New York Times: only Canon, Nikon and Sony will survive

The New York Times published an article on the future of camera manufacturers. According to Credit Suisse imaging analyst Yu Yoshida only Canon, Nikon and Sony are likely to survive in the future:

"If you look mid-to-long term, digital camera makers are slipping and the market is becoming an oligopoly," said Credit Suisse imaging analyst Yu Yoshida.

Panasonic held 3.1 percent of the camera market in July-September, down from 3.8 percent a year earlier, according to IDC. Canon Inc, Nikon Corp and Sony Corp controlled over 60 percent between them.

"Only those who have a strong brand and are competitive on price will last - and only Canon, Nikon and Sony fulfill that criteria," added Yoshida.

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  • PointsOfView

    Typo in title: survice

  • I wonder if the guys like Hasselblad and Phase One will survive.

    • slamming

      Hasselblad is overrated in digital age. They had an edge in film days due its large film size, but in sensors… they are constrained by ISO performance and operates best as a studio camera. (unless one is a film prude who needs that type of color saturation, wide DR, film grains….

      Even Annie Leibovitz uses a DSLR for “superb celebrity portraits” in Vogue, Vanity fair.

      Even i use only D800 … if that counts. Lol.

      • Anto de Chav

        Almost all Annie Leibovitz’s high end work is done with Hasselblad and phase one back..

        And D800 offers no super fast flash sync.

      • jk

        yeah Phase is the one to get if you can afford it.
        I cannot afford it , but I can rent it as I need it.

    • joodoe

      heee heee heee. Phase one, hee hee hee.

    • Can’t Believe It

      I think medium-format digital is more client-driven than photographer-driven. I’ve been on a (very) few big-time photo shoots and the client reps are always very nervous people. If you’re a big conservative company that’s spending several million dollars on reshooting your product packaging or introducing a new watch, the big conservative thinking is that it must be shot on medium-format digital.
      So yes, I think that P1 and Hassy will always be with us.

      • Paul

        yes – whats $40K (for the creative and shoot) when I’m spending $4MM on the campaign.

        • crank

          Do they use the Lunar or the Stellar in pro shoots? 😉

  • jim

    I will survice…

    • orpickaname

      At your servive.

  • Long Jon Sliver

    Suggesting that there’s no more innovation possible from photography….

    What a dumb article.

    • Kasponaut

      No its not dumb – I believe it will happen – more or less.

    • Ronan

      Currently the only thing they are doing is less noise and more MP.

      Everything’s been pretty much done. Their’s no new innovation.

      Think of it this way, the car body panels changes slightly every year and you get 5-10 more hp from the engine. That doesn’t mean it has new innovations, even though the car changes every year…

      • Pixyst

        … and then there’s Tesla

    • cppguy16

      There’s so much more to be improved. EVF brightness, AF speed and accuracy (eye detection, follow subject), auto WB, sensor-based image stabilization, sync speed, UI/controls/ergonomics, rolling shutter elimination, etc. At the minimum, we need to put together Sony’s sensor and body size, Olympus’ IBIS, Nikon’s continuous AF, Fuji’s auto WB and tone curves.

  • JPorto

    With only 60% on those 3, seems there is room for a 4th and a 5th with at least 10% each, maybe an ODM.

  • Eric Calabros

    without D400 nobody can survive

    • AM

      Maybe you won’t. So far, I’ve made it without one.

    • karmist

      Your 2014 resolution — embrace FX

      • KnightPhoto

        A lot of guys seem to be missing that there is still a decently large market for a D400 amongst shooters that are already primarily FX too. I don’t own a DX camera right now, and certainly won’t be buying any DX lenses and don’t own any anymore, but I will be buying a D400 for telephoto use in good light .

        For the same reason I will buy a V3 and that 70-300 1-series patent lens. Sometimes it’s good to go light and still have decent telephoto reach.

    • sperdynamite

      Yeah Pentax makes the D400. If you wanna piddle around APS-C why wouldn’t you want a system of lenses designed for it.

      • Dpablo unfiltered

        Every Nikon Telephoto is designed for it.
        (And that’s really why you want the damn thing…)

    • jk

      I think you are joking but no one will buy it since the D800E is the D300s replacement in reality, it is a good 15.4 mp DX camera with much better IQ and body quality than that of the D300s or possible D400.

      • Pick a name

        You forgot the D800’s great frame rate. Oh, wait…

        • crank

          5FPS was super fast in the 1990’s, and pros seemed to do alright with that. If you can’t nail it at 5FPS, you need to work on your technique. Or get a video camera….

          • oldschool

            Well, “pros” also seemed to do alright photographing action without auto focus back in the days. But today is not the 70ies, or 90ies, or anything in between.

          • RBR

            Canon upped the frame rate of the 1Dx to 14 fps by way of a firmware update (reportedly changed the algorithm for the image processing) which is something Nikon should be looking into for all of their cameras, not just the top of the line. Half the battle is processing the data.

    • Mansgame

      It’s called D7200. Nikon isn’t going to make an expensive soccermom DX camera that only a small fraction of Nikon users want. It’s all about FX now in the pro lineup.

      • Foolishcfo

        Nikon will most certainly make a pro-level DX successor (whether you call it a D400 or D9000 as Thom Hogan suggests might happen) to the D300S. Nikon is no doubt sitting on the fence waiting for Canon to release the 7D Mark II. It makes a ton more sense (think bigger margins) to release a D400 than to continue muddling through with both a D5300 and D3300. One of those will eventually go away as there isn’t enough to differentiate them anymore and the margins are weak.

        Oh, and soccermoms use their smartphones.

        • orpickaname

          But the best soccermoms use D4 + 600/4 VR.

  • bjrichus

    The article is actually titled like this: “Japan Mid-Tier Camera Makers Face Shakeout as Smartphones Shatter Mirrorless Hopes”. I suspect that this speaks more to the relevance of point and shoot cameras at the LOW end than anything else.

    • SPfan

      Most, if not all “mid-tier” manufacturers are perfectly capable of buying a sensor and doing what Canon and Nikon do but the top tier is small, and already taken. Judging by the number of new lenses coming from Nikon, they’re not that interested in the top end, either.

  • sdancer

    Presented by Analysts, the authors of Housing Crisis I and II, Failing to Predict the Future, and the massively popular It Will Always Go Up!

    • Thom Hogan

      If you don’t try to use the past and present data you have to anticipate the future, then the future will ALWAYS be a surprise.

