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Author Topic: Will 4/3 format disappear in 10 years?  (Read 2581 times)
HSakols
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« on: June 14, 2013, 10:27:53 AM »
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I am having a blast with my Olympus epl5 especially using some of my nikon lenses on it.  However, I'm a bit hesitant to put much money in the system because of the rapid developments in digital photography.  No longer are the days when one kept there trusty Nikon body for 20 years.  Do you think the 4/3 format is just another fad that will be obsolete in 10 years?  I"m still using nikon lenses I've had for over 20 years.
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RobSaecker
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« Reply #1 on: June 14, 2013, 02:00:14 PM »
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With the current rate of change in the photo industry, I don't know how anyone could make any predictions about where we're going to be in ten years. Just look at how long it took Kodak to go from top of the heap to the junk heap.
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Rob
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« Reply #2 on: June 14, 2013, 02:22:24 PM »
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No idea whether M43 will be long-lived. IMO predicting the future is a fool's game played by people who think they can force their beliefs & desires into becoming reality simply by stating them emphatically enough. Such arrogance!

I like the M43 system right now...so I use it right now. I hope it'll last awhile. There are some stellar native lenses available, I can use almost all my SLR & rangefinder lenses via adapters and the Olympus OM-D5 at least is a pretty straightforward camera. The system serves my needs, is compact & light and is fun to use.

As for 20 years from now...things will be what they'll be, and if I'm still around I'll just roll with it.

-Dave-
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BJL
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« Reply #3 on: June 14, 2013, 02:39:15 PM »
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As other have said, there is little hope of making reliable predictions about any system: maybe even Canon SLRs and EOS lenses will fade away within a decade, due to the combined forces of a shift towards mirror-less systems that use a new series of lenses, and a rising dominance of the Sony sensors now used by most of Canon's rivals ...

As an example, who could have predicted a decade ago the complicated story of the Minolta-created alpha mount lens system in the digital era:
- Konica-Minolta's struggles in the digital transition, leading to the sale of its camera division to Sony and discontinuation of all alpha-mount film SLRs
- Sony's struggle for several years to achieve profitability, with rumors that Sony would dump its SLR efforts
- the eventual rise of the Sony Alpha system to a strong third option in the DSLR world
- Sony's abandonment of "true SLRs" with OVF's, in favor of its EVF "SLT" cameras
- Sony's shift towards mirror-less NEX system and new E-mount lenses, and alpha mount lenses working poorly with NEX's CD AF
- the arrival of on-sensor PDAF, which might some day make those alpha-mount lenses work fine on mirror-less bodies, but is not quite there yet ...
« Last Edit: June 14, 2013, 04:19:21 PM by BJL » Logged
PeterAit
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« Reply #4 on: June 14, 2013, 04:11:17 PM »
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With the current rate of change in the photo industry, I don't know how anyone could make any predictions about where we're going to be in ten years. Just look at how long it took Kodak to go from top of the heap to the junk heap.

Rob is right, IMO. I will add that a camera system is for taking photos, not to be treasured and preserved for 10 years!
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Peter
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RobSaecker
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« Reply #5 on: June 14, 2013, 04:34:12 PM »
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I will add that a camera system is for taking photos, not to be treasured and preserved for 10 years!

While I can't disagree with that statement, I also can't help but feel a little regret when I consider that my ~35 year old Nikkormat is still a useable camera, but it's extremely unlikely that my D7000 is going to be useable at half that. But, oh well, that's the world we live in.
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Rob
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« Reply #6 on: June 14, 2013, 05:41:14 PM »
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...I also can't help but feel a little regret when I consider that my ~35 year old Nikkormat is still a useable camera, but it's extremely unlikely that my D7000 is going to be useable at half that. But, oh well, that's the world we live in.

The D7000's sensor (like all sensors) will degrade performance-wise over time even if otherwise the camera still functions fine. It's just part of the deal with current photoelectric tech. This is mainly why today's relatively short camera lifecycles don't bother me too much. Refreshing the sensor every 3/4 years is mostly a good thing.

