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Author Topic: Has Canon fallen hopelessly behind? (cross-posted)  (Read 33410 times)
nemophoto
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« on: March 27, 2012, 08:56:57 AM »
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I've used Canon cameras since 1980. I've always thought it was a technologically advanced and bold company that benefited from a multifaceted corporate environment (medical, opthomological, optical, etc.). And now, it swoops down to present us with (gasp!) a 22MP instead of 21MP 5D3, and (another gasp!) 18MP movie, I mean still camera -- the 1Dx. And the 1Dx is suppose to replace both the 1d and 1Ds series?? I own both the 1D4 and 1Ds3. I actually, except at higher ASA values (yes, I know ISO is the "correct term"), feel my old 1Ds2 had better image quality than my 1D4. And my 1Ds3 does a great job, except my commercial clients are starting to itch for more res in their instore posters. Because Canon is so far behind Nikon (and I'm also assuming Sony at this point), I've thought of buying a Pentax 645D.

Am I the only one who feels Canon has taken it's eye off the ball by thinking all photographers want to really be cinematographers (I was one one in my early days, and even won a Kodak film award, so I know where I'm coming from)? I'm curious about other thoughts...

Nemo
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SpiritShooter
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« Reply #1 on: March 27, 2012, 09:38:23 AM »
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There was a time, long ago that long gray lenses were the norm at sporting events.....no so much any longer.

There was a time, long ago that Canon's autofocus was state of the art....not so much any longer.

There was a time, long ago that Canon's cameras were considered state of the art....not so much any longer.

Reading the numerous forum posts, and blogs, it appears that Nikon is capturing the hearts and minds of photographers world wide. Everyday I am reading of folks  selling and changing platforms from Canon to Nikon. It just seems to me that Nikon has upped their game with innovation, excellent glass, and is pushing the envelope while Canon continues to crawl.

Just my perception, is it a dream?
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BernardLanguillier
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« Reply #2 on: March 27, 2012, 09:58:22 AM »
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Why does it matter?

Photographers using Nikon cameras were able to take very good images back when the 1Ds ruled the world.

The current Canons are way superior than those, so is there any problem relative to the actual needs of photographers?

Why is the supposed superiority of the D800 having any impact on the happiness of photographers who happen to use Canon equipment?

Cheers,
Bernard
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A few images online here!
nemophoto
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« Reply #3 on: March 27, 2012, 10:15:06 AM »
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I hear you, and I agree. To add to that,

There was a time long ago when Nikon shooters were dumping their equipment for Canon because of the quality and innovation.

I think Canon became complacent and maybe even forgot who their promoters are. They've almost chosen to focus on the point-and-shoot crowd. (A recent survey showed that 33% of all buyers chose Canon, compared to 27% for Nikon.) But, like not unlike the manufacturers who support racing to sell the family sedan, the pro users and equipment are what provide the panache and and visibility. I still think Canon glass has an edge on Nikon (mostly for telephoto). But, what you attach it to is something else. After years of Nikon getting creamed, they created a game plan, and I laud them. I hate to say, a friend of mine (also a pro shooter in NYC) and I have actually discussed what it would take to switch to Nikon. I'm lusting after 36MP for some shoots.

It doesn't matter in the realm of Nikon versus Canon. It matters in the world of "what's next?". My Canon 1Ds3 is four years old, with lots of hard miles (though not photojournalist miles -- is that like dog years versus human years? Smiley ) And, as I stated before, my clients are starting to want higher res images for a lot of things and my preference is NOT to go MF. The game changer with the D800 is that Canon seems to be asleep at the wheel, with regards to advancing technology.
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scooby70
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« Reply #4 on: March 27, 2012, 10:30:09 AM »
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I think that Canon had a plan that made sense for Canon. They lead the market and introduced incremental improvements always being careful to hobble lesser models so as not to harm the sales of more expensive models. It worked. However, few plans remain intact for long after contact with the enemy and Nikon, Sony and others have their own plans which have their own interests at heart and not those of Canon.

To me the future lies in getting bigger sensors into smaller form bodies. MTF and other smaller form systems are game changers as are the technologies that go with them that feed into DSLR's. I wouldn't be surprised if Canon would rather the CSC market and new technologies disappear overnight so that they could get back to the traditional technologies and the Canon v Nikon cold war days. Tough. Times have changed.

I think that the future belongs to the electronics companies rather than the traditionally optical and photographic companies. I doubt that Canon will do a Kodak but maybe they're on a slight slide and just as a change took place at Nikon maybe a change needs to take place at Canon.