      • jk

        thom, we are waiting your Df, Fuji XE2 reviews and your opinion on the EM1 vs GX7 ,etc.

        when will we expect to see your XE2 vs EM1 review?
        and when will you review the Df ?
        I do not think I am alone waiting to see what is your take on these cameras.

        anyway, hope you will have the greatest new year’s eve.

      • Dpablo unfiltered

        Oh, the future will surprise you anyway, whether or not you want to admit it…

  • PapaZerg

    they forgot about Fuji, who is the only manufacturer doing very well amongst the others.

    • ronin

      Fuji, after losing money and essentially dropping its DSLR line, has never made money and continues to lose money in its mirrorless line. Since Nikon and Canon are profitable in interchangeable lens cameras, and Fuji loses money, this is not what most other people would call “doing very well.”

      • Spy Black

        And where are your facts to back this up?

        • Maji

          From the article itself… “Panasonic, like peers Fujifilm Holdings and Olympus Corp, has been losing money on its cameras”

          • Spy Black

            Not quite exactly your comment. And they’re all losing money.

    • SPfan

      He’s correct. Fuji, despite being large, is not doing well with cameras. Needless to say, the sensitized business (film, paper) isn’t doing much, either. Yes, it’s possible to have some great products a and loyal following and still lose money.

    • EJP

      Doing well in what way? They make a niche product for a (so far) niche group of loyalists and are losing money like crazy with virtually no hope of making money in cameras. They have a very nice system with excellent lenses but use, for the most part, a quirky sensor that hasn’t caught on beyond the Fuji loyalists – but it loses money like crazy! So how exactlya re they doing well? Isn’t that measured by profitability?

      • PapaZerg

        not everything can be measured in numbers alone. we must also check the reliability of their research for this article.

        they are expanding their production. at the moment, their production cannot meet the demands of the market. they make great products as well. i shoot Nikon for important or paid jobs but i am also now starting to use Fuji for critical stuff as well.

        sure, Fuji is a fad now. but as far as i can see they are doing very well globally.

  • Paul

    “Only those who have a strong brand and are competitive on price will last – and only Canon, Nikon and Sony fulfill that criteria”

    Nikon is trying it’s hardest to no longer be competitive on price.

    • Ronan

      Really? How so? I found their prices to be exactly what the competition is, both Nikon/Canon generally being more expensive than Sony.

      • lololalallll

        $3000 retro camera with a turd lens and specs worse than it’s counterparts?

        • Maji

          yet Nikon can’t make enough of them… good that you don’t work for Nikon… that way Nikon had product that sells.

        • crank

          @lolo–have you ever heard of a company called Leica? Terrible retro design, extremely high prices ($3,000? That’s cheap–try $8,000!), laughable specs–yet it sells well enough that there’s usually a backlog. They even make one that takes only black and white photos (and no video!), and still costs $8K! But if you are too cheap or inexperienced to only buy entry level cameras, of course you would never understand….

          • AM

            Yes, but people who buy Leica don’t buy them because of the specs. First off, they buy them because they are Leica, and second, because they can afford them.
            Also, I wouldn’t consider a D610 an entry-level DSLR. It’s cheaper than a Df, and it’s definitely more bang for your buck.

      • SPfan

        Sony gets it about being cheaper (not that they have a choice). Canon used to be cheaper but not anymore. In Canon’s favor, they have real rebates, on desirable items, several times a year.

      • jk

        yeah but Sony lenses are very expensive especially those fake Zeiss ones.

  • Photdog

    The market
    for photographic equipment has sure been going through some major changes
    already and will have to face further changes.

    economic papers have written already about brand loyalty have been yesterday.
    Now many DSLR and System-camera owners are tied to their cameras system of
    choice by the mount. But Makers shouldn’t rely too much on this effect. It was
    also published often that customers walk away if brand- or product-promises do
    not come true.

    I think
    especially in areas, other than that people cannot circumvent (like cars), It
    will not pay off for the makers if they let their marketing policies dominate over
    listening to the customers. Likewise, it will less pay off to sacrifice QS and
    product quality to raise the win margin. (e.g. initial problems with the D800
    and then the D600 and the SB 900stories ending up in the X10 models)

    equipment is outrageous expensive Like the WR-1 controls and many customer
    requests are ignored for years already.

    At the same
    time products raise the bar in IQ. Sigma and Zeiss are delivering an IQ
    with some lenses that simply doesn’t exist in the Nikon program. (comparing it
    to the Zeiss Otus, Nikon’s new 58mm was going into the wrong direction in my opinion).
    I don’t think that Nikon can’t keep up, but they decided not to go for it. And
    that’ll cost them business. To cripple the otherwise great Df with the mediocre
    AF from the D600/510 and to save at some other corners is a shame.

    These facts
    do create some displeasure with many customers. Not an ideal precondition to
    secure the future business.

  • kb

    I like Fuji, and own/use a Fuji APSC camera, but they’re losing big money on cameras(though not overall as a corporation) just like Oly, Pana, etc.

    • jk

      actually Sony is the only one losing really big money even as a whole corp.
      Fuji is in fact making a lot more than it used to in cosmetic and medical business markets.

  • zoetmb

    There’s an editorial today on Apple Insider on how the analysts and journalists got Apple completely wrong in 2013 and even when proven wrong, never retracted or apologized for their earlier incorrect analysis and stories.

    I don’t trust the analysts to get the camera market any more correct than their analysis of the phone, Pad and computer markets.

    We’re at a point where there are about to be radical changes in the photo market due to the advances in smartphone cameras, the associated massive decline in p&s camera sales, impending technology changes in higher end cameras (mirrorless), the saturation of the DSLR market and the decline of periodical and newspaper publishing with the major publications abandoning the use of pro photographers.

    So what this analyst is not taking into account is that there is room in the market for a disrupter. That disrupter may be a traditional camera maker or it could be someone completely new. There’s also a market split with mirrorless being far more successful outside the U.S. (for reasons I don’t quite understand).

    So while I agree that Nikon, Canon and Sony will dominate and that many players will drop out of the P&S market, I disagree that Nikon, Canon and Sony will be the ONLY players. And even those players can be pushed out of the market: Nikon has had slim profits for years and Sony has been losing money for years. As with their TV division, I don’t think Sony has any profits in the consumer photography division even though many of their recent efforts (such as the NEX and A7 line) are impressive.

    High end photography (SLR and up) was always traditionally a niche market. DSLR changed that (the D70 sold more in one year than the Nikon F sold in its lifetime), but with the advent of higher quality smartphone cameras, I think enthusiast and pro photography is going to return to being a niche market.

