smaller units to maximize profits. But it also shows apple’s willingness to develop niche products that fit into their ecosystem. 

And that’s why I think it’s a no brainer for Apple to produce a completely reimagined and redesigned pro camera, because they have the pro software and pro hardware for complete integration. They can make the most efficient camera with the most cutting edge technologies with brilliant design, and you will shoot on their codec, edit in their software suite, on their computers and monitors, and publish on their platforms. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Replies 51
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Top Posters In This Topic

Popular Posts

Granted the Mac Pro might not be for mass consumers, but there's a much wider market than just filmmakers. And It's not actually a niche product; it's just a high-end version of a product nearly every

Incorrect. The market that is “shrinking” is the smartphone market. Everybody already has one, and apple has marginal advantages over the competition. Again, apple hasn’t seen growth here, which is wh

As a pro Nikon user for 40 years, I have mixed feelings here. I love my d850 for its still image quality and features. But I’d guess their contract with Sony for the sensor limited the video features

Posted Images

I bought a Nikon Z6 this summer because I needed a second camera for work, my budget was max-$3k CAD, and Sony was out (my A cam was a Sony A7III and due to the file numbering bug having more than one Sony camera on set was a nightmare).  I'm happy with it, but it is basically just a repackaging of the A7III.  The Z6II is so incrementally improved over the mark one that one would never believe it came out the same year as the Sony A7SIII (which finally fixed the file numbering bug).

The saving grace is that the z6 has been an incredible photography tool.  However when Sony comes out with the A7IV, it'll be time to choose which camera to replace, and Nikon is just not performing at what we would want as video professionals.

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, independent said:

And that’s why I think it’s a no brainer for Apple to produce a completely reimagined and redesigned pro camera, because they have the pro software and pro hardware for complete integration. They can make the most efficient camera with the most cutting edge technologies with brilliant design, and you will shoot on their codec, edit in their software suite, on their computers and monitors, and publish on their platforms. 

Apple can.... but won't... 

I'm sure its probably the same reason why Samsung pulled out after the NX1.

Plus, I don't think they want to monopolize the industry - nothing good comes out of it - you just get sued and put into submission.

Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, independent said:

Their $10,000 Mac Pro and $6,000 monitor and $1,000 for a stand isn’t for mass consumers. It’s just economics; the high price reflects the smaller units to maximize profits. But it also shows apple’s willingness to develop niche products that fit into their ecosystem. 

And that’s why I think it’s a no brainer for Apple to produce a completely reimagined and redesigned pro camera, because they have the pro software and pro hardware for complete integration. They can make the most efficient camera with the most cutting edge technologies with brilliant design, and you will shoot on their codec, edit in their software suite, on their computers and monitors, and publish on their platforms. 

Granted the Mac Pro might not be for mass consumers, but there's a much wider market than just filmmakers. And It's not actually a niche product; it's just a high-end version of a product nearly every home and office uses. Any professional who needs a powerful desktop for any reason might consider it. And many more people with more money than sense will go out and buy it simply because they think "it's what professionals use and I want the best". The real genius of Apple products is in the styling and marketing, not in the design or features.

It's worth noting that if Apple put out a cinema camera they would likely not be able to include ProRes raw recording internally - they already challenged Red's patent in court and lost.

And being Apple, they would probably have a proprietary lens mount with very limited, overpriced lenses. You would have to buy an ipad or iphone as the monitor, there would be no headphone jack, the audio inputs would be some new proprietary type, everything would be touchscreen only, and the mounting threads would be 1/2" instead of 1/4" so that you have to buy a special Apple baseplate for $2499 just to put it on a tripod. Plus it would probably have an internal media and an internal battery that cannot be removed and which does not last for a full 10hr production day (and the charger would be sold separately).

Apple are the last company I would want to see release a cinema camera.

Link to post
Share on other sites

It is worth remembering that ASML, the current monopoly supplier of EUV lithographic tools, was only saved from bankruptcy by a $4.5B injection of cash by Intel, Samsung and others.

So Nikon management was not dumb to reject going for this technology, it was ruinously expensive to develop and did not even line up well with their core strength in lens making.

