I personally love the polar opposites here --
Upgrade the 1DX? I just don't see it. Though the price would drop on the original and could make a nice intermediary step between the 7D MKII and 1DX MKII
I can't imagine Canon waiting another year to release their big MP... They'll keep bleeding sales to the Nikon D800...
Why would Canon feel compelled to rush into the high megapixel market when it's pretty much been a flop for Nikon and Sony?
Reality is between these 2 polarized opinions. The d800 market is a niche market, and the mk3 is more of a general purpose market.
You are right. I admit I made an overstatement just to stir things up a bit and try to get people to see a different perspective.
If Nikon's goal was to fill a niche, they may be hitting exactly what their purpose was. I guess I assumed that their purpose was to produce a competitor to the 5D line that would rival it in sales. If that's the case, then it has been, if not exactly a "flop," at least disappointing.
...big mp's is a niche market. it's not for everyone. Now I know it isn't the true test for sales, but looking at the amazon best sellers list -- the mk3 lands at 9th, and the d800 lands at 38th...
I've often said the the 5DIII was originally targeted to meet a specific market – wedding and event photographers. Which happens to be about the only viable commercial market remaining in photography. That doesn't mean it isn't a great all purpose camera, it just means that Canon identified a professional base and focused on that base.
It seems to have paid off. The first wave of purchasers seemed to draw largely from that base and their satisfaction with the camera could be seen in the glowing comments on this and other forums.
Now the street price has come down and the 5DIII is riding a wave of popularity from enthusiasts, perhaps driven in part by pent-up demand for the 7DII and by the release of the 6D. I think the 6D may actually help 5DIII sales because it has sparked interest in full frame and then once the serious consideration of the feature set begins, buyers rationalize the purchase of the higher end model – and yes, this part is autobiographical
On the other hand, I have never been able to identify a clear, sizable market for the D800. Yes, it may be great for landscape photographers, but how many professional landscape photographers do you know? The number is a tiny, tiny fraction when compared to wedding and event photographers.
It's actually not hard to understand the genesis of both the 5DIII and the D800. The major complaint about the 5DII was the autofocus system. This forum and others were filled with comments about how people didn't want more megapixels, they just wanted a better autofocus and clean high ISO. Canon delivered exactly what people said they wanted.
On the other hand, Nikon users complained about how Canon had so much better resolution. Yeah, they tried to pretend they really liked their low megapixel Nikons, but it was pretty clear they felt shortchanged. Nikon responded by giving them what they said they wanted. It just doesn't appear that the demand was as great at predicted.
Nikon does have a loyal user base, but it's smaller than that of canon's. Nikon's only way to really gain market share is to take loyalists from canon.
Or to grow the base. But that's the problem all DSLR manufacturers face. The customer base is aging out and isn't being replaced by younger customers. Part of that is generational preferences (iPhones etc.) but part of it is economic as well.
The poor economic conditions in the U.S. and Europe have hit younger people particularly hard. College graduates are underemployed or unemployed. Studies have been done that show that recessions have a life-long impact on the earning power of students who graduate during a recession. DSLRs are an expensive hobby that requires substantial discretionary income and many in the next generation simply don't have that income.
Canon and Nikon pinned a lot of their hopes on emerging markets in Asia, especially China. But recent monetary policies in China hurt that market as well.
So, for the time being, camera manufacturers really don't have any good prospects for growing their markets, other than repeat sales to existing customers or stealing customers from the competition, which as you point out, is no easy task.
So, I guess this all feeds into my original conclusion: I see no reason for Canon to rush into the high megapixel market when (perhaps this is a better way to say it) it hasn't been performing all that well for its competitors.