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Author Topic: Thoughts From Canon on a Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera  (Read 22901 times)

Edwin Herdman

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Re: Thoughts From Canon on a Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera
« Reply #30 on: December 22, 2011, 04:40:13 AM »
Well, the first thing to recognize is that EVIL/ILCs are being seen as "competition" for the market, and many of us have a vested interest in seeing no format change taking place.  I do not think there is much to worry about, since professional and even consumer lenses for EF mount will not be replaced by an ILC camera.

It would be nice to have more choice, especially for people who mainly shoot just wide to medium telephoto where the lens size can be limited, in smaller bodies.  I would caution that we aren't going to see much more quality in compacts without large sensors (which there isn't really any pressure to produce for this market) and large lenses; however the Nikon V1 / J1 demonstrate that you still can have high quality higher ISO shots with a smaller sensor, and even a bit more size in the lenses should allow for much greater quality than currently available in the compacts (assuming, however, that sample variation and mismatches are not going to plague ILCs as much as they do DSLRs - this seems easily tested for compacts at the factory, whereas with an ILC you don't know which lens it will end up being paired with).

One other note about the Nikon F mount adapter:  An EF mount adapter for an ILC could restrict the minimum size of the ILC.  The Nikon F mount space is notably smaller than EF mount (the film to flange distance is mostly irrelevant here) would either mean an adapter unit would hang below the camera, or it would restrict how small the ILC could be by a certain amount.

mb66energy

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Re: Thoughts From Canon on a Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera
« Reply #31 on: December 22, 2011, 04:59:08 AM »
The questions are
  - what are the advantages of a mirrorless design?
  - Do I want to use one set of lenses for all cameras or am I willing to do things in parallel?

I see some advantages of mirrorless cameras and I want to use ONLY ONE LINE of LENSES.

I would like a camera which has the following three functions/application ranges:
  - compact portable camera with a line of 3 or 4 pancake primes (17/24/40/80mm equiv and f/2.8 , perhaps the 40mm as f2.0) - a 17mm lens without the need to bend the light to allow a mirror to flip would be great!
  - camera with good video features which can be used with my EF and EF-S glass
  - "intelligent rear cap" for e.g. a EF-S 10-22 in the bag - always ready to shoot

This for let's say 1000 EUR with EF adaptor ... I don't want to sell my 40D cameras - they have great ergonomics and IQ.
7D is to expensive 60D is to plasticky for it's price, so the 600D might be a good addition to have video. But it lacks the compactness which comes with a proper mirrorless design and will be some interim solution.
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ppucci

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Re: Thoughts From Canon on a Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera
« Reply #32 on: December 22, 2011, 05:33:19 AM »
As well as satisfying the desires of 5D Mark II shooters that want a point and shoot with great IQ.

I am one 5D2 owner that would definitely buy a compact with a superb IQ without the need for it to swap lenses (like I have been considering the X100).

Bengt Nyman

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Re: Thoughts From Canon on a Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera
« Reply #33 on: December 22, 2011, 05:54:55 AM »
Quote
author=smirkypants link=topic=2542.msg54234#msg54234 date=1324509952]
I think mirrorless is kind of gimmicky.
Whoever thinks that mirrorless is gimmicky is in for a surprise.
Whoever thinks that a mirrorless camera does not "need" interchangeable lenses might as well have said that cameras do not need interchangeable lenses.
The future of photography is mirrorless cameras with interchangeable lenses.
This will only change when zoom lenses outperform primes.
« Last Edit: December 24, 2011, 03:16:44 AM by Bengt Nyman »

Woody

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Re: Thoughts From Canon on a Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera
« Reply #34 on: December 22, 2011, 06:01:48 AM »
Actually, some zooms do out-perform prime lenses. :)

elflord

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Re: Thoughts From Canon on a Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera
« Reply #35 on: December 22, 2011, 06:50:45 AM »
The whole marketing hype of mirrorless cameras is the ability to have a camera with DSLR quality images at the size of the point and shoot. The closest camera to that promise the the GF3X, but that would mean to maintain that size profile, you will need to stick to pancakes or that one lens. Still the GF3X is bigger than the G12.

I have yet seen any photos comparing the NEX-5N + SEL 18-200mm vs DSLR. Would it really be that small?

If we could just take a step back from all that marketing hype that all the mirrorless camera manufacturers poured onto us and take a clear look at the true value proposition of mirrorless cameras, we would realize that this is still a highly un-established market segment. If not for their ability to use classic MF lenses, note that mirrorless lenses are often poor in quality and high in price. Now, do I want a collection of those lenses, definitely not.

It's true that mirrorless cameras aren't pocketable with a supertele, but then no camera is. 500gm for the 100-300mm panasonic (200-600mm equiv) doesn't seem too unreasonable. Canon's lenses in that focal length range aren't even hand holdable.

It's true that there are some really bad lenses for mirrorless mounts. There are also some really bad lenses for Canon mounts. That's a reason not to buy those lenses, but not a reason to avoid that camera.

