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07-28-2010, 07:56 PM   #61
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Pentax has just introduced what might be a category-busting camera, namely the 645D. It would be the height of foolishness for them to enter another new market category in which their ability to compete is questionable, to say the least. Meanwhile, they have two very solid and successful APS-C cameras on the market with more to come in the relatively near future. I say let Nikon and Canon slug it out for the relatively small FF market, while Pentax works on producing top-notch, high value cropped sensor cameras for the rest of the DSLR-using world. Oh, and I definitely expect an interchangeable lens EVIL camera from Pentax one of these days. That market is potentially huge.

Rob

07-28-2010, 08:34 PM   #62
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QuoteOriginally posted by robgo2 Quote
Meanwhile, they have two very solid and successful APS-C cameras on the market
Kx is, K7 is not... look at the numbers (sold), not at the features.
07-28-2010, 08:35 PM   #63
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QuoteOriginally posted by robgo2 Quote
Pentax has just introduced what might be a category-busting camera, namely the 645D. It would be the height of foolishness for them to enter another new market category in which their ability to compete is questionable, to say the least. Meanwhile, they have two very solid and successful APS-C cameras on the market with more to come in the relatively near future. I say let Nikon and Canon slug it out for the relatively small FF market, while Pentax works on producing top-notch, high value cropped sensor cameras for the rest of the DSLR-using world. Oh, and I definitely expect an interchangeable lens EVIL camera from Pentax one of these days. That market is potentially huge.

Rob
You do realize that the 645D is out of the budget for 99% of photgraphers out here, right? I know I don't have, what is it bout US$10,000(?) to drop on a camera body...

EDIT: D'oh!! I misread your whole post...I gottcha now...sorry about that, I somehow read you were equating the 645D appeals to the same customer base as a FF...while there might be appeal it is not going to be in the budget of any but the upper end of the consumers out here...and even then, I doubt many would plop down the cash when for that they could buy a heck of a FF Canikon system.
07-28-2010, 09:03 PM   #64
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QuoteOriginally posted by deejjjaaaa Quote
Kx is, K7 is not... look at the numbers (sold), not at the features.
Bingo! The commodity priced DSLR wallops the flagship. Which one sucked up more capital to develop?

Pre-digital the money made was in glass, not bodies. We are simply in a phase in the transition from film where the opportunity cost that went into the film mini-labs and emulsions is now economized into the sensor and processors you hold in your hand.

At some point those circuitry costs will drop, the bodies will be more like commodities, and the real $$$ will be made in glass which is far more design and labour-intensive to produce, CAD/CAM advances notwithstanding. It will also be be in software (buy Adobe stock).

Remember: in the West the camera requires a computer to interface, but most parts of the world the camera is the computer, and will be forever, so the processing power therein is inevitable.

The quality, "good enough" issue is moot. These companies all need tech advances to continue growth in mass markets. They're not Leica. The fidelity issue with comparison to sound is also not there because lossy audio largely replaced crappy tape which replaced crappy 45's. In the meantime, McIntosh and Paradigm kept selling their superior wares, to play music from crappy tapes and 45's! (I know, I am guilty as charged). There are numerous consumer incidences of putting lipstick on a pig. One could say that is the history of Apple!

FF makes sense because it is the largest form factor that allows for lenses that maximizes the average human handgrip at the highest quality for the lowest absolute cost through economy of scale. MF is simply too big. I predict that smaller formats will endure as low-end models (APS-C may be the 110 equivalent, and what happened to that?), but at some point, we might see just 3 factories worldwide making FF sensors as a commodity to brand spec design in a universal format the same way that film became dominated by 2 major suppliers and a few innovators on the fringes.

With Photokina coming, I wonder more and more what Canon is up to. They have the muscle to move the market. If they even hint at powering back their market share by lowering the FF price point, we will know that they see little room for innovation other than the sensor. They can sacrifice cash to make Nikon hurt. It didn't work for Sony but it might for Canon; they've done it before. If they also come out with an EVIL-like system that has an FF image circle like Sony (but still using an APS-C sensor), we'll know which direction the tide is going.

I shot a roll of film today. My next camera is a Fuji instant 'cause it looks pretty.

07-28-2010, 09:54 PM   #65
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QuoteOriginally posted by traderdrew Quote
I could imagine a 40 megapixel low noise camera for around $1,000.00 one day.
Is that possible? Even with gapless lens design there is a limit to how small the pixels can be. If the light wave is bigger than the pixel then your stuck.

