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Author Topic: Nikon is working on an interchangeable sensor camera. Why not Canon?  (Read 5474 times)

Bruce75

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I've seen rumors that Nikon is working on cameras that can have an interchangeable sensor. I found it interesting and also clever marketwise. At this moment the cameras ar covering pretty well the photographers needs, and it can become interesting to start to sell specific sensor for the diverse kind of shooting (high iso specific sensor, a low clean one and so on). ithink that there is a chance to sell many of them.
Now, I found really strange that Canon, that's producing both Camera and Sensors is not working on something similar.
Canon il the market leader and could set a standard for all the companies, no?

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Mt Spokane Photography

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Re: Nikon is working on an interchangeable sensor camera. Why not Canon?
« Reply #1 on: September 30, 2013, 11:57:17 PM »
I've seen rumors that Nikon is working on cameras that can have an interchangeable sensor. I found it interesting and also clever marketwise. At this moment the cameras ar covering pretty well the photographers needs, and it can become interesting to start to sell specific sensor for the diverse kind of shooting (high iso specific sensor, a low clean one and so on). ithink that there is a chance to sell many of them.
Now, I found really strange that Canon, that's producing both Camera and Sensors is not working on something similar.
Canon il the market leader and could set a standard for all the companies, no?
If you think about it a little, a interchangeable sensor is not the best idea we've seen!  Nikon filed a patent for one, but only one of every several hundred patents actually happens. 
 
New sensor tech comes along every year or two and, it requires different pin outs, different processors, etc.  If sensors had to be compatible with old design motherboards, there could be no dual pixel technology, no 8 channel readouts, no improvements at all!  We would still be forced to use Digic I, 2 channel readouts, 1 inch LCD displays, and a ton of old stuff that's way out of date.
 
The only standard to be set would be for having a camera that was the most out of date, and perhaps for losing the most sales.
 
Do you really think that Nikon is going to tell Sony that they won't buy their  new super duper sensor because it won't work with their 2 or 4 year  or older camera body?  Do you think that a replaceable sensor will be cheap?  Look at RED, their modular sensor costs more than most cameras. Or at the low end,  Ricoh,
 
The other factor is that Camera bodies and particularly shutters have a limited lifetime, why put a new sensor in a worn out body, not to mention not having the latest features that we all want.
 
 
« Last Edit: October 02, 2013, 01:20:15 PM by Mt Spokane Photography »

David Hull

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Re: Nikon is working on an interchangeable sensor camera. Why not Canon?
« Reply #2 on: October 01, 2013, 12:48:48 AM »
So.... let's say you had a Nikon Camera (like a D800 for example) what sensor would you want to exchange it with?  I don't get the benefit Nikon is using the best sensors made.

mb66energy

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Re: Nikon is working on an interchangeable sensor camera. Why not Canon?
« Reply #3 on: October 01, 2013, 01:07:45 AM »
An interchangeable sensor is a good idea, but
  - it requires to change the processor too because IMO sensor + processor = film replacement - but that doesn't drive the price too much.
  - replacing a sensor by a customer needs a high precision sensor fixture to bring it in the same plane as the replaced sensor

I think it is possible to do this for 200 or 300 $/EUR more on a medium class camera, let's say 1300 $ instead of 1000 $. I would really appreciate such a system - specially if a monochrome sensor is available. Thinking (better dreaming) of ~ 20MPix with 12 or 13 bit DR and superior sensitivity, 2 EV more ISO sensitivity and working red filters for landscapes ...
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verysimplejason

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Re: Nikon is working on an interchangeable sensor camera. Why not Canon?
« Reply #4 on: October 01, 2013, 02:45:57 AM »
This isn't new.  Ricoh has been doing it for quite some time I believe but it'll be fun if Canon follow suit though this route must be followed only if IQ difference will be quite high.  If minimal, it's better to stick to the current system because it'll be cheaper. 

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Re: Nikon is working on an interchangeable sensor camera. Why not Canon?
« Reply #5 on: October 01, 2013, 03:34:25 AM »
The electronic interface need not be a major barrier. Look at CF cards, and how we get ever faster ones while maintaining backward compatibility. Unlike SD cards, where newer generations don't necessarily work on older ones.

Also there is a possibility they could release multiple sensors per generation, but will still have an upgrade path in that if you want a radical improvement some time later, you'd have to replace a bit more. Within a generation, I'd love to see a mono sensor offered alongside the typical bayer colour sensor. Want AA or not? That could be another choice. Or even one optimised for video like the ultra-low light one they're testing.

But the biggest problem I see is that a removable sensor will consume more space, which goes against the trend of smaller bodies in the consumer space. So this may be better suited to higher end kit, perhaps a future medium format body.
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Hesbehindyou

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Re: Nikon is working on an interchangeable sensor camera. Why not Canon?
« Reply #6 on: October 01, 2013, 05:08:00 AM »
I found really strange that Canon, that's producing both Camera and Sensors is not working on something similar.

