The Toy-nasation of Photography

Started Jun 14, 2011 | Discussions thread
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The Toy-nasation of Photography
Jun 14, 2011

...or Photography for Toy Enthusiasts

The Japanese have always liked their toys and cute and small gadgetry, and that's fine, but I think we are seeing too much of that floating onto the photography world...

Sure we all want smaller and more practical products. But to want smaller cameras does NOT mean one also wants TOY cameras and TOY lenses.

Before all the mirrorless fad, the new kid on the block was the 4/3 system. The premise was a smaller and lighter system, while retaining the same image quality of the more traditional systems. That seemed to more or less hold true. Olympus lenses were generally accept as very well engineered lenses, and a nice system to buy into if one didn't mind the smaller sensor - but can the same be said about the newer m4/3?

What do you get with a m4/3 system? One gets lenses that are about the same size as the original 4/3 system, but that perform optically worse than any other system in the market. This is then compensated by software, in or out of cameras, and it supposedly makes it all alright. Sure it's nice to have the option of software correction, but to have it sneakily forced on you like it never happened? I guess it makes sense to force it down your throat... how could they not force it on you when the lenses are so crap? Well, might as well release a 4mm fisheye, market it as rectilinear, and call it a wonder of engineering... Seriously, why not?

I mean, I do like Panasonic. Despite the m4/3 glass, I liked the original GF1, and the GH series seems to have a lot going for it. The LX, FZ and TZ series also do a lot of things better than the competition. But I also like serious cameras with serious glass...

Where are the nice lenses from the original 4/3 system? Are we gonna get a GH5 that is as cute as a button? Is it all downhill from now on?

So, a new GF3 huh? Let me guess... Smaller, less buttons and better touchscreen controls.... WOW! (BTW, was it designed and inspired after a bar of soap? I just googled "bar of soap" and it looks very similar...)
And this new 25mm? Another wonder of engineering? WOW, how exciting!

If one looks at Pentax and Leica M lenses it's obvious that we don't need smaller sensors to have smaller lenses... If one looks at the original 4/3 E-Series of bodies it's also obvious one doesn't really need to get rid of the mirrorbox to have a smaller camera... So why are we buying into this crap? Do we really we a new mount, a new "oh there's no mirror" camera, or a new collection of software-corrected glass?

Dunno, but I guess that this recent fad with small and mirrorless is not really about better products, but really about cuter and more marketable toys.

Just some food for thought...

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