Mirrorless Camera News and Commentary

News and commentary about the mirrorless camera world (latest on top). Hover or tap on News/Views in the menu bar above to see the full list of recent articles as well as folders containing all older ones dating back to 2011.

The Best Mirrorless Holiday Deals

This page will change from time to time as new deals come and old deals go. But I thought I’d share my thoughts about cameras and lenses that you should be paying attention to (be sure to consult my reviews of the individual products for additional advice):

  • Fujifilm — I’m not excited about any of the X body deals currently available, so buy the body you want at whatever the price is (i.e. the deal isn’t what should be motivating you). On the other hand, the Fujifilm lens deals [advertiser link] are real and useful, and shouldn’t be overlooked. I very much like the 14mm f/2.8, 15mm f/1.4, 23mm f/1.4 lenses, all with US$100-150 discounts currently. Likewise, the 56mm f/1.2—most of you don’t need the APD version—gets the same savings. The 10-24mm f/4 is a good lens at a good price with the current discount. And if you don’t have the 16-55mm f/2.8 and 50-140mm f/2.8 and need them, now is a good time to pick them up. Fujifilm is aggressive with the GFX 50R bodies if you buy a lens [advertiser link] with it (US$1000 savings). I haven’t reviewed the GFX bodies and lenses yet, so can’t really give you advice on what the best choices in the lenses are, but they’re all on significant sale.
  • Olympus — The deals currently feel a little lukewarm to me. At all points, I believe there are better bodies out there at the prices Olympus is charging (e.g. the X-T3 is better than the E-M1m2 at US$1599), so those buying into a new system should make a careful choice. And note that the E-M10m2 is available at the same price with or without the 14-42mm kit lens, so pay close attention! Again, it’s the Olympus lens deals [advertiser link] that should really catch your attention. There are good discounts (10-30% off) on several lenses I think highly of: 25mm f/1.8, 45mm f/1.8, 60mm f/2.8 macro, 12-40mm f/2.8 PRO, 12-100mm f/4 PRO, and 40-150mm f/2.8 PRO. So m4/3 users should be looking closely at their lens kits to see if there’s something they should pick up at a holiday discount.
  • Panasonic — The GH5 and GH5S bodies [advertiser link] are showing some modest, but useful discounts (10-15%), so if you’ve been thinking about these this might be a good time to pick them up. The excellent G9 [advertiser link] is down to US$1300, a tangible discount. The lenses with good deals I think highly of are the 35-100mm f/2.8 II and the 100-400mm f/4-6.3. 
  • Sony — Sony has all kinds of deals, but the A9 body at US$1000 [advertiser link] off is a big deal, and the A7Rm3 body at US$400 off [advertiser link] is almost as big (both deals start on Sunday the 18th). Both are great cameras, and those are really good prices. 

Competition is Good

I keep track of statements made by various camera executives in my Claims to Remember article. I've just added Nikon's "Our goal is to become number one in the full-frame market for both mirrorless and DSLRs" to the list (quote from dpreview interview).

All companies have goals. Broadly paraphrased:

  • Canon — to be the overall market leader across all camera categories
  • Fujifilm — to be one of the top three camera companies
  • Leica — to grow financially while remaining profitable
  • Nikon — to be number one in full frame, competitive in other meaningful categories
  • Olympus — to restore market share to previous levels
  • Panasonic — [unknown]
  • Pentax — to stay alive and relevant
  • Sony — to be number two in overall market

Yes, that last one is a previously stated goal for Sony, and as far as I can tell, still active.

In particular, Canon, Fujifilm, Nikon, and Sony have overlapping and conflicting goals. They can't all be in the top three and they can't all be number one in any sub-market. 

But there's nothing new in all these statements.

