Is micro four thirds on its way out?

Started Sep 21, 2017 | Discussions
3dwag
3dwag Veteran Member • Posts: 4,032
Re: Is micro four thirds on its way out?

puttin wrote:

Allan Brown wrote:

Mark9473 wrote:

Mikespirito wrote:

is micro 4/3 on its way out. Seeing as Crop sensor Mirrorless is on the rise

m43 is a crop sensor mirrorless. Your question makes no sense at all.

Wrong!

A crop sensor is one that still uses the lenses from the "original" sized sensor I.E. DX is a crop from FX.

M4/3 is not a crop as the lenses were designed for that size. Same with 1" sensors.

So, the m4/3 sensor with the native lenses is actually full frame.

The lens may cover the full size of the sensor, but that is a bit of a stretch since the term full frame is meaning the same size as 35mm film.

Actually, technically Allan Brown is correct.  Although the term “Full Frame” in some photography circles today is taken to mean the 24mm x 36mm digital sensor camera format, to many of us who grew up with film cameras it is only a recent slang which has become mainstream to describe that 24mm x 36mm format, and is really relevant only if that 24mm x 36mm sensor system is your “Reference” for smaller sensor cameras which can use the same lenses as the larger sensor.

For many years my main serious cameras (including some professional work) were 6x6cm, 6x7, and 6x9, and in the earliest years 4x5 inch, and even some dabbling with 8x10in.  I was also starting to use 135 film cameras (24x36mm frame size) for my personal and casual use, but I NEVER heard it referred to as “full frame”.  I lusted for an Olympus Pen for a while during that period — note that these were referred to as being “half-frame” 35mm (135) cameras but, again, in those days I never heard of a “full-frame” 35mm camera.

So, if a 24mm x 36mm is “full frame”, then what is a Hasselblad X1D?  OK, it is a “medium format” camera (but actually a cropped medium format camera compared to the original film format).

Yeah, I know that “full-frame” has pretty much gone mainstream to mean digital cameras with 24x36mm sensors.  Just call me Sour Grapes.

Still - “crop sensor” technically does mean the cameras which can use their bigger (original format) siblings’ lenses, though the image will be cropped compared to the larger sensor.  In terms of, say, a Canon 6D, a Canon 70D with an APS-C sensor is a “crop sensor”, and for EF lenses the 6D is “full-frame”, but really only w.r.t. the 6D sensor size as the reference.

And μ4/3 is its own format.  There are also some “cropped sensor” video cameras which use μ4/3 lenses.

This just shows the silliness of those that think full frame is something wonderful when all it means is the lenses were designed for the sensor size. It is marketing nonsense.

BTW, medium format is also full frame as is 8X10".

So, I take the above comment of "Crop sensor Mirrorless" to mean DX (APS-C) format.

Allan

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3dwag
3dwag Veteran Member • Posts: 4,032
Re: Is micro four thirds on its way out?

puttin wrote:

Allan Brown wrote:

puttin wrote:

Allan Brown wrote:

Mark9473 wrote:

Mikespirito wrote:

is micro 4/3 on its way out. Seeing as Crop sensor Mirrorless is on the rise

m43 is a crop sensor mirrorless. Your question makes no sense at all.

Wrong!

A crop sensor is one that still uses the lenses from the "original" sized sensor I.E. DX is a crop from FX.

M4/3 is not a crop as the lenses were designed for that size. Same with 1" sensors.

So, the m4/3 sensor with the native lenses is actually full frame.

The lens may cover the full size of the sensor, but that is a bit of a stretch since the term full frame is meaning the same size as 35mm film.

So, you bought into this silly nonsense like so many?

It is amazing how people will ignore the facts and continue to believe in a myth.

What myth ?

Allan

This just shows the silliness of those that think full frame is something wonderful when all it means is the lenses were designed for the sensor size. It is marketing nonsense.

Full frame lenses were around before the FF sensor. That is the F mount for Nikon. I have many lenses that cover the full frame sensor and they were made long before digital, so how were they designed for the sensor.

Except that, they did not originally refer to them as “full-frame”. See my reply here: https://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/60147191

BTW, medium format is also full frame as is 8X10".

So, I take the above comment of "Crop sensor Mirrorless" to mean DX (APS-C) format.

Allan

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HRC2016 Senior Member • Posts: 3,914
Why does this matter?
1

Every format is eventually on its way out.

The internal combustion engine is on its way out but people still buy cars with them.

There is no way to future proof your hobby or investment.