    • Can’t Believe It

      I’m rooting for the Lytro guys. Hopefully they’ve been using their time out of the spotlight to come up with a better way for people to use their cameras than the kludgy system they have now.

      • lololalallll

        LOL Lytro? They need to sell the tech to Google/Android or Apple/iOS for smart phones. It’s a completely silly tech that serves no purpose other than a science experiment. They don’t have the capital, buzz, nor marketing to do anything with it.
        Incorporating that tech into mirrorless or DSLRs or smartphones is the best solution.

        • Mansgame

          I agree. I was at an event with my fancy DSLR and lights, and one of the know-it all guests kept trying to sound smart by asking me if I had heard of Lytro and how all my gear was going to be obsolete because it was the greatest thing. I was trying to be polite but he had no photography experience and was repeating what he read on a tech blog somewhere. If it worked, you’d see all the Olympics photographers next year using Lytros. But they’re not.

    • Thom Hogan

      > There’s an editorial today on Apple Insider on how the analysts and journalists got Apple completely wrong in 2013

      Analysis and projection are always fraught with uncertainty. The question is whether you’re building a projection from emotion and anecdotal evidence or using real evidence and facts. The difference here is that we have a pretty strong series of facts we have to account for, and those facts all are pointing in one direction at the moment.

      > We’re at a point where there are about to be radical changes in the photo market due to…

      I would have said that we’re already past that point, and have been for two or three years. I sounded warnings about this in 2003, 2007, and 2010. The camera makers didn’t adjust to what was happening around them, and the obvious outcome ensued.

      > So what this analyst is not taking into account is that there is room in the market for a disrupter.

      Absolutely. Indeed, I’d say ONLY a disrupter is going to change the shape of the market at this point. The question is whether you think any of the existing Japanese camera companies can be that disrupter.

      > I disagree that Nikon, Canon and Sony will be the ONLY players.

      Even with a disrupter, you’re talking about three companies with huge resources that will turn on a dime if they see their business threatened. At least they should ;~). Unfortunately, their track record isn’t perfect on this, as they didn’t correctly see smartphones as a disrupter.

      > I think enthusiast and pro photography is going to return to being a niche market.

      I believe it already has, and that’s part of the problem.

      • manhattanboy

        What is your take on where the big three (Nikon, Canon and Sony) will position themselves?

        The way I see it, Sony is a large and diverse enough company that they will enter all market segments and support whatever succeeds.

        I am beginning to believe that Canon has shown its hand and it is volume production with competition on price. Look at the difference in cost between Canon’s 70-200 2.8 at $1800 versus Nikon’s at $2400.

        Nikon is where? My opinion is I think they are positioning themselves to be the “premium” brand company…all of their recent products have, as Thom recently commented, been way overpriced (save the D7100, which at under a grand was a bargain ;). Most everyone here loves Nikon for how the sensors produce stunning images. Except that Sony makes most of the sensors, and there is nothing that prevents Sony from selling that lovely high dynamic range sensor to Canon, or using it themselves with the amazing Zeiss lenses that have out-shined Nikon of late. Are people in droves going to flock to a Zeiss/Sony combo? No, but it is enough to cause concern about how believable a “premium” Nikon market position is. I see Nikon with a temporary lead… they have combined Sony’s great sensors with decent glass and autofocus systems to deliver premium products.

        The competitors, however, are closing fast on all fronts. Canon has shown with the Mark III that they have caught up to Nikon’s focusing capabilities. Zeiss and even Sigma now have demonstrated a clear ability to produce equal or better glass. I am failing to see an easy path for Nikon with their current strategy. I frankly don’t think that Nikon can sustain a 25% or greater price differential versus Canon in the long term.

        Strategically, it feels as if Nikon is starting to constantly iterate 3k, 5k, etc. DSLR bodies with hopes that margins on sales will keep things going for the bottom line. This lower end segment is the one that is going to be challenged in the next several years with the increasingly better smart phone cameras (and mirrorless), hence why I think we have seen also a marketing shift from Nikon Germany and others to start pushing full frame.

        • Dpablo unfiltered

          I think that Canon is preventing Sony from selling them their lovely sensors. I think that Nikon is using a lot of different sensors. I think that the quality of the images that come from Nikon glass includes a lot of things not measurable. I think Nikon is worth a 50 % premium over Canon.

        • Thom Hogan

          Sony and Nikon are in different places. If Sony had to abandon cameras it wouldn’t much impact the health of the overall company and its profitability would improve. Sony is still in cameras because ego-wise, they still think that they should be the dominate consumer electronics brand across all product categories. Samsung and others have pretty much displaced them.

          Personally, I happen to think Sony is spending bad money after good chasing something that they might never get back. Even if they succeed, the will have the same problem Apple and Samsung currently face, which is where do you get growth from? In my book, Sony’s spending too much time on the battles they already lost and not enough on the battles to come.

          Nikon, on the other hand, can’t afford to lose in cameras. If they do, they have no viable business. Unfortunately, “cameras” seems to be a declining market as smartphones and other devices take over the photographic function, and Nikon has no position in those other devices, nor are they going to win a useful position being last to the game. Ship has sailed. They need to fix their current ship and find some new ones in water that isn’t being contested so hotly.

          You asked the question as to where they will position themselves. In Nikon’s case, they don’t know. They just spend a decade trying to position themselves as “everything” in cameras, and realistically, all they still have that’s useful is a premium DSLR position. I have high doubts that the premium market is big enough for even the current players. Personally, I’d rather be Zeiss than any of the camera players, because as the camera players keep making new lens mounts, that gives Zeiss something to target usefully.

          The problem for Canon/Nikon is the same as I’ve stated it for over a decade now: they went the proprietary route. The did not enable third parties and build an ecosystem. That’s now going to come back and bite them in the butt big time. Sony seems more open to enabling others, though they are nowhere near as open as they need to be.

          Canon, Nikon, and Sony really aren’t in the business of stealing customers from each other, as you seem to suggest. The lens and accessory investments by the premium customers is a real friction against people just switching, though it does happen in small amounts. However, the reason why I’ve been so tough on Nikon in recent years is that they just haven’t spent a lot of time catering to their already locked in customers. The lack of D300 and D700 true followups, the missing lenses, the lenses that are slow to update, the lenses that are getting updated that everyone already has a good example of, all miss the needs of their most loyal and likely long-term customers.

          • Taildraggin

            Thom, I’m kinda surprised he didn’t reference your blog. He’s pretty much in line with your progs.

