Mirrorless Takes Another Hammering

Started May 17, 2013 | Discussions
OP (unknown member) Forum Pro • Posts: 13,144
Re: Mirrorless Takes Another Hammering
1

cplunk wrote:

rattymouse wrote:

As seen at sansmirror.com, the final numbers are in for mirrorless last year and the results are NOT pretty.  The main mirrorless players are either losing enormous money (Panasonic and Olympus), losing some money (Fujifilm), or barely eeking out a profit (Sony).

Canon and Nikon are profitable, but it is virtually certain that their DSLR sales are carrying that load.

Another bloodbath for the mirrorless makers, leading to the question, will they all survive until next year's financial reports??

Taking the conclusions of the financial statements as a whole tells you really nothing about the sales or profits of the cameras from Panasonic or Sony.  Unlike Nikon, they do far more than make cameras.

Sony, for instance, is one of the largest Hollywood movie distributors, also one of the large record companies around.

I have a 10" circular saw blade and a microwave make by Panasonic. Which is a division of Matsushita electronic, that also builds in flight entertainment systems along with involvement in countless other industries.

But I guess if you need some reason to bash "mirrorless" cameras, cause you think the future of technology involves a mirror, more power to you, the bottom line fits the story.

I dont shoot with an SLR, I shoot mirrorless. But if you think putting your pre-concieved ideas into my posts helps you deal with the fact that mirrorless cannot turn a profit, then more power to you.

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OP (unknown member) Forum Pro • Posts: 13,144
Re: EVERYONE doubling down on Mirrorless
3

Just Having Fun wrote:

Every camera maker said they are going to focus MORE on mirrorless.  Olympus is dropping P&S to put more into mirrorless.  Sony is getting rid of the mirror even in FF.  Nikon and Canon said they are going to spend more on it too.

Everyone seems to know the future is cameras without mirrors, except a handfull of people here.

Nonsense.  SLR's dramatically outsell mirrorless.  It is not even a contest.  Not only that, but the sales difference is INCREASING towards SLR's not mirrorless.  If this was a boxing match, it would be stopped and mirrorless would be staggering back to its corner now.

I remember whe electronic typewriters made their last big push.  PCs were too expensive and no one thought they would catch on in the home.  Typewriters/wordprocessors had 90% of the market.

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OP (unknown member) Forum Pro • Posts: 13,144
Re: Mirrorless Takes Another Hammering
1

Don't overestimate mirrorless' success here in Asia.  I live in China and it is pretty hard to find any Mirrorless in the stores.  You can find them, but you have to look beyond the massive amounts of Canon, Nikon, and Sony (very popular) SLR's here.

China is one of the largest photographic markets in the world now, and it is very, very, VERY heavily biased towards SLR's.

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RichRMA Veteran Member • Posts: 4,073
DSLR's outsell mirrorless for 2 reasons
1

1.  Nikon and Canon are by far the main camera sellers and they created very poor mirrorless offerings.  One whose sensor is too small to compete and the other which is just a big P&S.

2.  N. Americans are hyper-conservative and continue to buy predominantly big, black DSLR's because the perception is that if it's big and weighs more, it must be providing more value.

It's the Walmart mentality.

Jeff Veteran Member • Posts: 5,087
Ratty, I'm not so sure about your thesis ....
1

rattymouse wrote:

Just Having Fun wrote:

Every camera maker said they are going to focus MORE on mirrorless.  Olympus is dropping P&S to put more into mirrorless.  Sony is getting rid of the mirror even in FF.  Nikon and Canon said they are going to spend more on it too.

Everyone seems to know the future is cameras without mirrors, except a handfull of people here.

Nonsense.  SLR's dramatically outsell mirrorless.  It is not even a contest.  Not only that, but the sales difference is INCREASING towards SLR's not mirrorless.  If this was a boxing match, it would be stopped and mirrorless would be staggering back to its corner now.

Ratty,

I'm not sure that's true. In the last year or so, mirrorless seems to have captured 20% or so of the market and appears more or less steady. The falloff in shipments over the last few months may be due to channel stuffing before Christmas.  SLR's indeed outsell mirrorless, but its still early in a classic cycle for the adoption of new technology.

In other posts you cite your experience in camera shops in China where it is evidently hard to find them on the shelves.  There could be a few reasons for that, among them would Olympus and Panasonic using different distribution channels. Or they may be in short supply.  Anecdotal observations have to be considered with a grain of salt.

As I've attempted to show with CIPA data in other posts, I don't see evidence to support "Mirrorless is getting hammered".  Am I missing something?

