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12-30-2012, 04:07 PM   #991
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QuoteOriginally posted by Laurentiu Cristofor Quote

The K mount can work, no one said that it cannot - I even said it's not the K mount that is the problem in itself. But if you're going to shorten the registration distance for a MILC system, you have two choices - a micro-K-mount solution or building a new mount from scratch. The micro-K can offer some advantages in terms of backward compatibility - it would be straightforward to make an adapter for it, for example. But I would prefer if they took the opportunity to create a clean new mount design.
Why bother with a new mount at all then? If the advantages are limited to flange distance then we're talking about smaller sized gadgets, which is desired by some but not all on the basis of ergonomics.
QuoteQuote:
As for Nikon's future, they have a considerable DSLR customer base to worry about, so not all my thoughts about Ricoh/Pentax do apply to them, but I do believe they will also have a hard time transitioning to MILCs, as they have no real system to offer. In some ways, Ricoh has an easier choice because they have less customers to lose. Look at how Nikon and Canon are handling MILCs and you'll see why Canon is #1 in photo business - or maybe you won't see it now, you'll see it in a few years.
Canon is also committed to high end dSLRs and seem to sell them very well. We're probably arguing different perspectives of a similar direction. One user is interested in an advanced dSLR product to use with existing K-mount lenses (without an adapter), another is keen on an advanced MILC with a new mount. But I'm not sure a new mount, even if compatible with K-mount lenses via an adapter, will produce more customers, new or existing, investing into the brand.

12-30-2012, 04:21 PM   #992
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ash Quote
Why bother with a new mount at all then? If the advantages are limited to flange distance then we're talking about smaller sized gadgets, which is desired by some but not all on the basis of ergonomics.
The issues that people can have with the ergonomics of MILCs have nothing to do with the cameras being thinner. A thinner camera is an advantage whether you are an amateur or a pro. Same goes for the more compact wide angles that are possible with shorter registration distances. These are some of the same reasons why Leica has managed to stay alive in the SLR era while sticking to a rangefinder design (build quality and their lenses are the other reasons).


QuoteOriginally posted by Ash Quote
Canon is also committed to high end dSLRs and seem to sell them very well.
Their high end SLRs are all FF. FF users point to the lack of FF sensors in MILCs as the main advantage for DSLR technology today. What do you think will happen once a FF MILC will become available?

QuoteOriginally posted by Ash Quote
We're probably arguing different perspectives of a similar direction. One user is interested in an advanced dSLR product to use with existing K-mount lenses (without an adapter), another is keen on an advanced MILC with a new mount. But I'm not sure a new mount, even if compatible with K-mount lenses via an adapter, will produce more customers, new and existing, investing into the brand.
Customers wanting to use their K mount lenses without an adapter are served today. But their number seems to decrease rather than increase.

OTOH, Sony has sold a lot of NEXs to people wanting to use Leica lenses on digital cameras but not wanting to spend $7,000 on an M9. The GXR M module was built to cater to the same group. However, neither is a match for the M9 because neither one uses FF sensors. A FF MILC would demand attention from users of any brand - it's a great opportunity to be in the spotlight and attract Canon and Nikon users. It's an opportunity to grab some market from the big guys - there are not many such opportunities.
12-30-2012, 05:14 PM   #993
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ash Quote
I don't believe other photographic companies' journeys are for Pentax to emulate. You seem to suggest that new mounts to make customers keep buying new gear is the way forward. You do not see a future market in producing new DFA lenses? Perhaps existing sale numbers of DA and DFA lenses might dispel any myth that Pentaxians aren't buying any more lenses and Pentax will suffer if it doesn't create a new mount.
I have said repeatedly that DSLRs with an OVF have a long future and that I hope to see some serious D-FA* glass from Pentax.

But I would also like to see Pentax develop a new mount specifically for EVIL. Optimized for CDAF, with modern drive system, and one that can have the AF firmware updated while on the camera. If Pentax wants to be the company that offers compact bodies with small high quality prime lenses, the EVIL is a big step in that direction.