If I was buying into a system today it wouldn't be Canon.
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Fips
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« Reply #5 on: March 27, 2012, 10:37:17 AM »
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It seems to me that Canon is doing quite well with more emphasize put on video. Maybe they've chosen this path deliberately to break out of the "Nikon vs. Canon Cold War".
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Les Sparks
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« Reply #6 on: March 27, 2012, 10:46:23 AM »
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The problem for me isn't that my current Canon isn't adequate it's that when I get new camera lust I don't see a Canon model to lust after. Sony and Nikon seem to be something more to lust for than the new Canon. I would like to get a new lens or two to replace somewhat less than great lens. But I hesitate to invest in more Canon glass because I don't see purchasing a new Canon body. If I were to purchase a new camera today, it would probably be a Sony or Nikon.

My guess is that Canon will up its game soon, In the meantime I'll save money by not upgrading my old camera and lens collection and just enjoy taking photos.

Les
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BJL
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« Reply #7 on: March 27, 2012, 10:55:56 AM »
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If I was buying into a system today it wouldn't be Canon.
This "halo effect" on people's choice of which system to enter is I suspect far more of an issue than the claim that a large proportion of serious, well-equipped photographers are swapping systems according to who has better specs this year. That, and the likelihood that there will be more upgrades from D700 to D800 than from 5D2 to 5D3. EDIT: as Les just put it:
...when I get new camera lust I don't see a Canon model to lust after. Sony and Nikon seem to be something more to lust for than the new Canon. ...
In fact, I agree with everything that Les said: I missed it when I first made this post because he and I posted almost simultaneously. (Actually, a lot of us are lusting after something more mobile, like a Nikon V1, or Olympus OM-D E-M5, or Panasonic G3 or GH2 or GX1, or Sony NEX-7.)

As to falling permanently behind? It is not yet time for that conclusion at all. For comparison, there was a time when Nikon was far further behind Canon in its high end DSLRs, and that was not permanent. I would bet on Canon having some vigorous R&D efforts going on, in realms like sensors and a mirrorless system. At worst, Canon might have to swallow its DIY pride and collaborate with other companies on sensors --- like Nikon did after its failed LBCAST sensor efforts.
« Last Edit: March 27, 2012, 11:03:01 AM by BJL » Logged
nemophoto
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« Reply #8 on: March 27, 2012, 10:59:01 AM »
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The problem for me isn't that my current Canon isn't adequate it's that when I get new camera lust I don't see a Canon model to lust after. Sony and Nikon seem to be something more to lust for than the new Canon.

I hear you. My sentiments exactly.I've actually been spending the time upgrading a lot of my glass in the past couple of years. The new 70-200, for instance, is well worth the money and an example of the "old Canon". Sharpness-wise, it's on par with almost any other piece of fixed focal length "L" glass I have.

But the 1Dx replacing my 1Ds. No way. Maybe my 1D4. I keep thinking the other shoe will drop. A year or two ago Canon showed R&D results of a 120MP 35mm format sensor that shows they can do something amazing. Obviously they have it in them. But as Fips said, maybe they're more enamored with video and Hollywood these days. Certainly the C300 looks amazing, and I'd use it if I did film work. But stills are the bread and butter. Years ago, a friend of mine and I mulled over shooting with a video like camera and then cherry picking the exact frame you liked. I've actually moved away from that thought, because I'd rather KNOW I was at least trying for the decisive moment, rather than hoping it's somewhere there in a video stream. But maybe I'm old fashion in that respect. 35 years of shooting can do that....
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RFPhotography
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« Reply #9 on: March 27, 2012, 11:00:27 AM »
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The problem for me isn't that my current Canon isn't adequate

Then what's the worry?  If the current gear is up to the task then does it really matter what Canon's MP count is.  WRT the clients who want larger resolution in posters, depending on what you're shooting, that's possible to by shooting in segments and stitching.

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it's that when I get new camera lust I don't see a Canon model to lust after.

Maybe that's part of the issue.  Buying because you 'want' something or 'lust' for something isn't often the best reason to buy.  

I'm coming at this from someone who did switch from Canon to Nikon a couple years ago.  I had similar feelings at the time in terms of confusion about Canon's strategy but that wasn't the main driver of the switch.  Camera functionality - Canon's not up to my needs - and absolutely abysmal customer service were the main drivers.  Without the other issues I could have lived with Canon's confusing product strategy.
« Last Edit: March 27, 2012, 11:04:03 AM by BobFisher » Logged
Fips
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« Reply #10 on: March 27, 2012, 11:03:41 AM »
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But stills are the bread and butter. Years ago, a friend of mine and I mulled over shooting with a video like camera and then cherry picking the exact frame you liked. I've actually moved away from that thought, because I'd rather KNOW I was at least trying for the decisive moment, rather than hoping it's somewhere there in a video stream. But maybe I'm old fashion in that respect. 35 years of shooting can do that....