Nikon, for example, has had a decades-held deep goal of catching and passing Canon as the leading camera supplier. It's one of the things that led to the Coolpix, Nikon 1, and KeyMission bull rushes, for example. More recently, Nikon seems to have narrowed their goal to the much more specific (and potentially winnable) full frame market, but I'll bet you big money that if we were to walk the halls of Nikon HQ in Tokyo we'd find that there's still a (now) unstated goal of topping Canon.

We all need goals. Without goals you are taking a random walk. Large multinational corporations try to avoid random walks, thus they all have goals.

I take the clear overlap of the Japanese camera companies' goals to be a positive sign: they're getting more competitive. 

Back in the first decade of the century, the ever-increasing sales volume basically floated all boats in digital cameras. Even if you had a specific market share or competitive goal, it didn't really matter if you hit it or not because your sales and profits were still going upwards as long as you kept iterating and executing.

A few companies fell out during the long and dramatic digital ramp up (1999-2011). Pentax because it changed ownership twice. Minolta for the same reason. It's tough to change ownership and still focus on products. You generally spend most of your time integrating into the new organization and getting new management buy-in for everything you want to do. In consumer electronics, that can put you a generation or two behind very quickly. 

Another factor entered into play, too: most of the Japanese companies that make cameras aren't exactly consumer-oriented companies. Canon, Panasonic, and Sony have huge consumer-fronting organizations, but with Fujifilm, Olympus, and Pentax those companies actually have far larger presence in the business-to-business or medical orientations, with cameras sold through dealers being almost an anomaly to their primary businesses. 

Nikon was bimodal. It has two large divisions. The Precision group sells huge semiconductor manufacturing equipment business-to-business. The Imaging group sells small cameras and lenses to consumers. The digital sales run-up actually flipped which division was bigger, and even with the strong downturn in camera sales since 2013, Imaging is still bigger than Precision. Today, Nikon is close to being a half consumer, half business-to-business company.

Why do I mention this? Because to sell cameras to consumers, you need a consumer front. There's a reason why you're more likely to see Canon, Nikon, and Sony as the primary (and maybe only) products carried by your local dealer. This makes the other companies' road to their stated goals more difficult. As a consumer, you tend to see only Canon, Nikon, and Sony. 

This is why I wrote a long time ago that Pentax really needed to change their sales method to direct-to-consumer. As long they think they need to rely on dealers, they've got problems keeping up with the Joneses. They don’t have many dealers. They have little consumer visibility any more.

Okay, I've taken a long route—as usual—to get to today's thought. 

Photokina and PhotoPlus Expo both showed that we're going to have a very competitive pile-on in full frame mirrorless cameras. Canon, Leica, Nikon, Panasonic, and Sony are all there with competitive products and looking like they'll be aggressive in those moving forward in the future. Fujifilm is trying to bridge full frame by positioning just below (APS-C) and above (Medium Format), which gives them something unique to market. 

It's Olympus and Pentax that look like they don't have a clear strategy and products to define that at the moment; and neither are in the now busy full-frame mirrorless game. I suspect that they're just responding slower to the trends and will get around to it, though. 

I've been testing the Canon R, Nikon Z, and Sony A7/9 models and the accompanying lens sets a lot lately. They're all really good products, and highly competitive with one another. As users, that's exactly what we want: we want the camera companies to see and respond to clear challenges from each other and produce better products as a result. It's happening today with full frame mirrorless, and I hope this continues for some time, as we'll only benefit from that.

So, will Nikon hit their stated goal? 

I don't care. You shouldn’t either.

What I do care about is that they try ;~). Because by trying, the Z products—which are already really good—will only get better. And in so doing, that will force Canon, Leica, Panasonic, and Sony to make better full frame mirrorless cameras, too. 

Now, if they'd only do a better job asking customers what we're grappling with that they haven't addressed...

Leica Goes Retro to the Future

bythom leica m10d

Leica today announced yet another M model, the M10-D, but it's a very interesting one, as that image of its back should show. 