90% of the technology is inter-changeable between DSLRs and EVIL. The AF system and lenses are the two key technologies that would be different. Remember that one key selling feature that Fuji pushed is the Leica adapter. An EVIL could use lenses from almost any system which makes it even more versatile. Features like refined focus peaking almost make AF unnecessary for many wide to short-tele lenses.
12-30-2012, 05:24 PM   #994
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QuoteOriginally posted by Laurentiu Cristofor Quote
The issues that people can have with the ergonomics of MILCs have nothing to do with the cameras being thinner. A thinner camera is an advantage whether you are an amateur or a pro. Same goes for the more compact wide angles that are possible with shorter registration distances. These are some of the same reasons why Leica has managed to stay alive in the SLR era while sticking to a rangefinder design (build quality and their lenses are the other reasons).
Leica is in a class of its own. And their prices reflect that. I've held a few MILCs and whilst nice and comfortable on the whole, none of them had a gripped feel I liked to shoot with. Pentax dSLR buttons are just so nicely spaced and thought out. That's ergonomics.

QuoteQuote:
Their high end SLRs are all FF. FF users point to the lack of FF sensors in MILCs as the main advantage for DSLR technology today. What do you think will happen once a FF MILC will become available?
I don't know, but I don't assume dSLRs will become defunct with the passionately pushed FF MILC concept. The dSLR advantage is currently responsiveness. I won't keep repeating this practical difference.

QuoteQuote:
Customers wanting to use their K mount lenses without an adapter are served today. But their number seems to decrease rather than increase.
Stats please? Or are you just personally convinced of this because of your presented Oly and Fuji cases.
QuoteQuote:
OTOH, Sony has sold a lot of NEXs to people wanting to use Leica lenses on digital cameras but not wanting to spend $7,000 on an M9. The GXR M module was built to cater to the same group. However, neither is a match for the M9 because neither one uses FF sensors. A FF MILC would demand attention from users of any brand - it's a great opportunity to be in the spotlight and attract Canon and Nikon users. It's an opportunity to grab some market from the big guys - there are not many such opportunities.
It's sounding as if every such 'opportunity' for success needs to be taken for there to be a future for Pentax. Producing products with a practical difference has always been Pentax's forte, and if a FF MILC is an idea they think will advance the brand, the. I'm sure they'd do it, but at the cost of sabotaging the K-mount to bolster a new mount's lens sales, this would be very much unlike a good legacy brand to do. I see (as per the next desired Pentax product poll results so far) an advanced dSLR as still the most pressing product to get out, then introduce a great MILC to support a broader group of photographers. The K-01 was a nice start to doing this.

12-30-2012, 05:30 PM   #995
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QuoteOriginally posted by Winder Quote
I have said repeatedly that DSLRs with an OVF have a long future and that I hope to see some serious D-FA* glass from Pentax.

But I would also like to see Pentax develop a new mount specifically for EVIL. Optimized for CDAF, with modern drive system, and one that can have the AF firmware updated while on the camera. If Pentax wants to be the company that offers compact bodies with small high quality prime lenses, the EVIL is a big step in that direction.

90% of the technology is inter-changeable between DSLRs and EVIL. The AF system and lenses are the two key technologies that would be different. Remember that one key selling feature that Fuji pushed is the Leica adapter. An EVIL could use lenses from almost any system which makes it even more versatile. Features like refined focus peaking almost make AF unnecessary for many wide to short-tele lenses.
EVIL cameras definitely have a future. The question is, what is the immediate direction Pentax is heading with its cameras? Having an interchangeable system with adapters that allow full functionality of all mounts of lenses doesn't help Pentax sell its own lenses. A new mount in itself doesn't solve any problem created by the K-mount. Would it be a loss to produce a great MILC (K-02) with all the refining and revamping you've described on a K-mount running alongside a K-mount dSLR successor body?
12-30-2012, 06:00 PM   #996
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I also wonder why we expect lenses to be outdated or wear out the same way cameras do. If lenses were designed to last a couple of years or a certain number of actuations like a digital body then there'd be little reputation for such a company. The opposing argument that Pentax are not selling lenses because users who want FA/DA Limiteds have them by now, and their lenses are lasting a lifetime so don't need to buy any more, says more about Pentax's attitude to producing quality gear than it does to reflect their poor plan for longevity.