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danijel973
danijel973 Contributing Member • Posts: 853
Re: Is micro four thirds on its way out?
1

Ever since the 4/3 came out and I bought the E1 and the ZD 14-54mm f/2.8-3.5 combo, there have been continuous rumblings about 4/3 being a bad idea, how the sensor is too small, there aren't enough megapixels, high ISO is too noisy etc.

Then it morphed into m43 and although it's now at 20MP, high ISO is fine and the glass is excellent, some people just can't stop predicting its doom.

I shot some of my best stuff with 43 and m43 cameras. Image quality was always top notch, the optics were top notch, and there are two major camera manufacturers committed to the standard. It's not going away any time soon, from what I can tell.

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samtheman2014
samtheman2014 Veteran Member • Posts: 4,571
Re: a bit on Canon

Astrotripper wrote:

HeyItsJoel wrote:

Astrotripper wrote:

In the future, EOS M from Canon will probably join them.

Canon just needs to get off their ass and produce more native lenses for the M-line.

I actually find it interesting how Canon got about the EOS M. I think they will be a major player in mirrorless field, the same way they are now in the DSLR world.

Unlike Nikon, it looks like Canon had an actual long-term strategy for their mirrorless offering. Now that Canon finally has the technology to make good mirrorless cameras, it's probably just a matter of time before they start developing EF-M into its more mature form.

I agree Nikon did not support CX properly at all with some rather optimistic  overpricing at launch for a number of the cameras . However from a performance perspective the 1 system cameras are very good with an excellent AF system that was until fairly recently better than anything any other mirrorless maker had to offer , the cameras were very fast in operation { start-up , FPS etc } and even though limited compared to more evolved mirrorless systems like m43 they do still have native lenses covering from 18-810mm with VR { FF equiv AOV } , and a couple of fast primes including a fasty fity equiv and an F/1.2 portrait lens.

From a purely technological aspect I would suggest that the Nikon system was pretty good and those doubting that Nikon can make a serious mirrorless camera are kidding themselves. Whether or not they decide to do so is another question

As for EF-M lenses, do note how what they have is actually pretty well thought out. And affordable.

I think EF-M will quickly start replacing EF-S in the entry level segment and within few years will completely replace it.

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NCV
NCV Veteran Member • Posts: 8,789
Sure it is
4

M43, APS ,FF and 1"  are all on the way out of the photography mass market. Indeed they are already out.

I just see cell phones and ipads when I visit places tourists go.

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samtheman2014
samtheman2014 Veteran Member • Posts: 4,571
Re: Is micro four thirds on its way out?
1

danijel973 wrote:

Ever since the 4/3 came out and I bought the E1 and the ZD 14-54mm f/2.8-3.5 combo, there have been continuous rumblings about 4/3 being a bad idea, how the sensor is too small, there aren't enough megapixels, high ISO is too noisy etc.

4/3 was a bad idea it lost money from start to finish . In truth Olympus have only made a tiny profit in the last year from their camera division most of which was down to restructuring. Had Olympus not been making money elsewhere 4/3 and m43 would have been closed down long ago

Then it morphed into m43 and although it's now at 20MP, high ISO is fine and the glass is excellent, some people just can't stop predicting its doom.

It did not morph the DSLR system was a failure from a finacial perspective and was killed off . The support for using FT lenses on adapters is only really of use for the two top tier Olympus the E-M1 and E-M1II

I shot some of my best stuff with 43 and m43 cameras. Image quality was always top notch, the optics were top notch, and there are two major camera manufacturers committed to the standard. It's not going away any time soon, from what I can tell.

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brentbrent Veteran Member • Posts: 3,815
Re: Asking in the RIGHT place
3

FrankS009 wrote:

You are asking about this in the wrong place. You need an analysis from a professional camera market analyst.

Oh, pshaw!  Nowhere else can one ask such a question and receive accumulated group wisdom comparable to that of this forum! 

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Brent

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Lola1234 Regular Member • Posts: 142
Re: Is micro four thirds on its way out?

I think Olympus made this camera line so competitive in offering these "tools" that can produce such high quality photography that I doubt it will ever go "out".  I think we on the mft forum realize that.  For me in terms of quality results, my choice ended up being between a Canon EOS rebel and an Olympus mft.  Since I'm an anti-hype person I did not want the Canon.

Does anyone see the difference between a high quality sharp picture and picture that's so sharp it looks fake?  (before post processing).

Now if I could just find someone who's willing to answer very amateur questions and not laugh..........

