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Author Topic: Mirrorless Vs Regular DSLR -- Your thoughts???  (Read 19175 times)

chrisdeckard

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Re: Mirrorless Vs Regular DSLR -- Your thoughts???
« Reply #15 on: May 17, 2012, 11:29:47 PM »
I honestly have no need for one.  We had two point and shoots that I recently got rid of.  They took up space.  If I need something unobtrusive I have my iPhone.  iPhone doesn't take great pictures, but that's why I have a 5DIII and tons of kit.  My only problem is not having the DSLR with me everywhere I go.  I carry it more than I did a point and shoot though.
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Re: Mirrorless Vs Regular DSLR -- Your thoughts???
« Reply #15 on: May 17, 2012, 11:29:47 PM »

Neeneko

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Re: Mirrorless Vs Regular DSLR -- Your thoughts???
« Reply #16 on: May 17, 2012, 11:43:29 PM »
Am I wrong for thinking that the only reason the mirror exists is so you can have an optical viewfinder?

In the end, you are correct.  Current AF systems depended on the mirror so that technology needs to shift a little, but that is a matter of new systems.

Oh, the other reason the mirror exists is epeen.

mb66energy

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Re: Mirrorless Vs Regular DSLR -- Your thoughts???
« Reply #17 on: May 18, 2012, 04:15:10 AM »
PROCONTRA
+compact size possible-fast AF is (up to now) missing
+last lens element can be near sensor:
More freedom for lens design/better quality
with less effort possible
-high power demand for TFT/less runtime
(correctable e.g. with EVF, battery pack)
added after reading JerryKnights words
+easier cleaning of sensor
+image control via monitor is easier
(for me)/compare it to my rolleicord viewfinder
+less moving components -> durability possible
with less effort

My premium pros are the compact size of the camera with the possibility to design flat lenses with very high quality. Omitting the mirror box helps the lens designer to minimize lens elements at very high image quality. All wide angles for SLRs are retrofocus designs which bend the light to shift a virtual lens lens plane to the sensor - the 10-22 mm lens has to "simulate" a single lens with a distance of 10 mm from the sensor plane but has to leave some 20 mm space for the mirror!

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« Last Edit: May 18, 2012, 04:37:57 AM by mb66energy »
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JerryKnight

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Re: Mirrorless Vs Regular DSLR -- Your thoughts???
« Reply #18 on: May 18, 2012, 04:28:00 AM »
One other thing to keep in mind is battery life. How many shots do you get with your DSLR in live view mode? Because that's the only mode available to a mirrorless.

Personally, I can get well over 1,500 shots on one battery with my 5D3 without live view. If I were to use live view the whole time, I'd be surprised if I could get 400.

So if mirrorless cameras really are going to threaten DSLR's, they'll either have to dramatically improve battery capacity or live view power efficiency. Not saying it's not going to happen eventually, but they have a long way to go in terms of battery life.

mb66energy

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Re: Mirrorless Vs Regular DSLR -- Your thoughts???
« Reply #19 on: May 18, 2012, 04:34:47 AM »
One other thing to keep in mind is battery life. How many shots do you get with your DSLR in live view mode? Because that's the only mode available to a mirrorless. [...]

Good point! I missed it in my Contra column in the tab above. I would use a mirrorless as (more or less) pocketable camera and as video camera. For the latter use I would like to have additional batteries just for the purpose to take longer video shots.

One alternative exists: The EVF which needs a tiny fraction of power compared to a 3 inch LCD display - I would prefer to have one in a mirrorless - for the shooting in bright sunlight or limited space or to have a third point to stabilize the camera with my forehead.
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NormanBates

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Re: Mirrorless Vs Regular DSLR -- Your thoughts???
« Reply #20 on: May 18, 2012, 04:47:04 AM »
compare this:
http://www.lensrentals.com/blog/2012/03/undressing-an-nex
with this:
http://www.lensrentals.com/blog/2012/04/d7000-dissection

and you'll know where manufacturing economics will lead us

Hillsilly

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Re: Mirrorless Vs Regular DSLR -- Your thoughts???
« Reply #21 on: May 18, 2012, 05:37:01 AM »
I only get about 300 - 330 shots from my EPL-1 when using an EVF.  But the battery is comparatively small.  My 40D battery is almost double the size and I can get 500 - 600 shots.  While the logical side of me believes a mirrorless camera must need more battery power, I'd suspect that battery life is probably more a product of battery size and battery technology than mirrorless vs DSLR.
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Re: Mirrorless Vs Regular DSLR -- Your thoughts???
« Reply #21 on: May 18, 2012, 05:37:01 AM »

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Re: Mirrorless Vs Regular DSLR -- Your thoughts???
« Reply #22 on: May 18, 2012, 07:23:31 AM »
I've always lived to "use the right tool for the job". For a lot of what I do which is wildlife, you need longer lenses and continuous AF. For a mirrorless system to replace DSLR it would need both those features and give me a different advantage, such as smaller size.

While I haven't used it, on paper the Nikon 1 seems the best mirrorless system in AF tracking capability at the moment, but it still isn't as good as a DSLR when the going gets tough.

