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11-18-2018, 10:53 AM - 1 Like   #706
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QuoteOriginally posted by biz-engineer Quote
Agreed. Not only mobile phones have taken away the casual shooters, but there is also a slow down of sales due to camera companies making of DSLR that are still working great after 5 years. Cameras such as Pentax K1, D810, D850 are likely to have rather long life cycles. People still use D800E and don't feel the need to buy something new.
I used my Pentax Super Program for 12 years.
I used my Canon EOS Elan for 11 years.
In the age of film, if you wanted to upgrade your sensor, you purchased the latest film.

Now if you want to upgrade your sensor, you purchase a new camera.
I doubt if typical digital camera working lifetimes will be what film cameras experienced.

11-18-2018, 02:24 PM   #707
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QuoteOriginally posted by reh321 Quote
I used my Pentax Super Program for 12 years.
I used my Canon EOS Elan for 11 years.
In the age of film, if you wanted to upgrade your sensor, you purchased the latest film.

Now if you want to upgrade your sensor, you purchase a new camera.
I doubt if typical digital camera working lifetimes will be what film cameras experienced.
such is technology!
11-18-2018, 03:08 PM - 1 Like   #708
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QuoteOriginally posted by reh321 Quote
I used my Pentax Super Program for 12 years.
I used my Canon EOS Elan for 11 years.
In the age of film, if you wanted to upgrade your sensor, you purchased the latest film.

Now if you want to upgrade your sensor, you purchase a new camera.
I doubt if typical digital camera working lifetimes will be what film cameras experienced.
Part of the issue is that our cameras get so much more use now than they did in the golden age of film. I might shoot 8 or 9 rolls of 36 exposure film when on vacation once a year and during the rest of the year 36 exposures would probably last me a couple of months. Now, I shoot as many exposures in a month as I would have in a year and way more when I go on a trip somewhere.

It isn't surprising that gear doesn't last quite as long.

Edit: I just checked my shutter count on my K3 which is about 4 and 1/2 years old and it is 65,000. And that's considering that I actually for the last couple of years have shot considerably more with my K-1. I just don't think film gear ever got that level of usage except for some high end pros or wealth hobby photographers. I don't like to think of how much it would have cost to buy and develop that many rolls of film (that's what, 2700 rolls of 24 exposure film)...

Last edited by Rondec; 11-18-2018 at 03:21 PM.
11-18-2018, 04:15 PM - 1 Like   #709
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote
Part of the issue is that our cameras get so much more use now than they did in the golden age of film. I might shoot 8 or 9 rolls of 36 exposure film when on vacation once a year and during the rest of the year 36 exposures would probably last me a couple of months. Now, I shoot as many exposures in a month as I would have in a year and way more when I go on a trip somewhere.

It isn't surprising that gear doesn't last quite as long.

Edit: I just checked my shutter count on my K3 which is about 4 and 1/2 years old and it is 65,000. And that's considering that I actually for the last couple of years have shot considerably more with my K-1. I just don't think film gear ever got that level of usage except for some high end pros or wealth hobby photographers. I don't like to think of how much it would have cost to buy and develop that many rolls of film (that's what, 2700 rolls of 24 exposure film)...
My experience is different. When I was shooting Kodachrome I would bracket - taking five exposures for each picture to be sure I got one properly exposed slide {slide film is not "forgiving" at all}. Now I typically take just one, knowing that I can 'tweak' the resulting JPEG if the exposure isn't quite what I want. Looking at my records, my total shutter count over the 7-1/2 years I was using Canon Rebels was 4361 {581 per year}.

Edit: I just checked the shutter count on my K-30, which I have had for 3-1/2 years .... it is 3928, so my rate has more than doubled to 1122 - but I doubt if, even now, that this is anywhere close to my exposure count during the age of film. I guess Rupert has influenced me to take a lot of photos of squirrels.


Last edited by reh321; 11-18-2018 at 04:53 PM.
11-19-2018, 02:18 AM - 1 Like   #710
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QuoteOriginally posted by reh321 Quote
I guess Rupert has influenced me to take a lot of photos of squirrels.
I guess squirrels are also unforgiving as slides are.
11-19-2018, 03:51 AM - 1 Like   #711
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QuoteOriginally posted by reh321 Quote
My experience is different. When I was shooting Kodachrome I would bracket - taking five exposures for each picture to be sure I got one properly exposed slide {slide film is not "forgiving" at all}. Now I typically take just one, knowing that I can 'tweak' the resulting JPEG if the exposure isn't quite what I want. Looking at my records, my total shutter count over the 7-1/2 years I was using Canon Rebels was 4361 {581 per year}.

Edit: I just checked the shutter count on my K-30, which I have had for 3-1/2 years .... it is 3928, so my rate has more than doubled to 1122 - but I doubt if, even now, that this is anywhere close to my exposure count during the age of film. I guess Rupert has influenced me to take a lot of photos of squirrels.
Each person is different. To me, exposures are basically free and so I might as well try different things. The worst that happens is I delete some photos when I get back to my computer.