Please correct me if I am wrong.
07-28-2010, 11:33 PM   #66
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
These companies all need tech advances to continue growth in mass markets.
And sensor size is near the bottom of their list.
As mentioned many times before, majority of the users do not care about sensor size! Only the top end users (like yourself) do.
Of course, if one of the company spend a billion dollar ad campaign hyping FF as the next best thing in the world, more people would take notice. But the advantage of FF is not immediately apparent to most consumers (unlike going from P&S to DSLR, or SD TV to HDTV). So why would they bother pushing FF as the next big thing when there are so many other features/gimmicks which can wow the general consumers just by demoing it?

QuoteQuote:
FF makes sense because it is the largest form factor that allows for lenses that maximizes the average human handgrip at the highest quality for the lowest absolute cost through economy of scale.
"Low cost/economy of scale" and "FF" do not belong to the same sentence now and for the foreseeable future. You keep claiming how little more FF sensor costs. I could never find any evidence of that. Most articles still claim FF costing 10 to 20x more than APS-C sensor.
07-29-2010, 12:28 AM   #67
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QuoteOriginally posted by Groucho Quote
One thing being overlooked here (well, by the FF crowd): the "good enough" factor. PnS cameras are "good enough" for the vast majority of people. APS-sensor DSLRs are "good enough" for even more. Once you get into FF, you are talking advantages that few people even know exist (try explaining DoF or DR to a casual Best Buy customer)... and FF is "good enough" for even more; the remainders going with MF or maybe film.

Superior technology does not automatically win, especially when it carries negatives like size, weight, cost, and the size/weight of the lenses (or the loss of much range with identical lenses.) The sensor is superior, but is the entire package superior? Very debatable.

Anyway - the "good enough". Remember Beta vs VHS? Beta had a clearly better picture - but VHS was longer, and "good enough." About about laserdiscs vs VCRs? Laserdiscs were far superior - but that technology never got cheap enough to mount a serious challenge. MiniDV camcorder sales were cut into by hard drive/DVD camcorders which had worse picture quality. Most people are not replacing their DVDs with Blurays despite Blurays having far better picture quality - DVDs are "good enough." People happily disconnect their landline phones in exchange for cell phones which have much worse call quality. Many people are enjoying streaming video from Netflix, Hulu, etc - even with worse image quality. Here's my favorite example of this: remember SACD and DVD-Audio formats? Both offering better sound quality over CDs, plus surround sound. Both flopped. Why? CDs are "good enough". In fact, most people have dropped even getting CDs so that they can get MP3s or AACs with inferior sound quality.

The point of all this, to repeat - the "quality" - whether it be sound quality, image quality (still photos or video), whatever - is only one part of the equation.

Besides, look back at the film days: even with 35mm, there were still lots of 110 cameras sold. And Disc cameras. And Polaroids. And disposable cameras. We are not heading towards some logical conclusion where we will all kowtow to the almighty fullframe sensor - there will always be a range of options and there will always be some next great advancement. (And again - if bigger sensors will keep getting cheap, why stop at FF, why not assume that MF sensors are the logical choice for the future?)
I think you sumarized the best the non-sensial debate regarding those questions. I may add a few things.

When Leica adopted the 35mm film from the movie industry and Cartier-Bresson, Walker-Evans and others adopted it, it was not for top quality but for compactness and praticability. At the same time Ansel Adams was using large format, with a resaon.

For the people compalining about dynamic range or sensitivity, one have to remenber that APSC beats 35mm films on all fields at the same time. It has more defintion, more dynamic and more sensitivity than any film past or available.

And one also has to remember that thin DOF wasn't always seems as a positive thing. I use DOF creatively, and I must say that APSC provides already plenty enough of it. One have to remember that grain of high sensitivity film (lets say 400 iso) is smoothing the thin DOF, plus with 35mm we didn't print as big as with FF or APSC, well for those who print.

The 12Mpx of the K-x already provides usable 6400 iso with a decent dynamics. Sure, with FF you get more, but do you need more ?

It seems to me like the MF vs 35mm debate of the old days. Everybody loose, LF win because with it you really control DOF and get the best wide angle shot....
07-29-2010, 02:06 AM   #68
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QuoteOriginally posted by ghelary Quote
I think you sumarized the best the non-sensial debate regarding those questions. I may add a few things.

When Leica adopted the 35mm film from the movie industry and Cartier-Bresson, Walker-Evans and others adopted it, it was not for top quality but for compactness and praticability. At the same time Ansel Adams was using large format, with a resaon.