I have to admit, I knew it was heavy before I bought it, but carrying the Sigma 120-300 f/2.8 isn't fun. But it is the "cheap" way to get 960mm equivalent with tracking AF easily. Where's the 500mm micro4/3 lens, putting aside their poor AF for now. Something around 300mm on the Nikon 1 might be more promising.

If I put aside tracking AF needs, I think the existing mirrorless systems, particularly micro4/3, have enough capability to replace DSLRs where you don't need bigger sensor sizes. But those lower demanding tasks are also met in an even smaller size by a compact camera.

A question for those looking for "smaller" system cameras, how small do you go before it goes too small? I find it very amusing that the people ditching DSLRs switching to the likes of the OM-D to "go small" are finding they want to buy the optional grip to make it bigger again. And once you put anything other than a pancake on it's not really pocketable anyway.
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OldSalt

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Re: Mirrorless Vs Regular DSLR -- Your thoughts???
« Reply #23 on: May 18, 2012, 09:48:41 AM »
     Strictly from my perspective I think that the average consumer interested in high IQ (quality above that now found in the Point & Shoot realm) should now thoroughly consider a mirrorless format since until just recently it hasn't been a viable option over the traditional DSLR though cost and quality has brought the mirrorless format camera into a stronger position especially now that you have multiple good options available.  With ever improving AF systems (not there yet) and even higher IQ at a somewhat lower cost (not always mind you but generally speaking) it is fast becoming the "next" progressive step in the path towards professional level gear. 
     
     I also believe this market will grow and really consume the low end of the DSLR market share and eventually I can imagine MFR's like Canon and Nikon reducing there "entry" level DSLR options to 1 model simply because the mirrorless format will continue to take market share away from both entry level DSLR sales and higher end point and shoot sales.  Modern smart phones with 8-12MP point and shoot style cameras has already starting eating up the low end of that market and eventually the combination of camera phones and mirrorless format camera will render point & shoot extinct.

     One of the greatest benefits the mirrorless format camera has is its ability to use nearly any lens ever made by any manufacturer and we’re already seeing this with the simultaneous introduction of lens adaptors and new mirrorless camera bodies being commonplace.  I also believe we may see MFR’s making mirrorless format camera bodies that do not offer lenses since there will likely be a multitude of lens offerings available, just as we see lens MFR who do not make camera bodies today.  Greater proliferation of these mirrorless format camera bodies from more and more MFR’s will result in lower prices and higher performance and in my opinion is a very exciting future for budding photographers and casual enthusiasts alike, not to mention the niche fill they already provide to many professional photographers.

I think the future photography gear progression will look something like this:

             Camera phone --> Mirrorless format --> DSLR
Gripped 7D | Nifty 50 | 70-200 f2.8L | 28-135 f3.5-5.6 | 75-300 f4-5.6 | EF-S 55-250 f4-5.6 | EF-S Kit 18-55 | 430EX II | Gripped 450D | Vanguard ABH-340L on top of an Induro Alloy 8M AT-413 |

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Re: Mirrorless Vs Regular DSLR -- Your thoughts???
« Reply #24 on: May 18, 2012, 11:43:21 AM »
The only current benefit for a mirrorless camera is smaller size.  Most of them do not have phase detect AF, many have no viewfinder at all, or a add-on EVF, there are no wide angle lenses wider than about 24mm FF equivalent.  Basically, most are small interchangable lens bodies that have a lot of compromises.
 
I would love a mirrorless camera if it had the power and features of a pro level DSLR, fast AF, FF, goof viewfinder, Fast FPS while retaining AF, etc.
 
They are getting there, the Soney NEX-7 is the best compromise I've tried, but still dissapointed me due to the lack of a wide range of lenses.
 
There is going to be a fallout in the market in the next 2 years, and some will be stuck with a dead end product line and a bunch of lenses that have no future.

Flake

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Re: Mirrorless Vs Regular DSLR -- Your thoughts???
« Reply #25 on: May 18, 2012, 11:53:38 AM »
The G1X has shown that it is possible to now make a 'compact' camera with image quality better than a crop frame DSLR and approaching that of a FF model.  Technology is advancing at such a pace that providing the lens is good then the difference between the high end and the low end is becomming very small.

So the mirrorless camera gets the G1X sensor and the Digic V and assuming a decent set of interchangeable lenses a lot of the advantages of a large DSLR are lost.  Here are the issues though:

Which client is going to accept that such a small camera can produce images are as good as a large DSLR?  There's still a lot to be said for the lights & magic show.

Full Frame is never going to be attractive in this format, not if image quality is the main goal.  The physics mean that the EF lenses are going to be needed to produce the image circle needed, and you end up with a camera like the NEX series - a tiny body with a huge great lens on the front.

But if you want to be a lot lower profile then they could be an attractive alternative.  The UK is full of scroats, now one of the most violent societies in the world - even worse than South Africa, even carrying a compact can attract unwanted attention, a DSLR is like putting up a 'ROB ME' sign.  Then there's the sheer cost of the latest high end DSLRs - many pros I know are not bothering to upgrade this time, and quite a few have said that the price of a new body would buy them a medium format system with a 39MP back, which will blow away any DSLR in terms of IQ.

