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Author Topic: Nikon's Future  (Read 11839 times)

BernardLanguillier

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Re: Nikon's Future
« Reply #40 on: October 19, 2015, 05:41:09 pm »

Is there a technical reason that explains why DSLR viewfinders have to be so tiny compared to old film cameras?

Yes, they anticipated that DSLR users would end up having to wear glasses cos' of the time they spend looking at screens. ;)

Cheers,
Bernard

Chuck Fan

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Re: Nikon's Future
« Reply #41 on: October 19, 2015, 06:05:35 pm »

Is there a technical reason that explains why DSLR viewfinders have to be so tiny compared to old film cameras?

Are they?  The view finder on my FF D810 doesn't seem to be any smaller than those on the F100, and is bigger than those on the FE.   The size of the viewfinder is a function of the image circle and finder magnification.  The magnification is a compromise.  Magnify the finder image too much and it would become too dark to see.

On APC format DSLRs the view finder is smaller because the image circle is smaller.  This is why optical view finder can't work very well with formats much smaller than APC.
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Theodoros

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Re: Nikon's Future
« Reply #42 on: October 19, 2015, 06:25:10 pm »

Are they?  The view finder on my FF D810 doesn't seem to be any smaller than those on the F100, and is bigger than those on the FE.   The size of the viewfinder is a function of the image circle and finder magnification.  The magnification is a compromise.  Magnify the finder image too much and it would become too dark to see.

On APC format DSLRs the view finder is smaller because the image circle is smaller.  This is why optical view finder can't work very well with formats much smaller than APC.

The only great VF ever on a 24x36mm SLR was if one would choose the DA-2 to use on an F3.... just the reason why my first AF 35mm size SLR camera, was a digital one.... In fact I used digital first with my Contax 645 and I only invested on a digital Nikon later...
« Last Edit: October 19, 2015, 06:30:34 pm by Theodoros »
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BJL

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Re: Nikon's Future
« Reply #43 on: October 19, 2015, 06:42:06 pm »

On APC format DSLRs the view finder is smaller because the image circle is smaller.  This is why optical view finder can't work very well with formats much smaller than APC.
Yes: with sub-35mm format SLRs, be they digital or film, the same degree of magnification in the OVF would give a far smaller image, and increasing the magnification to compensate gives a dimmer image, particularly problematic in lower-end DSLRs designed to be used with entry level zoom lenses of only about f/5.6 at the long end.  So the "APS-C" DSLR OVF designs are usually a compromise; higher actual magnification than 35mm forms SLRs (like 0.82x in the entry-level Canons, 1x in higher level Canons) but still a smaller OVF image (the above two examples give images only as big as 0.51x and 0.63x respectively in a 35mm format SLR OVF.)

Depending on what one wants of a viewfinder, many would change your last sentence "This is why optical view finder can't work very well with formats much smaller than APC 35mm format" and some would change it to ". . . smaller than medium format"!
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Chuck Fan

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Re: Nikon's Future
« Reply #44 on: October 19, 2015, 07:51:40 pm »

I think Sony today is, overall, a substantially less competent competitor in the photography market than Canon.  Sony as a company is also unfocused and complacent, far more so than Canon had been between 1990 and 2005.  If Nikon can still be in the position it is in today after Canon's 1995-2005 onslaught, I don't think Sony would squeeze out Nikon from being one of the major players in digital imaging in the foreseeable future.    If anyone can really hurt Nikon, it is still Canon, not really Sony.   If anything, Sony has incentive to cooperate with Nikon to try to beat Canon.

« Last Edit: October 19, 2015, 08:47:57 pm by Chuck Fan »
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dwswager

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Re: Nikon's Future
« Reply #45 on: October 19, 2015, 09:40:17 pm »

Are they?  The view finder on my FF D810 doesn't seem to be any smaller than those on the F100, and is bigger than those on the FE.   The size of the viewfinder is a function of the image circle and finder magnification.  The magnification is a compromise.  Magnify the finder image too much and it would become too dark to see.