EUV relies on mirrors, because glass soaks it up. Zeiss had the world's best know how there and was willing to roll the dice to use it, to produce to the specs ASML required. The man who lead the team is now the chairman designate of the entire Zeiss group.

Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, mkabi said:

Apple can.... but won't... 

I'm sure its probably the same reason why Samsung pulled out after the NX1.

 

Well, Samsung is mostly an electronics company. Apple is much more than that. They develop their own codecs to be edited in their own software, run on their own computers, viewed on their own monitors, and published to their cloud services. The only thing missing is their own pro camera. The iPhone cameras don't require any of Apple's hardware and software, so nothing is to be gained there. Only a pro camera would really take advantage of Apple's ecosystem (and help sell products and services). 

Of course, Apple doesn't need Nikon; its brand is plenty strong enough, and whatever savings in R&D might not matter because Apple would probably pursue a radical redesign of both internals and externals.

Also, Apple is close enough already; how hard would it be accommodate a large sensor into their existing iPhone camera processing infrastructure? They're 99% of the way there.

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
14 hours ago, barefoot_dp said:

And being Apple, they would probably have a proprietary lens mount with very limited, overpriced lenses. You would have to buy an ipad or iphone as the monitor, there would be no headphone jack, the audio inputs would be some new proprietary type, everything would be touchscreen only, and the mounting threads would be 1/2" instead of 1/4" so that you have to buy a special Apple baseplate for $2499 just to put it on a tripod. Plus it would probably have an internal media and an internal battery that cannot be removed and which does not last for a full 10hr production day (and the charger would be sold separately).

If I wake up with cold sweats from nightmares tonight, then I blame you @barefoot_dp

That sounds downright horrifying, and yet has just enough feeling of realism to it to be possible. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, independent said:

Well, Samsung is mostly an electronics company. Apple is much more than that. They develop their own codecs to be edited in their own software, run on their own computers, viewed on their own monitors, and published to their cloud services. The only thing missing is their own pro camera. The iPhone cameras don't require any of Apple's hardware and software, so nothing is to be gained there. Only a pro camera would really take advantage of Apple's ecosystem (and help sell products and services). 

Of course, Apple doesn't need Nikon; its brand is plenty strong enough, and whatever savings in R&D might not matter because Apple would probably pursue a radical redesign of both internals and externals.

Also, Apple is close enough already; how hard would it be accommodate a large sensor into their existing iPhone camera processing infrastructure? They're 99% of the way there.

 

 

Samsung is a business as is a Apple - if Samsung didn't see any profit in it, then why would Apple?

Cause they have an ecosystem? Apple's very own iphone is what is cutting into the camera business... If anything, they will keep improving the sensor, lens and software behind the iphone to keep cutting into the camera business... bye bye cameras - hello iphone <- one stop-shop tool for everything - including making movies. 

Movies already made on the iphone - Tangerine and Unsane. Do you really think that trend (making a movie on the iphone) would die away, or grow in popularity? Especially with the improvements to the iphone (overtime).

Would you agree or disagree? Current iphones beat out any digital video cameras of the 90s? 

Ok, now lets do the math - How long will it take a train leaving Station B at 100 km/hr to catch up to a train leaving Station A at 90km/hr? I'm joking..... but in a similar manner... Phones in general have a yearly refresh, whereas ILC cameras 2 to 5 years - how long before the iphone catches up to current cameras?

I give iphone another 2 to 3 iterations before having 8K and 4K/120p

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/24/2020 at 10:31 PM, EduPortas said:

Nikon is not a video company. Their forte is and will always be photo gear.

They make very good products in that respect.  A bit more expensive than the usual players, no doubt. But the quality is there.

Let's be honest here guys: Nikon = Japanese ethos. Failing for them means being bought by another Japanese company.

Since they are a part of the umbrella of the massive Mitsubishi group, I HIGHLY doubt we'll ever see a dramatic shift.

At least not as dramatic as Pentax, which by the way still make a very good photo cameras.