There are some good lenses available for these mounts (e.g. pana 20mm f/1.7, oly 45mm f/1.8 and the oly 12mm)

gmrza

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Re: Thoughts From Canon on a Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera
« Reply #36 on: December 22, 2011, 07:24:37 AM »


It's true that mirrorless cameras aren't pocketable with a supertele, but then no camera is. 500gm for the 100-300mm panasonic (200-600mm equiv) doesn't seem too unreasonable. Canon's lenses in that focal length range aren't even hand holdable.


Hence, there is a point, in terms of focal length, where the weight of the body becomes irrelevant.  Many of Canon's tele and all Canon super-tele lenses are heavier than a DSLR body.  Even the 85mm f/1.2 is roughly 25% heavier than a 5DmkII.  Never mind a lens like a 400 f/2.8.  When working with that kind of glass, trying to save weight on the camera body does not make sense, as it will do little to the overall weight of your equipment.

Thus, if my premise above holds, it probably only makes sense to try to produce quality glass to somewhere between 135mm and 200mm for a lightweight camera.

If Canon could thus build a camera with an APS-C sensor and a 15-85mm f/2-f/4 lens, I think that would cover 80%-90% of the potential applications for a lightweight camera.  I know there would be cases where I would be limited by such a camera, but on the other hand, such a camera would satisfy my needs 90% of the time.

Would a mirrorless, interchangeable lens camera be nice?  Absolutely.  Would I think a lot longer about taking the plunge to a second system (in addition to EOS/EF)?  Probably.

The flipside to this is how good a job the marketing departments of the manufacturers of CSCs do.

What I do know, however, is that I want a compact camera with a bigger sensor - preferably APS-C.  I am less dogmatic about the need for interchangeable lenses.  I am still waiting for something that really grabs my attention.
Zeiss Ikon Contax II, Sonnar 50mm f/2, Sonnar 135mm f/4

Edwin Herdman

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Re: Thoughts From Canon on a Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera
« Reply #37 on: December 22, 2011, 07:33:02 AM »
Actually, some zooms do out-perform prime lenses. :)
Primes designed with technology a decade earlier, you mean.

Primes still have a compelling advantage for blur quality over zooms, as well.

Edwin Herdman

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Re: Thoughts From Canon on a Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera
« Reply #38 on: December 22, 2011, 07:36:07 AM »
Hence, there is a point, in terms of focal length, where the weight of the body becomes irrelevant.  Many of Canon's tele and all Canon super-tele lenses are heavier than a DSLR body.
I think that, in order of importance, the limitations of a small sensor (which allows small glass to hit above its weight) are far more than the size of the glass.  Sure, medium format glass doesn't have to perform as well as 35mm format glass, and compact cameras or lenses for small sensors must be even more finely prepared to compete with 35mm format glass - but right now the battle is mainly on the sensor side.  Ask anybody who uses converted old glass; a lot of the old stuff still performs great (especially primes).

Dom

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Re: Thoughts From Canon on a Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera
« Reply #39 on: December 22, 2011, 10:28:54 AM »
Canon has a superb heritage where rangefinders are concerned, both in terms of lenses and bodies: a reincarnation of the Canon 7 would be quite something to behold – although little more than wishful thinking, I suspect.  However, I would love the idea of something replicating the build quality and style of the Canonet G-III 17: today a quality, fast, zoom could easily be manufactured into the space of the original f/1.7 lens.

Going back to the original post, I am one who would welcome a serious flagship PowerShot with open arms.  Back in 2004 I purchased the PowerShot Pro 1 and while I acknowledge its various shortcomings, it was somewhat ahead of its time.  To have an 8.3Mp CCD eight years ago was extraordinary, but the real pièce de résistance was the L-Series lens 7.2 - 50.8mm, f/2.4 - 3.5 zoom lens(35mm film equivalent: 28 - 200mm). 

I would rush out and buy an updated incarnation of the PowerShot Pro 1 and G12 . . . the Canonet GX sounds about right: a high IQ sensor, tilt-swivel screen, and an L-Series lens.

My Photoshop skills are not as good as they ought to be, but I have had a play at creating a mock-up – I don’t think camera design is a field I should get into! . . . .

Rexxer

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Re: Thoughts From Canon on a Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera
« Reply #40 on: December 22, 2011, 11:02:53 AM »
M-mount Canon please.

What I love:

My M6
The form factor of a Leica (small, stealth, sexy)
My Leica lenses
The look of my 5D2's sensor

What I hate:

The look of the M9's sensor
The price of the M9
The reliability of the M9

I would love an M9 with Canon's chips and Canon's pricing.

kirispupis

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Re: Thoughts From Canon on a Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera
« Reply #41 on: December 22, 2011, 01:08:47 PM »
Canon definitely needs something in this space.  IMHO it is already a mistake that they do not have something out there.  For a specific example I currently have a 5D2 and a 7D but still wanted a compact camera that is easier to carry around.  Our current compact was a G11 but we recently replaced it with the X10.  The X10 is a great little camera that the G11/G12 really can't compete against.  It certainly does not have the high ISO of the 5D2 or the AF of the 7D but it does a very nice job for what it is.  I recently took it to DisneyWorld - leaving my 5D2 + 7D behind - and it did a very nice job even in low light.

