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Which mirrorless system is for you?

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I voted Fuji.

Although I'm heavily into the Nikon system, I was impressed enough by comments regarding Fuji from some seriously credible forum members to take the plunge with an X-E1 - I've not been disappointed.

The size and feel of the cameras is close to my old Nikon FM's from the 70's and feels great after F4's, D2's and D3's.

For me it's Nikon for long lens FX work and Fuji for pretty much everything else. If Nikon made a large sensor FM equivalent mirror less body with F mount I'd be at the head of the queue to buy it.


Andrew

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In continuance of my post above, it looks like Sony will indeed be releasing a "dSLR-type" camera but without the "SLR"  :D.  It will use an EVF but will have PDAF by integrating PDAF sensors on its main imaging sensor.  

 

I expect this will be the norm going forward for Canon and Nikon as well although Nikon already pioneered the same but with a smaller sensor in its Nikon 1 Series.  Why Nikon has not released an APS-C version of the Nikon 1 using F-mount lenses (if this is feasible) is a puzzle.

 

More info using this link:  http://www.sonyalpharumors.com/patent-this-could-be-the-next-a-mount-mirrorless-sensor-and-design/

Edited by Larry

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Nikon buys sensors from Sony, so if a mirrorless Sony A-mount is possible, then a mirrorless Nikon F-mount camera is possible as well.

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Nikon buys sensors from Sony, so if a mirrorless Sony A-mount is possible, then a mirrorless Nikon F-mount camera is possible as well.

 

A mirrorless non-SLT EVF A-mount Sony camera with an APS-C sensor will indeed make available a sensor that can be used in a mirrorless EVF F-mount Nikon camera.  But Nikon could have sourced an APS-C imaging sensor with PDAF sensor built-in from Aptina.   It was Aptina who supplied Nikon a smaller version of such a sensor for the Nikon 1 Series.  Sony recently entered into a cross-licensing agreement with Aptina where among others, Sony likely picked up Aptina’s design of an imaging sensor with PDAF sensor.   

The Nikon 1 series was a safe way for Nikon to test the concept of an EVF PDAF in the imaging sensor mirrorless camera concept.  If successful, the Nikon 1 series would be a harbinger for a new series of mirrorless Nikon APS-C cameras that would have EVF and PDAF among its features.  In analyzing why Nikon has still not gone this way when it clearly could have done so by now, there are many matters which Nikon needs to decide on.  Crucially, any decision made here will need to consider long term effects. 

First.  Should this camera initially appear in the entry model or in the high-end model?  For low-end models, with or with out EVF?  If with EVF, Nikon needs to find an EVF that can handle varied conditions good enough to replace an OVF but which will not cost an arm and a leg.  A high-end model would need to be equipped with the best EVF available.  But as EVF steadily improves, should the high-end model perhaps have a feature where the EVF be made removable and upgradeable?  

 

What about articulating screen - with or without?  If the camera will have an articulating screen, should be it like the D5100/D5200,  NEX / E-M5 or like the GH3?

A mirrorless camera presents several opportunities to redesign the basic form of the dSLR.  Being able to do away with the mirror mechanism and the lens to sensor clearance opens up new design possibilities which in turn can result in new features.  For example, such a camera can be more light and compact (e.g., Sony NEX) if with basic features and bigger if with more features and better ergonomics (e.g., GH2 vs GH3).

A mirrorless EVF camera with a universal shutter sensor that has PDAF can autofocus and continuously track and shoot at 10fps to 30fps would be very attractive.  A camera such as this would be fantastic replacement for the D300/D300s.  But new considerations would immediately arise among one of which is a design that can dissipate the heat generated by such continuous shooting, a robust data channel that can handle the large stream of data from shooting continuously, a big-enough buffer that can handle the high rate of continuous shooting, etc. 

Nikon would likely be asking this question - with such a new design, could Nikon perhaps implement an image stabilizing system that would be built-in with the body such as the IBIS in Sony's A-mount cameras and Olympus IBIS in the E-M5 and E-P5?  Nikon has always claimed that a lens mounted image stabilization is superior but Olympus has shown it can successfully built an in-body image stabilization using an m4/3 sensor.  Can Nikon do an IBIS using an APS-C sensor that would be better than Sony's A-mount cameras?  And while mirrorless camera will require less sensor cleaning, what about the issue of having have to send an IBIS-equipped camera to a service center for sensor cleaning (as in the case of the Olympus E-M5) so as not to disalign the IBIS?  Is this potentially too big an issue as to warrant staying with VR and not adopt IBIS?    

 

As to lens, would it be better for Nikon to design a completely new lens mount that would among others already include an electronic aperture but also be more compact and lighter?  As sensor resolution continue to inch upward, new lenses that can handle the higher resolution will be needed. Should Nikon just take advantage of this situation to design and start a new series of lens even if it means that a new lens mount will be needed?  But would Nikon be better off just using the F-mount lens system where it would have the huge advantage of having a very large lens selection to use with the camera at the time the camera is launched?

 

Looking at all the above and the time needed to sort through the potential issues and advantages/disadvantages, I am now no longer surprised why Nikon still has not launched a mirrorless EVF APS-C camera!   :P

Edited by Larry

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You take the viewfinder of the Olympus VF-4 and a 24 MP DX sensor with PDAF integrated, add focus peaking, do away with the mirror and retain the F-mount with its' present register distance, and build this into a magnesium body, with a plastic( :P ) SD-card door, and voila, you have the D400!  ;) I think Nikon should license Olympus 5-axis IBIS for this, but I think they will stay with VR in the lens, which is unfortunate for optical quality (decentering issues) and for fast glass (no VR/IBIS at all).

 

EVF is by the way better than optical viewfinders in poor lighting, so this D400 would be Nikon's best low light camera, from a handling point of view.

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Nikon won't be introducing an F mount mirrorless for at least 4 years.  All R&D is being put into 1 system... just look at the ridiculous lenses they are trying to produce, optical formulas that are completely unique and require intense engineering.

 

1 system is worldwide the number 1 camera seller by a large margin.  Nikon made its choice with a small sensor.  If you want a big sensor mirrorless for f-mount, Sony is your only choice for the conceivable future.

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