For the people compalining about dynamic range or sensitivity, one have to remenber that APSC beats 35mm films on all fields at the same time. It has more defintion, more dynamic and more sensitivity than any film past or available.

And one also has to remember that thin DOF wasn't always seems as a positive thing. I use DOF creatively, and I must say that APSC provides already plenty enough of it. One have to remember that grain of high sensitivity film (lets say 400 iso) is smoothing the thin DOF, plus with 35mm we didn't print as big as with FF or APSC, well for those who print.

The 12Mpx of the K-x already provides usable 6400 iso with a decent dynamics. Sure, with FF you get more, but do you need more ?

It seems to me like the MF vs 35mm debate of the old days. Everybody loose, LF win because with it you really control DOF and get the best wide angle shot....
AHA, an other European seeing the similarities between what happened in the past and is going on right now. This is somewhat what I meant in these two postings : https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-news-rumors/107265-new-lenses-post...ml#post1110938 and https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-news-rumors/92361-pentax-k-5-new-c...ml#post1104538.
Oui, ghelary, comme toujours "l'Histoire se répète"!
The only things that are different, right now, are the 'guessing' and rumoring happening in public, on the internet...

07-29-2010, 04:53 AM   #69
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QuoteOriginally posted by Groucho Quote
One thing being overlooked here (well, by the FF crowd): the "good enough" factor. PnS cameras are "good enough" for the vast majority of people. APS-sensor DSLRs are "good enough" for even more. Once you get into FF, you are talking advantages that few people even know exist (try explaining DoF or DR to a casual Best Buy customer)... and FF is "good enough" for even more; the remainders going with MF or maybe film.

Superior technology does not automatically win, especially when it carries negatives like size, weight, cost, and the size/weight of the lenses (or the loss of much range with identical lenses.) The sensor is superior, but is the entire package superior? Very debatable.

Anyway - the "good enough". Remember Beta vs VHS? Beta had a clearly better picture - but VHS was longer, and "good enough." About about laserdiscs vs VCRs? Laserdiscs were far superior - but that technology never got cheap enough to mount a serious challenge. MiniDV camcorder sales were cut into by hard drive/DVD camcorders which had worse picture quality. Most people are not replacing their DVDs with Blurays despite Blurays having far better picture quality - DVDs are "good enough." People happily disconnect their landline phones in exchange for cell phones which have much worse call quality. Many people are enjoying streaming video from Netflix, Hulu, etc - even with worse image quality. Here's my favorite example of this: remember SACD and DVD-Audio formats? Both offering better sound quality over CDs, plus surround sound. Both flopped. Why? CDs are "good enough". In fact, most people have dropped even getting CDs so that they can get MP3s or AACs with inferior sound quality.

The point of all this, to repeat - the "quality" - whether it be sound quality, image quality (still photos or video), whatever - is only one part of the equation.

Besides, look back at the film days: even with 35mm, there were still lots of 110 cameras sold. And Disc cameras. And Polaroids. And disposable cameras. We are not heading towards some logical conclusion where we will all kowtow to the almighty fullframe sensor - there will always be a range of options and there will always be some next great advancement. (And again - if bigger sensors will keep getting cheap, why stop at FF, why not assume that MF sensors are the logical choice for the future?)
Nicely put, but I'm inclined to take the opposite view. As I opined earlier in this thread, "good enough" is probably in your pocket right now, in the form of a cameraphone that you consider to be free. (It's not really, but it seems that way of course.)

So: people who are only interested in "good enough" cameras will find it increasingly difficult to justify paying for a dedicated camera. Those who do bother to pay will probably gravitate towards FF, especially if future FF systems are not drastically more expensive than APS-C.
07-29-2010, 04:56 AM   #70
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QuoteOriginally posted by nosnoop Quote
And sensor size is near the bottom of their list.
As mentioned many times before, majority of the users do not care about sensor size! Only the top end users (like yourself) do.
Of course, if one of the company spend a billion dollar ad campaign hyping FF as the next best thing in the world, more people would take notice. But the advantage of FF is not immediately apparent to most consumers (unlike going from P&S to DSLR, or SD TV to HDTV). So why would they bother pushing FF as the next big thing when there are so many other features/gimmicks which can wow the general consumers just by demoing it?

"Low cost/economy of scale" and "FF" do not belong to the same sentence now and for the foreseeable future. You keep claiming how little more FF sensor costs. I could never find any evidence of that. Most articles still claim FF costing 10 to 20x more than APS-C sensor.
First, falocneye did the research on sensor costs. I've seen a $150 price spread at fab. More due to less scale of production, but that's the key issue. APS-C used to cost more than what a FF sensor costs now.