That's exactly the point. Stills ONLY is losing importance. As Michael pointed out in some article a while ago shooting RAW video and extracting stills is already done and it's here to stay!
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johnkiv
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« Reply #11 on: March 27, 2012, 11:22:28 AM »
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In find it interesting that cameras designed, with roots, as photojournalist / street photography tools are discussed in such depth on a landscape website.  It is amazing how far the technology has come.  We have amazing tools in our hands.

Iíve been using a 5D3 now for 3 days of work.  So far it was just what I was looking for.  For me, well worth the upgrade.  Iím not ďlandscapeĒ photographer, but sometimes I take the camera outside.  There are times more resolution can help, sometimes needed.   But Iíll have to struggle with what I have, or rent.

http://johnkishiv.com
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RFPhotography
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« Reply #12 on: March 27, 2012, 12:04:13 PM »
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Not quite sure I understand your point, John.  Are you suggesting that landscape photographers using SLR cameras is inappropriate?
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BJL
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« Reply #13 on: March 27, 2012, 12:40:14 PM »
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In find it interesting that cameras designed, with roots, as photojournalist / street photography tools are discussed in such depth on a landscape website.
Are you referring to medium format cameras, which were pioneered by Kodak in the late 1800's as cheap, low quality snapshot cameras for the lazy masses who could not be bothered with a "real" camera, meaning a large format sheet film camera? Yes, technology progresses, mostly in the direction of smaller formats and smaller, lighter, less expensive cameras and lenses that in almost all respects outperform the larger kits of the previous generation.


P. S. I started out in 6x9 medium format, with a Brownie. Not in the 1800's though.
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johnkiv
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« Reply #14 on: March 27, 2012, 01:31:06 PM »
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I its amazing that they are suitable for landscape the way they are.  I know people who take their 12mpx DSLR to canyon lands rather than their 4x5.   We can make prints from our desktop larger then most enlargers that were typically in a school photo lab, back when schools had photo labs.

Canon made their mark as sports cameras, edged out Nikon with with auto focus with EOS1(n) in film days.  Nikon caught up in film days with the F5 and their new lenses, and passed few years ago with digital.  Back then, none of these engineers/designers/marketers set out the make the best landscape camera they could.
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MrSmith
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« Reply #15 on: March 27, 2012, 03:16:34 PM »
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"the clients who want larger resolution in posters, depending on what you're shooting, that's possible to by shooting in segments and stitching."

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« Last Edit: March 28, 2012, 01:45:05 PM by MrSmith » Logged
nemophoto
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« Reply #16 on: March 27, 2012, 03:29:11 PM »
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Stitching is great for landscapes and inanimate objects. Horrible and impractical when shooting people. The 1Ds3 files have no problems if the AD picks a good, clean sharp shot. Unfortunately, one of my clients, because of poor vision, tends to pick soft images (which I warn them about), then expect miracles at 8 feet. Oh, and always tends to crop any environment out of a shot. THAT'S when Nikon's 36MP would come in handy. A blurry pixel (or really detail) is a blurry pixel, The the more you have, the more you can fudge.
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tom b
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« Reply #17 on: March 27, 2012, 03:38:46 PM »
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No, Nikon is still lagging behind Canon and Sony in number 3 position.

Cheers,
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RFPhotography
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« Reply #18 on: March 27, 2012, 03:43:05 PM »
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Stitching is great for landscapes and inanimate objects. Horrible and impractical when shooting people. The 1Ds3 files have no problems if the AD picks a good, clean sharp shot. Unfortunately, one of my clients, because of poor vision, tends to pick soft images (which I warn them about), then expect miracles at 8 feet. Oh, and always tends to crop any environment out of a shot. THAT'S when Nikon's 36MP would come in handy. A blurry pixel (or really detail) is a blurry pixel, The the more you have, the more you can fudge.

That's why I said depending on what you're shooting.  Smiley
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nemophoto
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« Reply #19 on: March 27, 2012, 03:48:05 PM »
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No, Nikon is still lagging behind Canon and Sony in number 3 position.

The article I referred to was for US sales, not world-wide. But Sony and Nikon nipping at Canon's heel is a wake up call.
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