Of course, there are also lenses of the ilk of DA 35/2.4 and kit lenses that sport reasonably good quality but for prices affordable to a vastly greater number of users...
12-30-2012, 07:38 PM   #997
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QuoteOriginally posted by Clavius Quote
I don't have to prove the fact that mirror slapping degrades IQ. If it didn't degrade IQ, then why do DSLRs have a mirror lock up function then?
QuoteOriginally posted by Clavius Quote
They fail every time the slapping shakes up the camera and degrades IQ. Twice, because of the needless waist of space in camera and lens. Three times over per picture, because due to the mirrorbox the lenses are slower then they could be.

Longer shutter speeds for 99% of the reason. Read your instruction manual about recommending a tripod. Mirror slap is such an infrequent problem that no one cares, especially not the 95% of pro photographers who readily use DSLR's (including in medium format where the really heavy lifting and $$$ occurs).

It's a non-issue, 99.99% technically solved 20 years ago. now, marketing people might make it an issue, but surely you're smart enough to see through that.

QuoteOriginally posted by Clavius Quote
Strange huh? With all those pro level EVIL's around they still won't switch. Wait what? What pro level EVIL's??
QuoteOriginally posted by Clavius Quote
That's not an argument. They don't use pro mirrorless cameras because there simply are no pro level mirrorless cameras around! The first manufacturer to actually do that will win bigtime IMO.
No demand. It's the market speaking. The demand is for the D800/D600 etc.

They listen to their customers and make what people want. The OVF is a finely honed, technical tool of choice.

QuoteOriginally posted by Clavius Quote
Ohw yeah, and then manufacturers have to combat each other by making the best glass, like in the old days. Instead of just preventing users from switching. A good company doesn't need to trap their customers.
The last 120 years of photographic merchandising says the complete opposite. Each brand has ALWAYS been all about locking you into a proprietary system. That's the whole point of a mount and why all use slightly different register distances. Canon became #1 with the least configurable mount of all, and the market gave them the dominant position and most business.

Long ago glass became pretty much equivalent with the application of CAD/CAM and ISO quality controls etc. A few dogs here and there, mostly due to marketing guys ignoring the optical engineers, but for the most part, there is no longer differentiation between glass offerings of different brands per se. In pro circles that ubiquity of Photoshop has mostly rendered the point useless. Glass comparison is mostly about marketing, not science.
12-30-2012, 08:26 PM   #998
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
I don't have to prove the fact that mirror slapping degrades IQ. If it didn't degrade IQ, then why do DSLRs have a mirror lock up function then?
yes, mirror slap can utterly total image quality. However the fact is that it is only becomes a problem within a certain shutter speed range e.g 1/15 ~ 1.5s shutter speed range*.


QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
They don't use pro mirrorless cameras because there simply are no pro level mirrorless cameras around! The first manufacturer to actually do that will win bigtime IMO.
rubbish, you are just hung up over what is considered professional and what isn't. what is more professional, Henri Cartier Bresson using a polariod or some highschool student with a Sinar F1 and phase one back? my money would be on Henri. Professionalism is more about skill and technique and less about equipment.


*though this is heavily dependant on focal length, the longer the lens is the more sensitive to unwanted vibrations it will be, and beyond that atmospheric disturbances also degrade image quality with extreme (1000mm and over) focal lengths.

12-31-2012, 12:10 AM   #999
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ash Quote
I've held a few MILCs and whilst nice and comfortable on the whole, none of them had a gripped feel I liked to shoot with. Pentax dSLR buttons are just so nicely spaced and thought out. That's ergonomics.
And that has nothing to do with MILC/SLRs. It's purely a matter of how camera bodies are designed.