Jeff

I remember whe electronic typewriters made their last big push.  PCs were too expensive and no one thought they would catch on in the home.  Typewriters/wordprocessors had 90% of the market.

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justmeMN Veteran Member • Posts: 6,886
Panasonic to eliminate divisions

From Associated Press:

"Panasonic, which lost a record 772 billion yen the previous year — one of the biggest losses ever in Japan — acknowledged that its three-year business plan had fallen far short of the desired results. Under its next three-year management plan, it promised to immediately eliminate unprofitable businesses."

I don't know if Panasonic's digital camera business is or isn't profitable, but it's clear that big changes are coming to the company.

Jeff Veteran Member • Posts: 5,087
Re: DSLR's outsell mirrorless for 2 reasons

RichRMA wrote:

1.  Nikon and Canon are by far the main camera sellers and they created very poor mirrorless offerings.  One whose sensor is too small to compete and the other which is just a big P&S.

The Nikon CX format is actually selling quite well. In fact, I saw one place where the J1 was the market leader in terms of units sold (not sure how current that is).  You may not like it from a technical perspective, but don't count out the CX format.  There are 100's of millions of smartphone users out there for whom the J1 and V1 would be a very nice step up.

2.  N. Americans are hyper-conservative and continue to buy predominantly big, black DSLR's because the perception is that if it's big and weighs more, it must be providing more value.

It's the Walmart mentality.

Sooner or later someone is going to get smart and create a killer product in this segment. The inertia you, I think, is because there's no one option that stands out above the others in the eyes of most consumers, so they buy based on what their friends are telling them.

OP (unknown member) Forum Pro • Posts: 13,144
Re: Ratty, I'm not so sure about your thesis ....
1

Jeff wrote:

rattymouse wrote:

Just Having Fun wrote:

Every camera maker said they are going to focus MORE on mirrorless.  Olympus is dropping P&S to put more into mirrorless.  Sony is getting rid of the mirror even in FF.  Nikon and Canon said they are going to spend more on it too.

Everyone seems to know the future is cameras without mirrors, except a handfull of people here.

Nonsense.  SLR's dramatically outsell mirrorless.  It is not even a contest.  Not only that, but the sales difference is INCREASING towards SLR's not mirrorless.  If this was a boxing match, it would be stopped and mirrorless would be staggering back to its corner now.

Ratty,

I'm not sure that's true. In the last year or so, mirrorless seems to have captured 20% or so of the market and appears more or less steady. The falloff in shipments over the last few months may be due to channel stuffing before Christmas.  SLR's indeed outsell mirrorless, but its still early in a classic cycle for the adoption of new technology.

In other posts you cite your experience in camera shops in China where it is evidently hard to find them on the shelves.  There could be a few reasons for that, among them would Olympus and Panasonic using different distribution channels.

Or lack of distribution.

Or they may be in short supply.  Anecdotal observations have to be considered with a grain of salt.

Agreed.  But coupled with additional experiences, (very few mirrorless sightings in the wild vs rampant DSLR sightings) adds more weight.

As I've attempted to show with CIPA data in other posts, I don't see evidence to support "Mirrorless is getting hammered".  Am I missing something?

Profits.  That's what is missing.  The big mirrorless players arent making money.

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GaryR60 Contributing Member • Posts: 656
Re: Mirrorless Takes Another Hammering
1

rattymouse wrote:

As seen at sansmirror.com, the final numbers are in for mirrorless last year and the results are NOT pretty.  The main mirrorless players are either losing enormous money (Panasonic and Olympus), losing some money (Fujifilm), or barely eeking out a profit (Sony).

Canon and Nikon are profitable, but it is virtually certain that their DSLR sales are carrying that load.

Another bloodbath for the mirrorless makers, leading to the question, will they all survive until next year's financial reports??

Given what I've read recently, about new lines of lenses, as well as new versions of mirrorless cameras, I find this very hard to believe. Could it be that these companies are losing money overall, due to other factors? It doesn't make any sense that they'd be doing what they are currently doing if they are losing money on these cameras. You know, a lot of the fiscal reports from large corporations with multiple product lines has more to do with the gyrations of their stock than it does the profits they are making from the actual products they make.

MichaelKJ Veteran Member • Posts: 3,466
Re: Mirrorless Takes Another Hammering
1

GaryR60 wrote:

rattymouse wrote:

As seen at sansmirror.com, the final numbers are in for mirrorless last year and the results are NOT pretty.  The main mirrorless players are either losing enormous money (Panasonic and Olympus), losing some money (Fujifilm), or barely eeking out a profit (Sony).

Canon and Nikon are profitable, but it is virtually certain that their DSLR sales are carrying that load.