WOW at lease one poster who has some insight. Panasonic and Fuji are at 4-5% of the market, 4 to 5x lower than Nikon and Nikon is neck in neck with Sony. Guess what its Nikon that is going to die. Then they tell you, but Canon Sony Panasonic form part of bigger companies.............. While Nikon forms part of the Mitsubishi Kieretsu, the biggest, bigger than Sony, Panasonic, Canon etc group in Japan, with one of its investors being the biggest bank in Japan. Nikon has been positive until last year and was sitting on more than 2 billions in cash in 2017 at least. They even have been bullish about their 2021-2022 numbers predicting profits for their imaging division as this big loss is a one time write off so as to make the cmpany leaner as they want to adapt to an ever declining market. They also have invested a lot into new field like lidar technology.

The fumy thing is people using market share as a metric of progress. Tell that to Sony who where selling 5x more cameras in 2010 with 5-8% market share than today with about 20%. How much time do people think Sony corp will be happy as a non historic camera manufacturer to continue to invest and surely incur loss in a camera business. Is Nikon in great shape, definitely not, but they are in much better shape than other manufacturers like Panasonic, fuji and even Sony. One has only 5% at best, the other one is now stagnating at about 20% since Nikon and Canon have launched their Mirrorless lineup. Even more, because it is in an ever smaller market.

Olympus the perfect example of the non sense about Nikon death. While for the last 3-5 years we are hearing how Nikon will die soon, Olympus who no one predicted, just went out. Nikon has always been positive until last year. Their profitability or even loss started in the imaging division started last year but with massive investment in R&D. What people here don't know as they concentrate on only camera bodies. Nikon has released 18 outstanding lens during the last 2 years. They have another 6 until next year, that will be 24 lens in 3 years. This is an investment on the next decade to 15 years, those lens are so good with the advantage of the bigger new mount. They also have build 6 bodies during that time and are heavily predicted that at least 1 if not 2 pro bodies next year. Meanwhile what has the likes of Sony produce. My simple guess, is that we will see Panasonic, then Sony and then the likes of Fuji, and I would put Nikon just before Canon to quit the camera industry. The likes of Canon, Nikon and to a certain extent Fuji are historic camera manufacturers. Sony was just opportunistic on a booming market, now that it is going down and down, they will soon quite, by selling it to stop the loss.

Annotation 2020-08-01 221848.png

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Danyyyel said:

Olympus the perfect example of the non sense about Nikon death. While for the last 3-5 years we are hearing how Nikon will die soon, Olympus who no one predicted, just went out. Nikon has always been positive until last year. Their profitability or even loss started in the imaging division started last year but with massive investment in R&D. What people here don't know as they concentrate on only camera bodies. Nikon has released 18 outstanding lens during the last 2 years. They have another 6 until next year, that will be 24 lens in 3 years. This is an investment on the next decade to 15 years, those lens are so good with the advantage of the bigger new mount. They also have build 6 bodies during that time and are heavily predicted that at least 1 if not 2 pro bodies next year. Meanwhile what has the likes of Sony produce. My simple guess, is that we will see Panasonic, then Sony and then the likes of Fuji, and I would put Nikon just before Canon to quit the camera industry. The likes of Canon, Nikon and to a certain extent Fuji are historic camera manufacturers. Sony was just opportunistic on a booming market, now that it is going down and down, they will soon quite, by selling it to stop the loss.

Going early into mirrorless gave Sony an advantage initially, but it also means they made the mistake of APS-C as the basis for their mount. Which they're trying to shoehorn a FF sensor into, which results in limitations in terms of the lenses they can design and what they can do with their sensors. 

With time, this will become more and more apparent to even the average consumer.  Nikon has better camera body IBIS and "better" (in the sense of one of: size/price/performance/value/speed/etc) lenses than Sony.

Canon meanwhile has made the deathly mistake of splitting up their mirrorless across EOS M & RF Mounts, they can not possibly support both forever! Nikon has already long ago killed their Nikon 1 experiment, that mistake is gone in the past now. 


Out of the "big three" I see Nikon the best set up for the long term future, they just need to keep on doing what they're doing. Release another couple of DX Z Mount bodies to get the mainstream average buyers and attract new blood to the system, plus Pro FX Z Mount body and keep up that stream of new Z Mount lens releases. 
(and purely in my dreams.... release a FX6/C70 competitor with a Z Mount!!)