Still, my Nikon FTn is just a bit older than your Nikkormat...and it works perfectly. I try to honor its longevity by firing off a roll of film every so often. Hopefully I'll be able to do that 20 years from now too...

-Dave-
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bcooter
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« Reply #7 on: June 14, 2013, 06:43:18 PM »
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I hope it continues, but who knows?

I dig em, a lot.   Up to 1,000 iso the MFT OMD is 98% of the quality, detail and depth of my Canon 1dx's.

I'm serious, though I haven't shot both side by side with flash.

Yea, there a little different than an optical finder camera, the menu's require some thought, the buttons are smaller and a little more delicate, but hell, the OMD and a bag of lenses costs less than a 1dx body, you can almost carry it in a pocket and they do marvelous things.

I mean who would have thought of quality video that looked pretty, had smooth image stabilization, autofocus while filming for a grand?

Download little snitch and a eye-fi card and you can tether jpegs all day long to the client, it's crazy, but it works.

Then shoot a still that can run in any publication in the world.

Now it makes me wonder why Canon or Nikon with all of their resource haven't really upped the game on cameras, but maybe they will, maybe not.

Today though I really do enjoy working with something different.

IMO

BC

« Last Edit: June 15, 2013, 12:23:36 AM by bcooter » Logged

BJL
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« Reply #8 on: June 15, 2013, 10:32:09 AM »
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Faced by the modern reality that digital camera bodies have a very limited life-time compared to either film cameras or lenses, I put a lot of emphasis on judging lenses, and lens systems, looking for ones that are likely to suit my photographic goals over many years of service. It helps that the variation between lens systems (quality and price, which sort of lenses they offer, zooms vs primes, big-and-bright lenses vs compact go-everywhere options, etc., etc.) are far greater than the practical variation between sensors in the various systems, if you stay away from super-magnified 100% on-screen comparison stupidity. In most respects, sensors from about 1" format up are well ahead of what any 35mm color film ever offered, so that the sensor-related image quality differences are far smaller than they were between different films and different film formats. Lens differences instead can be detected quite easily, from moderate sized prints and from feeling the weight over a day of carrying the kit.
« Last Edit: June 15, 2013, 10:35:30 AM by BJL » Logged
Tony Jay
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« Reply #9 on: June 15, 2013, 05:26:03 PM »
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Faced by the modern reality that digital camera bodies have a very limited life-time compared to either film cameras or lenses, I put a lot of emphasis on judging lenses, and lens systems, looking for ones that are likely to suit my photographic goals over many years of service. It helps that the variation between lens systems (quality and price, which sort of lenses they offer, zooms vs primes, big-and-bright lenses vs compact go-everywhere options, etc., etc.) are far greater than the practical variation between sensors in the various systems, if you stay away from super-magnified 100% on-screen comparison stupidity. In most respects, sensors from about 1" format up are well ahead of what any 35mm color film ever offered, so that the sensor-related image quality differences are far smaller than they were between different films and different film formats. Lens differences instead can be detected quite easily, from moderate sized prints and from feeling the weight over a day of carrying the kit.
There is a lot of wisdom in this post!
This is a very rational perspective.

Tony Jay
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BernardLanguillier
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« Reply #10 on: June 15, 2013, 08:10:32 PM »
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This is all incredibly ironic, don't you think?

Most cameras now all more than meet our needs in terms of print size, many do in terms of DR... So we in fact need new iterations less than we did before... Right?

Cheers,
Bernard
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David Hufford
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« Reply #11 on: June 16, 2013, 04:49:31 AM »
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Yep. Seems we are pretty much back where we were years ago. The lens is probably more important factor than the body. And right now, M43 has some very good lenses/lens systems for a reasonable price.
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fredjeang2
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« Reply #12 on: June 16, 2013, 05:56:54 AM »
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...m4/3 still have a huge potential ahead,
If manufacturers take the good decisions.