          • RBR

            I have been saying this for some time now, but all of the cameras are overpriced based solely upon the Dollar/Yen exchange rate. Nikon/Canon and the reset set their price points when the exchange rate was about 78 Yen to the Dollar. It presently hovers around 100 Yen to the Dollar as a consequence of government policy changes to improve foreign exchange problems in the Japanese economy. With that sort of an extra normal profit based solely upon exchange rates, the companies should be making money hand over fist. If they can not make a go of it under these circumstances, I have to wonder if they can make a go of it at all.

            I have no statistics to back up this observation, but Nikon appears to be losing ground to Canon. I see more and more “white lenses” at major sporting events and more young professional photographers purchasing Canon kit than I do Nikon. That does not bode well for Nikon.

            As you have observed on numerous occasions, Canon is better diversified than Nikon. Nikon could soon be approaching a “bet the company” position where a major failure of a new professional camera could relegate the company to relative obscurity if not outright failure.

            Nikon have created market segments and then failed to supply them with upgraded equipment in an industry where technology is rapidly changing. I think the shareholders at Nikon should be seriously evaluating the future employment of Nikon’s management team.

            We have previously discussed the actual sensor production of Canon vs. Nikon equipment that requires Nikon steppers to stitch together multiple segments to complete a single FX sensor versus Canons steppers which are capable of imaging a sensor larger than FX in a single pass (per layer). Although the loss rate due to stitching is supposedly very low, it still takes extra time and masks to do so which translates to extra costs. Have you heard anything more recently about Nikon finding a fab that they can use that is more up to date in their steppers and etc?

            Maybe Nikon has a surprise up their sleeve next month that will catch astonish us all…I certainly hope so.

            • Thom Hogan

              In the US retail market, the market shares for DSLRs are within 1% of each other for Canon and Nikon this year, at least in the last set of data I saw. More difficult to tell worldwide, as there’s no good consolidator of retail data globally. Looking at Canon’s and Nikon’s financial statements in the past year, they both seem to be saying about the same thing in terms of sales decline, so I strongly suspect that the overall global picture hasn’t really changed.

              In terms of PJ use, these things go in spurts. Nikon got a lot of the contracts after the D3 (and D3s/D3x) came out, seems to be losing them in the D4 generation. Those organizations tend to be highly price motivated, so if the cameras were equal, whoever bid lower would get the win, I think. Even when the cameras aren’t equal, I believe that to be basically true. Nikon gets hurt partly by their lens prices, by the way. Buying a full outfit is just less costly on the Canon side.

              As for steppers, and now cameras, Nikon management really needs to go back and read the Economist’s article on their mistakes in the stepper market. It’s dead on, and it applies 100% to cameras, too. If they fail, they’ll fail for the very same reasons, I think. Going it alone, arrogance, price aggressiveness, failure to respond to a competitor, poor customer support and service. When a disrupter comes in, all those things become huge negatives to the customer base and give them reasons to go with the disrupter.

              As for fabs, Canon still makes their full frame sensors on the same out-dated large feature fab, I believe. The benefit to them is that it’s fully paid for. The drawback is that they’re not benefiting from smaller transistors.

            • RBR

              I had missed The Economist article. Thanks for the reference to it. Although that was four years ago, little appears to have changed. This is a far cry from the era of “Japan, Inc.” During which the Japanese government conducted what amounted to arranged marriages for the specific purposes of sharing technology and creating stronger businesses that were capable of being disruptive in the market place. This even went to the extent of providing technology, sometimes of questionable origin, to be shared. I recall a speech by Admiral Bobby Inman shortly after he took the helm at the MCC consortium in which he commented about the problem of U.S. businesses competing given the constraints of U.S. anti-trust law.

              One other thing I have read about PJs that made sense was an evaluation of out of camera JPEGs at high ISOs (which they use when providing live feeds). It concluded that Canon images were clearly sharper (as a result of processing) than Nikon’s and the wireless system has a better implementation for live feed…sounds like something to look for in the rumored D4 successor.

              I am presuming that the wire services are probably able to negotiate prices that most of us will never see and there is actual competition for their business because of the volume of the orders.


            • Thom Hogan

              These days it is the Japanese banks that are doing the arranged marriages. Witness the Sony investment in Olympus, for example. But things are starting to move out of Japanese control. We’ve had multiple Western company attempts at takeovers, with a couple of successes. That’s going to completely change things long term if it continues, and a weakening yen makes it highly tempting (takes fewer dollars to buy a company).

            • RBR

              Yea, roughly 28% less which does make things pretty attractive.

        • “Canon has shown with the Mark III that they have caught up to Nikon’s focusing capabilities.”

          Compared to the D800, the 5DmkIII is way ahead of Nikon for autofocus. Only the D4 works better. Those two cameras feel like they are reading my mind with how they focus.

      • None of the big three seem to be able to turn on a silver dollar, let alone a dime.

        Canon and Sony have already failed to become the “name brand” or “value brand” in movie/video cameras (and are having their lunch eaten by RED and Blackmagic Design). If they’re not careful they’ll be out of the game within 12 months — heck, maybe it’s already too late. (How big is that dime, guys?)

        The only real differentiator in photography now is your lens system, and the two biggest names in camera lenses are Zeiss and Leica. Nikon and Sony have done an abysmal job of maintaining and building (respectively) lens system moats; Canon merely gets a pass (if we ignore EF-M, which we should).

        So, I’d say, Canon, Sony, and Nikon surviving is pretty much the most optimistic prediction — it assumes no real disruptors come along — and really is that even plausible? My favorite scenario is Apple buys Olympus’s camera division and releases a M43 iOS device with a default pancake lens (that fixes distortion etc. in software) and which can shoot ProRes video and decent stills. The only thing stopping this happening — Apple doesn’t see the camera market as being worth the bother.

        • Thom Hogan

          Neither RED nor Blackmagic are exactly lens producers. RED simply rebadges Cook lenses or lets you use your existing Canon/Nikon/PL mount lenses.

          The thing that people forget that all of the Japanese camera companies have an optics legacy first and foremost. That’s their strength, and it’s a strength that’s really tough to engineer around. Back when I did the Quickcam and again when I was doing due diligence for a VC about a possible new camera venture, I discovered the real problem is getting lenses. All the other components are easy to round up, even customize. The guys who started GoPro and Contour say the same thing: their biggest hassle has been lenses. Not a lot of places in the world you can turn to for high-end glass, high-end grinding and polishing, especially if you need any measurable quantity.

          As for Apple, Apple wouldn’t look at “the camera market” they’d look at the “capture and use of photographs.” It’s a subtle distinction, but it’s one that led to image sensors being in phones as well as cameras.