Link to post
Share on other sites
15 hours ago, mkabi said:

Samsung is a business as is a Apple - if Samsung didn't see any profit in it, then why would Apple?

Cause they have an ecosystem? Apple's very own iphone is what is cutting into the camera business... If anything, they will keep improving the sensor, lens and software behind the iphone to keep cutting into the camera business... bye bye cameras - hello iphone <- one stop-shop tool for everything - including making movies. 

Movies already made on the iphone - Tangerine and Unsane. Do you really think that trend (making a movie on the iphone) would die away, or grow in popularity? Especially with the improvements to the iphone (overtime).

Would you agree or disagree? Current iphones beat out any digital video cameras of the 90s? 

Ok, now lets do the math - How long will it take a train leaving Station B at 100 km/hr to catch up to a train leaving Station A at 90km/hr? I'm joking..... but in a similar manner... Phones in general have a yearly refresh, whereas ILC cameras 2 to 5 years - how long before the iphone catches up to current cameras?

I give iphone another 2 to 3 iterations before having 8K and 4K/120p

Phones are definitely eating up the camera business from the bottom up. First they replaced point and shoots, now they are replacing low-level DSLRs. This should tell us they will continue upwards eating up more and more professional equipment.

However, there is also one thing speaking in favour of the camera business. Photography and videography is simply MUCH MUCH bigger today then it has even been before. Wanting to become an influencer, instagrammer or youtuber is so common you can't throw a rock without hitting one, and since the userbase is so large there will be a lot of people who will want to get that edge from using professional equipment, even if the gap closes.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Red is for sale?

If they are, Apple just might, just to own the patents. My guess is that JJ will never sell, because he loves himself more than money.

Apple's patent challenge against Red is a much stronger sign of their interest in the pro camera business; Prores Raw is limited to mostly Atomos external, which is a bottleneck in many ways. 

In fact, think about the Canon R5 and Sony a7s3's HEVC h.265 footage, which is impossible to play or edit on most machines. Except of course, the new Macs, which can edit them quite cheaply. Bingo.

Again, why wouldn't Apple want to release a professional camera that would boost their entire ecosystem? They are pushing various technologies that really only make sense if they add the final piece to the puzzle. 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, independent said:

Red is for sale?

If they are, Apple just might, just to own the patents. My guess is that JJ will never sell, because he loves himself more than money.

Apple's patent challenge against Red is a much stronger sign of their interest in the pro camera business; Prores Raw is limited to mostly Atomos external, which is a bottleneck in many ways. 

In fact, think about the Canon R5 and Sony a7s3's HEVC h.265 footage, which is impossible to play or edit on most machines. Except of course, the new Macs, which can edit them quite cheaply. Bingo.

Again, why wouldn't Apple want to release a professional camera that would boost their entire ecosystem? They are pushing various technologies that really only make sense if they add the final piece to the puzzle. 

 

I think that you’re missing all the warning signs and red signals.

- Samsung left.

- Olympus sold their shit and left.

- Nikon might leave.

- Photokina terminated.

Again... why would Apple enter when everyone is leaving?

I know... you are going to pull the ecosystem argument on me... but hear me out.

Pro res... created long a ago... it’s not new... they didn’t create it to ultimately get into the camera business... they created it so that Artistic people can buy their computers... “Oh your videos don’t play back smoothly on your Windows PC? Well, I bet they playback smoothly on a Mac... cause we have pro-res... switch!!!” They are just doing that “supply and demand” a la Wolf of Wall Street - sell me a pen scenario.

I initially didn’t understand their approach to the M1 chip... but after asking myself - why would they do that?? From a “supply and demand” point of view....  They know 8K is the future, there isn’t many people that have it yet, but let’s get ahead of the curve, because they know that the R5 is just the beginning and if the footage from that isn’t editing properly on their Macs without proxies... it just presents an opportunity for someone else to swoop in... 

I seriously think that Apple seriously believes that their “professional” camera is the iPhone... there... I said it.

And, I’ll be honest... my wife does YouTube videos... she films, edits and throws on our 55 inch TV for our family to review and uploads it straight to YouTube all from her iPhone. Do you understand how easy that workflow is???

You don’t need to work with multiple devices.

You don’t need to offload from memory card.

