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Author Topic: Nikon (mostly) Exits Film Market  (Read 3992 times)
dbell
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« on: January 12, 2006, 10:35:23 AM »
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I can't say as I was really surprised by the announcement (Michael linked to the Nikon UK announcement in today's "What's New" section; there's also a similar announcement on the Nikon US site).

I find it interesting that they'll go on producing the F6 (a professional tool to which their market will expect them to show commitment), FM10 and some manual lenses. For the sake of maintaining an entry in the market for manual film bodies, I wish they had chosen the FM3 instead, but the (much cheaper) FM10 makes more sense as a camera targeted at students.

I think it's a little sad that they've also discontinued their large format and enlarging lenses. i'm a bit surprised that Nikon doesn't seem to see large format equipment as playing a part in their future. Between the scarcity of equipment and papers, I wonder how long the traditional darkroom will remain viable. I'm sure the purists will hang on, but I could easily see how the eventual lack of choice in materials and equipment might drive others to move to digital, even if nothing else has already. I guess the party won't truly be over until the chemicals stop being available.

I wonder if my old Nikon stuff will become more valuable (even in the short term) or just, well, old junk .


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Daniel Bell
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bob mccarthy
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« Reply #1 on: January 12, 2006, 10:59:24 AM »
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I think it's a little sad that they've also discontinued their large format and enlarging lenses. i'm a bit surprised that Nikon doesn't seem to see large format equipment as playing a part in their future. --
Daniel Bell
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=55841\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

The life span of these components is , hmmmm....nearly forever.

With the lack of growth in the marketplace, new entrants can buy used at a great discount to new.

I'll bet the number of new sales of LF/enlarger  lenses is pretty close to zero. If I wanted a Nikkor LF lens I'd go to Ebay or KEH. Nikon is competing with its past sales. Time to move on

bob
« Last Edit: January 12, 2006, 11:07:19 AM by bob mccarthy » Logged
John Camp
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« Reply #2 on: January 12, 2006, 11:23:33 AM »
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We're going through a tough transitional period here where the qualities and advantages of digital are apparent, so everybody wants to go there, but the cost of the sensors is still very high, and so  the choices of body styles are limited to those that sell the most. So we have only two remaining big players in pro "35" (Nikon and Canon), only two or three in medium format (Hasselblad and Mamiya, maybe Pentax?) and scattered representatives of LF. At some point, fairly soon I think, we'll reach a plateau where the improvements in sensors are seen as marginal, and then prices will start to come down. When that happens, we should start seeing a variety of camera styles come back -- when the cost of the sensor is no longer overwhelming, we'll see custom backs for whatever LF bodies remain, may very well see some rangefinders, etc., IF the companies that build that stuff are still around, if they've been able to survive the transition.

We'll also see another branch of photography, the chemical branch, which (not to denigrate it at all) will be sort of artsy-craftsy, like platinum printing or the other alternative printing processes used to be. I think that could go on for a long time -- forever -- unless the EPA or some other organization gets on top of the chemistry...

A few years ago, I spent some time messing around with Polaroid slide film, with their little developing kit, and I liked it -- had a completely different feel than standard slide film, or anything I've ever seen in digital. With the ocean of great film cameras out there, good scanners and interchangeable lenses between digital and film, something like that could come back...maybe.

JC
(proud owner of two F5s and an F4, none of which have been used for three years...)
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Brian Gilkes
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« Reply #3 on: January 12, 2006, 02:03:22 PM »
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Unless Nikon are also sacking all employees that worked on the discontinued lines, I would expect to see an intensification of R&D into new and more relevant products. As Nikon at last seem to be back in the black, this would seem to make sense. Hopefully this will mean Canon 's heels will be nipped ,which will be good for all.
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Brian
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raymondh
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« Reply #4 on: January 12, 2006, 04:06:10 PM »
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Unless Nikon are also sacking all employees that worked on the discontinued lines, I would expect to see an intensification of R&D into new and more relevant products. As Nikon at last seem to be back in the black, this would seem to make sense. Hopefully this will mean Canon 's heels will be nipped ,which will be good

You don't really believe that Nikon (or Canon) are spending much of anything in film camera R&D, do you?  I would be willing to bet that Nikon "intensified" their digital R&D a while ago and this isn't going to increase that one bit.
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