          • Totally agree that Apple would take a holistic approach (which you and I, among many, have been imploring nikon to do for years). I agree that the only real differentiator is glass, which puts sony at a disadvantage (and might make olympus an attractive target), but I suspect that a revolution in optics is in the offing (where lenses are designed from scratch for post-processing) and this may disrupt the traditional lens makers (e.g. when small, fast lenses with computer modulated distortion suddenly leave existing designs looking utterly obsolete).

            Look at what’s happening with sigma, on the one hand, and the upstart chinese lens companies on the other.

            • Thom Hogan

              Funny thing about that revolution in optics. I was getting pitched from several manufacturers back in the mid-90’s to incorporate yet-to-actually-realized technology in the QuickCam. To my knowledge, two of those still haven’t made it to a real product yet. I’ll believe that we can create lenses with liquid, from injection molds, or with flat plates when I see them.

            • Oh I’m not talking about novel lens technologies. I’m talking about designing lenses with post-processing in mind as a seamless whole, which the camera companies appear to be blind to. Plenty of camera makers will do correction in software, but they do it at the wrong point in the image pipeline — RAW -> correction -> JPEG. The correct way to do it is Sensor -> RAWa -> correction -> RAWb (you can decide whether you want to keep RAWa, RAWb, or both). Once you think this way, lens designers are freed up from many constraints. This works especially well with pixel-binning (use insanely high resolution sensors — do distortion correction, and THEN do pixel-binning, then store RAW).

            • Thom Hogan

              Okay, I’m board for that. As you probably well know I’ve been lambasting the camera makers for not solving user workflow problems for quite some time, and raw files are right at the heart of the problem for serious users.

            • Jon Ingram

              Not a bad idea… hadn’t thought of that

  • BigEater

    Fooey! Market share is no guarantee of survival. Anyone buy a Speed Graphic camera or Bell and Howell projector lately?

    • Paul

      market share is no guarantee, but it demonstrates consistent ability to deliver (develop, mfg, dist, sell) products that move off shelves – sounds like everyone disagrees with this analyst based on what they see people using at their local photo spots 🙂

      • Can’t Believe It

        You are right about that, and it doesn’t really matter how bad your products or customer service are as long as you maintain a Svengali-like hold over your customers. For instance Microsoft continues to prosper even though their products are heinously user-unfriendly and their customer service non-existent. If there was a choice, no one in their right mind would use Microsoft products (and Apple is getting the same way).
        But Microsoft succeeds because its executives understand that the only customers they need care about are the men and women who make the IT purchasing decisions for major corporations.
        For Microsoft, as for Nikon, everyday users are at best an annoyance…

        • Paul

          manufacturing is a tough business. Its a herculean effort just to get something developed, into production and distributed while coming somewhat close to originally planned cost targets, feature sets, and launch times. Very easy to forget about customer details with these complex dev cycles. The analogy for cameras (like your corp IT buyer) is probably a costco buyer. “get me something new that says “nikon dslr” in the $1200 range with 2 lenses”. bonus points if it has some new “wow” feature that is easy to explain on the display. If you get me 200K units at x% margin by Q3 ’14 you’ll get an end-cap in all 500 stores.”

  • 250ninja

    If Canon, Nikon, and Sony have 60% of the market, that leaves 40% for the other guys. Seems like a large enough slice of the pie for Samsung, Pentax etc. I went to The Grand Canyon and Death Valley this month. Most of the shooters were using DSLRs! This is a big change from even a year ago. There were iPads and smart phones taking pictures and video, but very few point and shoots. Maybe a couple of mirrorless. I expect smart phone cameras will get better and better, Android and IOS will have a RAW format added and manufacturers or third parties will make add on lenses to smart phones that will make the compact market almost disappear by the Iphone 6 or 7. Mirrorless will eventually die off and we’ll be left with smartphone cameras with better built in and add on lenses. DSLRs will always have a small model in their line like the Canon SL1. Manufacturers will price DSLRs aggressively and push their product into Costco. Most of this is already happening. The next year or two and the dust will settle with Canon at the top, Nikon second, Sony third, Mirrorless and compacts a very, very small part of the market.

    • Paul

      seems like a big piece of pie, but competition will change the current SOMs. that was the point…not sure about the cell phone and add-on lenses becoming popular.

    • istreetshooter

      Why will mirrorless eventually die off, because austere Americans and Europeans aren’t buying them? For many users, the mirrorless systems are closer to DSLRs than they are to cheap compact cameras.

      • jk

        I think if you ever get a some serious mirrorless camera with decent or great EVF like my A7R or EM1 or XE2 , then you will understand they are actually better than D-SLRs in many ways , but at the same time not as fully matured systems as Canon Nikon Leica.
        but in 5 years time , it is like, even Nikon fan like Thom Hogan once said at his DSLRBODIES site , all cameras will be mirrorless in 5 years , and if Nikon won’t take it seriously , Nikon will go bankrupt.
        and Thom even predicted the D5 will be mirroless(I mean a big mirroless pro body).

        • istreetshooter

          My V1’s viewfinder is very good considering the type, and much better than my older Pen accessory viewfinder.

      • 250ninja

        I look at mirrorless as too expensive and not really needed. Very similar to the APS film format and the Nikon Pronea and Canon EOS IX. I bought one of these Proneas since it mounted all my F mount AF lenses. Image quality was not as good as 35mm. The current mirrorless don’t mount existing Nikon and Canon lenses. Cell phone cameras will get so good that a DSLR will be needed to step up. That’s my prediction. We’ll see if they are still around when the Canon T7i and T8i are released. I’m guessing like the Nikon Pronea and Canon EOS IX, Mirrorless cameras like the Nikon 1 and Canon M lines will be discontinued in 2-3 years. Instead of 31 Powershots and 34 Coolpix cameras, they both will wise up and have a line of about 10 compact cameras.

    • jk

      actually their number is very wrong , in fact , the Sony sells number is much worse than they think it is.
      Sony may be the first one to go bankrupt.

    • whisky

      “Mirrorless and compacts a very, very small part of the market.”

      currently that’s true, but they may also evolve and become a very important link in the image taking chain. personally, i view mirrorless as a complementary product compatible upstream with DSLR’s and downstream with smartphones.

      for example, they may be designed compatible with DSLR glass or accessories (in addition to their own compact line of glass or accessories) but also hook wirelessly into smartphones (for command control, further processing, and transmittance).