You don’t need to transcode or create proxies.

You don’t need to sit at a desk to edit... I mean laptops were supposed to be the portable take along... but this... imagine... you going to Bahamas with the family. You don’t have to worry about the heavy equipment - just your phone. You take all your photos and videos on the phone... on the way back... you edit the stuff on the plane. Upload it on Facebook when you’re in the cab on the way home. Boom! Done... call it a day.

In fact... after saying that out loud... I would say PCs and laptops are also a dying breed of equipment. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

 

1 hour ago, mkabi said:

I seriously think that Apple seriously believes that their “professional” camera is the iPhone... there... I said it.

And you’d be wrong, because nobody is editing iPhone footage on Final Cut Pro on Mac Pros, iMac Pro’s, etc. Nobody. iPhones aren’t selling Macs. 

And please stop with the “shrinking market” phenomenon. The market for shitty cameras has shrunk. Actually, not really, because that market has been displaced and coupled with the smartphone industry. So the market for shitty cameras has actually grown. Everybody in the world now has a shitty camera in his pocket. 

However, the market for interchangeable lens cameras (non-shitty) has stayed relatively constant over the past decade, because these are the cameras that pros are using.

And we still see significant innovation and evolution in professional cameras, and more importantly, a gap between amateur and professional content. That’s what will drive that market and keep it alive and lucrative, until that gap is closed. 

Nikon isn’t struggling because of a shrinking market. It’s struggling because its cameras can’t compete with Canon and Sony. 

Thus my argument for Apple: they can quite easily develop an even better camera than either company. And there’s money in that.



 

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Administrators

Did you see how many shitty compact cameras Nikon used to make? Masses and masses of them, for the masses. The market has practically vanished. They did nothing about it. Of course the market is getting smaller. Professional tools are a niche compared to consumer cameras. It is only high margins and expensive price tags that keep them from being completely unviable. Now that the camera companies have backed out from bothering to compete in massive consumer markets, they have dug themselves an even larger hole. Also remember with Nikon it is not just cameras that are the problem.

Their outdated chipmaking business is about to hit the wall as well.

It has about one customer.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Administrators
On 11/26/2020 at 4:13 PM, UncleBobsPhotography said:

However, there is also one thing speaking in favour of the camera business. Photography and videography is simply MUCH MUCH bigger today then it has even been before. Wanting to become an influencer, instagrammer or youtuber is so common you can't throw a rock without hitting one, and since the userbase is so large there will be a lot of people who will want to get that edge from using professional equipment, even if the gap closes.

If all these influencers are buying professional gear, why is Nikon in dire straits? Part of it is because Nikon was late to the mirrorless market. Part of it is that influencers and content creators are just using an entirely phone based workflow from shooting to editing. Might be a tablet in there at most. How many D850 shot Tik Tok videos are out there compared to the number shot on smartphones? Maybe 0.00001%?

The industry has fucked itself.

They have not been in the game. It is the fault of elderly out of touch Japanese management in their 80's.

They haven't even yet got proper touch screens and OS. Let alone a successful App Store and foolproof connectivity.

Some companies quite frankly deserve to be swept away in the change.

I just hope the better, more deserving ones survive. Especially Sigma.

Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, independent said:

 

And you’d be wrong, because nobody is editing iPhone footage on Final Cut Pro on Mac Pros, iMac Pro’s, etc. Nobody. iPhones aren’t selling Macs. 
 

iPhones are Apple's main source of income not Macs... period.

Just because you aren't doing that doesnt mean "nobody". And, I've already named 2 hollywood movies filmed on iPhone i.e. Tangerine and Unsane.

I was going to write a bunch of stuff.... but I will let Andrew's last words sink in... also read other people's posts as well, especially Danyyyel. If you're not seeing the clues.... I don't know.... I can't help you....

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Super Members
14 hours ago, Andrew Reid said:

If all these influencers are buying professional gear, why is Nikon in dire straits?

Are they in dire straits because, by courting influencers, all the other companies are getting their money for nothing and their clicks for free ?

dire-straits-money-for-nothing.jpg.deab87cb2b1317cc13da2f8eff5eac46.jpg

 

 

* I'll get me coat.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...