OK, so here it goes.
we all (well, most of us) talk about megapixels (which will not beat the analog film anytime soon- but that;s OK :), chip size, photon spillover etc. here is my thought what the ideal Nikon (I don't want something else) should look like and a commercial thought at the end. What brought me to make this post was the realization that as the cameras (not LENSES) get more expensive, they get so for two main reasons:
- the chip performance (a good reason)
- the number of software bells and whistles goes up (a bad reason)
So, my new Nikon should have:
- an FX chip (or maybe a bit bigger- just slightly oversized?)
- very few camera options- S/A/M and then one general auto mode when you just had too much the night before
- selftimer (one setting) and a cable release for a long exposure
- only RAW format (who cares about anything else- you will Photoshop it later anyway, won't you? The computer software si so mauch better in doing that than the camera build in JPG conversion. Why bother? Memory is cheap
- decent flash sync but don't overdo it
- weather proofing- so I can shoot in the rain
- decent autofocus- about 15 points would do
- NO BLEEDING VIDEO!!! Get yourself a #$%#@ camcorder!!!!
Then if you feel like you need a bluetooth, a water fountain, 21 different automodes and a bagel with a cream cheese, pay for it.
What Nikon could do is to sell a basic chip with the setup as above. And then you could splash out. You want sport photos- different settings for a bicycle race, a tennis game (usually a green background) or basketball because you a a sport photographer? Go for it. You shoot street riots? Well an auto-mode to compensate for street flashes and smoke, auto ISO for even better low light performance (normally of course attainable by manual setting in the basic setup but you may be in a hurry). And so on. Each module for 200-300 bucks. Portraits, architecture, family etc.
This way, one could have a high end camera with basic functions if you are a freak like me who likes it RAW and manual and never uses other buttons NOR reads the manual, or you could have something customized for your needs with the buttons you want for the price you want to pay. I think this way the basic model could go down in price by probably 15-20% and each module separately would increase the price by 5-10% about the baseline. TV sets producers do that all the time. More features, higher price but the hardware is usually the same.
Because, be honest, look in the mirror and ask yourself, REALLY, what is the percentage and the frequency of the use of the various "features" on your upper shelf Nikon DSLR?