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03-21-2011, 06:45 PM   #1
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Opinion: Moore's Law & LBA

Some background here - I'm a recovering MMORPG addict. Instead of watching TV I was plugged into Video Games for 55+ hrs a week. I knew I had to make changes in my life, and decided to embrace a hobby, since I am unable to fish for trout and collect expensive graphite like I used to BC (Before Children).

My camera has been "away" for a couple weeks now getting serviced. Subsequently I've been going over several forums, photo schools sites and getting generally educated... instead of taking pictures which I'd prefer. Loving the B&W thread thats going by the way.

I've begun watching for lenses now...mmmm lenses. My favorite one to seek out is Pentax smc P-FA* 80-200mm f/2.8 ED IF - only because I told my wife I'd never ever need something like that.... and it looks cool. Then there is the limited 31mm that I need like a hole in the head.

But I digress - back to the title subject. I'm a photo newb - I put the question to you Pentaxians to opine:

If sensors are getting cheaper to produce, with higher pixel density per area and per buck, and the 18 month doubling implied by Moore's Law means that this will create the opportunity where Pro's will enevitabley be able to enlarge and crop APS-C sized images with a similar aesthetic end result currently, or previously reserved to Full Frame or even Medium format systems:

1) Do you think the Pro Formats will be relegated to closets and 2nd hand stores - precluding a drop in FF lens prices?

2) Will Lens Manufactureres - (particularly Pentax)- start filling in the "pro" holes from their current APS-C sized glass? ie a couple of new fast telephoto's for example?

3) With improved noise reduction at high ISO bigger apertures are not required - Constant F4 becomes the new Fast lens? (Bleh!)

4) If you think 3 is a possibility, what do the K-5 (flagship "Prosumer" level) equivalent camera's of 2020 specs look like?

Love to hear your thoughts

cheers

03-21-2011, 07:37 PM   #2
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You should read this
DSLR SENSOR SIZE AND PIXEL DENSITY
03-21-2011, 07:53 PM   #3
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3) No. Depth of focus (or lack of it ) is still a sought-after lens characteristic for some.
03-21-2011, 10:55 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by mattt Quote
1) Do you think the Pro Formats will be relegated..?

As APS-C sensor performance improves, I'd think Full Frame and larger sensor performance would, too. No matter how good APS-C becomes, a significant number of shooters will want the last nth degree of performance that can be had from larger sensors. And if sensor prices continue to fall, I'd guess demand for FF and larger sensors would increase rather than decrease.

Just for the pleasure of a large, bright viewfinder I'd love to have a Pentax FF dslr - and a fleet of new / renewed FF lenses. But, I'm not going to hold my breath. :bluebreath:

03-22-2011, 08:38 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by mattt Quote
1) Do you think the Pro Formats will be relegated to closets and 2nd hand stores - precluding a drop in FF lens prices?
No. FF will always have IQ advantages over APS-C, which will keep them in demand at higher prices than smaller formats. What's preventing a large scale defection from APS-C to FF are (1) cost of FF glass, (2) bad economy, (3) the majority of DSLR shooters are using entry level APS-C cameras with kit lenses (and therefore don't care about FF IQ advantages), and (4) size of FF cameras.

QuoteOriginally posted by mattt Quote
2) Will Lens Manufactureres - (particularly Pentax)- start filling in the "pro" holes from their current APS-C sized glass? ie a couple of new fast telephoto's for example?
Unfortunately, probably no. Pentax is a rather conservative company, particularly when it comes to expensive products. They still can't make enough 645Ds to keep up with demand and it took them nearly a year to introduce a second new lens for that camera. A fast supertelephoto would have a price somewhere north of $5,000. Pentax probably doesn't think they can sell enough lenses at such a price point to make it worth their while, and hence they don't seem any interest in making such a lens.

I would note that even Nikon has been ultra-conservative with supertelephotos. Yes, they have such lenses in their lineup, but supposedly they're not producing enough to keep up with demand.

QuoteOriginally posted by mattt Quote
3) With improved noise reduction at high ISO bigger apertures are not required - Constant F4 becomes the new Fast lens? (Bleh!)
No, not everyone wants fast lenses so they can shoot hand-held in low light. In any case, many of the best photographers use tripods, so it's never been an issue for them. Fast lenses are desired for the narrow DOF and because they tend to be all around better lenses than slower glass, even when shot at f8.