I also like how the Pentax bodies feel in my hand - I prefer them to any other DSLR - the problem is that I now prefer a MILC to any other DSLR too!

QuoteOriginally posted by Ash Quote
I don't know, but I don't assume dSLRs will become defunct with the passionately pushed FF MILC concept. The dSLR advantage is currently responsiveness. I won't keep repeating this practical difference.
I don't understand what you are talking about. My E-M5 is every bit as responsive as my Pentax DSLRs were. If there is a difference in responsiveness, it is in favor of the MILCs and that difference is that I can properly evaluate the outcome before even pressing the shutter - that is as responsive as it gets.

QuoteOriginally posted by Ash Quote
Stats please? Or are you just personally convinced of this because of your presented Oly and Fuji cases.
Well, I have some stats and some anecdotal evidence.

For stats, I look at Olympus having more DSLR sales than Pentax. And after they move on to MILCs I get anecdotal evidence showing increase awareness of their MILC cameras. And more stats showing that at least in Japan, their market share has increased after moving to MILCs. I posted links to those stats earlier in this thread.

Meanwhile, I do not see any evidence of Pentax market share increasing. Many PF users that I used to know are not posting here anymore because they moved on to Nikon or Sony or something else. You might be able to run some queries on your backend database and see how many users that were Pentaxians 2-3 years ago are still active today. And in my area I don't see any interest in Pentax at all. People don't even mention it as an option. Of the 4 Pentax users I know, 2 bought Pentax because I recommended it to them. There was also a 5th, but after half a year of Pentax he moved to Nikon. Meanwhile, interest in MILC cameras is orders of magnitude higher than interest in any Pentax product. The K-5 is not even talked about - if a Pentax product will be mentioned, it will be the Q.

And then there are the third party lens makers. Why would Cosina abandon K-mount and focus on MFT, if K mount was a more promising market? Same for Zeiss with NEX. Are we saying that those "entry-level MILC users" can appreciate high end MF lenses more than the guys that spend their time talking about Takumars? Why are Sigma and Tamron not producing lenses for K mount that they produce for other mounts? The questions are rhetorical - the answer is simple: because the market for K mount lenses is dying - there are just not enough users interested in investing in K mount lenses. And it's not because Pentax is offering a full lineup of quality lenses, because the principal K mount lens manufacturer is not even Pentax - it is Sigma.

That being said, I am happy to learn of any stats that show that Pentax has steadily increased their sales over the past 2-3 years and that people are excited about their products.

QuoteOriginally posted by Ash Quote
It's sounding as if every such 'opportunity' for success needs to be taken for there to be a future for Pentax.
Can you rephrase this - I don't understand what you are trying to say - I think there is a word missing somewhere.
12-31-2012, 12:16 AM   #1000
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QuoteOriginally posted by Laurentiu Cristofor Quote
Can you rephrase this - I don't understand what you are trying to say - I think there is a word missing somewhere.
Just a comma, I reckon, as in "It's sounding as if every such 'opportunity' for success needs to be taken, for there to be a future for Pentax." Makes sense to me.
12-31-2012, 12:21 AM   #1001
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Laurentiu, from your last post, Pentax *must* seize the opportunity in front of them here with FF MILC, or they will fail to gain a competitive footing in the photography market. I have heard similar things being said repeatedly for the 6 years I have been on this forum, and I'm yet to see Pentax dwindle. That's more anecdotal statistics for you as well.

As for MILC responsiveness, we must be looking at different aspects of performance. Lets just say we prefer different products and leave it at that for the 1,000th post in this thread.
12-31-2012, 12:52 AM   #1002
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ash Quote
EVIL cameras definitely have a future. The question is, what is the immediate direction Pentax is heading with its cameras? Having an interchangeable system with adapters that allow full functionality of all mounts of lenses doesn't help Pentax sell its own lenses. A new mount in itself doesn't solve any problem created by the K-mount. Would it be a loss to produce a great MILC (K-02) with all the refining and revamping you've described on a K-mount running alongside a K-mount dSLR successor body?
The SDM drive system does not work well with CDAF. Lenses that are designed for PDAF will never be as fast as lenses designed for CDAF on an EVIL camera. Notice that the new Sigma M4/3 lenses don't have HSM drive motors. Notice that Olympus does not use SWD motors on M4/3. The lenses that were designed to work with PDAF don't work well with CDAF cameras. Pentax can build an excellent K-02, but as long as it is stuck with legacy drive lenses the AF is going to be painfully slow compared to newer systems.

