Nikon's 5 year plan...

Started 11 months ago | Discussions thread
ePan
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Re: Nikon's 5 year plan...
In reply to stevo23, 11 months ago

The bad news for camera manufacturers like Nikon and Canon is that companies like Apple and Google also happen to have 5 year plans--and the necessary cash to follow through with those plans. When digital camera IQ reached a logical extreme it became comparable to the film camera IQ limits, which digital had earlier exploited. Film cameras didn't go away because photographers were unsatisfied with the quality of Kodachrome film or the ISO sensitivity of Tri-X. They went away because digital cameras eventually offered similar quality with far greater convenience. Film quality had hit a plateau and sensor quality eventually caught up. The first film cameras to go were the point and shoots, then the serious amateur cameras, and the last folks to give up their rolls of film were the SLR users. Exact same thing is happening to digital cameras in the fight against smartphones. Take a sample image from a full frame DSLR in 2007 and compare it to an image from the latest full frame camera today. You'll have to admit the improvements (to the naked eye) are minimal. Now look at a sample image from the original iPhone in 2007 and compare it to images from the iPhone 5s. Multiply those improvements exponentially for another 5 years and you'll have to agree that the article isn't just doom and gloom, but cold hard reality.

Today's images are purely software, and as such can be manipulated to any look the software designer can imagine, and the underlying processors can produce. I'm sure somewhere in Cupertino there's an Apple engineer hard at work right now perfecting the algorithm for the Leica bokeh look. Ultimately, if the fight over the next 5 years is going to be between cash strapped hardware manufacturers like Nikon and Canon vs. cash rich software experts like Apple and Google, then the fight may not be a pretty one to watch for those of us who can't imagine a world without our beloved camera names.

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