I would say as far as longevity of film cameras versus digital cameras that it depends on the quality of the camera. I do think the K3 is more solidly built than the K30 series and likely, with some care, can shoot easily for 9 or 10 years. The same is true for the K-1. The same is true for film cameras. Pentax made a fair number of ZX cameras that were prone to failure due to cheap, plastic parts. On the other hand, cameras like the MZ-S were made with quality parts and are worth repairing, even if they do have issues.
11-19-2018, 07:11 AM - 1 Like   #712
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote
Each person is different. To me, exposures are basically free and so I might as well try different things. The worst that happens is I delete some photos when I get back to my computer.

I would say as far as longevity of film cameras versus digital cameras that it depends on the quality of the camera. I do think the K3 is more solidly built than the K30 series and likely, with some care, can shoot easily for 9 or 10 years. The same is true for the K-1. The same is true for film cameras. Pentax made a fair number of ZX cameras that were prone to failure due to cheap, plastic parts. On the other hand, cameras like the MZ-S were made with quality parts and are worth repairing, even if they do have issues.
We agree.

Getting back to the root of this mini-detour
QuoteOriginally posted by biz-engineer Quote
Agreed. Not only mobile phones have taken away the casual shooters, but there is also a slow down of sales due to camera companies making of DSLR that are still working great after 5 years. Cameras such as Pentax K1, D810, D850 are likely to have rather long life cycles. People still use D800E and don't feel the need to buy something new.
I personally believe that in most cases, a quality DSLR, like the SLR before it, will last as long as the user wants it to. I don't know if the numbers are available, but I'm guessing that the DSLR+MILC market in 2018 isn't much smaller than the SLR+rangefinder market was in 1978. However, sometime in the 1980's the market experienced a "bubble" - people I know/knew had a SLR in 1990, people who depended on a Instamatic in 1980 and a smartphone today - and the camera industry is just now adjusting to the fall in volume.
11-19-2018, 09:27 AM - 1 Like   #713
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QuoteOriginally posted by reh321 Quote
We agree.

(...) I don't know if the numbers are available, but I'm guessing that the DSLR+MILC market in 2018 isn't much smaller than the SLR+rangefinder market was in 1978. (...)
It's actually (much) bigger.
  1. 1978 market, CIPA figures (thus excluding American, European and Russian manufacturers of the time):

    • Cameras with focal plane shutter: 5.0m
    • Cameras with lens shutter: 3.8m
    • Medium and large format cameras: 118,000
    • Others: 2.5m

    Total: 11.5m

    Source: http://www.cipa.jp/stats/documents/common/cr400.pdf

    Cameras with focal plane shutter were mostly interchangeable lens cameras, cameras with lens shutter were mostly compact cameras.

  2. 2017 market, CIPA figures:

    • Cameras with built-in lens: 13.3m
    • Interchangeable lens cameras: 11.7m

    Total: 25.0m

    Source : http://www.cipa.jp/stats/documents/e/d-2017_e.pdf


11-19-2018, 01:38 PM   #714
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QuoteOriginally posted by larryaustin3 Quote
Truth.
There have been more images taken in the last 10 years than in the preceding 100 years combined, but the average quality of images is far lower.
Perhaps it's a bit lower, but there are a lot of attics full of Poloroids and 4x6 snapshots that were terrible. I look at my crates full of prints from film from 20-30 years ago and much of it is and was unusable. I came back from a trip to Europe in 2000 and spent $200+ on film develoment and probably had a 30% keeper rate, and much of that 30% wouldn't pass as a keeper today.
11-19-2018, 02:57 PM - 3 Likes   #715
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QuoteOriginally posted by larryaustin3 Quote
There have been more images taken in the last 10 years than in the preceding 100 years combined, but the average quality of images is far lower.
QuoteOriginally posted by ThorSanchez Quote
Perhaps it's a bit lower, but there are a lot of attics full of Poloroids and 4x6 snapshots that were terrible. I look at my crates full of prints from film from 20-30 years ago and much of it is and was unusable. I came back from a trip to Europe in 2000 and spent $200+ on film develoment and probably had a 30% keeper rate, and much of that 30% wouldn't pass as a keeper today.
I think it's worth looking at all of those terrible photos and considering the enjoyment that was had in taking them. I too have some absolute howlers from my days as a youngster with a 110 film compact (most of them, in fact, were dreadful). I have plenty more that weren't much better in my early adult years with slightly better film cameras and, as years progressed, my first digital compacts. Even today, whether I shoot raw with my K-3II and a really nice lens or JPEG with my low-to-middle-of-the-range smartphone, some of the shots I take have no artistic value. And yet, almost every photo I've ever taken evokes a memory. In that sense, the quality of the images is of secondary value.