We all know that for moving images, a gh2-3
Are on the top of what's currently produced
In this gear range, and that, with Pana limiting
On purpose the performances in order to protect
Their pro line.  If they Didn't, a 1000 bucks gh
Could literally destroy their expensive motion
Cameras of the pro line.

Sensor size is just a part of the equation.

I see a good future for m4/3. In both still and Video
But specially in Video.
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theguywitha645d
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« Reply #13 on: June 16, 2013, 12:31:42 PM »
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- Konica-Minolta's struggles in the digital transition, leading to the sale of its camera division to Sony and discontinuation of all alpha-mount film SLRs

Just a little clarification--Minolta ended the production of film SLRs long before the sale to Sony.
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theguywitha645d
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« Reply #14 on: June 16, 2013, 12:36:34 PM »
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This is all incredibly ironic, don't you think?

Most cameras now all more than meet our needs in terms of print size, many do in terms of DR... So we in fact need new iterations less than we did before... Right?

Cheers,
Bernard


I think we are reaching the same point in the development of the PC. The quality is there and why do I need to keep buying a new PC or OS every year. This is why old MFD backs are still sought after, they have the quality to make excellent images even though technically they are behind modern sensors. Photography as an object lesson in MTF is rather unrewarding. I am planning to hold onto my cameras for a very long time.
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theguywitha645d
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« Reply #15 on: June 16, 2013, 12:38:58 PM »
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I think if Panasonic and Olympus get out of the consumer camera business, then m4/3 is dead.
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Telecaster
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« Reply #16 on: June 16, 2013, 01:14:24 PM »
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I see a good future for m4/3. In both still and Video
But specially in Video.

I have my eye on the upcoming Blackmagic M43-mount cinecam. Shoots RAW CinemaDNG as well as lossy compressed (ProRes). I've had an on/off thing for video since the early days of Beta. Recently rediscovered about 90 minutes of Hi8 (remember that one?) footage from late 1997 in Singapore, almost all of it shot along Orchard Rd. at night. While watching the scenes of people out strolling and cars whooshing past (after a particularly rainy day) I thought to myself, "This is way better than the photos I took during this trip!"

I don't want to disappear down the video rabbit hole and end up with some monster rig for what would likely be occasional use, but the Blackmagic is a tiny thing and would do the job with a rig to match. Low-light performance looks good from the pre-production footage I've seen. This would be a great opportunity as well to really put the fast Voigtlanders to work.

Maybe video will be the thing with this format...

-Dave-
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BJL
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« Reply #17 on: June 16, 2013, 02:42:50 PM »
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Just a little clarification--Minolta ended the production of film SLRs long before the sale to Sony.
IIRC, the "pro" models were abandoned earlier, but the Maxxum 50 and 70 "consumer level" film SLRs were introduced in February 2004, and were still current products until the 2006 transfer of the DSLR business to Sony.

But it hardly matters; sorry for taking this thread off-topic.
« Last Edit: June 16, 2013, 03:13:00 PM by BJL » Logged
uaiomex
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« Reply #18 on: June 18, 2013, 12:30:41 PM »
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The future nobody knows. The future of digital photo systems is very hard to predict. All we can do is to look back into history and exercise educated guesses to do our best at guessing. As I see it, only digital 35 gives me some reasonable assurance that it will be here for at least the next 15 years. As the holy grail of photography of today, the huge and vast arsenal of too many photographers have and being the dominant format for all serious and professional assignments, I have no doubt this format will last many years to come.

I haven't invested in digital medium format as it is horribly expensive and its future is the 64K question. Smaller formats I think, have a sure stay forever. Problem is, we don't know which systems will create a dominance. So, I think, many will come, many will go.

I have a mirrorless camera which I got with a kit lens. This camera is for leisure photography, so I won't spend any money on any expensive glass. I rather put all that "good" money on the best lenses digital 35 photography offers, the soundest investment in photography. Contrary what many believe, I consider my pro photo equipment an investment.

Eduardo


 
« Last Edit: June 18, 2013, 12:33:48 PM by uaiomex » Logged
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