Another bloodbath for the mirrorless makers, leading to the question, will they all survive until next year's financial reports??

Given what I've read recently, about new lines of lenses, as well as new versions of mirrorless cameras, I find this very hard to believe. Could it be that these companies are losing money overall, due to other factors? It doesn't make any sense that they'd be doing what they are currently doing if they are losing money on these cameras. You know, a lot of the fiscal reports from large corporations with multiple product lines has more to do with the gyrations of their stock than it does the profits they are making from the actual products they make.

I think it is clear that 2012 was a very bad year for the camera industry.  Compacts had by far the largest drop in sales, but dSLRs and mirrorless also fell far short of expectations.

As far as the new lenses, new mirrorless models and more companies entering the mirrorless market, you have to keep in mind two things: 1) mirrorless was rapidly growing until 2012 and all of the decisions about the mirrorless lenses and cameras that were released last year were made during the period of rapid growth; and 2) mirrorless technology is rapidly progressing and will continue to do so.

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MichaelKJ Veteran Member • Posts: 3,466
Re: Panasonic to eliminate divisions

justmeMN wrote:

From Associated Press:

"Panasonic, which lost a record 772 billion yen the previous year — one of the biggest losses ever in Japan — acknowledged that its three-year business plan had fallen far short of the desired results. Under its next three-year management plan, it promised to immediately eliminate unprofitable businesses."

I don't know if Panasonic's digital camera business is or isn't profitable, but it's clear that big changes are coming to the company.

The following is from Panasonic's annual report. Revenue for cameras as a whole decreased 30%. However, unit sales of their mirrorless cameras increased 70% and sales on a "value basis" also improved.

Despite the Poor Performance of Compact Digital Cameras, Robust Results in Digital Interchangeable Lens Cameras

Despite continued growth in developing countries, demand for compact digital cameras declined due mainly to the extensive use of smartphones in developed countries and lengthening replacement cycle. Under these circumstances, Panasonic’s results mirrored the year-on-year drop in the amount of market sales that in turn reflected the steady deterioration in prices and the strong yen. In fiscal 2013, the Company will focus on thoroughly reinforcing its structure and systems, enhancing efficiency, introducing high value-added models, and expanding sales in developing countries.

Turning to its digital interchangeable lens cameras, Panasonic took concrete steps to strengthen its product lineup as well as its sales systems and structure. This included the release of LUMIX MDC-GX1, a mirrorless interchangeable lens camera. Unit sales increased 1.7 times compared with the previous year while sales on a value basis improved substantially year on year. In fiscal 2013, the Company will release products with improved basic functionality while endeavoring to strengthen the lens business. Moving forward, Panasonic will continue to expand its share of the mirrorless interchangeable lens camera market.

panasonic_ar2012e.pdf  (page25-26)

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Sk8trguy Regular Member • Posts: 293
wasn't it 100% to 0% a few yeara ago?
2

iirc, dslrs held 100% of the market and mirrorless had 0% a few years back.  now it is 80:20.

a few years back canon said there is no way they would enter the market and Nikon had their mouths shut.  now they are spending a large portion of their$ on r&d and both are updating their current mirrorless systems.  I agree with everyone that the tide is turning.  it is not a question of 'if' but 'when'

tecnoworld
tecnoworld Veteran Member • Posts: 7,208
Re: Mirrorless Takes Another Hammering
1

Well, for many ppl, mirrorless are still just pumped up compact p&s cameras, while they are of course much much more.

What I wanted to mean is that samsung, a very big player, has a mirrorless system (the nx) which is improving more and more through the generations (now we are at the third one) and even released the source code to attract geeks and developers towards the system, being able to add featires (focus stacking on camera would be my personal dream, but there are a lot of opportunities, almost unlimited given the powerful quad core cpu, same than that on galaxy s3).

Thus, the panorama could suddenly change in the next few years, if such a big player believes and invests in its mirrorless system.

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OP (unknown member) Forum Pro • Posts: 13,144
Re: wasn't it 100% to 0% a few yeara ago?
1

Sk8trguy wrote:

iirc, dslrs held 100% of the market and mirrorless had 0% a few years back.  now it is 80:20.

Absolutely meaningless statistic.  DSLR sales are still exceedingly high and there is no trend down with the cause being attributed to mirrorless.

a few years back canon said there is no way they would enter the market and Nikon had their mouths shut.  now they are spending a large portion of their$ on r&d and both are updating their current mirrorless systems.  I agree with everyone that the tide is turning.  it is not a question of 'if' but 'when'

Just as long as you realize that you are 100% religious about this and not at all data drive.

