Joined on Jun 6, 2006


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On Walker Evans' iconic 'American Photographs' turns 75 article (39 comments in total)
In reply to:

bigdaddave: The picture of the woman is a strong picture, the others are really just 'documentary' shots of the era in which they lived and nothing special at all

Adams also photographed rural workers. People are a more delicate subject than rocks.

Direct link | Posted on Aug 12, 2013 at 15:10 UTC
On Walker Evans' iconic 'American Photographs' turns 75 article (39 comments in total)

Nearly anyone photographed in that era, rich or poor, would have looked sad about the mouth. Bad teeth. Don't dare smile.

But times change. Besides better oral hygiene, fluoridation, and dental care, people's attitude towards cameras evolve too. Today it would be impossible to marshall people to pose in front of cameras, knowing they'd be made to look tawdry for the sake of someone else's honors or schadenfreude.

Direct link | Posted on Aug 12, 2013 at 15:09 UTC as 4th comment | 1 reply

The hyper-critical savants ignore the massive negative effect smart phones have had on call camera sales. In a collapsing market, especially one where products change slowly and have been displaced with an entirely new creature, there are no magic solutions. No trick based on sensor size, body color, or retro look will work. Price cuts are self-defeating and won't halt the migration to a tool which is more versatile and convenient.

Kudos to all the camera companies for trying to fight. But they've all been burned. All will have to cut production and costs. The old days won't come back. The lower and middle market will be small, even if it does not vanish, permanently. Cameras will be fewer in number, be made by fewer companies, and cost quite a bit.

Direct link | Posted on Aug 9, 2013 at 14:59 UTC as 93rd comment | 1 reply
In reply to:

Twingphoto: I always thought that Nikon made the sensor so small to avoid cannibalising their "priority" lines of DSLRs. If true, this failure serves them right; never make a product that is not great in its own right. Ever.

If not true, what were they thinking? Which market segments cares enough for flexibility to want interchangeable lenses and at the same time does not care at all about sensor size?

I would have reduced the pixel count to make distance to other product lines, not the sensor size. It would have gone well with an image of a new innovative product line; look how well received the new 4 megapixel mobiles are. People now get the idea of lower pixel counts; they didn't a few years back.

Me, I got the Fujifilm X-E1 instead, couple of primes and the kit lens, a flash, and new hiking boots. I would never ever have gotten a lowly compact with poor specs; not even if it has interchangeable lenses, is branded "Nikon", and comes in pink, too.


Smart phones and tablets sell very well because they are jacks of all trades. A Dell or HP can offer a superb gaming PC, with top-of-line specs, but still trail in earnings because they can't make the most popular 1GB tablet.

Direct link | Posted on Aug 9, 2013 at 14:48 UTC
In reply to:

StevieF: Nikon could have had their 'cake and eat it' Nothing wrong with a 1 inch sensor as such (as Sony have shown) and could have preserved their DSLR sales, but the stupidity in the way that it was presented, completely misunderstanding the kind of customer who MIGHT be interested in the system - it was neither for the phone/P&S upgrader or the DSLR user as a smaller system.
And the price!!!!!!
I DID buy a V1 when the price crashed (£300 for body & 2 lenses was a bit too good to miss, very happy with it in certain circumstances, despite everything) and almost felt like 2 fingers to Nikon for being so arrogant- and Im a long term Nikon (D)SLR fan.
I'm about to go OM-D route.

Sony's camera sales and margins are down too. Nor would it work to make nothing but $650 RX100's, since there just aren't that many people who will spend that on a camera, period, if a phone can take pictures and do a whole lot more.

Direct link | Posted on Aug 9, 2013 at 14:43 UTC
In reply to:

marike6: The mirrorless bubble seems to be bursting (or at least showing holes), and Nikon is likely the first of several traditional camera companies to scale back production of MILCs. Although the Nikon 1 system managed to put Nikon in 4th place in the overall worldwide mirrorless market, perhaps enthusiasts are realizing that other than smaller size, there are few real advantages to investing in pricey MILC systems that ultimately don't outperform their DSLRs. It's a pity as the Nikon 1 managed to innovate in some areas where others MILCs weren't able to.

But Nikon is not a large conglomerate like a Sony or Panasonic who can make up for poor sales and unprofitable MILC systems with revenue from other divisions.

Sony is losing money, save for its financial sector, which has not reason to go on subsidizing money-losers. Panasonic is no cherry bowl either. Companies don't make up for losses by profits they don't have elsewhere. Any losses drag down the consolidiated result and depress shareholder value.

Direct link | Posted on Aug 9, 2013 at 14:30 UTC
In reply to:

Pixnat2: The best thing would be that Nikon join the m4/3 consortium and make a m4/3 camera ;-)

Serioulsy, Nikon makes the best DSLR's, but fail completely with mirrorless and compacts. Time to change strategy?

Yeah, join Oly and Panny, both of whom are losing money. Wonderful proposal.

Direct link | Posted on Aug 9, 2013 at 13:49 UTC
In reply to:

beavertown: The thing that kills Nikon 1 is Nikon's own greed.