I don't know what the direction is for Pentax. Will they miss-fire multiple times like Sony has? Will they keep trying to make bad compromises like the K-01 or Sony's SLT technology? Sony may follow Olympus and slowly phase the A-mount out as it builds E-mount. Sony keeps trying to compromise and combine EVIL with DSLR technology and instead is left with over priced, under performing cameras. Sony is trying to keep the A-mount alive by compromising and it's not working.

Adapters don't hurt sales. Just look at Fuji and Olympus. Actually a lot of people bought a Fuji or a M4/3 just because they already had older glass and they wanted to put it on a newer body. I have looked at buying a M4/3 several times just because I have a lot of old Canon, Olympus, Contax glass that I have not used in years. I would still buy the 12mm, 45mm, & 75mm for the AF. Now I am looking more at the Fuji X-mount instead and the 14mm, 35mm, and the yet to be released 54mm.
12-31-2012, 01:08 AM   #1003
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QuoteOriginally posted by RobA_Oz Quote
Just a comma, I reckon, as in "It's sounding as if every such 'opportunity' for success needs to be taken, for there to be a future for Pentax." Makes sense to me.
Thanks. It's late here - I am too tired to fill in commas. This will be my last post for 2012.

Happy New Year to everybody and may Ricoh find the best use of the Pentax brand in 2013!

QuoteOriginally posted by Ash Quote
Laurentiu, from your last post, Pentax *must* seize the opportunity in front of them here with FF MILC, or they will fail to gain a competitive footing in the photography market. I have heard similar things being said repeatedly for the 6 years I have been on this forum, and I'm yet to see Pentax dwindle. That's more anecdotal statistics for you as well.
Just because you cannot see Pentax dwindle, doesn't mean they haven't. In past years I was able to look forward to K mount lenses from Voigtlander and Zeiss. Those lens lines are now dead on K mount. And this is a fact, not anecdotal evidence. It is also a fact that some of the Sigma/Tamron lenses are not even available on K mount. You can choose to ignore such facts, but don't tell me they are anecdotal evidence, because that is not what they are.

QuoteOriginally posted by Ash Quote
As for MILC responsiveness, we must be looking at different aspects of performance.
Well, let's clarify the matter then: which exact aspects of performance do you find inferior in an E-M5 vs a K-5? How can I look at the same aspects if you don't tell me what they are?
12-31-2012, 01:15 AM   #1004
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Good point Winder. Hadn't thought of lens design regarding SDM. Perhaps SDM II has been conceived and designed to be implemented on both focusing systems. It's probable that there will be both a K-5 as well as a K-r successor announced together. Hopefully 2013 will enlighten us with these.
12-31-2012, 01:34 AM   #1005
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QuoteOriginally posted by Laurentiu Cristofor Quote
The issues that people can have with the ergonomics of MILCs have nothing to do with the cameras being thinner. A thinner camera is an advantage whether you are an amateur or a pro. Same goes for the more compact wide angles that are possible with shorter registration distances. These are some of the same reasons why Leica has managed to stay alive in the SLR era while sticking to a rangefinder design (build quality and their lenses are the other reasons).
A camera being thinner is an advantage, up to a point. Sure, I would like a slightly thinner K-5; but most MILCs have no grip to speak of. I would also like a body large enough to allow for a sensible button placement.
Leica is a special case, one of the few survivors after the SLRs took over.

QuoteOriginally posted by Laurentiu Cristofor Quote
Their high end SLRs are all FF. FF users point to the lack of FF sensors in MILCs as the main advantage for DSLR technology today. What do you think will happen once a FF MILC will become available?
Nothing at all? Few would buy it, and the typical, price-sensitive MILC customer would find it way too expensive?