So for times when there isn't a client to impress - out doing architechture or street scenes perhaps, they're never going to notice any difference in IQ because there isn't enough to see unless it's massively blown up, and people don't get quite so bent out of shape seeing a small camera pointed at them.

I realise some of this is heresey especially for gear heads, but having a pro friend with a Nikon D3 24 - 70mm f/2.8 and a G1X and hearing him confirming my feelings when he says the little camera produces better images, just says to me that the days of camera companies being able to charge stratospheric prices for kit are numbered, and that can only be a good thing for all of us.

drjlo

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Re: Mirrorless Vs Regular DSLR -- Your thoughts???
« Reply #26 on: May 18, 2012, 12:23:16 PM »
My only problem is not having the DSLR with me everywhere I go.  I carry it more than I did a point and shoot though.

I don't know.  I am getting a little tired of carrying my 5D MkIII + L glass to "casual" type outings.  I also like to use flash with diffusor indoors at night, which increases the size/weight of my bag.  It would be super nice to have a mirrorless camera with "at least (much preferably larger)" sensor size than aps-c that can take EF lenses.  I would slap on the 35L (or 50 f/1.4) on these outings.  Hmm.  Then again, what about the external flash...  I suppose I could pick up a 270EX but is it going to perform like my 580EX II with diffusor?  (as below)


DZ3C1793 by drjlo1, on Flickr
« Last Edit: May 18, 2012, 12:32:03 PM by drjlo »

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Re: Mirrorless Vs Regular DSLR -- Your thoughts???
« Reply #27 on: May 18, 2012, 01:23:36 PM »
Full Frame is never going to be attractive in this format, not if image quality is the main goal.  The physics mean that the EF lenses are going to be needed to produce the image circle needed, and you end up with a camera like the NEX series - a tiny body with a huge great lens on the front.

I think that gets at one of the central issues of the mirrorless concept:  what is the sensor size?  Larger sensors deliver better IQ.  Physics is physics -- you can't get a FF photo with shallow DOF without a FF sensor.  People love the portability of some of the systems but their sensors are tiny.  The NEX does look funky with large lenses and a small body, and that is APS-C.  Larger sensors need larger lenses, and larger lenses are not as portable.  And if it's not as portable, does it have much advantage for a traditional SLR setup for the general population?

Canon already has the full frame and a APS-C format.  Does it really need a third like Nikon?  And if it is APS-C like Sony, does it gain you that much if you're hauling EF and EF-S lenses around anyway?  Just think of how many threads will be "I'm tring to decide between a mirrorless, APS-C and a FF -- PLEASE HELP!!!" and "No, you much buy the FF (L) lens so that it can be used your your mirrorless now, your crop body in the future, and the FF in the distant future!"

The holy grail is something that is small and has amazing FL range, large apertures for low light capability, ultrahigh ISOs and has a AF system responsive enough for sports action.  Current optical and sensor technologies can not meet that.  Getting rid of the mirror will not meet that.  All systems are a trade between IQ and portability.  The first company that solves this problem will win the market... but I'm not holding my breath.

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Re: Mirrorless Vs Regular DSLR -- Your thoughts???
« Reply #27 on: May 18, 2012, 01:23:36 PM »

lol

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Re: Mirrorless Vs Regular DSLR -- Your thoughts???
« Reply #28 on: May 18, 2012, 02:49:38 PM »
...there are no wide angle lenses wider than about 24mm FF equivalent.

As the most mature mirrorless system, there's three major micro4/3 lenses that go wider than 24mm equiv. or 12mm in its native format:
Panasonic 8mm fisheye
Panasonic 7-14mm
Olympus 9-18mm

I haven't looked but there may be 3rd party ones too.
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Re: Mirrorless Vs Regular DSLR -- Your thoughts???
« Reply #29 on: May 18, 2012, 02:50:52 PM »
The closest I've seen to what I want is the Fuji X10.

The Canon GX is an option, but honestly, it's pretty ugly and the advantages of the larger sensor are lost with the slow lens. Plus, I really hate the goofy aspect ratio they gave it. They should have shaved the sensor down to match the aspect ratio of traditional 35mm and given it a slightly faster lens.

Reviews of both cameras have been critical of their viewfinders and I won't buy a camera without a usable viewfinder.  So, as a consequence, I'm still waiting.

I'm both old and old school, so my ideal would be a classic rangefinder clone with a decent zoom lens. I'm not particularly interested in interchangeable lenses, just give me something that's reasonably fast and goes from 28-135mm equivalent. When I want to change lenses, I'll use my DSLR. It doesn't even have to be APS-C size, just big enough to produce good quality images up to 8x10 or 11x14 at ISO 400.

At this point, I've resigned myself to waiting a few more years to see if Fuji can improve their models. I'd rather buy Canon but I'm not optimistic they'll have something I'm interested in.


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Re: Mirrorless Vs Regular DSLR -- Your thoughts???
« Reply #29 on: May 18, 2012, 02:50:52 PM »