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06-23-2011, 10:33 AM   #1036
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QuoteOriginally posted by eddie1960 Quote
Funnily enough Mini disc did Really Really well in Japan, 4 + years after it's death here there were still new models coming available there.
MD also did quite well in Europe, with regular folk buying them as portable audio players from downtown shops, same as any other consumer goods. They only went off the shelves when Sony pulled the plug.

The recording quality on the HD units is still superior to anything out there in a similar form factor, though some of the solid state units get close. The reason is they stuck with 16-bit A/D stream for which there was a low-noise low-cost integrated chip. There's almost no advantage to 24-bit most of the time... yet the numbers game forced its adoption.

What killed them was Sony's idiotic policies on music copying and transcoding. It was too little too late when they finally changed their attitude. It also took them forever to introduce a Mac-compatible unit.

I still have an MD unit. And it's a pretty colour.

06-23-2011, 10:50 AM - 1 Like   #1037
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QuoteOriginally posted by Art Vandelay II Quote
So, it wasn't a matter of me buying APS-C just because it was bigger. At the time bigger was indeed better. However now the difference is so close it isn't worth worrying about.
Bigger is always better in sensor land, all else being equal, and so long as you don't mind paying for it. But some incremental differences aren't worth worrying about. On a scale normalised to 1 for the 645D, APS-C is a 2.10 and MFT a 2.54. That's pretty close. 1/2.3" format is a 7.19. Nowhere near.

Ref: Equivalence of Camera Systems
06-23-2011, 10:53 AM   #1038
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QuoteOriginally posted by rparmar Quote
MD also did quite well in Europe, with regular folk buying them as portable audio players from downtown shops, same as any other consumer goods. They only went off the shelves when Sony pulled the plug.

The recording quality on the HD units is still superior to anything out there in a similar form factor, though some of the solid state units get close. The reason is they stuck with 16-bit A/D stream for which there was a low-noise low-cost integrated chip. There's almost no advantage to 24-bit most of the time... yet the numbers game forced its adoption.

What killed them was Sony's idiotic policies on music copying and transcoding. It was too little too late when they finally changed their attitude. It also took them forever to introduce a Mac-compatible unit.

I still have an MD unit. And it's a pretty colour.
A lot of people I know used them for Studio work, particularly after the death of DAT. the one format that never took off anywhere (with good reason) was panasonics doomed DCC (digital compact cassette) Always felt guilty about the 3-4 of those i sold
06-23-2011, 11:07 AM - 1 Like   #1039
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
First, IQ always matters. Always.

If it did not 110 and APS film would have flourished. They died long before 135 and 120.
I think you are oversimplifying the market, otherwise those crappy disposable 35mm cameras with plastic lenses would have not spread like weeds at tourist traps. There are other market forces at work - cost, size, convenience, etc...

QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
Second, eventually, years to come (5-8), sensor production costs will drop enough that competing on size will be a factor more than now. I think Sony was telegraphing the future with the NEX mount being FF. At some point pouring capital into making FF fabs more effective will be the only way to compete.
Do you see mirrorless MF in your crystal ball? Why is FF such a magical size? What makes it endure?

QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
Third, mirrorless is NOT low-end now as the sunk costs of DSLR allows for some real bottom level productions, and not everyone wants a smaller camera. Mirrorless APS-C will, for awhile, be entry to mid-level verging strongly towards the latter, especially for after-market lens sales, but will struggle at the low end. In fact, M43 does NOT want it to go low-end to much. They cannot produce sensors to commodity price like the Nikon D3100. Canon still manufactures the T1i in the same time that Panasonic and Olympus have gone through 3 generations of M43. Which company is getting the most bang out of their production lines, locking them in to long-term brand power and buying habits?
You are comparing two companies at two very different phases of camera evolution. Panasonic is investing, iterating like mad, building organizational intelligence. Their primary motive right now is not to maximize profit/investment. On the other hand, Canon is squeezing every nickel they can out of their investments. They have the organizational intelligence. It's like clockwork for them.

You are right that M43 is not low-end, yet. Olympus and Panny are toying a bit with deeps discounts on older models, but they haven't really made an effort. Are low yields really holding them back? Do Canon and Sony really have the secret sauce and is that competitive advantage sustainable? Or will Panny eventually figure out the trick? Or have they actually sized production to their projections and were surprised to see them exceeded?

QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
Fourth, all that will matter for M43 is that on the sales floor (or in the forums) their engine is smaller than APS-C and their marketing message will get lost in the din of 9 companies fighting over the same turf. I do not believe that M43's smaller engine has built up anywhere near a big enough lead.
That's funny, the rows and rows of compacts and bridge cameras at the local Best Buy don't advertise their sensor size. I'd hazard a guess that your average soccer mom can't tell you what size her sensor is (let alone explain what 1/2.33" means), but they sure as hell can tell you how many megapixels they have. It says so right on the camera.

QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
Rolling out lots of models in a short timeframe is NOT necessarily a sign of profits and productivity.
No, it's a sign of rapid innovation and learning at the expense of profits and productivity. Panasonic, I believe, is in it for the long haul.

QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
I agree that Samsung is a company to watch. They are free from the shackles of the Japanese market, including the Yen.
Cool, something we agree on!

06-23-2011, 11:26 AM   #1040
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QuoteOriginally posted by johnmflores Quote
You are comparing two companies at two very different phases of camera evolution. Panasonic is investing, iterating like mad, building organizational intelligence. Their primary motive right now is not to maximize profit/investment. On the other hand, Canon is squeezing every nickel they can out of their investments. They have the organizational intelligence. It's like clockwork for them.

You are right that M43 is not low-end, yet. Olympus and Panny are toying a bit with deeps discounts on older models, but they haven't really made an effort. Are low yields really holding them back? Do Canon and Sony really have the secret sauce and is that competitive advantage sustainable? Or will Panny eventually figure out the trick? Or have they actually sized production to their projections and were surprised to see them exceeded?
The only way that M43 can compete against the coming wave of APS-C is on price.

They cannot compare specs. M43 loses.

Realistically, M43 cannot compete on price. That is a non-option.

Saying "my engine is smaller but goes almost as fast, let's pixel peep some photos" will not win you new entrants looking for the biggest bang for the buck. Sensor size will be the same factor for M43 vs. APS-C as the losing battle 43 fought. Call it mirrorless or whatever, that fact and dynamic has not gone away and is the bane of M43.

M43 is on borrowed time, measured in less than half a decade.

If you think Panasonic is in for the long haul, that's your opinion. In my book they look a lot like Contax.

I see mirrorless and DSLR coexisting at multiple sensor sizes for some time. I think some of the sunk costs of the SLR system, and the pellicle advances alongside sensor improvements, give the DSLR a way of staying profitable for a long time with minimal innovation. The Leica S2 is a DSLR. Do you think Leica will now supplant that with a mirrorless? No.

Mirrorless will, for the next few years, be mid-level. It has to amortize development costs and build lens arrays. FF DSLR and the Nikon D3100's will bracket the market and some things like Sony's pellicles will come up the middle. Frankly, I see the prosumer owning BOTH a DSLR AND a mirrorless. Where that leaves Pentax is still undecided. We'll see in the Fall.

In fact, that is probably the #1 reason why Canikon have not yet moved. they are lining those two stars up to avoid market cannibalization. Sony beat them to it. Yet 43 has effectively dumped the SLR entirely. That says something. Two suppliers have had to put all their eggs in one basket and maximize their share as fast and best they can before cars with bigger engines and substantially more and cheaper production, come onto the track.

You are talking to a guy with 2 Olympus film cameras.
06-23-2011, 11:38 AM - 1 Like   #1041
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What interests me was imaging-resources speculation that the "Q" of the Q-mount stands for "Queen", akin to how the K of the K-mount stood for "King". If this is indeed so, then it suggests to me that the other rumored mirror-less from Pentax will not have another completely new mount. After all, the other mirror-less is rumored to be APS-C, and hence have a larger size, so that would have made much more sense as the "Queen" than the tiny size of the just-announced system. So perhaps then the other mirror-less will have the K-mount, or at least some redesigned version of the K-mount such that they feel they can still refer to it under the banner of the K-mount.

Of course, Q could stand for something entirely different (Quirky etc). Please, let's get this thread away from analyzing Pentax's decision of what they have actually released, and go back to wild speculation
06-23-2011, 11:45 AM   #1042
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Panasonic has the potential to make great sensors. The GH-1 was very competitive with the Canon 7D and better than a lot of APS-C sensors. Panasonic seems more focused on HD video optimization than still image quality. Olympus would do well to find a 2nd source for sensors and Samsung could be a good option. Olympus can not keep making baby steps in IQ/DR/high ISO while Sony and others are making big strides.
06-23-2011, 12:21 PM   #1043
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
The only way that M43 can compete against the coming wave of APS-C is on price.

They cannot compare specs. M43 loses.

Realistically, M43 cannot compete on price. That is a non-option.

Saying "my engine is smaller but goes almost as fast, let's pixel peep some photos" will not win you new entrants looking for the biggest bang for the buck. Sensor size will be the same factor for M43 vs. APS-C as the losing battle 43 fought. Call it mirrorless or whatever, that fact and dynamic has not gone away and is the bane of M43.

M43 is on borrowed time, measured in less than half a decade.

If you think Panasonic is in for the long haul, that's your opinion. In my book they look a lot like Contax.

I see mirrorless and DSLR coexisting at multiple sensor sizes for some time. I think some of the sunk costs of the SLR system, and the pellicle advances alongside sensor improvements, give the DSLR a way of staying profitable for a long time with minimal innovation. The Leica S2 is a DSLR. Do you think Leica will now supplant that with a mirrorless? No.