Who cares what people "need"? you think the history of product development is based on that? Did you not buy an iPhone farting app? Millions did.

How about the old claim that 6MP was enough for any camera. I heard that for years. Apple said we did not need cameras or videos in phones. Now they have them. the list of needs vs. wants is always won by the possible wants.

And it's all silly. FF sensors are already being made. The cost of production transferred from APCS-C in volume will drive down the cost of FF production. As with cars where we pay more on average for products we once thought we would not "need" (air conditioning, for example, power windows), are now ubiquitous, taken for granted. We don't "need" 1080p we have 90% acuity at 720p), but it's dominant in sales now. We'll pay a premium now for that 10% gain until it is the normalized format.

The DSLR image circle now can take FF. At some point that will be leveraged for a competitive advantage. The major brands are all hedging that way in their lens development save the M43 crowd.
07-29-2010, 07:47 AM   #71
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
the list of needs vs. wants is always won by the possible wants.
Exactly right! And right now, those who want FF are vastly out-numbered by those who want convenience. Most folks don't want big, heavy, expensive FF DSLRs. They want a camera on their cellphone that will give them pics that are good enough to post on Facebook and to make a 4X6 print should they want to put it in a scrapbook. That says that the research will go into small sensors...not FF.
07-29-2010, 08:43 AM   #72
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QuoteOriginally posted by TaoMaas Quote
Exactly right! And right now, those who want FF are vastly out-numbered by those who want convenience. Most folks don't want big, heavy, expensive FF DSLRs. They want a camera on their cellphone that will give them pics that are good enough to post on Facebook and to make a 4X6 print should they want to put it in a scrapbook. That says that the research will go into small sensors...not FF.
You're missing the point.

They'll want both. Convenience and FF are not mutually exclusive. You've used faulty logic. APS-C and Sony's new E-mount both already accept FF image circle so you don't need to be "big and heavy" to get there. Tape decks and LP's sold alongside each other for decades. HDTV came out and the Ninitendo Wii stayed at 480. it's not always substitutive; in fact, rarely is.

And who makes 4x6 prints? Last I noted, photo printing was in decline as well. We're looking at HDTV and 27" monitor displays soon, and increasing fidelity on small LCD's/OLED's. Small sensors will get better, hit a wall (already have on MP's vs. ISO) and then the only outlet to accommodate superior display resolution will be a larger sensor. It's not a matter of if, but when.
07-29-2010, 08:50 AM   #73
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No...it's reality. DSLRs, in general, make up a tiny, tiny fraction of all the people who are taking digital pictures. And those who need FF are a tiny fraction of that tiny fraction. The money follows the market.
07-29-2010, 09:18 AM   #74
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
First, falocneye did the research on sensor costs.
With all due respect, it is more of an educated guess/estimation rather than facts.

QuoteQuote:
Who cares what people "need"? ....
the list of needs vs. wants is always won by the possible wants.
You are EXACTLY right!
I have always maintained that majority of users don't care about sensor size...
and majority of users do NOT want FF!
07-29-2010, 09:48 AM   #75
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I don't believe anyone here knows the future, to state the obvious. We all perceive occasional insights from our own points of view, but we may be in a narrrow market segment that is irrelevant to the movement of the herd.

I remember how the "personal" computer went from a toy or novelty to turning main frames on their ears. People were rushing to write software for personal computers as they became a huge market, while the main frames stagnated with relatively unfriendly primitive software. Bigger not always succeeds. Are FF cameras merely the battleships of WW II. Sure they can shoot a bullet 25 miles, but who really cares.

Take a look at the age demographic in camera clubs and who attends photography sessions. We have 70 plus members in the local club, but it seems to include exclusively those in their 40's and older. We had a teenager attend last month's meeting, but unlikely he'll be back, i think. There will always be still cameras, but will the segment using it as an enthusiast hobby be as large as it is today. I think not.

The younger generations are out there happy with simple point and shoots, cell phones, and seem to be spending their more serious time either gaming or shooting video with $200 machines for Youtube. Its not that they won't shoot still pictures occasionally, its just that it will won't be a serious hobby for as many in the future.
The baby-boomers are willing to spend serious money on cameras, the next generations - not so much.

So which camera mfrs will get stuck with "battleships" in their camera lineup - not Sony apparently :-(

Am i 100% right in my predictions - I would say no more than any of the rest participating in this discussion

Happy shooting,

Last edited by philbaum; 07-29-2010 at 09:58 AM.
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