Thom Hogan explains why Nikon’s late entry to the mirrorless market could actually be a good thing



 

Continuation to my post from earlier today: there could be multiple reasons why Nikon is still not releasing their mirrorless solution. All previously announced mirrorless cameras from other companies were not perfect and they all had some serious disadvantages. Just in the past year, we started seeing mirrorless cameras with improved EVF (Leica SL), dual memory cards (Fuji X-T2), better battery life (Sony a9) and other improvements. Maybe Nikon is simply waiting for the tech to mature and to see what works on the expense of other company's R&D budget and then jump in with the perfect mirrorless solution? A few days ago Thom Hogan (www.bythom.com) made a very good commentary on this topic here on [NR] - it's worth the read:

It's ironic that I--who have for so long outlined Nikon's product mistakes--find myself in the position of defending them on mirrorless.

Simply put, Nikon has one chance at serious mirrorless. Putting something out before it is ready, before it is class beating, before it is refined, will kill Nikon faster than anything else. Being late with a really great mirrorless product is better.

It's better because the legacy lens overhang can and will win them back customers if Nikon does it right.

The comparative here is the D1. Nikon got trounced by Canon in the 90's and probably would have been the next film camera company to go underwater had digital not came. The F5, while a tour de force of engineering, was a market dud, and had launch issues that made the dud into a thud. The D1 completely reversed Nikon's fortunes. But boy it was a close call, because the D1 had serious issues. Fortunately, Nikon very quickly addressed those with the D1h/D1x.

But the D1 was "first." This time around Nikon will be "last." There's no margin for error in that. If Nikon gets serious mirrorless wrong, all hell breaks lose for them.

"Wrong" means anything less than an A7 in all aspects of performance. And not the original A7, but whatever is current when Nikon launches.

So, what Nikon needs is an M1. An M1 that makes all us DSLR users go "wow." That's not coming in 2017. What does come, comes in 2018. Let's hope it's an wow M1.

That's the monopolist/duopolist advantage: you can let competitors churn through and prove what really works in the market shift. In essence, you get free research while milking your cow.

Now, here's the tough part: you need to understand what you learned and do it right, or else you will find yourself going from leader of the pack to back of the pack or worse. A lot of companies have succeeded in milking their old product but, despite seeing the shift clearly, missing when their products tried to shift. A few just denied the shift and then didn't survive at all. If you look through the computer industry, you see example after example of these. Somehow, HP has just managed to stay relevant and large. Others, like DEC were absorbed by a competitor they underestimated.

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  • Arcmor

    Apple wasn’t the first one to come out with smart phone. But Nikon will need iPhone like product to jump start ahead of the others.

  • Eric Calabros

    Interestingly Nikon just filled a patent for a lens converter that lets you use mirrorless lenses on your DSLR body 🙂

