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02-15-2015, 07:51 PM   #16
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This is an illustration of where the LCD overlay sits in the viewfinder of a camera like the Canon 5D III:



This is all the information displayed in the new 'Intelligent Viewfinder II' transmissive LCD in the new Canon 7D II:


No doubt LCD 'transmissiveness' has improved, but displaying all that info in front of the light path into the eye-piece must have some impact on optical viewfinder brightness, even when everything is turned off in the display. As I mentioned, even the simple grid and AF point display on some modern FF cameras seems to visibly dim the viewfinder.

Perhaps the only way to avoid light loss would be some sort of active data projection system (similar to what is used in the Heads Up Display (HUD) of some military aircraft), where the data is projected into the viewfinder from a point outside of the light path. Maybe the boffins at Ricoh are working on something exactly like that.


Last edited by rawr; 02-15-2015 at 07:59 PM.
02-15-2015, 08:06 PM   #17
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IMHO, if you have that translucent display, as we all do, to show the active focus points, you would have most of what you'd need to place framing lines. Note that my Fuji X-Pro1 already has that feature, with frame lines in the OVF that coordinate with the zoom lens. When the lens zooms, the frame lines narrow accordingly. All I would add new is a crop on the sensor capture to match what the OVF is showing.

---------- Post added 02-15-15 at 08:13 PM ----------

That's what I was imagining, jonby. You just took it steps further. I like your control scheme, but I'd also want a quick way to set common fixed ratios. It's a lot easier to buy frames for 8x10prints than 8x11!

To all the doubters, I would definitely want a way to switch all accessories and features off and restore a clear, uncluttered view, too.
02-15-2015, 08:16 PM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatridger Quote
my Fuji X-Pro1 already has that feature
EVF's make it easy
02-15-2015, 08:39 PM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by rawr Quote
This is an illustration of where the LCD overlay sits in the viewfinder of a camera like the Canon 5D III:
I don't know about you Rawr, but a distracting electronic lightshow cluttering up my VF isn't my idea of good design.

02-15-2015, 09:04 PM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatridger Quote
I like your control scheme, but I'd also want a quick way to set common fixed ratios. It's a lot easier to buy frames for 8x10prints than 8x11!
Yes I agree. The aspect ratio could be shown using the standard LCD readout at the bottom of the viewfinder while making the adjustments.

QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatridger Quote
To all the doubters, I would definitely want a way to switch all accessories and features off and restore a clear, uncluttered view, too.
While in the crop adjustment mode, pressing the green button could cancel all cropping.
02-15-2015, 09:35 PM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by mamethot Quote
I would say yes to an histogram overlay in the viewfinder as well...
That would requite a high-resolution screen. Not sure how easy that would be unless you went with a full blown hybrid VF- which would be awesome!

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02-15-2015, 09:42 PM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by Digitalis Quote
a distracting electronic lightshow cluttering up my VF isn't my idea of good design
Agreed.
Worse still, even if you turn it off, it darkens your VF.

There was an interesting discussion on DPR's Nikon FX forum a while ago where it was shown by Marianne Oelund that while FF viewfinders may indeed be bigger, they aren't necessarily any brighter than DX viewfinders once you measure the light that emerges. Some FF viewfinders were measured to be about 0.45-0.53 stops darker than Nikon APS-C viewfinders.

So even if they do have a nice big FF pentaprism in the new Pentax FF, extra apparent VF brightness compared to APS-C VF can't be guaranteed. IMHO Ricoh shouldn't put too much extra fancy stuff into the on-screen display, otherwise folks might be disappointed once they bring the new camera to their eye.
02-16-2015, 04:21 PM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by rawr Quote
EVF's make it easy
QuoteOriginally posted by Digitalis Quote
I don't know about you Rawr, but a distracting electronic lightshow cluttering up my VF isn't my idea of good design.
I agree with Digitalis, an EVF alone dismisses a mirror and prism and all the fun!! Isn't that a MILC ?

02-16-2015, 04:46 PM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
Not sure how easy that would be unless you went with a full blown hybrid VF- which would be awesome!
The more rubbish that is put between the primary mirror and the eye will reduce transmission, making the viewfinder darker - a hybird OVF would be nice, but not very practical. IMO it is either full OVF or a full EVF - there is no room for half measures here when so much is at stake.
02-16-2015, 04:55 PM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by RuiC Quote
Isn't that a MILC ?
Indeed.

An interesting option would be some sort of hybrid EVF/OVF, combining the best of both. I recall asahiman mentioning a while ago that Pentax recently got a patent on something along those lines ...
02-16-2015, 05:02 PM   #26
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Agree also with you Digitalis. The purpose an OVF serves should not be distracted by trying to fit more and more unnecessary information into it. The important exposure settings are what allow us to keep the eye on the VF whilst changing them, but the mode, WB, drive, AF setting etc. don't need to be there - they are all a glance away looking at the top LCD on the camera dials. I am hopeful Ricoh will see past all that clutter and focus on developing a photographic tool for photographers.

Last edited by Ash; 02-16-2015 at 07:26 PM.
02-16-2015, 06:01 PM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ash Quote
I am hopefuly Pentax will see past all that clutter and focus on developing a photographic tool for photographers.
Understandable. But I guess it will depend on how Ricoh read the way technology and the market are going. Competitors (Nikon, Canon, Sony, Fuji, Panasonic - everyone) are making increasingly fancy viewfinders, not just because they can, but because customers seem to want them.
02-16-2015, 06:50 PM   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by rawr Quote
Competitors (Nikon, Canon, Sony, Fuji, Panasonic - everyone) are making increasingly fancy viewfinders, not just because they can, but because {their} customers seem to want them.
If actually true (and not just another way to one-up each other) does that require that Ricoh's customers want them?
02-16-2015, 08:14 PM   #29
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I think the idea being bounced around that an informational overlay, or even a full EVF overlay, necessarily amounts to a cluttered viewfinder with a host of distracting markings and flashing lights, is misleading. In fact, one of the advantages of such a system is that it makes it possible to turn all overlay elements off, to give an entirely clear view of the focusing screen, if desired, or to include only the elements which are needed at the time.

Given that the FF camera will need to offer some kind of indication of the APS-C crop area in order to properly support DA lenses, this will need to be done either by having the frame lines permanently etched into the focusing screen, adding to the current viewfinder clutter, or via some kind of overlay. In the latter case, this can be shown only when needed.

Personally I am not happy with having AF area markers cluttering my view when focusing manually (as per current Pentax DSLRs), so I would certainly not be happy with additional APS-C frame markers being visible all the time as well. So for me, an informational overlay system would seem to be an option worth considering, despite the potential loss of transmission.

The original post by Wheatridger was primarily about a method of allowing variable cropping and aspect ratios in camera, requiring a fairly simple viewfinder overlay system to show the framing area. This would hardly amount to an unreasonable amount of viewfinder clutter and is similar to the system used in some very well-liked rangefinder cameras for many years, as he points out. It's a shame that the discussion seems to have migrated towards the much-covered OVF/hybrid/EVF debate while the proposed functionality has hardly been commented upon.
02-16-2015, 08:18 PM   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by monochrome Quote
does that require that Ricoh's customers want them
I guess we'll have to wait and see how Ricoh make the call. But I suspect there will be more stuff in the display than, for example, the K-3 has. Whatever the D750/D810/5D3 have will probably be matched in the Pentax FF viewfinder.
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