QuoteOriginally posted by mattt Quote
4) If you think 3 is a possibility, what do the K-5 (flagship "Prosumer" level) equivalent camera's of 2020 specs look like?
Since 3 is not a possibility, it's hard to tell. Keep in mind, there really is no such thing as Moore's law. At a certain point, the technology hits a brick wall, and improvements slow down. Pentax's focus should be on improving AF performance and developing a true OS for the camera with apps. New technologies may come along that are yet unanticipated and unimagined, but in a bad economy, innovation often slows down.
03-22-2011, 09:06 AM   #6
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from my persoective (maybe I should use a non photography related synonym) I believe that while the sensors will always improve, the resolution will take a back seat for some time to come, to high ISO and noise.

People are demanding higher and higher ISO capabilities, Forget that digiral has surpassed film already in this regard, (that happened in 2003 for pentax with the first *istD), people want more. In the last 4 years resolution has not moved far, but high ISO has, and will continue to do so. Sure they can put a lot more on a chip, just look at the latest brige cameras 12MP on a 8 x 10mm chip. that extrapolates to 57MP on an ASP-C sensor. So why is no one selling it? it is not needed, plain and simple.

As for High ISO making F4 the new fast lens, this is true and false. Sure, if I could get 100ISO performance out of a camera at ISO 3200 I would be satisfied with a 500mm F6.3 lens, but I am not sure it will get there any time soon.

Also, as others have stated for artistic reasons, it is sometimes nice to be able to have bigger apertures for isolation of foreground and background. that will always create a market for fast lenses. Note lenses are getting better too, just look at the performance for price of the new samyang offerings, 14mmF2.8, 85mmF1.4 and the new 35mmF1.4. All internal focus, so AF could be an easy step for these lenses, good overall performance etc... and a fraction of the cost of some pentax or sigma equivelents (although MF vs AF so not a direct comparison)
03-22-2011, 02:25 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by mattt Quote

1) Do you think the Pro Formats will be relegated to closets and 2nd hand stores - precluding a drop in FF lens prices?

2) Will Lens Manufactureres - (particularly Pentax)- start filling in the "pro" holes from their current APS-C sized glass? ie a couple of new fast telephoto's for example?

3) With improved noise reduction at high ISO bigger apertures are not required - Constant F4 becomes the new Fast lens? (Bleh!)

4) If you think 3 is a possibility, what do the K-5 (flagship "Prosumer" level) equivalent camera's of 2020 specs look like?
1. The larger format market will contract, becoming even more specialist and true Pro pro. That will quell much of the upgrade-path-is-FF desire on escalating price as well.

2. The big mfgrs will react to, and continue to respond by filling market demand, because that's why they're big. Pentax, if not swallowed, will continue being Pentax (and contract more into servicing loyalists & minorities, releasing the occasion rehashed old design lens in "silver".)

3. More likely F2.8 (or faster?). The phenomenal demand for 70-200 F.L (expensive) fast hi-Q zooms, and the lust for even longer fast lenses by outdoorsy and sport freaks will not wane -- unless the bumhole falls out of world economies for a very extended period.

4. The future prosumer level camera will progress full-steam as it is now headed, ie. with stronger emphasis toward super quality video capabilities. Full blown Hybrid might be an apt description. Ca/Ni/So have that market in their sights and understand what's going on.
The traditional term "Still" image is destined to take a back seat to more "Motion" imagery.
DLSRs have that potential to produce mega-HQ vid, of short[ish] duration, matching the quality of their stills.
So budding con/pro-sumers will be able to affordably play in both worlds, using the one same tool, and produce superb results at both.

Remember you said Moore's Law, and you gave good indication that you realise the sheer "pace" that Gordon's analogy implies.

.R.

Last edited by Hypocorism; 03-22-2011 at 02:48 PM.
03-22-2011, 02:43 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by bobmaxja Quote
You should read this DSLR SENSOR SIZE AND PIXEL DENSITY
I enjoyed the read - right on the money.

QuoteOriginally posted by northcoastgreg Quote
Pentax probably doesn't think they can sell enough lenses at such a price point to make it worth their while, and hence they don't seem any interest in making such a lens.
- interesting point. I was curious about that one since the FA*80-200 f2.8 hasn't been made for a number of years now.

thanks for sharing your thoughts.

03-22-2011, 04:44 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by mattt Quote
I enjoyed the read - right on the money.