  • John Chandler

    I’m hoping Nikon eventually does make a good mirrorless,because that Nikon 1 blows. imo sensor is too small to be taken serious for large prints. I love Sony A7R series but its also a love hate thing. I love the size factor, love the FE and the fact i can adapt any lens to it but I hate the menu system, I hate how slow the apps load. I truly loathe how slow the one main app i use alot is pathetitcally slow and on purposely crippled by sony because developers can’t access core functions – i’m referring to the timelapse app….its the one most usefull app. it takes like 10 seconds to launch it, once inside it, it painfully slow to access functions, hit menu and theres like a 2 to 3 second lag to load functions, going between menus, another 1 second lag. whatever buttons are programmed will not map anymore inside the app. this i truly find annoying, because once inside the app its a different environment, ignoring whatever customizations you’ve made, ie. c1 to zoom and focus will not work, you have to hit menu, tap several buttons to get to the zoom function and do it that way which can takes 10 or more seconds when in fact, outside the app, one button press and you are there.
    sony’s achilles is the apps, the app store and basically software. case in point – when new firmware comes you have to go thru an archaic system to download it, run it and install it – twice this has bricked my sony, causing me $400 to have it sent in and repaired. in comparison with Nikon, you load firmware update onto your memory card, insert into camera and load it, and its done, super simple, reliable. Yet sonys methods is a total series of fubar. if you want to use your PC to load and install apps from the sony playstore, good luck having fun with that. it requires installing some apps first that allow it to talk to the sony store, either way i could never make it work, it would always fail to talk to the camera hence preventing loading the apps. i sign into the playstore, i want to buy a new app thats $30, that sky nd filter thingy, looks fancy but it simply wont work.
    other option is within the camera, connect to wifi, go to app store, pay for it, download and install – this also fails for me sometimes. it goes into a loop and simply won’t install after download. yet i’ve had it work in the past – this happens mainly for new apps. if i have say timelapse app already and thers an app than updating it seems to work just fine. point is, the unreliable, frustration of dealing with the sony app store truly is frustrating to me and its not just me, many users have same issues. for over 6 months i simply could not download and install apps.
    the sony app that you install on your mac os….guess what its not longer being updated, same for the DNg converter, sony has failed to update apps for the mac os and on their website they’ve stated this, its been over a year. there are serious bugs, problems and they dont bother to update it, which i find unbelievable.
    this is where i think nikon can truly capitalize, their software dev team i think is superior but they need to put an app store in place which they dont have, they need to create a touch screen that loads apps. Their dslr line needs to move into a new era that allows uploading images to flickr, sharing on social media. these big ass cameras are frustating because an iphone has all the great features, it can take pictures, edit and upload right on the spot, wheres dslr requires too many steps and effort to achieve this. Sony’s can do all this, albight requires a cellphone for connectivity but just cause it can do it does not mean most use it, again the apps are so slow it frustrates people.

  • gsxr92@hotmail.com

    A very personal wish:
    Please nikon make a twin line products:
    Dslr Line like d750, d810, just improve it over time
    Mdsl Line d750, d810 bodies and sensors, no mirror big bright crisp evf, full hybrid cdaf pdaf af coverage,
    It will let us, customers to choose between two greats ergonomics system with ovf for these who prefer this, and evf for those who prefer that with one and only one great optics solution,
    If you can create some recessed Lens travel design only for the dslm why not, but That not my point.
    I switched one time from dslr to mirrorless for compactness reason,
    I am back now to dslr for the sake of my eyes wich don’t suits well to evf, and also for the false compactness reason totally negated by lenses of these system (apsc or fx, i know m4/3 is really the big deal in compactées but what of the ergonomics)
    The ergonomics of dslr suits me more than mirrorless,
    So it was a mistake for me and now there is no way i make it again,
    I really think a real mirrorless on a dslr body could be a great idea for some, look at m4/3,
    There are very small bodies (gm1, pen séries,)
    Average ones (em5, em10)
    Big ones (em1, gh4, g7)
    Some like the big ones, some the small
    It’s just natural préférences and ergonomics thing,
    But you know i have seen so many fuji pimped with grip, even woodens one, so many a7 with custom grip to withstand the heavy glasses that right now i tend to think that it is just all a what glasses do you want to use matter than anything else.

    Try to know what pics you want to do, what lense will do the trick,
    The body will come naturally

  • SPshooter

    Too late as I can’t change wife anymore.

  • Martin Lang

    An Oly M1 Mk2 fullframe f-mount, exactly this, af from D5

    • HD10

      I have long been pining away for a full-frame F-mount mirrorless along the Olympus E-M1’s design. Having the D5 AF speed and capability but spread out over a bigger area would be mind blowing.

      I will however add that the camera should have an integrated vertical grip as the current battery grip option for the E-M1 (Mk1 and Mk2) leaves much to be desired. It will be bigger than the Olympus E-M1 … but it will be substantially smaller than the D5.

      OK, I need to awaken from this day dreaming. =)

  • decentrist

    form over function

  • JoeFunny30

    Really good points by Thom. There’s a lot in economic history to support the idea that technological late comers enjoy the advantage of learning from the pioneers’ errors.

  • Negative287

    Sorry, but I don’t see this going well for them.

    They’re already hurting, have very few decent lenses for entry level, and there are already cameras considered to be near perfect mirrorless offerings.

    Both Sony and Fuji have excellent mirrorless options, and at least Fuji has lens quality / pricing that make them really hard to beat.

  • FountainHead

    Too little, too late: the end.
    OK… more like “Nothing, too late, the end”.

