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Author Topic: Patent: The Mirror Box Isn't Dead Yet  (Read 3363 times)

Canon Rumors

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Patent: The Mirror Box Isn't Dead Yet
« on: February 04, 2018, 01:44:10 PM »

Canon has filed a patent at the USPTO for a new mirror box design. This new mirror box adds speeds and a reduction in bounce.


There are a lot of parts to a mirror box assembly, and it’s easy to see how the remove of this complex system could greatly reduce the cost of production and increase margins for camera bodies, but we’re not ready to be rid of it yet.


It’s obvious that an EOS 7D Mark III and and EOS-1D X Mark III will remain “mirror slappers” for their next iterations. We should also expect to see improved FPS in both camera bodies.


« Last Edit: February 04, 2018, 01:53:37 PM by Canon Rumors »
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Patent: The Mirror Box Isn't Dead Yet
« on: February 04, 2018, 01:44:10 PM »

9VIII

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Re: Patent: The Mirror Box Isn't Dead Yet
« Reply #1 on: February 04, 2018, 04:05:51 PM »
There is a lot of potential left for further development of the mirror box.

The traditional method of pulling the mirror away is fast, but consumes a lot of space, instead of flapping the mirror forward they could pull it flat with the sensor and slide it straight down instead.
Theoretically you could fit a mirror inside the EOS-M mount as long as the lenses don't intrude on the 15mm space that the mirror absolutely requires.
I'm sure it looks impossible right now, the shutter and AF chips use a lot of space, but maybe AF could be built into the veiwfinder? (where the metering chip already lives) Maybe the mirror could be combined with the shutter?
Canon probably has a few dozen engineers who would love to try and smash the "size" complaint with the SLR design.

Whether or not it's worth messing with EOS-M is a good question, but maybe they could make a 24mm flange Full Frame body?
Instead of going Full Frame Mirrorless, they could just make a Short Flange SLR and keep the best of both worlds.

LDS

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Re: Patent: The Mirror Box Isn't Dead Yet
« Reply #2 on: February 04, 2018, 04:47:29 PM »
The traditional method of pulling the mirror away is fast, but consumes a lot of space, instead of flapping the mirror forward they could pull it flat with the sensor and slide it straight down instead.

AFAIK one of the reason is the mirror flipping up blocks light entering from the pentaprism. If you move it in other directions, you need another way to block that light. While, IMHO, more complex movements will also be far more expensive, and probably slower. What we need is a thing material that could change from reflective to transparent quickly enough... ;D
Otherwise the cheaper solutions is obviously an EVF.

unfocused

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Re: Patent: The Mirror Box Isn't Dead Yet
« Reply #3 on: February 04, 2018, 07:54:54 PM »
The single lens reflex design has a lot to recommend it. It's been the dominant design for going on 75 years. Too many people assume that mirrorless designs will eventually replace the single lens reflex, but simply because a design is new and electronic, rather than mechanical, doesn't make it better.

It's great to know that Canon continues to innovate with its single lens reflex designs. I look forward to the next generation with faster frame rates and less vibration -- maybe we will even see a quieter 1Dx III "silent" shooting mode.

The old SLR still has a lot of life left in it. I expect it could very well outlive me, at least.

woodman411

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Re: Patent: The Mirror Box Isn't Dead Yet
« Reply #4 on: February 05, 2018, 09:14:25 AM »
The single lens reflex design has a lot to recommend it. It's been the dominant design for going on 75 years. Too many people assume that mirrorless designs will eventually replace the single lens reflex, but simply because a design is new and electronic, rather than mechanical, doesn't make it better.

It's great to know that Canon continues to innovate with its single lens reflex designs. I look forward to the next generation with faster frame rates and less vibration -- maybe we will even see a quieter 1Dx III "silent" shooting mode.

The old SLR still has a lot of life left in it. I expect it could very well outlive me, at least.

+1. Electronic viewfinders were supposed to get rid of "archaic" side and rear view mirrors in cars too. What automakers realized however, is that mirrors offer high reliability and clarity in almost any weather condition, don't consume any power, and can be augmented with electronics if needed. Those strengths are still relevant in cameras too.

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Re: Patent: The Mirror Box Isn't Dead Yet
« Reply #5 on: February 05, 2018, 11:25:55 AM »
 "adds speeds ", " how the remove of "
Goodly engrish - please proofread after running it through a translator before posting. Thanks.

Talys

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Re: Patent: The Mirror Box Isn't Dead Yet
« Reply #6 on: February 05, 2018, 11:31:26 AM »
As I mentioned in another thread -- if you watched the post-game Lombardi trophy award, in the enormous press gaggle immediately in front of the podium, the only cameras that were mirrorless were massive camcorders, and the odd smartphone at the very front.  Every camera was a DSLR, and most of those made an impressive sea of white lenses with red rings.

The mirror box isn't going anywhere anytime soon.

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Re: Patent: The Mirror Box Isn't Dead Yet
« Reply #6 on: February 05, 2018, 11:31:26 AM »

ahsanford

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Re: Patent: The Mirror Box Isn't Dead Yet
« Reply #7 on: February 05, 2018, 12:59:52 PM »
There are a lot of parts to a mirror box assembly, and it’s easy to see how the remove of this complex system could greatly reduce the cost of production and increase margins for camera bodies, but we’re not ready to be rid of it yet.

This whole 'end of the mirrorslappers' narrative is off to me.  Mirrors and mirrorless will coexist for a very very very long time -- it's just a question of how long our preferred Canon product line will keep its mirror.

Canon will likely take a really firm hand to the consumer crop markets (i.e. RIP mirror) before too long, but the decision to pull the mirrors from 7D, 6D, 5D, etc. will have to be very carefully thought through, justified and rolled out.  (My money is still on the 1-series having a mirror for many generations to come, but I'm far less certain for other product lines.)

So I see developments like this CR post as perfectly logical.  Just because a large car company has a slick new electric vehicle doesn't mean it should stop looking for efficiencies and innovation with their internal combustion engines, right?

- A

Talys

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Re: Patent: The Mirror Box Isn't Dead Yet
« Reply #8 on: February 05, 2018, 02:32:41 PM »
@a - that is a perfect analogy.

Electric vehicles are no doubt the future, but adoption is slow for many reasons, because they're still relatively expensive and are still quite inferior in some use cases. 

We can think of hybrids as live view and technology like dual pixel as bridge technology that benefit both.

Even though electric cars may be the only vehicles eventually, for a very long time, perhaps our entire lifetimes, there will still be internal combustion automobiles.

Where the analogy breaks down a little is that oil is not a renewable resource (largely - one could make a pitch for oil alternatives like ethanol), and that drives the eventual demise of cars that need oil. If we could just synthesize oil cheaply, electric cars would need a whole lot more to become our future.

Fortunately for wildlife enthusiasts, this world is not going to run out of mirror and prism making materials any time soon :D

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Re: Patent: The Mirror Box Isn't Dead Yet
« Reply #8 on: February 05, 2018, 02:32:41 PM »