This is a purely hypothetical question but I'm guessing many of you have thought about it once or twice.
I'm curious if anyone else would consider a DSLR designed, dedicated and optimized solely for still photography worthwhile / desirable?
Quite simply: If you could get better still images from a camera without video, would you buy it?
- Would you buy it instead of a hybrid model with video features if it produced better still images?
- Would you buy it if the images were the same but it was designed differently for still photography use?
Does anyone else think compromises might exist in hybrid DSLR designs in order to offer HD video on the same sensor?
- Would a sensor designed for dedicated still photography perhaps offer better specs, IQ, sensitivity, speed, [insert other perceived benefit here]?
- How much better would a dedicated still photography camera perform if it didn't have to produce video as well?
- Would the CPU, processing and firmware possibly be less complex, more efficient and stable?
- Would the control layout and ergonomics, menus, etc be easier to use and offer more versatility and/or control?
- Is it possible that video features have delayed R&D while engineers work out new challenges due to the hybrid designs?
- Do you think video increases the price of the camera? Is it logical to think a dedicated still camera might cost slightly less while still offering better images?
Just thought I would throw it out there to chew on. Might make an interesting discussion. Thanks for your time.
I'm sure that a hybrid camera like Sony makes takes a hit in sensor performance due to the translucent mirror technology. I don't believe they use that just for video though. I think it helps them reduce the number of moving parts (mirror box, etc.)
As far as the sensor in the new T4i which has embedded phase detect points built in goes... I don't know... maybe it has an impact. Those consumer cameras are a compromise anyway. No one buys them thinking they are getting the best IQ Canon can offer.
For a traditional DSLR like the 5D Mk III, there was discussion that Canon used a stronger anti-alias filter in front of the sensor to combat the aliasing problems of the Mk 2 when shooting video. A stronger anti-aliasing filter certainly would have an impact on still image quality. How much? A smidgen. DPreview compared the D800 with AA filter to its AA-less D800E brother and found that the D800E was slightly sharper between f/4 and f/5.6 under lab conditions. http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/nikon-d800-d800e/22
So, did Canon's decision to use a stronger AA filter to help video users have a real impact on still IQ...probably not.
If you want the absolute in IQ, pay $43,000 for a Hasselblad. Don't have that kind of money? Buy the D800E and pick a lens that can deliver enough resolving power. Could that camera be manufactured cheaper if it didn't have the video features? For sure, but the price they charge for a body is not strictly tied to manufacturing cost. They have to consider development cost and expected sales as well. The 5D Mk 2 showed the world that adding video boosts sales in a major way. Building a body that lacked video means fewer sales, so the sale price goes up even though it might cost them less to manufacture each body. Everything is a trade off.