  • alex mak

    Pioneer or copycat

  • Owen Perry

    EVFs still suck tho… I don’t care how much they improve… untill it’s indistinguishable from optical I’ll have a hard time enjoying the experience of an EVF. I recently started shooting 35mm film on a Nikon 2002 (F401), and I love that viewfinder more than even modern DSLRs! Simplicity.

  • Shaul Boilov

    Whatever mirrotless camera Nikon decides to make, I just hope it won’t be ugly….

  • MB

    Thom has always has some interesting and kind of to the point observations … and I am sure most Nikon shooters would like to think of this one as a viable one … me too of course …
    But the times has changed significantly for Nikon since D1 has been released …
    For example Nikon had very profitable lithography business at the time so they could afford to spend on development of D1, not so any more …
    Nikon recently stretched really hard and invested heavily in medical business, but that is still far from being profitable … and developing a ground breaking, one of a kind mirrorless system is an expensive venture, I am not sure if Nikon is able to pull that out easily right now …
    The problem is that Nikon should not just recycle a couple of current technologies and put it in yet another mirrorless, they must reinvent everything …
    For example if they just put SnapBridge in it will immediately put back a lot of customers off because most people just hate it, and rightfully so … the idea may not be that bad but the execution is horrible … so they must rebuild it from ground up, make it really usable and launch it on D820 so people can start to think different about it …
    This time it is not the end of the beginning of digital photography and start of ending for film as with D1, this time it is the final years of film and SLRs as the last remaining film era technology and if Nikon does not make something great it will be the end for them too …

    • I don’t know if the future belongs solely to mirrorless systems. Have you ever done some panning technique during sports events using an electronic viewfinder? The view gets jerky. Mirrorless can’t be the solution for everything if the electronic viewfinder is still having some disadvantages.

      • MB

        Similar things people (me included) used to say about digital at the time of D1 … it will never replace film resolution, dynamic range, colors etc … and look where we are now …
        Electronic viewfinders may not be as good as optical ones in some aspects yet … but they are pretty close so it seems just a matter of a year or two at most … and they do have many advantages …

      • RC Jenkins

        I have. It’s not jerky like you describe, though there is a very slight amount of lag that sometimes is imperceivable or makes no difference. But sometimes it makes a difference…depends on the situation. What’s the last mirrorless EVF you used to shoot sports?

        I’ve also tried something different a few times: I tried using my optical viewfinder on one of my mirrorless cameras (Fuji X-Pro2).

        The optical viewfinder on my mirrorless body is excellent for sports. Framing is often better & easier than my DSLRs because the Fuji’s optical viewfinder allows me to see the area surrounding the frame (to anticipate action) as well as the frame itself (with its dynamic frame-lines and live image preview).

        This continuous tracking autofocus performance (phase detect) is the certainly not up to par with my Nikon DSLRs yet, but it’s still not bad and very promising.

        Each of the styles (DSLR, mirrorless EVF, mirrorless rangefinder, etc.) has advantages & disadvantages, and different levels of technical advancements that will change over time.

  • I really hope Thom is right about coming to the party late with the biggest, baddest mirrorless camera in 2018. But I am very skeptical they will do it.

    Just think about all the R&D needed to do so. There are a myriad of current patents they have to steer around and like Thom said, it has to be the best on the market at release. And to do this with a release date in 2018, I doubt can be done.

    I wish them well, but to expect Nikon to develop a totally brand new product of this complexity, while continuing to improve and innovate on on the D5, D810, D750, is a massive ask. I would think it would require an entirely new, and autonomies section of the imaging division.

    One more thought. I bought into a Fuji mirrorless system (along side of my Nikon), to go smaller, & lighter with great image quality. This new FX mirrorless would not be smaller and only marginally lighter (camera only) than the D810 say. So what would the benefit be in buying a FX mirrorless over a D810 FX? Would the system compete with the DSLRs or just give us one more option?

    • Mike D

      The problem with your doubts on a possible 2018 delivery date is that it calls for a guess as to when Nikon started to develop a mirrorless camera. A camera intended for release in 2018 has had the on-paper design completed by now. Any patent issues have been dealt with. It’s not like work just started last month. At this point only Nikon knows if they are on schedule or not.