Basically, this is an M10-P, but with the rear LCD removed and total emphasis put on detailed control of the camera and review of the images on the FOTOS app (Android, iOS) via Wi-Fi connection. You get the same 24mp CMOS sensor and quiet shutter of the M10-P. You just don't get a rear LCD.

On the shooting side the camera is pure retro in the sense you're virtually back in the film world, with only a few camera controls—there's a shutter speed dial and an exposure compensation dial, and apertures are controlled by the lens—and a rangefinder to look through to compose the scene. 

Internally, the camera has 2GB of dedicated RAM for storing images (it also has an SD card slot buried in the removable bottom). Plus it has a full Wi-Fi connection. That's where the FOTOS app comes in: it can control all aspects of the camera you used to control via menus, as well as grab images to work on or send. In other words, on the workflow side the camera is totally modern, relying upon your smartphone to do a lot of heavy lifting. 

It's an interesting dichotomy. And expensive at US$7995. 

How well does it work? I don't know, as I haven't had a chance to use one. But I believe Leica's on the right track here. No matter how its done, our cameras need to be able to talk to the outside modern world. The days of download-to-computer really need to come to an end (well, okay, we still want that to save and archive our images and perhaps throw more horsepower at processing them).

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Where Are We?

With Photokina out of the way, it's time to assess where the camera makers now fall in terms of mirrorless cameras:

  • Canon — two apparently incompatible systems, EOS M for APS-C and EOS RF for full frame. This seems wrong to me, as the smaller system is not a feeder for the larger system.
  • Fujifilm — two systems, XF for APS-C and GF for small medium format. Fujifilm has adapted a "two-stop apart" standard, which makes for a clear difference in image quality if you step up, and by using APS-C as their main system, keeps overall system size down.
  • Leica — two systems using the same lens mount (L-mount), one APS-C (CL/TL) and one full frame (SL), plus the long continuation of the old M series in full frame (M mount). It's clear, however, that Leica's new engineering is going into the L mount; nothing seriously new is happening in the M mount.
  • Nikon — abandoned their small 1" system (Nikon 1) to concentrate on a large system (full frame Z series). No smaller iteration in sight at present.
  • Olympus — completely sticking with their original small sensor (4/3"). 
  • Panasonic — two systems, G for m4/3 and S for full frame. Panasonic has also adapted a "two-stop apart" standard, which again makes for a clear difference in image quality if you step up. By using m4/3 as their small system, they keep that system size down.
  • Pentax/Ricoh — complete no show. Technically the Q is still available in Japan, but it hasn't been updated in ages and is no longer available globally. 
  • Sony — two systems, E for APS-C and FE for full frame, both using the same mount (also dedicated video cameras using this mount). 

Put another way (via sensor size, each about one stop apart in overall performance, all else equal):

  • 1/2.3" — abandoned
  • 1" — abandoned
  • m4/3 — Olympus, Panasonic (generally 20mp)
  • APS-C — Canon, Fujifilm, Leica, Sony (generally 24mp, one 26mp)
  • full frame — Canon, Leica, Nikon, Panasonic, Sony (12, 24, 42, 45mp)
  • small MF — Fujifilm, Hasselblad (50mp)

You can see from that the reason why some folk are wondering about m4/3's future. With Panasonic picking a second format and the formats just smaller than m4/3 now having been abandoned, the question is how you keep m4/3 up with the image quality push upwards, and pixel count is now starting to lag (made up for some by the pixel shift in some high-end m4/3 cameras). Olympus now seems isolated having chosen m4/3 and not supplementing that with a larger format. 

The true bottom edge of the market seems to currently be 24mp APS-C. Frankly, such cameras are quite excellent, even in low light, and provide more than enough pixels for most uses. Even just five years ago we were struggling to get that level of image quality in any reasonably priced camera, but as I write this, you can find US$500 camera bodies that achieve it. 