I concur.  I also use the DK-17M 1.2x viewfinder Magnifying Eyepiece on my D810.  It protrudes a little from the back of the body, but the entire frame is still easily viewable.  I highly recommend it.  Had the DK-21M (I think that is the model number for rectangular viewfinder Nikons) on the D7100.
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razrblck

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Re: Nikon's Future
« Reply #46 on: October 20, 2015, 05:08:17 am »

I understand brightness can be a problem on DSLR with really big AF sensors (less light reflected upwards in the viewfinder), but that is marginal.

Here are relative sizes of some cameras I own (with a 50mm 1.4 lens on 35mm equivalent FOV compared to a 100% and 1.00x viewfinder):

1) OM-1n has 97% coverage and 0.92x magnification, effective size of 0.89x;
2) Nikon FM2(n) has 93% coverage and 0.86x magnification, effective size of 0.80x;
3) Mamiya ZE has 94% coverage and 0.85x magnification, effective size of 0.80x;
4) Nikon D200 has 95% coverage and 0.95x magnification, effective size of 0.60x (adjusted for crop);
5) Nikon D7000 has nearly 100% coverage and 0.95x magnification, effective size of 0.63x (adjusted for crop).

So clearly there is a lot of difference in between the crop and full frame cameras I own. Now, I tried both the D700 (from a friend) and the D810 rented two times. The D700 has 95% coverage and 0.72x magnification, for an effective size of 0.68x. The D810 isn't that far from it, with 100% coverage and 0.70x magnification, for a 0.70x effective size. They are slightly bigger than the viewfinders in my crop cameras, but not by such a huge margin as my film cameras.

So, to reiterate, is there any technical reason we can't have full frame DSLR viewfinders to be at least closer to film cameras?

As for the DK-21M, I tried it and it's a pain in the ass wearing prescription glasses. It does make things bigger, but it hides parts of the viewfinder in the process, so I have to move around to see every corner. Though that's the tradeoff with a crop camera, so I live with it.
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Chuck Fan

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Re: Nikon's Future
« Reply #47 on: October 20, 2015, 09:40:35 am »

The difference is not between DSLR and film.  It is between autofocus and manual focus.   When 35mm film SLR moved to autofocus,  most autofocus film bodies chose to reduce finder magnification in order to brighten the finder image and increase eye point.    This was probably judged a good trade off because critical focus is no longer done through the finder, so bigger image for seeing small details is no longer as important.  But brighter image is judged to be better for composition and for low light situations.   Higher eye point also makes the finder easier and more pleasant to use because it allows the entire image to be easily seen in one view without poking out your eyes with the finder eye piece.

As you recall, many older film bodies had nice big finder images that helped with manual focus in bright light.   For dimmer light one resorted to visual focus aids like split prism.   But their finder images were all fairly dim compared to later autofocus cameras.   Finder brightness and finder magnification have an inverse relationship.  There is only so much light coming through the lens and up the mirror into the finder.   If you magnify the image, you spread the same amount of light over a larger image and each part of the image become dimmer.

As you might also recall, many older film bodies also had low eye point, meaning you have to stick your eye ball right up to the eye piece to see the whole image.  With a larger finder image, you would need larger and more expansive eye piece optics in order to afford a high eye point.  That's why even mid range manual focus cameras had low eye points.  You had to go all the way up to an F3 to get high eye point finder.  By accepting a lower finder magnification, lower level autofocus cameras can give he same high eye point as was once available only in the F3 with an action finder.
« Last Edit: October 20, 2015, 09:49:41 am by Chuck Fan »
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Rob C

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Re: Nikon's Future
« Reply #48 on: October 20, 2015, 10:09:01 am »

But the trouble, of course, is that not all of us want to use autofocus all the time. Personally, I find that having gone to it because of failing eyesight, I still discover myself having to override it much of the time.