      • Exactly. Working on a new camera starts already 1 – 2 years ahead with all the engineering stuff before you can even see the first prototype for testing purpose. This is also the reason why predictions of how the market will evolve are difficult to make.

    • EnPassant

      The talk about a Full Frame/FX mirrorless camera from Nikon are only coming from the FF snobs on this forum.
      The Nikon president in the translated interview clearly stated their focus was on mid range and high end DSLRs!

      Doesn’t sound to me as Nikon will make a FX mirrorless!
      And why should they with the big FX F-mount DSLR system and many lenses?

      Because of the falling DSLR sales many proclaimed the death of DSLRs. But it is mainly the DX DSLR sales, especially at the low end that has been falling while FX sales are fine. At least that is my impression.

      So there is really no need for Nikon to develop a FX mirrorless.
      And as you noted a mirrorless FX system using the F-mount (or a new mount with current lenses adapted as some commentators still hope to be able to use) would not be much smaller or lighter.

      A mirrorless DX system on the other hand would be much smaller and lighter as you know having both Nikon and Fujifilm cameras. And for the smartphone generation (who prefers smaller devices) Nikon plan to release a mirrorless system that beats the rivals in quality.

      As I can see that points to a mirrorless DX system as that is arguably the best compromise between image quality and size and weight. Considering Fujifilm is the only serious APS-C mirrorless producer with different types of cameras and an almost full lens line dedicated for the APS-C for the most important focal lengts I don’t think Nikon is too late if they make a good start.

  • Gene

    I think Thom accurately outlined Nikon’s history of failed launches. At least in the past 30 years or so. So, why would anyone want to believe that Nikon will launch a ‘perfect’ mirrorless out of the gate? Highly unlikely in my opinion, given the lack of vision represented by Nikon’s recent launches. This company has become a zombie. No ambitions beyond making money. This won’t last long enough for Nikon to make a difference, even if they launch a mirrorless camera.

  • MonkeySpanner

    I don’t have much hope Nikon can have success with a ML system. After they totally effed the 1 system (which could have been a great system).

    • The 1 system didn’t sell well at least that is my info because too small sensor and too expensive for that?

      The trend in photography gear for enthusiasts is going towards bigger sensors (see FUJI GFX). The smallest could me m4/3 but below that everything is now Smartphone stuff mostly.

    • marymig

      The question is how that happened?

  • CRB

    Opinions are opinions. Just that. Of course all of us Nikon users would like to see a good MILC release from them. But hope is one thing and reality is another. The world didnt stop for Nikon to decide if they should or not release a mirrorless camera in the mid time.
    To say “Being late with a really great mirrorless product is better. It’s better because the legacy lens overhang can and will win them back customers if Nikon does it right”
    It’s like almost to ignore how many milc cameras already have been sold and of course, how many sales oportunities Nikon lost. Its just been delusional. Nikon is late to the party, and unless they come up with something magical, no one will dump their mirrorless for legacy lenses…many just use one lens with their cameras. And some even sold their heavy Nikon/Canon gear for something light…
    Once more…opinions are just opinions. And mine is no exception

  • XanderV

    It’s interesting reading through the comments here and seeing people’s (mis)understanding of why someone would switch to another brand for mirrorless. I was a Nikon user and now am a Sony user.

    First off, I’m just a hobbyist, and I only have the original Sony A7. I originally switched for two reasons: it is small enough (about the size of a classic film SLR) and provides a great manual focus aid (punch-in focus; focus peaking is inaccurate).

    My kit is currently a Sony 35mm 2.8, Canon FD 20mm 2.8, Canon FD 50mm macro, and Nikon 105mm f2.5 AIS. The 35mm is the only AF lens I have, and most of the time, it’s the only one I got with me. The diaper bag always wins out against the camera bag. And I rarely ever need much more than what I already have.

    Does my A7 have poor ergonomics, battery life, liquid and dust sealing, menu system, button layout, responsiveness, startup time, autofocus, and realtime “live” view? Of course, but all of these flaws combined does not outweigh the simple fact that I’m more likely to have the camera with me.

