Will the A9 actually be a "wakeup call" for Sony?

Started Apr 20, 2017 | Discussions thread
havoc315 Veteran Member • Posts: 4,241
Re: Size vs. Pixels-and-bits

em jo photo wrote:

havoc315 wrote:

em jo photo wrote:

A Owens wrote:

em jo photo wrote:

L Copps wrote:

The Nikon 1 lenses were also slow and way inferior to DX and FX lenses. Nikon 1 was a second class system. Other 1" systems like the Sony RX-100 smoked it.

No one's defending Nikon 1.

Except, wait! I am! In a strange and non-obvious way! Not because the 1 V3 is a particularly good camera or a viable system, but because it demonstrated, 3 years ago, that Nikon could deliver today's headline A9 features (20 FPS with full-tracking autofocus, 1/16000 silent global electronic shutter with minimal rolling) in a mirrorless platform.

It is the readout speed of the new sensor which makes all the innovations of the new Sony possible. The question is whether Nikon can get access to this sensor technology and how they will implement the innovations made possible by it.

Nikon doesn't need the the new sensor technology to compete with stills. They hit the mirrorless speed and AF targets in 2014 without it. And if you don't mind the crop, and can live with lower bitrates or fewer frame rates, they've shown us they don't need it for 4K video, either.

No they didn't...... That 2014 readout speed was for a 1" sensor --- significantly less data than a full frame sensor.

I think you got it mostly wrong here, havocman. Stop drinking the Sony Kool-Aid and your frown will turn upside down.

Number of pixels and bits per pixel = data. What does the size of the die those silicon photodiodes are on have to do with it?

A 1" sensor, 20 MP at 12 bits per pixel, delivers the exact same data footprint as a 135 sensor with 20 MP, reporting 12 bits per pixel.

In 2014, Nikon was hitting the mark with 18.3 megapixels at 12 bits per pixel. That's the data the camera has to run--doesn't matter that it came from a 1" die.

In 2017, Sony is trying to ooooo-and-ahhhh us all to death with those same speed targets, processing 24 megapixels at 12 bits per pixel. Doesn't matter that it came from a 135-size die. (The 12-bit processing, by the way: that was one of Sony's weenie press-release fine-print asterisks, right--that at top speed, the A9 isn't using a 14-bit pipeline?)

So, sure: you are right in the sense that 24 megapixels at 12 bits per pixel represents a bigger data footprint than 18.3 at 12 bits per pixel. But let's say Nikon used an off-the-shelf 16MP, FX-sized sized sensor: would you think Sony's 24 megapixels were "clobbering" it in real-world use? No. Of course not.

The real problem with this comparison: it pits Sony today against Nikon three years ago. Pretty unfair to Nikon. Why should we assume they haven't explored any of this, further, in the years that have passed?

So Nikon's got this, man. As of 2014, they were ready to jump into the mirrorless speed business anytime they choose.

As the A6000's failure to dent the D5X00 business teaches us: if the A9 sells, Nikon will compete with it. If the A9 doesn't sell, they won't. Geez, even Sony's hedging this whole A9 gambit with their own brand-new A99ii. If the A9 were such a sure bet, Sony would go all-in with it--there wouldn't still be any chips stacked on the SLT side of the table.

They aren't hedging.  They simply still have a-mount customers, so they are selling to those customers.   If they were hedging, they would still be developing a-mount lenses -- there hasn't been a new a-mount lens in about 5 years.

No--- transferring data from a small sensor is very very different than a large sensor.  Why do you think it wasn't done before now?!? If it was sooooo easy, then why wasn't everyone doing it 3 years ago?

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