A full frame sensor is by far the most expensive component in a camera body. There is little advantage, once you've taken into account the downsides, of a system that has an interchangeable sensor - you'd be better off buying two bodies, each with a different sensor. It would probably work out cheaper, too.

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Re: Nikon is working on an interchangeable sensor camera. Why not Canon?
« Reply #6 on: October 01, 2013, 05:08:00 AM »

MLfan3

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Re: Nikon is working on an interchangeable sensor camera. Why not Canon?
« Reply #7 on: October 01, 2013, 06:21:49 AM »
like Thom Hogan says in his latest article, I think they(all camera companies at least able to produce FF or FX )need to go modular design.
and this patent is a big move towards that trend.
I hope Sony and Canon will follow that trend.

photonius

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Re: Nikon is working on an interchangeable sensor camera. Why not Canon?
« Reply #8 on: October 01, 2013, 06:41:18 AM »
I've seen rumors that Nikon is working on cameras that can have an interchangeable sensor. I found it interesting and also clever marketwise. At this moment the cameras ar covering pretty well the photographers needs, and it can become interesting to start to sell specific sensor for the diverse kind of shooting (high iso specific sensor, a low clean one and so on). ithink that there is a chance to sell many of them.
Now, I found really strange that Canon, that's producing both Camera and Sensors is not working on something similar.
Canon il the market leader and could set a standard for all the companies, no?

Precision would seem to be a major issue. As lensrentals showed with the adapters, as little as 10 micrometer off, and one side will be soft with respect to the other wide open. Given that everybody seems to want a D800 sensor, with a supersharp image from edge to edge, there probably will be a lot of complaining. A little grain of dust could easily tilt the sensor when inserted. Of course it could probably be adjusted with some calibration system to make sure it's planar again.  Never mind that the you would have to recalibrate the microadjustment for all your lenses  :P

bainsybike

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Re: Nikon is working on an interchangeable sensor camera. Why not Canon?
« Reply #9 on: October 01, 2013, 07:25:07 AM »
Now, I found really strange that Canon, that's producing both Camera and Sensors is not working on something similar.

Do we know that they aren't?

Marsu42

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Re: Nikon is working on an interchangeable sensor camera. Why not Canon?
« Reply #10 on: October 01, 2013, 07:46:38 AM »
it requires to change the processor too because IMO sensor + processor = film replacement - but that doesn't drive the price too much.


Ugh, why's that? Surely a processor can be designed to work with different sensors?

Anyway, for general consumer dslrs I don't see this patent going anywhere because
* changing the sensor has to be awkward in practice
* the price of a ff sensor is large, if you buy it you want to use it
* manufacturers are quite happy to sell 2 bodies (crop for reach & ff for iq)

Random Orbits

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Re: Nikon is working on an interchangeable sensor camera. Why not Canon?
« Reply #11 on: October 01, 2013, 08:06:43 AM »
it requires to change the processor too because IMO sensor + processor = film replacement - but that doesn't drive the price too much.


Ugh, why's that? Surely a processor can be designed to work with different sensors?

Anyway, for general consumer dslrs I don't see this patent going anywhere because
* changing the sensor has to be awkward in practice
* the price of a ff sensor is large, if you buy it you want to use it
* manufacturers are quite happy to sell 2 bodies (crop for reach & ff for iq)

Change the sensor for IR or UV photography rather than getting multiple cameras, perhaps...

Marsu42

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Re: Nikon is working on an interchangeable sensor camera. Why not Canon?
« Reply #12 on: October 01, 2013, 08:26:31 AM »
Change the sensor for IR or UV photography rather than getting multiple cameras, perhaps...

Sounds a bit too specialized to implement something like this in mainstream gear ... even exchanging a sensor for less resolution but a lot of whole more dynamic range might only concern a minority.

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Re: Nikon is working on an interchangeable sensor camera. Why not Canon?
« Reply #12 on: October 01, 2013, 08:26:31 AM »

m

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Re: Nikon is working on an interchangeable sensor camera. Why not Canon?
« Reply #13 on: October 01, 2013, 09:01:51 AM »
Canon il the market leader and could set a standard for all the companies, no?

Is that a rhetoric question? Or sarcasm?
Not to save one's life would there be a standard for interchangeable sensors across companies.

Max ☢

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Re: Nikon is working on an interchangeable sensor camera. Why not Canon?
« Reply #14 on: October 01, 2013, 09:04:29 AM »
Beside the technicalities, this interchangeable sensor concept would not result in a lucrative business model because profits are best realized on systems rather than components. Canon and Nikon certainly have more interest in selling complete camera bodies to the amateur/pro who whishes to update his/her equipment rather than just one sensor...

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Re: Nikon is working on an interchangeable sensor camera. Why not Canon?
« Reply #14 on: October 01, 2013, 09:04:29 AM »