I need no magnifier for my F3, but have one on both the D200 and D700; as I said earlier, give us a break - give us a split-image! My af camera screens (the above) suck big time; not just because unaided they feel small, but because the surface of the screens isn't manul focus-friendly.

Rob C

razrblck

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Re: Nikon's Future
« Reply #49 on: October 20, 2015, 11:48:21 am »

@Chuck: Thanks! That's what I wanted to know.

@Rob: I'm with you. The times I use my 50mm f/1.4 AF-D with the D200 I'm often struggling getting the eyes in perfect focus. It's a great little camera, but damn whenever AF doesn't work well it becomes a real pain to fix it manually.
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MoreOrLess

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Re: Nikon's Future
« Reply #50 on: October 21, 2015, 02:11:36 am »

Sony sold off their chip division into it's own company, so I don't think Nikon will have trouble with chips.

Paul

Pretty much, this should bring an end to any preferential treatment the Sony camera division might get, whats more that camera division is likely to either be put in the same situation or at least pushed to turn a profit so any loss selling to try and build market share will be much harder to achieve.

Quote from: Jimbo57
I think that Nikon missed a trick with the Df.

If that at been a mirrorless FX format in a body the size of an FM2n, it would have provided the "retro" look they were after in a really attractive specification.

I love my D810 and D800E cameras but would have liked them to be slightly more compact and without the disadvantages of an archaic mirror/pentaprism mechanism.

Really though that's a much bigger technical shift for Nikon, the Df was I'd imagine quite cheap/easy to create, a new body design but no new tech needed.

I do agree theres definitely a market for a mirrorless FX body. In the DX and 43 market I think reducing lange distance was a much bigger advantage because with the smaller sensor and lenses to match you are dealing with both a potentially smaller packeage and a user base often happier with more basic handling. You move up to FX though and I don't think the savin in flange distance is nearly so great an advantage, lenses are larger(and with a small flange sometimes actually longer than DSLR lenses) and generally users want more advanced handling that pushes the cameras beyond pocketable. I would actually say that the biggest size/weight saving factor with the Sony FE system isn't the flange distance reduction but rather then ability to remove the larger FX sized pentaprism and AF sensor.

Generally though I think the net tends to be a bit of an echo chamber for a relatively smaller number of gearheads to both post and surf a lot(hence lots of news stories aimed at them). I was just on the Amalfi Coast and DSLR's outnumbered mirrorless by probably 20-1 at least.
« Last Edit: October 21, 2015, 02:59:34 am by MoreOrLess »
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Chuck Fan

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Re: Nikon's Future
« Reply #51 on: October 21, 2015, 09:40:15 am »

There is a persistent rumor that Nikon had field tested a mirrorless full frame body shortly after the release of the D700, and that camera could mount Nikon range finder mount lenses in addition to F mount lenses through an adaptor. 

But Leica negotiated some sort of agreement with Nikon which caused Nikon to stop further development of that body.
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Theodoros

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Re: Nikon's Future
« Reply #52 on: October 21, 2015, 09:48:32 am »

There is a persistent rumor that Nikon had field tested a mirrorless full frame body shortly after the release of the D700, and that camera could mount Nikon range finder mount lenses in addition to F mount lenses through an adaptor. 

But Leica negotiated some sort of agreement with Nikon which caused Nikon to stop further development of that body.

I never heart of such a rumour, but even if I would, I would think of it as the worst web trolling ever! (larger than Synn's posts  ;D) What would Leica do? pay them off for them not to proceed? ...oh please!
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Chuck Fan

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Re: Nikon's Future
« Reply #53 on: October 21, 2015, 10:11:12 am »

I never heart of such a rumour, but even if I would, I would think of it as the worst web trolling ever! (larger than Synn's posts  ;D) What would Leica do? pay them off for them not to proceed? ...oh please!