    If Nikon were to create a mirrorless body sized to one of their non-pro film bodies of yesteryear, I would buy it as soon as I could. I fully expect Nikon to make a better camera than Sony, not in terms of performance but in usability. And that is what matters, since they all seem to “perform” these days.

  • Chris Chan

    Nikon DSLR is already a mirrorless camera if you switch on the LV mode, they can just make a new camera removing the mirror and prism, and use all their existing lenses, make an adapter with electronic contacts for their AF lenses.

    • BdV

      I’d go for any one of those mock ups instead.

    • This way it would be a success as the Pentax K-01.

      • Michiel953

        Whatever happened to the K-01? Hopeless commercial failure, no lenses?

        • I didn’t sell at all and was a commercial failure because focus speed was based on contrast detection only, thus awfully slow, it doesn’t have any EVF and the design was looking like a brick.

  • Rod P

    Have to agree whole heartedly with Thom. Nikon cannot fudge this product in any way. It has to be way better than the A7RII & A9 combined. That combined with the Nikon lens ecosystem may juts be enough for it to succeed & draw people back from Sony & others.

    • Milkod2001

      No it does not have to be better than A7Rii & A9. If it was ,it would cost $5000 or more. Very few would actually have bought this camera. Nikon could just have made mirrorless camera slightly better than A7ii with native F mount at reasonable price right now. That would stop venturing Nikon users into mirrorless cameras done by other brands. After that Nikon could concentrate to make A7Rii & A9 killers but that would take some time(1 – 2 years). More Nikon hesitate , less sales come into Nikon pocket and less serious it is considered by photographers. Time to wake up.

      • Rod P

        No, I really don’t think that is what Thom is saying. Nikon will only get one chance to make a good impression, and it will have to be very very good.
        I’m not sure why everyone thinks this will take so much time to develop, its complete nonsense. Chinese companies with far less resources are able to “copy” such things as iPhone etc. in less than a year.
        Nikon will already have much of the tech and plans already, as no company can just sit back when something like mirrorless is making big inroads, they will already be well on the way with mock ups and schematics. The only thing they will have to do is retool one of the production lines

        • Ah, but the Chinese don’t give a crap about patents when making their knock offs. I doubt Nikon can afford to go that route.

          • marymig

            They can’t

  • Craig John

    There are a few things Nikon can’t do with their launch into the mirror less market place.

    1) They can’t chince out on features. They can’t release a camera with 1/4000s shutter speed and ISO 200, when other serious cameras offers ISO 100 as a base (Sony), and shutter speeds up to 1/32,000s (Fuji X-T2). They need dual card slots if they want to hit the pro/prosumer market. They HAVE to have 5-axis IBIS, or they’re toast. Wifi, tethering, USB3, HDMI….Their EVF needs to be the biggest and baddest EVF with absolutely zero lag. They need to hit the high ISO mark and AF mark of the Nikon D500 right out of the gate. If they can get this thing to AF as well as the D5 or D500 in the dark, it will be a HUGE boon.

    2) They can’t get greedy. $4,000-$5,000 price point will kill this camera right out of the gate. People are used to spending $1,500-$2,500 on their mirrorless camera bodies. Making a leap of faith into a new format is much more tolerable at $2,000 than $4,500.

    Very few people will be willing to make the change from their current mirrorless system to Nikon at $4,000.

    The Sony a7II was $1,600ish – and they didn’t chince on many features. They had 1/8000s at ISO 100. They had a big beautiful EVF with nearly zero lag. They have 5-axis IBIS, which is phenomenal. But that has since changed with the a9.

    The Fuji X-T2 ($1,600), while a crop sensor, now offers dual card slots, 1/32,000s shutter speed (with a base ISO of 200), a great AF system.

    3) Legacy glass. Nikon is in a bit of quandary here. They can’t ignore their legacy F-mount lenses, but they also can’t have a huge bulky camera. While the f/1.4 Sony lenses are big and heavy, the camera bodies are smaller and lighter, yet still easy to hold and use.

    Perhaps this is where the Nikon DF2 comes into play. They can make it a mirrorless F-Mount camera with an EVF. I’d buy two of these cameras in a heartbeat (if they don’t chince on features), to use with my Nikon f/1.4D.