3dwag
3dwag Veteran Member • Posts: 4,032
Re: Asking in the RIGHT place

brentbrent wrote:

FrankS009 wrote:

You are asking about this in the wrong place. You need an analysis from a professional camera market analyst.

Oh, pshaw! Nowhere else can one ask such a question and receive accumulated group wisdom comparable to that of this forum!

I resemble that remark! 😁

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Brent

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gary0319
gary0319 Veteran Member • Posts: 5,613
Re: Is micro four thirds on its way out?

Mikespirito wrote:

I bought a Panasonic GX8 for the video capabilities. From a camera standpoint the takes pretty good stills. But before I invest in more lenses, is micro 4/3 on its way out. Seeing as Crop sensor Mirrorless is on the rise

Not according to my local dealer that handles Nikon, Canon, Olympus and Sony. I quizzed him about how the Olympus cameras were fairing since they were the most recent addition to his lines.

His reply was that they did not cut into this Full Frame business at all, but did make a big dent in the crop sensors. As he put it the crop sensors are "neither fish nor fowl"...to big to be small and not big enough to be big.

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Astrotripper Veteran Member • Posts: 6,809
Re: a bit on Canon

samtheman2014 wrote:

Astrotripper wrote:

Unlike Nikon, it looks like Canon had an actual long-term strategy for their mirrorless offering.

I agree Nikon did not support CX properly at all with some rather optimistic overpricing at launch for a number of the cameras . However from a performance perspective the 1 system cameras are very good with an excellent AF system that was until fairly recently better than anything any other mirrorless maker had to offer , the cameras were very fast in operation { start-up , FPS etc } and even though limited compared to more evolved mirrorless systems like m43 they do still have native lenses covering from 18-810mm with VR { FF equiv AOV } , and a couple of fast primes including a fasty fity equiv and an F/1.2 portrait lens.

Yeah, and if you think about it, CX could have been a worthy competitor to Micro 4/3 (basically in the same way MFT can be to a Fuji X). At least in the lightweight travel camera department, but probably in many other areas, if only Nikon would be willing to push it that way.

TBH, I liked the modular approach to V3, for example.

From a purely technological aspect I would suggest that the Nikon system was pretty good and those doubting that Nikon can make a serious mirrorless camera are kidding themselves. Whether or not they decide to do so is another question

Yep, they did have some pretty impressive specs and capabilities.

But on the other hand, there was the problem of sensor performance lagging behind its contemporaries. Kinda like with those 12mp sensors in the older PENs. Only with Nikon it took way too long to address this.

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samtheman2014
samtheman2014 Veteran Member • Posts: 4,571
Re: a bit on Canon

Astrotripper wrote:

samtheman2014 wrote:

Astrotripper wrote:

Unlike Nikon, it looks like Canon had an actual long-term strategy for their mirrorless offering.

I agree Nikon did not support CX properly at all with some rather optimistic overpricing at launch for a number of the cameras . However from a performance perspective the 1 system cameras are very good with an excellent AF system that was until fairly recently better than anything any other mirrorless maker had to offer , the cameras were very fast in operation { start-up , FPS etc } and even though limited compared to more evolved mirrorless systems like m43 they do still have native lenses covering from 18-810mm with VR { FF equiv AOV } , and a couple of fast primes including a fasty fity equiv and an F/1.2 portrait lens.

Yeah, and if you think about it, CX could have been a worthy competitor to Micro 4/3 (basically in the same way MFT can be to a Fuji X). At least in the lightweight travel camera department, but probably in many other areas, if only Nikon would be willing to push it that way.

TBH, I liked the modular approach to V3, for example.

From a purely technological aspect I would suggest that the Nikon system was pretty good and those doubting that Nikon can make a serious mirrorless camera are kidding themselves. Whether or not they decide to do so is another question

Yep, they did have some pretty impressive specs and capabilities.

But on the other hand, there was the problem of sensor performance lagging behind its contemporaries. Kinda like with those 12mp sensors in the older PENs. Only with Nikon it took way too long to address this.

yep, that was probably the biggest issue the aptina sensor was primed for speed and performance over image quality. The latest gen Sony 1" sensors at least at low ISO { where I live } compete pretty well with the best m43.

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Jim Stirling

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Ab Latchin Senior Member • Posts: 1,613
Re: "countless lens manufacturers"?
3

paul613 wrote:

Ab Latchin wrote:

In fact, with at least 4 companies producing various types of bodies with the same mount, and countless lens manufacturers... I think the mount is quite safe for years to come.