  • Morris

    Hasselblad is gonna be the last standing

    • rt-photography

      there is a small market for those who need the 40+mp and huge dynamic range for large prints. yes they will be around but as digital is getting better the share will dwindle. the d800 is a very capable and impressive camera.

      check this out:

      it gives the hasselblad a good fight. maybe for very huge prints it has somewhere to improve but on the whole it does very well and low noise performance, it just rapes the hasselblad

      • SizeMatters

        When the D800 replacement comes along we’ll see just how small the market for 40+mp is!!!!

    • jk

      maybe Leica will buy them , I hope so I cannot wait to see a true MFDB from Leica although I may not be able to afford that.
      I love Leica but the S is not the real MFDB and I do not think it ‘s worth it , Hassel Blad is great camera system but It is a tiny company like Pentax and I do not think they will survive.


    Sony & Canon will survive because they are not dependant on photograhic products. Whether Sony in particular will stay in the camera business is rather moot.
    Nikon, on the otherhand has really no where else to go……. except into history.

    • jk

      well, Sony will go bankrupt or a part of Samsung or Panasonic very soon.

    • whisky

      “Nikon, on the otherhand has really no where else to go……. except into history.”

      well … they could go up. desperate times call for innovation. JMO.

    • whisky

      nikon has this uncanny track record, of releasing innovative product just before things look like they’re going from worse to würst.

  • Dino Brusco

    in terms of sheer cameras I find it misleading.. over here Lumix (Panasonic) are much better rated and spread than Nikon Coolpix. on a side note, Olympus and Fuji are gaining customers here in Italy yet they are perceived as niche products. I think Samsung made a very smart move to merge camera and phone divisions, Italy is 3rd worldwide cell market and people are demanding more and more from their smartphones.

  • jk

    silly article very superficial.
    Leica will survive and Fuji will survive too.
    and I think Samsung will and maybe will be big in the business too.

    I think Pentax , Richo , Panasonic will not be around in 3 years.
    But Olympus may be able to survive too , considering it is a much bigger company than Nikon.
    I think as a Sony Nikon Canon user , I do not think Sony will be in the business in 5 years, it may well be a part of Samsung or Panasonic in 5 years or so , or it may go bankrupt, its financial state is really bad with huge amount of debt.

    • Gary Stonners

      Leica maybe but not on a long run, Fuji only as separate company from the main Fuji corporation or in case they get bought out by another company. Fuji Corp hasn’t been doing well for some time now. Their photographic division is simply too small to survive in the current arrangement.

  • Marc Antoine

    And Fuji stupid Crédit suisse !

  • amk

    For what it’s worth… I recently sold all my Nikon gear, some old, some newer to fund a complete switch to Fuji X (x-e2 camera and several lenses). Of course, I am much more bullish about mirrorless than most here. Bear with this long post and I may explain.

    Yes, there are some drawbacks to mirrorless, primarily speed and the efv quality. For me speed was not much of an issue since I seldom photograph fast moving anything. And the EFV, now that I have it, it isn’t that bad actually. However, there are many many positives that far better suit me than my old Nikon dSLR. Let me run through a few of them:

    1) Size / weight… The cameras and lenses are very small in comparison to what Nikon/Canon offer in a dSLR. I hike, camp with my gear so this was a big factor.

    2) Quality… Stellar. These fuji lenses are spectacular. While the base sensor of the Fuji is “outdated” by 24mpix standards, 16mpix is just fine by me, in particular because the output of this sensor with the x-trans array and closely developed lenses is again… stellar.

    3) Lenses… in all the 12+ years Nikon has been in the DX format market how many awesome lenses have they made optimized for this format? How many primes. Not many. So, in two years, Fuji has put out a system of lenses that better supports their cameras than Nikon did with DX.

    4) DX vs FF… FF has the POTENTIAL to be better than DX (how good is your technique, your lenses, your lighting, print size, etc). The question is, does this matter to you or not. I was honest with myself and realized that lighter/compact would be far more beneficial to me than FF. What good is a FF camera with a monster lens if it will stay home because it takes too much room in my back pack? At this point in time, my point of view is that DX can create wonderful images with few instances where this will be a limiting factor.
    Bringing it together, Fuji has come up with a highly competenty system that is small and lightweight. It will not suit everyone’s needs but does hit, frankly, the needs of many. I speak about fuji because that is what I know best. The rest of the mirrorless systems may offer similar benefits too.
    Where am I going with this? I think there will always be a market for dSLR’s but I think it will be in the FF professional, sports, fast action, weight is not a problem, I need to make 40×60 prints segment. For a good majority of the rest of enthusiasts (and some pro’s) a mirrorless system will offer a highly compeling alternative. As a result I do see the DX dSLR segment fading away (this not helped by the lack of high quality DX sized/optimized lenses) and mirrorless filling in this same need.

    Of course, you can always bring in the FF arguments. Yes, they are valid. FF has the POTENTIAL for better images but the question is, do you really need them. In my case,.

    • JakeB

      FF not only has a “POTENTIAL”, its already there.

      Again, horses for courses…for you the MILC provides a good fit, for others it’s FF and everything it has on offer.

      • amk

        Just to clarify my comment about “POTENTIAL”… of course it is there from a technical standpoint but if all I ever do is view on screen, print 4×6’s for family and a very occassional 8×10… I am not really using that potential that FF can enable.
        I think the market will break into FF dSLR for ultimate speed, handling and quanlity & MILC/compact DX and below for enthusiasts. I am not sure a DX dSLR will be a huge market in future years.

        • mikeswitz

          Which is why Nikon is slowly abandoning the high- end DX market. It looks like it doesn’t have much of a future. FF dSLRs are another story. I have both a D800 and an X Pro-1. Neither does well what the other does well. Different cameras for different jobs. I expect both will co-exist for quite some time.

    • Simon Barracks

      Here we go again…another ‘mirorless’ poster in need to justify his/her purchase.

      We’ve been thru these type of posts already numerous times, ad nauseam…

      • amk

        I’ve justified my purchase long before this post. I was just sharing how I came to my decision and the factors that played into is as it is relevant to the future of dSLR’s.
        Nikon lost me as a customer because they failed to keep up with the competition. As a result, they lost severla thousands of dollars. Mirrorless will NEVER be for everyone, however I do believe they do present a competitive alternative that was not there before so this is yet another threat to the segment.

        • Drazen B

          I believe both FF and Mirorless will co-exist just fine in future. That’s not to say the DX DSLRs will still be around for much longer, I agree with you on that point.

