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"Mirrorless" is anachronistic

Started Sep 19, 2012 | Discussions thread
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"Mirrorless" is anachronistic
Sep 19, 2012

To describe a camera as mirrorless is to describe a car as a horseless carriage.

Might I suggest "Digital System" as a more fitting and enduring moniker for cameras of this ilk? Camera "systems" have always been marketed as sets of accessories (principally lenses) that fit a certain form factor of camera. Digital cameras mean that the image acquisition and processing is digital, rather than mechanical/chemical. Therefore, digital + system = the perfect descriptor for interchangeable lens cameras that use their sensor for a viewfinder image..

SLR technology was developed over eighty years ago to solve the parallax problems of twin lens and rangefinder cameras by adding the capability to look through the shooting lens itself. This enabled easy lens interchangeability, a marketing success story. The key to this technology was the flip-up mirror and pentaprism, an expensive and delicate mechanism.

The ability to view the image directly off the sensor obviates the need for all that complexity, and building cameras without mirrors makes them less expensive to produce and maintain. The remaining complaint of SLR Luddites is the impaired quality of the image in the viewfinder. This may be true for now, but not for long.

So, dSLR cameras will soon enough be crowding the shelves of used cameras in your closet and at camera shops, along side film SLRs and Speed Graphics. They are destined to become the wagon wheels of twenty-first century photo technology.

Welcome to the world of digital system cameras.

(Why do my kids keep calling me Captain Obvious?)

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