Some of the features found on current m43rds cameras are class leading, especially when you consider the pricepoint of the bodies, and the lenses being produces are truly exceptional.

I count only three who make native-mount lenses that can autofocus, embed EXIF data, or communicate electronically with the camera: Olympus, Panasonic, and Sigma. And Sigma hasn't released a native M43 lens since 2013.

Why only count lenses that autofocus? Are the Voigtlander lenses not worth inclusion?  There are actually very few gaps in the system barring an UW af, a long macro and a ultra tele (like a 400 or 500mm prime).

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Paul S. in Maryland

MOD Tom Caldwell Forum Pro • Posts: 37,314
So much to worry about ....
1

Mikespirito wrote:

I bought a Panasonic GX8 for the video capabilities. From a camera standpoint the takes pretty good stills. But before I invest in more lenses, is micro 4/3 on its way out. Seeing as Crop sensor Mirrorless is on the rise

Well before you run out of lens types you can buy you will have realised that M4/3 is here to stay.

For example - if your went for an aps-c sensor system how many incompatible mount systems use the aps-c sensor?  How many dedicated lenses does Canon have for its EF-M mount?  Is EF-M here to stay?  One might also wonder about Canon's aberrational EF-S lenses.  And what might we do with all our EF lenses once Canon goes fully short flange focal distance.  In fact if we start worrying there is indeed so much to worry about ...

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Tom Caldwell

samtheman2014
samtheman2014 Veteran Member • Posts: 4,571
Re: Some other mount systems have very few oem lenses

Tom Caldwell wrote:

Mikespirito wrote:

I bought a Panasonic GX8 for the video capabilities. From a camera standpoint the takes pretty good stills. But before I invest in more lenses, is micro 4/3 on its way out. Seeing as Crop sensor Mirrorless is on the rise

Well before you run out of lens types you can buy you will have realised that M4/3 is here to stay.

That is what they said about FT, Tom  which had some superb lenses and lots of very good lenses

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Jim Stirling

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MOD Tom Caldwell Forum Pro • Posts: 37,314
Re: Some other mount systems have very few oem lenses
2

samtheman2014 wrote:

Tom Caldwell wrote:

Mikespirito wrote:

I bought a Panasonic GX8 for the video capabilities. From a camera standpoint the takes pretty good stills. But before I invest in more lenses, is micro 4/3 on its way out. Seeing as Crop sensor Mirrorless is on the rise

Well before you run out of lens types you can buy you will have realised that M4/3 is here to stay.

That is what they said about FT, Tom which had some superb lenses and lots of very good lenses

Jim,

But you must admit that the thought of a new longer flange focal distance mount for the  4/3 sensor and thinking that it might compete with aps-c and FF sensor dslr bodies was a little out there in deep space.  No matter how good the gear might have been. Luckily they changed course before that silly diversion took them right out of the game.  That they biffed their still smiling 4/3 customers in the process was a nicer result than taking them further down the route to eventual oblivion.

4/3 certainly would never have torn me away from Canon and of course we cannot say that Canon gear was any less capable than that of Olympus.

At least the M4/3 mount did provide a clear alternative that has allowed camera owners to take a different path.  The dslr might have a long way to go before it becomes the dinosauer of photography but in the meantime quite a lot of would be camera buyers have voted with the credit card that they no longer wish to play the dslr game.

So your point is valid but my point is that M4/3 is much more established than 4/3 ever was and one might look at the mounts that use an aps-c sensor and try and figure out which oen of them might survive.  For example why might anyone have bought a selection of EF-S lenses - something dreamed up by Canon for those who mmight never aspire to a FF sensor EF mount?  Canon still make them but their reason for being is rather weak and EF-M only can be used on EF-M bodies - to look at the number and type of EF-M bodies about one might also wonder if Canon is at all serious about the EF-M mount - any more than trying to stop some of the bleed from EF to M4/3.

At least M4/3 is a straight from the shoulder no nonsense attempt at a proper long lasting system type and not a case of fiddling around the the fringes with nearly, maybe, but never quite good enough lest we make something that will kill off our dslr pot of gold.

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Tom Caldwell

rjensen11 Regular Member • Posts: 210
I think smartphones are a greater to risk to MFT than Canon or Nikon
2

I think phone photography is improving with every new system, and their ease of use is a big plus that makes up for lack of IQ.

I know the IQ on a phone isn't what it is on my Olympus E-M1 II. However, how many of us have pictures go any further than FB or texts to friends?