          I’m currently looking at FujiFilm and the latest products and technologies coming from them as I’d like to have a 2nd camera to my Nikon FX. The X-system is the new ‘force’ to be reckoned with, and should play just fine as either a main cam for many and 2nd cam for some. And my eyes are all on the Fuji’s new lenses, those 23mm, 10-24 and the Pro zooms to be released next week (16-55 and 50-140 f/2.8) are all sweet ‘pieces of glass’.

          Keep your E2 and enjoy it, it’s a great little camera.

    • EJP

      Put a 24 megapixel Sony Bayer sensor in a Fuji XE2 and I’m there, until then, great lenses in a great form factor system…

    • Jon Ingram

      Yup, I love Fuji too. I decided to go with D800 for event photography and anywhere I travel to with my car. The Fuji x-e2 gets used for most of my other photography (which is a lot), especially all of my backpacking, mountaineering, and travel photography. The rx1002 stays in my pocket/briefcase wherever I go when I don’t have a full system with me. I got a lot of love for the D800, but the fuji is so perfect and light that I use it most of the time except for when I know I need the unique capabilities of the D800, such as superb DR at low ISO, high resolution, specialized flash, or fast AF.

  • Global

    The summary of this article makes no sense — definitely Canon and Nikon will survive. Sony probably will continue to weasel in on it. But also, don’t rule out Samsung (who is doing it the right way too, if considerably different), and possibly even Apple (especially considering Samsung).

    Samsung and Apple don’t have “systems” (and Apple isn’t even trying yet), but both of them own so much of the camera industry (by way of their phones) right now, that they are literally the 2 giant gorillas in the room. Sony doesn’t even come close by that standard. Samsung is heavily investing in Hybrid Android/Phone Camera systems, and Apple is so tied to the arts community (in Branding) that one can reasonably assume that if Samsung makes it work, Apple will take a bite out of it.

    What I envision is a smartphone camera with the processing & sensor capability of a Nikon D4 within the next 10 years. At that point, it will only be logical to have a “Mirrorless” phone (with a standard PANCAKE lens — removable) and a sensor smaller than Nikon’s N1, allowing for very small zooms and primes. It will be the same good-enough quality (and superior to current Mirrorless cameras), such that DSLR owners will want this system for their phones (even if they never have more than 2 lenses) and even if they don’t use it as their primary phone.

    In the mid-run, however, I think Fujifilm & Canon have the right idea for cropped Mirrorless (though Fuji’s brand still has limited appeal, unfortunately). Although Sony isn’t far off thanks to their stellar branding (but full-frame is seriously going to limit them in market size & size of lenses and costs). Nikon is doing very interesting things — co-branding cell phones now (see recent Nikon news), using their optics and Expeed processors in phones, something Canon is not doing. I think Nikon has the right idea: grab the cell phones; we already see “Zeiss” optics in other manufacturer items, why not Nikon? But just as with the Df, Nikon is way too conservative to make game changing moves, its just slowly creeping that direction & I would guess the executives are not fully on board.

    Just like idiots who say “video doesn’t belong in cameras” — there will also be mistaken idiots who think that Mirrorless doesn’t belong in Phones. They are WRONG. The manufacturer who makes the first successful Interchangable Mirrorless Camera Phone will have a long-lasting place in the hearts of a whole generation of new phone/camera users. Especially if its in a Samsung/iPhone — which, again — leads me back to Samsung & Apple as guys not to rule out in killing the DSLR industry (or absorbing a huge portion of the Mirrorless industry).

    Sony, Nikon, and Canon will rule full-frame, to be sure. Canon, Sony, and Nikon have yet to prove themselves in cropped Mirrorless (Olympus or Fujifilm may hang on in Mirrorless like Pentax did in DSLRs). But in Mirrorless — I’m thinking in Samsung is going to win if they do the Phone right & if they do, Apple will be there next, the same way Apple always steals the latest accomplishment and incorporates it. Or used to anyway, before Jobs died.

    • Dpablo unfiltered

      I was wondering why nobody was talking about Samsung. They will be making a lot of stuff when Pentax folds. And Pentax was such a good company. Tamron or Tokina should buy them out. Or maybe Sigma even. Then Sigma would have a licensed mount to use… Oh, and Sigma is definitely going to fold, nor is Tamron or Tokina. I think Hasselblad is going the way of Pentax also.

      • Dpablo unfiltered

        Sigma is definitely NOT going to fold…

        Stock people know about stocks.
        Camera people know about cameras (sometimes…)

    • whisky

      perhaps most importantly, a “phone” may just be a modular chip embedded into a wristband (like a watch) or a camera, a laptop, a hard drive, or even flash memory. it’s the wireless interface which extends this “phone hub” to features that will win the hearts and minds of consumers which choose them.

      to this end, miniaturization runs against the reality of ergonomics and there may be no need for a dedicated mirrorless phone, but appliances which are optimized for the feature sets consumers want most.

    • tmay

      Apple isn’t ever going to build a specialty iPhone focused on photography or video.


      Apple is going to put the best camera (meeting the size and manufacturing volume constraints) in every one of the iPhones that they build for each generation, and if they have to, master every tier in camera design and manufacture to accomplish that over the coming generations. The best that any camera manufacturer could hope from Apple is to have API’s for Lightning or wireless connected camera modules.

      Samsung is more amenable to specialty phones, and has already dabbled in it so I don’t doubt that that will continue.

      Then there is Nokia/MS, which has some models catering to photographers, but I have to wonder if the economics justify these in the volumes that they are selling.

    • I totally agree about a “smartphone” type DSLR some time in the future. THAT is where it needs to go. I have my doubts, though, about Samsung and/or Apple getting into the serious DSLR business. Nikon, Canon…they’ve forgotten more about what goes into a professional camera than Apple or Samsung will ever know.

  • Reese

    Most people who claim to know the future are total idiots. I wouldn’t count Sigma out yet, at least as for as lenses go…

    • mikeswitz

      Wait does that prediction mean you are a total idiot? ;=D

  • CRB

    Photographers will lose (and im a nikon user)…Both canon and nikon are not companies that inovate

  • ereshoping

    So many analysts… so little time.

    If it was your money where would you put it??

    • Marcus R.

      “If it was your money where would you put it??

      I’d buy a camera.

      Then go out shoot with it and enjoy the experience.

      And invest some time and money to learn more about photography and things one still needs to improve on.

      It’s simple.

      • Roscoe Tanner

        Well said, Marcus 😉

        It should be about the photography and ‘a’ camera, not ‘the’ camera.