Personally, if one of my friends were to ask me for a camera recommendation and I knew they weren't interested in getting into photography - just taking pictures of their friends and trips - I wouldn't hesitate to recommend the X10 over a Rebel + kit lens.

I do not intend to replace my Canon SLR equipment (have a 1D-X on order) with a small camera - even an interchangeable lens one with a better viewfinder + high ISO, but a lot of Canon's business comes from the lower end of the market and they are quickly losing there.
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RT

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Re: Thoughts From Canon on a Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera
« Reply #42 on: December 22, 2011, 01:31:51 PM »
Canon definitely needs something in this space.  IMHO it is already a mistake that they do not have something out there.

...

Personally, if one of my friends were to ask me for a camera recommendation and I knew they weren't interested in getting into photography - just taking pictures of their friends and trips - I wouldn't hesitate to recommend the X10 over a Rebel + kit lens.

I can't necessarily agree with the first statement. The market isn't set; it's still fluid, and there are new buyers all the time. It would be a mistake for Canon to ignore or disregard the market, absolutely. But Canon doesn't need to have something on the market, especially if it's just to have something on the market. I would prefer that Canon bring out a product that it really believes in and provides something new to the market and tangible benefits, rather than a me-to version of something or a half-baked product just to fill shelf space. Based on this interview, Canon seems to understand this and is going to go a different direction with its mirrorless offering.

I agree with the latter statement, though. I in fact did recommend to my brother and sister-in-law that they should get something like the X10/XZ-1 or a NEX-5 instead of a DSLR because it really better fit their needs (they admitted that they didn't want to carry around a big camera; they just wanted to take good photos of their daughter; they ended up getting the Sony A55 because they had it in their mind that "Getting a DSLR is just what you do." My sister-in-law's words, not mine).


They wouldn't have to create a whole new lens line. Just use the EF-S mount and you'll have a instant line of quality lens for the new camera.

I don't think that's really workable. Just getting rid of the mirror and keeping the flange back distance won't reduce the size of the camera much, if any. So if Canon wanted to make an interchangeable lens mirrorless camera system that had any advantage over their DSLR line, they'll have to reduce the flangeback distance. Lenses are designed to work with a certain distance to the sensor, however. Canon couldn't just cut the 44mm flange back distance on the EF-S mount and have those "legacy" lenses still work. If they cut the flange back distance, they'll need to introduce a whole new line of lenses to match, just like Sony had to do with the NEX line and Olympus/Panasonic had to do with Micro Four Thirds. In both Sony's and Olympus' cases, the sensor sizes stayed the same as their prior line (Alpha for Sony and Four Thirds for Olympus/Panasonic), but the shorter flange back distance necessitated new lenses.

Lee Jay

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Re: Thoughts From Canon on a Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera
« Reply #43 on: December 22, 2011, 02:23:51 PM »
I think all the current mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras are "tweeners".  They are neither big enough to be powerful and ergonomic nor small enough to be pocketable.  So, if Canon wants to play, I think they need to make their system such that at least the kit lens and one prime can fold flat inside the body when the system is powered off, like the G-series and the S90/95/100 do.  If they can't do that, then they should just released fixed zoom cameras like those two series with continuous improvements, and also release something like the EOS IX:

http://www.canon.com/camera-museum/camera/film/data/1996-2000/1996_eos-ix-e.html?lang=us&categ=crn&page=1996-2000

traveller

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Re: Thoughts From Canon on a Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera
« Reply #44 on: December 22, 2011, 04:58:47 PM »
There's a broad diversity of opinions here and in a way they're all correct.  The reason for this is because what we're currently calling "mirrorless", "EVIL", "ILC", or whatever, will eventually be what we will call "cameras".  Cameras exist today and existed in previous eras in many different formats and this will likely remain the case in the future.  We are struggling to find a category to put these new system cameras in, because everyone wants them for something different and want different things from them.  Some want small, pocketable cameras (the 'compact camera upgrader' and 'DSLR supplement' crowd), whilst others want larger, more ergonomic and capable cameras (the 'DSLR replacement' crowd).  Neither of these positions is inherently wrong, but one camera (and perhaps even one system) is unlikely to satisfy both camps. 

Technology is approaching a point where even "professional" cameras will not need many of the mechanical trappings of the SLR heritage.  So will mirrorless cameras replace DSLRs? Eventually, I think they will; once you've removed the need for the reflex system with ultra high resolution EVFs and on-sensor phase detect AF, why bother with a mirror - flappy or transluscent :)

In this type of changing market, it is often those with less to lose that are able to move first, which is why I think that we're seeing the 'DSLR replacement' system camera from the likes of Panasonic and Samsung whilst the those with larger market shares in DSLRs have been slower moving.  Once the 'big two' admit DSLRs are reaching the end of the road, they've given up their massive advantage in glass and also the competitve advantages that their competences in the mechanical side of cameras give them.  This fear of game-change in the industry explains why Nikon went for the 1" sensor in the "1" system (cr*p name) and why Canon seems so paralysed with indecision.