Why aren't there any compact fullframe zoom cameras?

Started Feb 14, 2013 | Discussions thread
PicOne Veteran Member • Posts: 6,931
Re: Why aren't there any compact fullframe zoom cameras?

joejack951 wrote:

kemal erdogan wrote:

Hi Folks,

No so long ago, there were a lot of really compact film cameras; complete with zoom lenses. Why aren't there any such cameras anymore?

Think, for example, excellent Olympus Olympus mju II ZOOM that I had (was stolen). It is a full frame camera with a very compact body and tiny (compared to other full frame covering lenses) zoom lens that covers 35-115 mm range. (Note Sony RX-1 does not count as it really is not that compact and does not have a zoom lens).

What am I missing here?


Excellent? I just read the specs and if a manufacturer released a camera like that today, it would be considered junk. From: http://camerapedia.wikia.com/wiki/Olympus_mju_II_ZOOM_115

Let's just look at the lens specs: 38-115mm (f/4.5-9.7) zoom lens

Where do I even start? Wow, 38mm "wide"! That's barely wider than a normal field of view. And with a blazing fast aperture of f/4.5. Imagine the depth of field control. Not.

f/9.7 at the telephoto end? Really? No DSLR on the market can even focus with a lens than dim, then again, there's probably little need as just about everything will be in focus especially if you stop down for some sharpness.

That page doesn't list a max shutter speed but the ZOOM 80 is listed as 1/600th. Again, wow! Well, given the ultra-slow lens, at least it won't be limiting outdoors. Just don't try to shoot anything moving faster than Grandma with it.

I can't find any viewfinder specs but given the lens and shutter, I wouldn't expect much. It's not a TTL viewfinder so it's not going to be anywhere near 100% of the frame and accuracy is likely to be as pitiful as lens speed.

Ok, now that I'm done with my (light-hearted) bashing, I'll add some useful (maybe) info. To get an idea of why film cameras could be so small, simply look at what's not in a compact film camera:

  • large rear LCD
  • memory card slot(s)
  • audio/video I/O jacks
  • large, high voltage lithium ion battery
  • buttons to manage all the functions
  • EMI/RFI shielding for all the electronics
  • processor for digital sensor

I'm sure I could go on but I've spent enough time on this post

You're right.. these things aren't found in a compact film camera, but they are found in compact digital cameras.   The OP's question is why can't you get a FF sensor and lens comparable to those used on the old compact film cameras.

eg.. this was a nice little walkabout, albeit non zoom.

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'Everything in photography boils down to what's sharp and what's fuzzy.'
-Gaylord Herron

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