    • ereshoping

      Fair enough but I was thinking more along the lines of investing in a camera manufacturer…

    • Morris

      my money ? in my pocket! your money ? well i have large pockets you know

  • Espen4u

    Why not make a Nikon 2 from DX leftovers? The sensor will be good enough for all soccer moms and what not. The cameras would be cheaper than the 3xxx/5xxx to produce and it would cater to all the casual shooters out there. And while they’re at it, make a prosumer DX with EVF assisted OVF and give some love to the DX lenses too. It’s not every photographer out there who likes to lug around the ‘holy trinity’.

    • Drazen B

      “Why not make a Nikon 2 from DX leftovers?”

      You mean something like a Nikon Coolpix A? Or a new MILC?

      • Espen4u

        Yes, a DX MILC with EVF and controls like a 5xxx. Plus two zooms or so initially, because it will need a new mount. In short a Nikon 1 for the American/European market.

        • mikeswitz


          • Espen4u

            Yup, a non-retro Fuji or a better NEX.

          • Espen4u

            A non-retro Fuji in the prize bracket of a 3xxx with access to all the current Nikon glass.

  • Mansgame

    The way Nikon has been dropping in quality control (Left focus problems on the D800, and oil and dust issues of the D600), lack of customer service (not allowing third party repair shops to buy parts and calling everything “impact damage” and failing to issue a recall for the D600), along with their lack of exciting cameras, I think Sony will gain a lot of ground on them. Many Nikon people don’t like Canon so it’s less likely they’ll move to them, but Sony has a lot of promise.

    For others, innovation in mirrorless technology is what makes or breaks them.

    • unumbskulk

      yeah but sony doesn’t make cameras let alone camera systems. they make do-hickeys.

  • ronin

    We can talk all day if analysts are right or wrong. Anyone can cite cases where analysts or company bigwigs were incorrect regarding other products, and hint that therefore all forecasts are wrong. But that all is immaterial.

    Because in this specific article, the analyst didn’t pull his forecast out of whole cloth. Instead, specific YoY numbers, marketshare numbers, and trends were cited.

    Based on those numbers, the forecast was a reasonable one, one that anyone not a photography fan would come up with. It’s the same sort of analysis institutional as well as retail investors would come up with, and as a result the companies in question would face the same pressures from the investment community (and internally) to drop unprofitable lines.

    Now it’s one thing for us to disagree with the forecast. But if we do it’s up to us to use those same numbers and try to construe something positive.

    (Hint: Calling a 150 year old banking organization ‘stupid’ because we don’t like the message, and worse because we like likely doomed luxury consumer product lines, does not by itself provide a superior analysis to Mr. Yoshida’s).

  • Spike

    Who is this idiot banker and what does he know…… There will always be a market for medium/large format for pros Mamiya/Leaf or Hasselblad, and large format too many LF manufacturers to mention.
    So he is only talking about consumer camera’s then…. er well there will always be a market for Leica at the top end, and then there are the smart phone stuff others have mentioned. So it’s over-generalized drivel from Mr Credit Su

    • ronin

      Tell you what. Use the same numbers he did and derive different conclusions. It’s easy to sit there and call people idiots and drivelers when they put their jobs on the line to use said numbers to come up with forecasts for their clients.

      Let’s hear how those dismal trends portend a fantastic future, Spike.

      • AnalyzeThis

        Analysts use numbers all the time to derive conclusions. Sadly, they don’t have a 100% prediction success rate. Not even close. If they did, no one would ever lose money in investments.

        The problem with using numbers only to predict trends, is that they cannot account for unforeseen variables.

        The report also neglected to mention Leica, which is one of the 3 profitable camera makers right now.

        So while the report may generally predictive, I don’t think it’s specifically accurate.

  • Can’t Believe It

    It’s more than just a few companies having financial trouble. My prediction is that we’re at the end of the stills era. YouTube has democratized video and Vine has shown us that you can create compelling, hilarious, important videos that last just 6 seconds, no crew, no script, no real thought needed.

    The numbers are against still photography. Our beloved decisive moments are singularities while the cacophonous flailing of video is a self-inflating equation that captures attention on three axes: Sound, Movement and Time.
    History offers a grim precedent. .Think about this; after commercially viable photography was perfected in the mid 1800s, it took less than 100 years to almost completely muscle aside illustration in the advertising world and kill realistic painting in the art world. Moving images are following close behind. The Lumière Bros. demonstrated commercially viable movies about 1895, video arrived just 30 years later.

    We are the dinosaurs, my fellow Nikon lovers, and the meteor that’s going to wipe us from the face of the earth has already begun to light up the sky.

    • Sorry, but you haven’t a clue. Ask a “realist” artist like Eric Fischl (or his wife, April Gornik) about his current prospects and you’d hear a vastly different story. Besides getting the far side of a million dollars for a painting these days, he also does a lot of photography as part of his art making. Yes, video is exploding. But so is still photography. Witness what is happening with cameras in phones. Some phones are being pitched according to the quality of the camera that’s in them. Not the quality of voice calls, number of apps, how thin it is, how big or sharp the display is…it’s how good the camera is. After the invention of the automobile, the airplane wasn’t far behind. Despite landing on the moon 50 some odd years later, we’re still driving automobiles 45 years after that.

  • z

    In 5 years, I predict that news rag such as NYT will no longer exist in print. Olympus and Panasonic, their chances are better than NYT —-> see Newsweek, Life …

  • thecouchguy

    Nikon have lost my interest and cash for the mean time, Fuji have it now.

  • Jim

    What difference does it make? NIkon, Sony, Canon and who else? As long as the camera works and you have a computer still capable of processing it (I still have film in the freezer and film cameras – several and in different formats) you can take photos. I remember realizing some years back the digital f’ed up the camera market. It was the beginning of the end because there was constant and instant obsolescence. Before camera models lasted years, now there was constant updates and new models – and also on the computer side. Before, you didn’t like the images you got you changed the film and/or developer, now it was a new camera – and whatever else that entailed – plus the software/computer upgrades. But what really counted – the image – that is what it said – was forgotten. Screw the technology, what about the art.

    • Well Jim, if my pictures just had more pixels, they’d be better for sure!! .

  • Paolo

    These analysis are too simplistic and deemed to be wrong. It’s true that some companies will disappear (this has already started: think Pentax and Minolta), but then the analyst simply picked the three major at present, without analyzing their trend.

    In my opinion, it’s not so obvious that Nikon is going to survive, at least if it continues acting as it is doing now. Nikon is piling error after error: launching the D800 long before it could be available (giving profit to early resellers and to competitors that could sell a high resolution camera before them), negating the D600 shutter problem and then replacing it just after a year (frustrating all its buyers), and creating a pure photography camera that misses completely the advantages of retro cameras.

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