QuoteOriginally posted by Laurentiu Cristofor Quote
Customers wanting to use their K mount lenses without an adapter are served today. But their number seems to decrease rather than increase.
Please do not make things up.

QuoteOriginally posted by Laurentiu Cristofor Quote
For stats, I look at Olympus having more DSLR sales than Pentax. And after they move on to MILCs I get anecdotal evidence showing increase awareness of their MILC cameras. And more stats showing that at least in Japan, their market share has increased after moving to MILCs. I posted links to those stats earlier in this thread.

Meanwhile, I do not see any evidence of Pentax market share increasing. Many PF users that I used to know are not posting here anymore because they moved on to Nikon or Sony or something else. You might be able to run some queries on your backend database and see how many users that were Pentaxians 2-3 years ago are still active today. And in my area I don't see any interest in Pentax at all. People don't even mention it as an option. Of the 4 Pentax users I know, 2 bought Pentax because I recommended it to them. There was also a 5th, but after half a year of Pentax he moved to Nikon. Meanwhile, interest in MILC cameras is orders of magnitude higher than interest in any Pentax product. The K-5 is not even talked about - if a Pentax product will be mentioned, it will be the Q.
On a growing market (i.e. the DSLR one), their market share could decrease while the sales volume remains relatively constant, maybe even increase a little. I see you're trying to push the burden of proof on us, but none claimed their market share increased. OTOH, you're making some bold statements... of course, without any kind of proof.
Estimating market trends based on forums is quite unreliable. Basing them on the 4 Pentax users you know, well...
I will remind you that the DSLR market is 4 times larger than the MILC one in units, and 5 time in value. "Interest in MILC cameras is order of magnitude higher"? Yeah, right.

QuoteOriginally posted by Laurentiu Cristofor Quote
And then there are the third party lens makers. Why would Cosina abandon K-mount and focus on MFT, if K mount was a more promising market? Same for Zeiss with NEX. Are we saying that those "entry-level MILC users" can appreciate high end MF lenses more than the guys that spend their time talking about Takumars? Why are Sigma and Tamron not producing lenses for K mount that they produce for other mounts? The questions are rhetorical - the answer is simple: because the market for K mount lenses is dying - there are just not enough users interested in investing in K mount lenses. And it's not because Pentax is offering a full lineup of quality lenses, because the principal K mount lens manufacturer is not even Pentax - it is Sigma.
Indeed, why would Cosina abandon K-mount? Maybe they're not doing so well (due to the economic climate) and they had to concentrate on easier markets?
FTR, Sigma is still announcing K-mount lenses (for example the new 35mm f/1.4 "Art"), so they don't agree with your conclusion; and I would like to see some data about how they're selling more K-mount lenses than Pentax.

QuoteOriginally posted by Laurentiu Cristofor Quote
That being said, I am happy to learn of any stats that show that Pentax has steadily increased their sales over the past 2-3 years and that people are excited about their products.
I doubt anyone would care to try proving your strawman.

QuoteOriginally posted by Laurentiu Cristofor Quote
Well, let's clarify the matter then: which exact aspects of performance do you find inferior in an E-M5 vs a K-5? How can I look at the same aspects if you don't tell me what they are?
This is a matter of the processor/electronics&software used, and we all know the PRIME II is due to an update.

What I can't understand; you don't care about the K-mount at all - why don't you go to e.g. Sony, which are much closer to your liking? Why do you believe that an entire company should dramatically alter their course, just to make you happy?
Well, whatever. I wish you a Happy New Year, and may Sony make the camera you want.

Ash@Winder: I'm not entirely convinced about this "lenses made for PDAF are not suitable for CDAF" thing. It's all based on one specific implementation, right? 4/3 -> m4/3. Let's keep in mind that only recently Pentax implemented fast-ish CDAF algorithms.
Maybe the HSM is too big for MILC lenses.
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