Apple and Samsung have armies of engineers building better hardware and more sophisticated processing algorithms into their phones, so they will continue to move faster than camera makers. And they do it without >100 menu options. Apple appears to have simulated limited DOF with two lenses, so what else with they solve with software?

Consider panoramas. My iPhone can do a continuous panorama with two shutter clicks - start and stop. My Olympus is as feature rich as any camera I've seen, yet to do a panorama I have to take a bunch of pictures and load them all in Photoshop (or some other software package) to put it together, and I won't know until I get home if it worked. What a hassle. Why don't they do it in camera like any other phone? I'm sure Photoshop can do more when stitching photos together than my iPhone, but it means I'll only try a few panoramas this year, and most of those will never make it to Photoshop. It also eliminates the wide angle lens you carry "just in case" you need it.

Even the EVF, which is great, is mostly mimic-ing the behavior I get on my phone.

One of the main attractions to MFT is lighter and smaller than FF. Well, the size and weight of a MFT is a lot closer to a FF camera than that of a phone.

Don't get me wrong, I just spent a small fortune on a E-M1 II and several lenses so I see the value of this system, but I suspect this is the last traditional camera I ever purchase.

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MOD Tom Caldwell Forum Pro • Posts: 37,314
Why buy a camera when you always have a "free" camera to hand?

rjensen11 wrote:

I think phone photography is improving with every new system, and their ease of use is a big plus that makes up for lack of IQ.

I know the IQ on a phone isn't what it is on my Olympus E-M1 II. However, how many of us have pictures go any further than FB or texts to friends?

Apple and Samsung have armies of engineers building better hardware and more sophisticated processing algorithms into their phones, so they will continue to move faster than camera makers. And they do it without >100 menu options. Apple appears to have simulated limited DOF with two lenses, so what else with they solve with software?

Consider panoramas. My iPhone can do a continuous panorama with two shutter clicks - start and stop. My Olympus is as feature rich as any camera I've seen, yet to do a panorama I have to take a bunch of pictures and load them all in Photoshop (or some other software package) to put it together, and I won't know until I get home if it worked. What a hassle. Why don't they do it in camera like any other phone? I'm sure Photoshop can do more when stitching photos together than my iPhone, but it means I'll only try a few panoramas this year, and most of those will never make it to Photoshop. It also eliminates the wide angle lens you carry "just in case" you need it.

Even the EVF, which is great, is mostly mimic-ing the behavior I get on my phone.

One of the main attractions to MFT is lighter and smaller than FF. Well, the size and weight of a MFT is a lot closer to a FF camera than that of a phone.

Don't get me wrong, I just spent a small fortune on a E-M1 II and several lenses so I see the value of this system, but I suspect this is the last traditional camera I ever purchase.

Rule out all the lightweight stuff.  The GX850 is right in the mobile phone firing line.  Video and panoramas ditto.

But I had a 500mm f8.0 mirror lens on a M4/3 body this week - mobile phones do have a little way to go just yet before they reach the furthest frontiers.

Lots of attempts to "telephoto" mobile phones - not been really successful so far.  Wide angle - well a Ricoh GRD/GR would always cream a mobile phone even today, but the mobile phone is always there and with the present world wide addiction to being "always available" for a chat it is hardly surprising that the importance level of a chat is mirrored by a similar importance of the mobile snap.  If the mobile does the job and it is handy then "why not?"

Humans have always been a gregarious animal and when they associate they need to chat about something - usually it is important otherwise why must they do it ...

The E-M1 in its incarnations is safe for a while longer.

But real camera-owner enthusiasts were never that thick on the ground.  Not that a mobile phone user cannot also be an enthusiast as well.

What cameras can never replicate is that for the desperate need of continuously paying for real time mobile communication you get a series of cameras for apparent nothing.  Only a few will consider that paying a considerable amount of money for a separate camera kit that they might never actually use is worth while.  I personally would agree with this philosophy.

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Tom Caldwell

Iuvenis Senior Member • Posts: 1,147
Re: Is micro four thirds on its way out?

No format is on its way out. Not M43, not APS-C, not full frame.

The reason? You no longer buy a roll of disposable sensors which are fitted to your camera (as was the case before digital). In those days, if no one was selling film for your camera, you could no longer use it. That happened to disc film and 110 film, so dying formats were not a theoretical risk.

Bigger formats have some benefits, smaller formats have others. There is a reason for the range of formats that we have today, and technology has not materially changed the relative performance of different sensor sizes, only the absolute performance of all sensor sizes.

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