- interesting point. I was curious about that one since the FA*80-200 f2.8 hasn't been made for a number of years now.

thanks for sharing your thoughts.
that's because pentax has re defined their lens line up to be consistent with the crop factor and speed of the lenses

In film they had 28-70, 70-200 and 300 F 2.8. Now they have 16-50, 50-135 and 200 F 2.8 lenses. They also have a 300/4 in place of the 600/4 They have gone down the road of equivalent FOV ( or focal length) to gain or claim lower weights

They suffer still from the "M Disease"

Last edited by Ole; 03-25-2011 at 02:11 AM.
03-22-2011, 06:04 PM   #10
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What is the M disease? Inability/disability to sell new swanky gear because the brilliant legacy of old glass that is still available?
03-22-2011, 06:15 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by mattt Quote
What is the M disease?

Perhaps the (dubious) belief that "Smaller is Better"?


Tim
03-24-2011, 04:11 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by mattt Quote
Some background here - I'm a recovering MMORPG addict. Instead of watching TV I was plugged into Video Games for 55+ hrs a week. I knew I had to make changes in my life, and decided to embrace a hobby, since I am unable to fish for trout and collect expensive graphite like I used to BC (Before Children).

My camera has been "away" for a couple weeks now getting serviced. Subsequently I've been going over several forums, photo schools sites and getting generally educated... instead of taking pictures which I'd prefer. Loving the B&W thread thats going by the way.

I've begun watching for lenses now...mmmm lenses. My favorite one to seek out is Pentax smc P-FA* 80-200mm f/2.8 ED IF - only because I told my wife I'd never ever need something like that.... and it looks cool. Then there is the limited 31mm that I need like a hole in the head.

But I digress - back to the title subject. I'm a photo newb - I put the question to you Pentaxians to opine:

If sensors are getting cheaper to produce, with higher pixel density per area and per buck, and the 18 month doubling implied by Moore's Law means that this will create the opportunity where Pro's will enevitabley be able to enlarge and crop APS-C sized images with a similar aesthetic end result currently, or previously reserved to Full Frame or even Medium format systems:

1) Do you think the Pro Formats will be relegated to closets and 2nd hand stores - precluding a drop in FF lens prices?

2) Will Lens Manufactureres - (particularly Pentax)- start filling in the "pro" holes from their current APS-C sized glass? ie a couple of new fast telephoto's for example?

3) With improved noise reduction at high ISO bigger apertures are not required - Constant F4 becomes the new Fast lens? (Bleh!)

4) If you think 3 is a possibility, what do the K-5 (flagship "Prosumer" level) equivalent camera's of 2020 specs look like?

Love to hear your thoughts

cheers
Get your camera back and go take pictures. Getting caught up in LBA is a trap.
03-24-2011, 04:43 AM   #13
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its back.. early even :P It is a trap no doubt.
03-24-2011, 04:52 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by mattt Quote
What is the M disease? Inability/disability to sell new swanky gear because the brilliant legacy of old glass that is still available?
No. The M disease is my name for pentax's occasional fallback to always trying to make the smallest cameras and lenses possible. In the film days they got caught up in a race with Olympus to make the smallest cameras and lenses and in the process many of the better and fastest K series lenses disappeared totally. Look at the 85 ,135,200 and 28 and 35mm lenses. Pentax K lenses for these FL were between 1/2 and 1 stop faster. Cameras were so small many people had trouble holding them. While some like the MX were excellent otherwise the size made them hard to use
03-24-2011, 08:28 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lowell Goudge Quote
No. The M disease is my name for pentax's occasional fallback to always trying to make the smallest cameras and lenses possible. In the film days they got caught up in a race with Olympus to make the smallest cameras and lenses and in the process many of the better and fastest K series lenses disappeared totally. Look at the 85 ,135,200 and 28 and 35mm lenses. Pentax K lenses for these FL were between 1/2 and 1 stop faster. Cameras were so small many people had trouble holding them. While some like the MX were excellent otherwise the size made them hard to use
I like small cameras, but each to his own. The big advantage is that my gear bag is smaller and lighter than the other guys'. The other big advantage is that thieves will gravitate to the biggest, baddest and therefore most expensive cameras that are walking around. That'd be the guys with the big honkin' Nikons and Canons, please rob them instead of me.

Moore's Law doesn't apply all that much to lenses, because of the known laws of physics on optical glass. It does apply more to camera bodies because they are being driven more and more by semi-conductors and electronics. A camera body purchase today won't be worth much in 3 years, just like a computer. Personally, I like to put my money in lenses instead of bodies.
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