The bottom edge has been on a constant move upwards in both size and pixel count over time, with the primary exception being specialty cameras, such as the Panasonic GH5s and the Sony A7Sm2. The real question is whether that edge will continue to move up. 

Short answer: yes. The camera companies need to sell you something, thus they have to push something new or something "more," preferably both. APS-C is now the entry point, and full frame 42mp+ is now the target "quality" point.

Sadly, the rest of the camera isn't getting the same loving tech push as the sensor is. Even the ISP's—Bionz, Digic, Expeed—are falling behind the capability you have in your smartphone. More importantly, the wired and wireless connections are still sub-optimal and using older, outdated parts to save money rather than pushing the technology. But the camera industry doesn't know how to sell those things. Their (mostly inept) marketing departments can barely make clear messages about sensor size and pixel counts and what that actually means to a customer. 

Ecosystems versus Alliances

"You're only as good as your weakest link in the ecosystem." —Jimmy Iovine

I found several instances of people posting comments recently about the state of cameras similar to the following: "you have to be in an alliance or you'll die." 

Not at all true. 

An alliance is merely corporate cooperation that attempts to create a viable ecosystem which the individual companies don't think they can do by themselves. As with most multi-corporation entities, that generally isn't the most efficient way to do something. Ecosystems can often be more easily created and flourish when produced by a single company (witness Apple). Indeed, that often is the best way, as there is only one chef in the main kitchen dictating the overall cuisine.

Now, if you look up the word ecosystem in the dictionary—or use DuckDuckGo, or an unnamed search engine that likes to invade your privacy while you search the Internet—you'll find the long existing definition, which is basically "a community of organisms and how their relationship to the environment around them works."

In the high tech world, we took that nature-driven term and bastardized it to mean "all the additional products and services that support a core product (or product line)." The first time I recall using the word ecosystem with tech was when I wrote about the Apple II and the world of products that surrounded it (disclosure: I was involved with and produced some of those products). 

At Osborne Computer, my whole domain was basically growing the ecosystem: I managed the hardware products, the software (BIOS, OS, applications), the third-party software program, all documentation, the magazine, the user group relationships, and worked with the training department. My goal was very simple: to make the sum of the parts bigger than the sum of the parts. 

What's that mean? 

Well, if you just sell a product, you're defined only by how good the product is. Make a great product and you'll have better sales than if you make a fair or poor product, all else equal. But if you make the great product the center of solving the widest possible range of user needs and help grow other products around it to hit all specialties and possibilities, you'll sell more. 

Apple has long been the master of ecosystem. They had virtually no control or influence on it with the Apple II, but the Macintosh was where they started to master the ecosystem. My friend Guy Kawasaki was one of Apple's first "evangelists," and his role was very much like mine was at Osborne (other than the internal bits of product and software management): expand the system around the main product to make a big and vibrant ecosystem that supported it.

The Japanese camera companies all have two strikes against them when it comes to ecosystems, and both tend to be defined by cultural tendencies. First, there's a long history of "proprietary" in Japan consumer electronics. It's the reason why they're not leaders in personal computers, for example, as the Windows ecosystem in particular basically defeated all the Japanese proprietary ones. It was easy to enforce proprietary within Japan, particularly because of the keyboard/language issues, but none of that played well outside Japan. And ultimately, the Japanese needed to integrate their own computer needs with the rest of the world. Voila, dead proprietary computer systems.

The second is the "coopetition" aspect of Japanese culture. It's Japan against the world most of the time. The Japanese have a tendency to pair up with themselves rather than in global alliances. (While it's interesting that Leica is the center of the L-mount alliance, the Germans long ago learned to act like and work with Japanese companies after the Japanese companies took their optical market away. Leica and Zeiss, to a large degree, act Japanese when in Japan.) 

Which brings me to this: American companies often just look like misbehaving bullies when they come into the Japanese market looking for cooperation and/or sales. That doesn't go down well at all. Adobe came into Japan like gangbusters with expensive Photoshop licenses when the Japanese needed software to go with the early digital scanners that were being produced, dictating terms that, to this day, are still disliked and remembered negatively by several key photography-related companies. 