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tex Veteran Member • Posts: 7,511
Ummm, wasn't that Disraeli? /nt
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Sk8trguy Regular Member • Posts: 293
oookay, back to reality
3

rattymouse wrote:

Sk8trguy wrote:

iirc, dslrs held 100% of the market and mirrorless had 0% a few years back.  now it is 80:20.

Absolutely meaningless statistic.

20% of the interchangeable lens market gets taken up in a few short years, and you call it meaningless.

that is like saying if hybrids and electric cars take over 20% of the auto market, it's meaningless if other sales remain constant.   in the real world it means that is 20% more sales you could have had but gave way.  which is why everyone now is jumping on the band wagon and putting most of their r&d money into it.

MichaelKJ Veteran Member • Posts: 3,466
Re: Wrong on both counts

RichRMA wrote:

1.  Nikon and Canon are by far the main camera sellers and they created very poor mirrorless offerings.  One whose sensor is too small to compete and the other which is just a big P&S.

Even if both companies had created terrific mirrorless cameras the vast majority of their customers wouldn't have suddenly switched.  In fact, the EOS-M is currently the best selling mirrorless camera in Japan and the black double kit lens configuration is 4th among ILCs. The other 9 cameras in the top 10 are DSLRs.

2.  N. Americans are hyper-conservative and continue to buy predominantly big, black DSLR's because the perception is that if it's big and weighs more, it must be providing more value.

It is funny how many people accept this ridiculous stereotype without offering any evidence of its validity.  Perhaps you would like to explain why Apple had to finally bring out an iPad mini even though Steve Jobs said they never would.  Why is the MacBook Air outselling the 15" MacBook Pro? When the Mini Cooper was first released in the US, they were back ordered for six months and many people paid several thousand over list price to get one.

As far as big is concerned, GM just had a record year in China led by sales of their Buicks. And, the large phablet phones are also a big hit in East Asia.

It's the Walmart mentality.

Walmart is #2 behind Sun Art in market share in China with over 380 stores.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887324883604578396090449466504.html

On the other hand, Walmart recently abandoned their latest attempt to open a store here in NYC.

The one thing we do agree on is that mirrorless has a bright future. However, it remains to be seen which mirrorless brands will survive.

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JJLMD
JJLMD Junior Member • Posts: 47
Re: Mirrorless Takes Another Hammering
1

I'm a former musician who buys Mark Levinson and Bryston gear so that I can hear music that sounds like, well, music. Unfortunately, I don't know a soul who listens to music on anything beyond the car stereo or iPhone. Similarly, pretty much everyone I know is content with the cell phone for their photographic needs. I have no one that shares my fascination with cameras that, unlike iPhones or super zooms, allow me to capture clear pictures in low light yet are easy to tote around. Where are all the enthusiasts?

Conversely, there are plenty of wine, watch and car enthusiasts (including myself).

Capturing beautiful pictures or hearing sublime music is deeply meaningful to me. Why do I feel so alone?

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thorkilry
thorkilry Contributing Member • Posts: 874
Re: Mirrorless Takes Another Hammering

MichaelKJ wrote:

thorkilry wrote:

It is funny how people se things  diffrently.

The stock holders reaction to the 2013 year end result, was a +500p from 2715 to 3215...

Given that Olympus is, for all practical purposes, a medical equipment business, you comment is irrelevant as far as the issue of the health of mirrorless cameras is concerned.

No, as you say, Imagning business is the driver of the Olympus Brand.

So teoretical Medical business should pay Imagning business for Branding.

Ofcause business is about profit, but Olympus will not drop mirrorless, as long world marked are healty, they have a 100 year anniversary to celebrate in 2019...

The following is from an interview with the CEO in the annual report:

Question:

The competitive environment facing
the Imaging Business and the profit
structure seem more adverse than
those facing the other core business
domains. In such circumstances,
what reasons are there for Olympus
to continue the Imaging Business?

Answer:

As I mentioned previously, the Imaging Business is simultaneously a brand driver and an optical and
imaging technology driver. An important purpose of the Imaging Business is to apply imaging
technologies created in an adverse competitive environment to the medical and life science fields

.....

If we didn’t have the Imaging Business, a seven-year gap would occur in imaging technologies
that might make it difficult to introduce the latest innovations into the medical field.

http://www.olympus-global.com/en/common/pdf/ar2012e.pdf (see page 26)

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johnvr1 Regular Member • Posts: 199
Re: Mirrorless Takes Another Hammering

This thread seems a bit short on facts and long on assumptions.

I just hope they all survive, as I enjoy my mirrorless and my DSLR gear.

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