Nikon V1, V2 are very expensive. V1 lowered its price but the V2 only drops its ridiculous price a bit.

The 1 system's lenses are not cheap, the price tags are competitive to some of their DX lenses.

Having said that, the advantage of the 1 system may be the tiny sensor which can make brilliant superzoom.

Before it is too late, please release some super telephone lenses along with large aperture prime lenses and LOWER the prices!

Wrong. Nikon initially priced the V1 to make money, but sales volume just did not meet expectations. Later it discounted, but margins fell too low for the modes increase in volume to make up the difference. Nikon gambled that the V1 would find buyers without displacing other sales. It failed. The m4/3 or NEX products are not winners by default, since their makers are losing money too.

The ONLY way to make money selling camera gear is to find a clientele that will pay the costs of capital and production for a premium good. Any who survive in the camera business will probably need to discontinue bargain products and cater only to a smallish market that pays extra.

Direct link | Posted on Aug 9, 2013 at 13:45 UTC
In reply to:

Asylum Photo: Tell that to Olympus, Panasonic, Sony and Fuji. The mirrorless market is fine, as long as you produce a high quality camera.

Are Olympus, Panasonic, Sony, or Fuji making any money on their cameras?

Direct link | Posted on Aug 9, 2013 at 13:39 UTC
In reply to:

Kookie B: Silly Nikon . . .

All Nikon had to do was give its loyal users a mirrorless with ...

- built-in EVF
- 16-24mp APC-S sensor (a la the NEX)
- fast lenses
- and -- importantly, yet illogically -- take a styling clue from Fuji by making it look like the natural descendant of the classic "S" series rangefinders

... and then stand back as sales soar.

This isn't very hard. Hello? Nikon? Is anybody listening?

Regards to all,

Ed B.

Thumbs down. That would only cannibalize the D3200. The "sales soar" fantasy shows a rather parroquial notion that the world is waiting for more cameras. It's not. It would be more likely to respond to a shampoo branded and promoted by a baldy.

Direct link | Posted on Aug 9, 2013 at 13:37 UTC

Quarterly sales were down 8%. Profits shrank by 74%, from 8.9% to 2.5% of sales. The camera market is contracting permanently. To survive, Nikon must cut back on numbers of products, perhaps limiting itself to prosumer clients to care to pay extra money for heavy retro gear, and who don't expect a D800 to make phone calls, give road directions, or play Angry Birds.

Trouble is, those stalwart geezers don't buy or upgrade very often. The Social Security check just won't allow it. Their Medicare co-payments will rise too fast to buy gear anyway. Commercial imaging margins are paper thin, and photojournalism is headed the way of the dodo.

The Nikon 1 was an interpid attempt to lure buyers no longer attracted to P&S, but who would not want a big DSLR either. Yes, it did deliver a quiver to sales, or a year or so, but that niche is saturated and has nowhere to go. This may be the fate of the NEX, m4/3, and Canon compacts too.

Direct link | Posted on Aug 9, 2013 at 13:33 UTC as 108th comment
On Build your own point-and-shoot camera with Bigshot article (55 comments in total)

Too bad other cameras aren't as friendly to tinkering or rebuilding. Of course, then they might not be as small or snuggy constructed. Anyone who dismantles a P&S to clean a sensor also discovers that dust ingested by the operation may exceed the dust removed.

Oh, how about a medium format version of the same instructional "toy"?

One thing you can't do, however, is build your own sensor. Home brewing or gardening are an easier reach.

Direct link | Posted on Aug 7, 2013 at 13:22 UTC as 21st comment

Might a contemporary DSLR or camcorder, with a plain f/2.8 lens, shoot video comparable to what Kubrick needed for candlelit film shots in 1974? Didn't the Barry Lyndon scenes benefit from a wee dose of supplementary lighting anyway? There were at least a whole lot of candles. A single candle, on the other hand, would be a difficult (lense flare, blowout) shot, except maybe for a facial closeup. Its hard to photograph both the moon against a starry sky too.

Direct link | Posted on Aug 6, 2013 at 14:08 UTC as 32nd comment | 5 replies
On Camera shipments continue to fall article (136 comments in total)
In reply to:

John Miles: So at some point the manufacturers just might, perhaps, oh I don't know, in a fit of random panic, possibly just sit at a computer and actually..........


Then they will learn what to manufacture. Because I don't know what's guiding the designs at the moment, but it sure isn't the people using 'em.

Get movies the heck out of some cameras and start optimising for stills. A one touch movie button is a proper waste of space of wherever it is. Get manual lenses onto small sensor cameras. Supply 28-400mm lenses across all formats. Launch lens change 2/3" with proper bodies. Bring back the hand grip. Dpreview. Please create a museum of the best all time digital cameras, by vote. Include their image quality in available comparison results. Show the manufacturers that IQ is going nowhere in small sensor cameras. Just recently my daughters Casio S-500 smacked my new Lumix FT-20 for six. How is that remotely possible! We need timeless benchmark quality for each camera type.

Grumpy Old Men IV?

