D600 Oil spots, D800 AF issue, and now this...

Started Nov 10, 2012 | Discussions thread
Grevture
Veteran MemberPosts: 3,983Gear list
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This is getting absurd ...
In reply to Judy Stone, Nov 11, 2012

Judy Stone wrote:

I just hope that this will not be the fate of Nikon, Canon too.

The era of Japanese consumer electronics giants is dead

I have been using cameras for 30 years. I used to read a lof of photo magazines back in the old days, before internet forums. And I have been involved in forums like this for many, many years.

As far as product quality, nothing is new. There are always debates like the D800 AF hysteria and the D600 oil spot grumbling going on, they come and go, but are largely inevitable. And they hit all brands about equally.

In the past few years Canon users has had huge debates over AF issues (much, much more serious ones then the D800), lens quality issues and the issues of sensor DR and color banding. Pentax users have cried about AF issues and oil spots (sound familiar?). Sony users have has debated around heat issues in NEX cameras, about issues relating to spots and dust on SLT mirrors. Just to take a few examples. And every where the cries are the same "brand XXX is ignoring its customers, why are they so irresponsible". It sound about the same everywhere. Really.

And the issues like these have more or less always been around. Not so long ago D7000 usres was on a war path about AF inconsistencies. And going back a bit further, anyone still remember the hysteria around D200 banding? Or the initial issues surrounding the D2H?

Interestingly, there were actually less hysteria in the debate around the much more serious issue of Nikons D2 generation of professional cameras generally being a complete and utter failure in terms of being competetive on the camera market. Nikon went from about a 55% market share among profesional photographers to less then 10% in just four years. This was a issue which posed a very real threat to Nikons demise as a serious camera manufacturer. And one that really scared the living daylight out of many Nikon executives.

Look longer back, in the pre-digital stone age of photography there were also quality issues discussied at photo clubs and in magazines. A bit less hysterical maybe, but then we did not have instant feeback forums which slowed the debate down. But the frequence and severeity of actual quality issues seem to have remained largely constant over the 30+ years I have been involved in photography. If anything, and in relating to vastly increased number of cameras used today, they are fewer and further in between. And - actually, really - less serious.

Issues like the D800 AF and the D600 oil spots are just the normal noise of forums. It has always been like that, and it is not specific to any particular brand.And they do not pose any particular threat to any given manufacturer. Much unlike the more real issues of camera brands building camera models which are commercial failures. But there the forum discussions tend to much more subdued.

It is almost to a degree where you can say, as a rule of thumb: the more intensly and aggressively a issue is discussed in forums, the less long term impcat it will have.

The article you have linked to is about a different issue altogether. It is about the normal progession of time and the slow but certain shifts of power in markets. Companies never dominate large and economically appealing business forever. There is bound to be competition and changes. Thats just how life changes and develops in the corporate world.

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