Mirrorless will, for the next few years, be mid-level. It has to amortize development costs and build lens arrays. FF DSLR and the Nikon D3100's will bracket the market and some things like Sony's pellicles will come up the middle. Frankly, I see the prosumer owning BOTH a DSLR AND a mirrorless. Where that leaves Pentax is still undecided. We'll see in the Fall.

In fact, that is probably the #1 reason why Canikon have not yet moved. they are lining those two stars up to avoid market cannibalization. Sony beat them to it. Yet 43 has effectively dumped the SLR entirely. That says something. Two suppliers have had to put all their eggs in one basket and maximize their share as fast and best they can before cars with bigger engines and substantially more and cheaper production, come onto the track.

You are talking to a guy with 2 Olympus film cameras.
I guess we'll have to disagree on this. I don't think IQ is the determining factor, particularly those moving up from a P&S. Like many of us here I bet, I get a lot of questions about people stepping up from a Point & Shoot. The kinds of things that I've heard include:

"I can't take photos of my kids playing soccer with my point & shoot."
"I was on this cruise and this guy next to me got some great shots of the whales. Mine look like tiny dots."
"I'm intimidated by dSLRs. I don't have time to learn how to use them."
"I'm looking for higher quality."

Yes IQ is important, but to say it's the most important for everyone may be an oversimplification.

Regarding Contax - did they make televisions and video cameras and electric shavers and rice cookers and laptops and irons massage chairs too? Panasonic is massive and massively diversified. I don't imagine Contax was. This diversity may have hurt them among the old-school photographers, but they countered nicely with a Leica alliance, and not everyone cares about that anymore. Cameras are little more than computers with lenses these days, and Panasonic has a lot of experience with consumer electronic devices.

Finally, Olympus. Notice I haven't really mentioned them much as I don't know if they have the horsepower to define markets. They are like the Pentax of the M43 world - an admired heritage brand that does bring some innovation to market but are not the market leader. Their challenge is to find their niche in relation to the 800# Panasonic. Many, myself included, would like to see them evolve into the serious amateur/pro arm of M43. But I'll be the first to admit that that's a small market and they'll need volume in other segments to survive.

06-23-2011, 12:27 PM - 1 Like   #1044
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QuoteOriginally posted by eddie1960 Quote
the one format that never took off anywhere (with good reason) was panasonics doomed DCC (digital compact cassette) Always felt guilty about the 3-4 of those i sold
I am probably the only other person here who knows what you are talking about!

A decade ago I helped found the first community internet radio station in Canada. We used MD decks in studio and portable units for reportage etc. Worked very well, since you can edit together your whole show on one MD. I always thought that choice was one of the reasons for our success -- kids the age of 12 making their own radio programmes from the ground up.

QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
M43 is on borrowed time, measured in less than half a decade.
Well, that's about half a decade longer than Pentax Q in any rate.

Anyway, that's enough of this thread for me - everything has been said that will be said. Very sad Pentax spent good R&D money on this enterprise.
06-23-2011, 12:39 PM   #1045
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If Panasonic is a computer company with a lens attached then I will point out they are neither Apple nor Leica, neither computing leading edge nor with an optical pedigree.

At least Olympus is a real camera manufacturer.
06-23-2011, 01:53 PM   #1046
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Who cares about the historical pedigree if they keep turning out great cameras and great lenses?
06-23-2011, 02:04 PM   #1047
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QuoteOriginally posted by johnmflores Quote
"I can't take photos of my kids playing soccer with my point & shoot."
"I was on this cruise and this guy next to me got some great shots of the whales. Mine look like tiny dots."
"I'm intimidated by dSLRs. I don't have time to learn how to use them."
"I'm looking for higher quality."
These are good points - I too have heard these from a number of people talking/asking about camera gear, not just soccer mums. This is a big part of the concept Pentax has adopted in developing the Q-mount IMO. This market is far bigger than the FF market (that is unsatisfied by the APS-C and not as keen to fork out the cash for a dMF)...
06-23-2011, 03:07 PM   #1048
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QuoteOriginally posted by macTak Quote
What interests me was imaging-resources speculation that the "Q" of the Q-mount stands for "Queen", akin to how the K of the K-mount stood for "King".
I think a bunch of people here would have designated it a "J" mount. And no, I don't mean "Jack."
06-23-2011, 03:27 PM   #1049
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We just have to wait what does this new innovation for Pentax will do to the next flagship next year at Photokina 2012.

APS-C /MF mirroless will come. For now, Pentax takes care of the other consumers who requires this camera and it's not us who are fond having big lenses and alll the advantages of DSLR. We already have K-5/K-r

For me i would still get one but later. Its the next best thing for me when i'm lazy and i want a small camera to go to with interchangeable lens.
06-23-2011, 04:34 PM   #1050
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I really don't understand which market they are aiming for with this $800 price point.

Are they aiming for lomo holga street shooting hipsters? not at this price point.

Where does all the cost come into what they've put into this camera? A 1/2.33 sensor shouldn't add that much to this cost.
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