The forums are full of rants by people who might fit in museums themselves. They want to roll back the clock 40 years. They dream of a camera equivalent to a 1970 Pontiac Firebird, at 1970 prices, but with the reliability of a 2013 Camry and the mileage of a hybrid.

The notion that video has impaired cameras is rubbish. The RX1 is a still photo camera with a second-rate video function that does not detract from the photo performance. Most DSLRs remain primarily photographic, not video, tools.

Phones will soon feature 2/3" sensors or small tele-adapters. There is no money to be made by ramping up production of "quality compact" cameras, if most of the market will prefer phones anyway.

Direct link | Posted on Aug 2, 2013 at 13:56 UTC
On Camera shipments continue to fall article (136 comments in total)
In reply to:

DustSpeck: Give me a break, are the manufacturers really that stupid? New Olympus EP-5: $999 for the body; New Panasonic Lumix GX7: $999 for the body. Do they really think these are going to sell? Right price is $599-$699. I'd like an Olympus 12mm wide angle for my EP-1... at say $499, not $799. Do they think everyone works for Goldman Sachs?

For the several thousand "Pros" that earn a living with their work, perhaps $6 or $7 grand is a reasonable investment. But the mass market is the hobbiest and as their paychecks continue to shrink, so will camera sales. Just like the disaster in the PC industry, a tablet computer is "good enough" to browse the internet, just like a cell phone camera is "good enough" for pictures because I can't afford a new EP-5, GX1, or 70D.

Cut prices? How to do that if products already sell at a loss?

There are high fixed costs associated with advanced cameras. The sales volumes are too low to make any profit, unless the prices are rather high. People who buy newly announced models do pay a premium. But that's their affair. 2011 or 2012 models sell quite cheaply. Meanwhile, to cut a lens price by half might prompt unit sales to rise by 30%, but entail a loss on each unit sold.

Direct link | Posted on Aug 2, 2013 at 13:39 UTC
On Panasonic GX7 First Impressions Review article (1201 comments in total)
In reply to:

martin0reg: For the price of a om-d the new IS should be as good as the five-axis IS from olympus, especially on video. Dear DP, please make a comparison in the forthcoming test.
Why is the grip so big? It seems to be very near to the lens...

Panasonic is not claiming that the IBIS is five-axis, nor even as good as the in-lens Mega OIS of earlier models. The deficiency may not matter much for still photography, or even be an acceptable trade-off for people who want to use assorted non-stabilized lenses, but could impair video competitiveness.

Direct link | Posted on Aug 1, 2013 at 17:03 UTC
In reply to:

Shamael: I have seen it more than a week ago on a German Photo magazine, my first impression was, "heh, Sony goes 4/3". Seems that the alliance with Oly pays off. Sony works with Oly on the Nex FF, Isis on that new camera, Oly works on the lenses for it, and should show up around end of this year.

Stev Huff was fire and flame to anounce a "presumed" body price of 2800$, what left me react and tell him that double sensor size must obligatory mean double price, while you need not much more material to make a FF camera than any Apsc. One nedds to rememeber that RX1 has a lens that is worth the price alone and the body is just a gift in the combo. I wish Sony made cameras that sell and that anyone can pay for. This permanent overpricing of FF cameras to protect the Apsc market sucks. The 1500$ D600 and 1800$ A99 remained a dream and as it seems, sales for those gear do not boom as expected. Maybe one should review prices a bit and sell at affordable ones, not at "special" gear rates for 1% ers.

Panasonic (Mashita) makes components for Sony Vaios, and Sony makes sensors for camera sold by Panasonic and others.

Direct link | Posted on Aug 1, 2013 at 15:06 UTC
In reply to:

Joe Talks Photo Gear: As a past owner of the GF-1 and GX-1 I say I would rather own either than dump $999 for the latest iteration. Let's look at it in say 9-12 months when it's selling for $599 or less. Panasonic lost its mojo quite a while ago. Olympus took it from them. Don't want to believe this? Just look at the recent $200 off of the GH3.

A G5 (if you can find one) or a GF5 are a good buy right now. But lenses are what tie up most of the investment, and only certain models ever sell at much of a discount. The 14-140mm or fast primes stay rather expensive.

Direct link | Posted on Aug 1, 2013 at 15:04 UTC
In reply to:

justmeMN: In the USA, you have to be an enthusiast, to know that Panasonic makes cameras. It's a pretty obscure camera brand name here.

True, you don't find the micro 4/3 models at any most brick & mortar retailers at all. But some stores do carry the (dwindling) P&S models.

Direct link | Posted on Aug 1, 2013 at 15:02 UTC
In reply to:

TN Args: Why would they choose an eye point of only 17.5mm? Surely eyeglass wearers like me cannot live with that? My camera's eye point is 22mm and it is only just enough when wearing glasses. I would not want to go below 21mm.

What were they thinking?

The eyeglass problem involves more than people in need of corrective lenses, since an EVF / OVF is often needed most under bright sun, when an LCD is useless and many will wear sunglasses. Would polarized lenses skew perception via an EVF? Does the diopter need to be adjusted differently?

Direct link | Posted on Aug 1, 2013 at 15:00 UTC
Total: 426, showing: 301 – 320
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