Why's that important?

Because a camera is just one component at the center of a photography ecosystem. If you want to sell lots of cameras, you'd better have a thriving ecosystem supporting it. For interchangeable lens cameras that means lenses, of course. But it also means flashes, video recorders, batteries, remotes, grips, protective covers/sleeves/bags, mounting gear, and much more. 

You may recognize a lot of that. For instance, Canon and Nikon both make lenses, flashes, batteries options, remotes, grips, and even some of the other stuff from time to time for their proprietary systems. So they kind of have an ecosystem they control by themselves. Not that they do a good job of that. Nikon, for example, is notorious for not having accessories in stock, overpricing them, and then doing completely stupid things like making an MB grip for the Z7 that doesn't have user controls on it: it's just a battery holder that bolts to the bottom of the camera.

We also sometimes we get silly decisions that have a wide, negative impact with customers trying to live in the ecosystem. The (as yet unverified) story behind CFast is that Canon wanted something different than what appeared to be a growing Sony/Nikon alliance in XQD. The original parties to XQD were SanDisk, Sony, and Nikon. Notice which company isn't in that group? 

But there's a more important part of a photography ecosystem that's currently broken, and that's in part because those Japanese cultural tendencies are now positioned against those brash Western companies. 

Photography today has a strong workflow that isn't controlled (or even mastered) by the Japanese. This was one of the things pioneered by Silicon Valley and driven by the iPhone. Ironically, that was all triggered by Phillipe Kahn's use of a Japanese cell phone to send immediate photos to others in the valley of the birth of his daughter back in the late 90's. 

Meanwhile, camera companies seem to have never heard of card readers (while providing terrible throughput when using the camera as a card reader), they barely give lip service to ingest programs, they have terrible connectivity issues because they use old parts and have very little decent software, they don't play well with the Internet, and the cloud may be something that they think they understand and have tried to do (e.g. Nikon Image Space), but really don't get at all. 

In essence, the Japanese companies are pretty good at mastering the part of the ecosystem that you hold in your hand (camera, lens, flash). Beyond that? They're not doing the things that are necessary to make a complete ecosystem thrive. And that's particularly true at the global level. 

Of course, even within that hardware bundle that's in your hands there are now signs of problems. It's a dirty secret that a lot of the internals of BIONZ, DIGIC, and EXPEED are licensed from others.  But consider this: Apple is now running six 64-bit cores and matching GPU at about 2.5Ghz, along with running their imaging routines in hardware. By contrast, Nikon is running two 32-bit (and older design) cores at a slower clock speed in EXPEED. 

So even within the part of the ecosystem that the Japanese companies control, they're falling dangerously behind. Apple is able to run their real-time HDR, stitching, and 3D light-shaping effects because they're running state of the art electronics inside. The camera companies will have a difficult time matching that without seriously upping their game when it comes to the smarts inside the camera.

So, does an alliance of three companies (e.g. the L-mount alliance) mean that the two big duopolists (Canon/Nikon) will die? No. It's basically "more of the same" in the Japanese camera world as far as I can see. 

Do Canon, Fujifilm, Nikon, Olympus, Panasonic, Pentax, or Sony each have a person in charge of building a growing, thriving, abundant ecosystem (and able to influence product decisions internally)? Nope. To a large degree, that's why the overall camera market ecosystem is still contracting. 

When I made my Communicating, Programmable, Modular camera proposal over ten years ago, all elements of that were targeted to expose and allow the creation and expansion of a vibrant ecosystem. It isn't just lenses that define how healthy an ecosystem is. If it were, the m4/3 ecosystem would be dominating the mirrorless world and growing like weeds.