I guess what I'm saying is, regardless of the average quality of today's images, if someone had fun taking them, or gets any kind of enjoyment from looking at them later on, they were worthwhile
11-19-2018, 04:28 PM - 1 Like   #716
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QuoteOriginally posted by BigMackCam Quote
I think it's worth looking at all of those terrible photos and considering the enjoyment that was had in taking them. I too have some absolute howlers from my days as a youngster with a 110 film compact (most of them, in fact, were dreadful). I have plenty more that weren't much better in my early adult years with slightly better film cameras and, as years progressed, my first digital compacts. Even today, whether I shoot raw with my K-3II and a really nice lens or JPEG with my low-to-middle-of-the-range smartphone, some of the shots I take have no artistic value. And yet, almost every photo I've ever taken evokes a memory. In that sense, the quality of the images is of secondary value.

I guess what I'm saying is, regardless of the average quality of today's images, if someone had fun taking them, or gets any kind of enjoyment from looking at them later on, they were worthwhile
Having scanned photos from forty years, I am quite convinced that digital is delivering much more sharpness than we ever got from film. If "quality" is measured by contemporary standards, then no 35mm photo would be a 'keeper', but they are what they are - records of a time we cannot return to and usually cannot replicate. People keep saying here "equipment doesn't matter", but I don't see them acting that way when facing images from the past.
11-19-2018, 04:33 PM - 2 Likes   #717
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QuoteOriginally posted by reh321 Quote
Having scanned photos from forty years, I am quite convinced that digital is delivering much more sharpness than we ever got from film. If "quality" is measured by contemporary standards, then no 35mm photo would be a 'keeper', but they are what they are - records of a time we cannot return to and usually cannot replicate. People keep saying here "equipment doesn't matter", but I don't see them acting that way when facing images from the past.
Right, and therefore quality is subjective... it embodies an awful lot more than purely technical measurements of sharpness, contrast, vignetting, lens distortion, grain / noise, etc. Each of us probably has a personal view on what image quality is, but regardless of the technical details and measurements, if a photo is successful in evoking any degree of pleasure to anyone, and for any reason - whether that's just the original photographer, or a viewer - then it has value. And any photo that someone finds pleasurable, regardless of the technicalities, is better than one that no-one appreciates, even if the latter is technically superior...
11-20-2018, 01:45 AM - 2 Likes   #718
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QuoteOriginally posted by BigMackCam Quote
Right, and therefore quality is subjective... it embodies an awful lot more than purely technical measurements of sharpness, contrast, vignetting, lens distortion, grain / noise, etc.

+1 to that Mike. Every time somebody says "image quality" when they mean sharpness and resolution (or even worse "IQ"), my poor old teeth get ground down a bit closer to the stumps. I get the feeling that a lot of people aren't really happy talking about squishy aesthetic stuff and would rather talk about crunchy technicalities instead, so they elevate the things about photography that are measurable to the top of their criteria. And when somebody mentions that actually the amount of sharpness and resolution that you want in a photo are aesthetic choices in themselves, things can get volatile pretty quickly.


Edit: Just to be clear, this thread is an exemplar of intelligent civilised discussion so far, and I'm most definitely not trying to prod it into the sort of volatility that I mentioned.

Last edited by Dartmoor Dave; 11-20-2018 at 01:55 AM.
11-20-2018, 04:09 AM - 2 Likes   #719
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QuoteOriginally posted by BigMackCam Quote
I think it's worth looking at all of those terrible photos and considering the enjoyment that was had in taking them. I too have some absolute howlers from my days as a youngster with a 110 film compact (most of them, in fact, were dreadful). I have plenty more that weren't much better in my early adult years with slightly better film cameras and, as years progressed, my first digital compacts. Even today, whether I shoot raw with my K-3II and a really nice lens or JPEG with my low-to-middle-of-the-range smartphone, some of the shots I take have no artistic value. And yet, almost every photo I've ever taken evokes a memory. In that sense, the quality of the images is of secondary value.

I guess what I'm saying is, regardless of the average quality of today's images, if someone had fun taking them, or gets any kind of enjoyment from looking at them later on, they were worthwhile
There have been plenty of "terrible" photos taken over the years. Some have been taken with Kodak brownies and some with smart phones and even some with Large Format film. But most of the time, as you say, the photographer wasn't out to try to make art, but remember some sort of time spent with family or visiting somewhere special.

I would say that it is a bit easier to take well exposed, sharp photographs with modern, digital gear. The simple fact that you get an instant preview of your image allows you to tell quickly if you misfocused or if something else is amiss, whereas with film, you wouldn't know till you developed the film. I suppose it is easy to think of the film years as the golden years, but quite simply few of the worse images from those years are being posted to Facebook and other image sites and so it gives a skewed perspective of how good the photography was then.
11-20-2018, 05:57 AM   #720
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I used to be a regular reader of AP and recall, about 6 years ago, an article comparing pictures taken on London streets with an slr and a phone. Even the night shots with the phone were considerably better than I would have imagined. I remember the reviewer being impressed also.
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