I've heard more than one version of the story.  But they seem to agree on the essentials.

Nikon sometimes pull marketing stunts like release limited or special edition retro cameras on some anniversary that couldn't conceivably do much for the company's bottom line.   I seem to remember Nikon released a special edition S-2 range finder after the turn of the new century just because it seems to be a slow year.

So how much Nikon would want for putting such a stunt on hold depends on who in Nikon is pushing for the project, whether the project is a stunt or a serious marketing move with a long term plan.
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BJL

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The difference is not between DSLR and film.  It is between autofocus and manual focus.   ...
@chuckfan: Thanks for an excellent explanation of the situation with the optical viewfinders of 35mm format SLR cameras all I can add is to refer to the extra issues that arise with sub-35mm formats, as I mentioned above and supported by razrblck's examples:
4) Nikon D200 has 95% coverage and 0.95x magnification, effective size of 0.60x (adjusted for crop);
5) Nikon D7000 has nearly 100% coverage and 0.95x magnification, effective size of 0.63x (adjusted for crop).

@Rob C:  The best of both worlds can be offered by EVFs, where the size and brightness of the VF image size are unrelated.  Indeed the Leica SL offers a magnification of 0.8x, back in "manual focus SLR" territory, and even down in teeny-tiny 4/3" format, the Olympus EM-1 has a VF mag. of "1.48x @50mm", and so an effective image size of 0.74x ("35mm format equivalent").  That's a bigger image than Nikon offers in any of its auto-focus SLRs, film or digital.
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BernardLanguillier

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@Rob C:  The best of both worlds can be offered by EVFs, where the size and brightness of the VF image size are unrelated.  Indeed the Leica SL offers a magnification of 0.8x, back in "manual focus SLR" territory, and even down in teeny-tiny 4/3" format, the Olympus EM-1 has a VF mag. of "1.48x @50mm", and so an effective image size of 0.74x ("35mm format equivalent").  That's a bigger image than Nikon offers in any of its auto-focus SLRs, film or digital.

Which gives us plenty of opportunity to look at the coarse pixels of those EVFs (granted I haven't tried the new Leica yet, only speaking about the Sony and Olympus).

Cheers,
Bernard

BJL

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Which gives us plenty of opportunity to look at the coarse pixels of those EVFs (granted I haven't tried the new Leica yet, only speaking about the Sony and Olympus).
If you can see the pixels on current EVFs, your eyes are clearly younger and far sharper than mine.  Anyway, the primary use for the full view in an EVF is composition; for manual focusing, zooming quickly gives a far finer view than the secondary image scattered off the frosted glass (or plastic) screen of an SLR's viewfinder.
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BernardLanguillier

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If you can see the pixels on current EVFs, your eyes are clearly younger and far sharper than mine.  Anyway, the primary use for the full view in an EVF is composition; for manual focusing, zooming quickly gives a far finer view than the secondary image scattered off the frosted glass (or plastic) screen of an SLR's viewfinder.

I guess that it's the case.

Agreed in principle, yet:
- I am not sold on the current Sony implementation,
- I have a satisfactory ratio of critically focused images using the Otii on the D810, not that different than what I get with AF in fact.

Cheers,
Bernard

ErikKaffehr

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Hi,

It is quite interesting for me. It seems that folks who actually use EVFs may tend to like them. On the other hand anytime an SLR user looks in my EVF they say, what an awful device. Personally, I see it as both plus and minus. EVF is great for focusing with magnified live view and can offer a lot of information. EVF is also great in darkness. On the other hand OVF works better in bright light.

I would say that the future belongs to the EVF, but that future may not be here, yet.

Best regards
Erik

I guess that it's the case.

Agreed in principle, yet:
- I am not sold on the current Sony implementation,
- I have a satisfactory ratio of critically focused images using the Otii on the D810, not that different than what I get with AF in fact.

Cheers,
Bernard
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Erik Kaffehr
 
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