A Curious Observation

Prior to the Canon R and Nikon Z announcements, the Internet (and my In Box) was filled with "Sony is Invincible" messages. Okay, that's a bit of an exaggeration, but you know what I mean if you read any of the mirrorless/DSLR fora messages prior to August. Sony was on a roll. Only Sony has the technologies needed. Only Sony will survive. Doom and gloom for everyone else.

Well, that settled out pretty differently. I suspect Nikon will have one of their best quarters ever this quarter. Canon users seem happy with the R. 

It now seems we have Canon fora talking reasonably intelligently about the R, Nikon fora talking reasonably intelligently about the Z, and Sony fora talking reasonably intelligently about the A7/A9. Just as it should be. The Fan Boy anti-Canikon marketing campaign seems to have disappeared and been replaced with reasonable discussions for the time being. That makes you wonder whether some of those older anti-Canikon messages were Sony-fed FUD via anonymous posters. 

Unfortunately, there's a new victim starting to emerge.

The new "you are doomed" format is m4/3. 

I do have some concerns about m4/3: I don't know how you can continue to sell US$2000 m4/3 cameras that are as large as a full frame camera that sells for the same amount, for example. But that's a little different than "you are doomed." It really means that Olympus and Panasonic will need to double down on the things that make m4/3 unique. It'll be tough to stay close with pixel count or dynamic range when compared with full frame, for example. So size once again is what they need to pay closer attention to. 

And that's a tricky area to master. The Canon EOS M5 is a pretty small camera, after all, with a bigger sensor and access to a lot of legacy lenses. 

To me, a good m4/3 mirrorless camera really now needs to sit about where I've always wanted a compact travel camera to sit. I keep looking at the E-M10m3 and the Panasonic GX line (what happened to the GM?) as where I want something a bit more capable than what we currently have available. A "perfect" E-M10 matched with the trio of f/1.8 Olympus primes would be nearly jacket pocketable (obviously, both pockets), yet more capable than any compact I've wandered around with. 

I'm also struck by the fact that there still isn't a perfect vlogger ILC that's supremely portable, and Panasonic's emphasis on video means they ought to be tackling that, and m4/3 seems perfect for that.

Ignore the "m4/3 is doomed" messages. Instead, tell Olympus and Panasonic what you really want in the format. Maybe they'll listen.

Does the Lens Mount Matter?

First, let's put blame where it belongs: the marketing departments of Canon and Nikon. When you make a claim—our new mount is better—it's up to you to prove it. Worse still, Canon and Nikon have both opted to point to lenses that don't really effectively speak to the claim (Canon 28-70mm f/2, Nikkor 58mm f/0.95). 

So let's back up a minute. 

For optical design purposes, there are two factors that are important in a lens mount for lens design: (1) how close it is to the focal plane (flange distance); and (2) how wide the opening is (throat; measured at smallest non-obstructed point). 

In the film/DSLR era, we had the following:

  • Canon EF: 44mm flange, 50.6mm throat
  • Nikon F: 46.5mm flange, 44mm throat
  • Minolta/Sony Alpha: 43.5mm flange, 42mm throat

The common myth is that the throat diameter is what determines how fast a lens you can put on the mount. For years, this was expressed by (incorrect) statements like "Canon can make f/1.2 prime lenses and Nikon can't." Yes, there is a bit of a relationship between aperture and throat, but it's not a direct "larger throat means faster lenses" relationship. 

So the marketing fumble started long, long ago. 

Today, we have the following situation in mirrorless:

  • Canon RF: 20mm flange, 50.6mm throat
  • Nikon Z: 16mm flange, 52mm throat
  • Sony FE: 18mm flange, 43.6mm throat

Nikon went from having the most restrictive mount—in terms of allowing optical design options—to having the least restrictive one. 

So what does that mean: least restrictive? Consider the following illustration of an off-axis light path (from Bill Claff's excellent site that lets you play with patented optical designs).

bythom offaxis

The lens mount is going to be generally in that gap between the last element and the focal plane (labeled FL in this Nikon 35mm f/1.8 Z lens patent). (I used the word "generally" because technically you can have a lens element that is beyond the mount in mirrorless designs, but the ray angles then would start to get extreme and the filter over the sensor starts to come into play.) A less restrictive lens mount simply gives you optical design options you wouldn't have with a more restrictive mount. 

So, the real problem is this: neither Canon nor Nikon have actually demonstrated the difference the new mount gives them in optical design. Their marketing departments point to a pair of lenses, but they actually don't show how those lenses couldn't have existed in their previous mount. And they're not very specific about what's different.

And there's the rub. If Canon and Nikon did go out of their way to show how the new mount is better, then by definition the old mount they're still selling is worse! Neither company really wants to deprecate their existing DSLR lineup (and both have DSLR mounts that are effectively more restrictive than their mirrorless mounts). Thus, the two companies marketing folk talk in generalities, and even in futures ("...will allow us to..."). 

Ironically, Sigma's CEO, Katuto Yamaki, was able to do a bit better than either Canon's or Nikon's marketing in one response to a question from dpreview: "I’ve been very impressed by Canon’s new lenses for RF. The 50mm F1.2 and 28-70mm F2. Very impressed - and a little jealous! They’re possible due to the wide diameter and short flange back. Otherwise such lenses would be very difficult or impossible. Having the larger elements at the rear of the optical system makes it easier to achieve good performance at large apertures."

Yep: "makes it easier to achieve good performance at large apertures." Not that it can't be done, but that it opens up optical decisions that are easier to create in the manufacturing plant.

So let's make the Sony fanboys both happy and unhappy ;~). I mention them in particular because they're the ones running around screaming that the mount doesn't make a difference all over the Internet. 

Okay: start with unhappy Sony fanboys. The mount does make a difference. Canon and Nikon engineers now have room to explore many new optical designs, including moving the entrance pupil far forward of its usual position and not having to use expensive and complex aspherical elements to move light radically. Optical designs at the rear of the lens can involve larger elements. Sony, not so much. 

Okay: let's create happy Sony fanboys. Nikon happily existed and made excellent lenses for over 50 years in their old most restrictive lens mount. Sony will, too. 

And that's the bottom line here: it isn't that you can't design a good lens with a restrictive mount. You can, but your design choices are more limited, you may have to resort to trickier glass choices, and there are light ray paths you can't contemplate or use. At present, we don't know just how far Canon and Nikon will go in exploring the limits of their new mounts. It very may well turn out like it did for film SLRs and DSLRs: that most of the common lens choices users want are adequately done with all the existing mounts. 

As it stands, I'm not sure I want to give up 24mm and carry a three pound weight off the front of my mirrorless camera body (Canon 28-70mm f/2). And I know I'm not much interested in a manual focus 58mm f/0.95 lens. I consider these to be more design explorations by Canon and Nikon than truly practical lenses we're all going to want in our gear kit. That's not to say that those companies might not at some point come up with something interesting that couldn't be done before and is a practical lens. Just that they haven't yet. 

Meanwhile, as my reviews indicate, Sony and Zeiss have been creating perfectly fine lenses for that "most restrictive" FE mount. 

So, if someone tells you that you have to choose a camera based upon lens mount efficiencies, I'd say balderdash. Nope. Plenty of useful lenses will be available for all the mounts. 

Meanwhile, I—and the rest of the world—are waiting for Canon and Nikon to actually prove that a less limiting mount truly makes a real difference. It's possible that they will. But they haven't so far, and I see no sign that they will any time soon.

2018 Mirrorless Camera News/Views

Mirrorless camera news and views for 2018. The stories in these folders were front page news on sansmirror during the time periods indicated:

2017 Mirrorless Camera News/Views

2016 Mirrorless Camera News/Views

text and images © 2018 Thom Hogan
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