    I’ve stated from the beginning, the DF missed the boat by not having an EVF or hybrid EVF to use with their legacy MF glass. Sony’s a7II became the perfect camera to use with Nikon’s old manual focus lenses – that’s one HUGE reason why I sold my DF. Having a crappy AF module from the D600, and 1/4000s where the others.

    4) There is a LOT of area for ergonomic improvement when it comes to the mirrorless bodies. The Sony and Fuji cameras, while reasonably good, aren’t perfect in terms of button layout. Some buttons just seem to be placed in the oddest positions. Some buttons are so freaking tiny.

    5) Menu system. Every system takes a bit of getting used to, and I’ve personally had zero problems with Sony’s or Fuji’s. The one thing I love about Fuji is having a “user menu” where you can add features to make personalized custom menu. But, you can’t chince here either. Fuji doesn’t allow you to add “reformatting your cards” in this menu – which is stupid. …either that, or I just completely missed on how to add that feature.

    6) Those AF points need to span the entire viewfinder. No more clustering the AF points in the center 1/3 of the viewfinder. Once you’ve gotten used to placing an AF point on the extreme outer edge of the viewfinder, and works accurately, you’re not going back to a center cluster.

    7) Auto live view. This can’t be missed. It has to be a feature. There has to be an option where as soon as you pull the camera away from your face, you automatically get a live view on the rear LCD. …And that rear LCD has to swivel to a perfect 90 degrees downward and upward. No stopping at 45 degrees downward like the Fuji.

    8) Lighting – Nikon can take a HUGE lead here with a solid native speedlight/flash system. If I can use my SB800 natively, score.

  • KnightPhoto

    For some reason I can’t find Thom’s article, can someone post a direct link? Oops I see it was a comment posted here… thanks

    • he wrote this here on NR – see the link in post

  • audio

    that is a joke, right?
    Thom Hogan would have been a great pick as a Nokia executive. They surely wanted to wait and profit from the smartphone research done by others. And it turned out just great, look how much they saved of R&D money!

    Because they won’t release a “perfect” mirrorless, they didn’t release one at all?
    Bravo. In that spirit, I will never start learning a new language again!

  • jefffromvirginia

    I would be very interested in a Nikon mirrorless full-frame camera. I recently bought a Nikon D500 and love it. My other system is an Olympus OM-D E-M1. I love it too. Not because its smaller, but because I love what mirrorless provides. EVF, focus peaking, live composite (although that may only be an Olympus feature), and focus stacking to name a few.

    Sony has brought out the A9 to go after Canon and Nikon. But while it has some amazing features, I think they dropped the ball in a couple of areas. Its too small. Its ergonomics leave a lot to be desired. It uses SD cards instead of XQD cards which leads to really bad buffer times. If Nikon can release a mirrorless camera on the level of the D810 or D500 and stick dual XQD slots in it, provide a really nice EVF, and integrate the autofocus system from the D5 and D500, they’ll have a winner.

    • marymig

      The Sony ergonomics are terrible.

  • TheMexican

    don’t understand why you people keep saying it’s Nikon’s 1st shot / 1st mirrorless etc.
    The Nikon 1 series is a wonderful mirrorless system built for the enthusiast & entry level users with ultra compact system and great features & quality.

    No the Nikon 1 aren’t the X-T1/2/A7 competitor but it’s a great option. Just look at the Nikon 1 J5 & V3.

    • Yes, but most consumers are more interested in the aps-c and full frame mirrorless sensor market than only having a 1-inch sensor. Also a professional body with dedicated controls and flash system such as on the DSLR is more interesting than having the design of a simple compact camera – FUJI and Olympus are demonstrating this with their flagship models. It’s too limited now the concept of the 1 system.

      • TheMexican

        You aren’t “hearing” me, I’m not saying 1″ sensor is good enough,I’m just saying that Nikon are definitely not new to the mirrorless business. Making a pro DSLR is combining the nikon 1 with a proper APS-C / Full frame sensor and some dials from their D5/00 series. And that’s about it.
        Of course with the relevant 2017+ features lacking in previous models.

        I just don’t like how people tend to underestimate Nikon over mostly the DL fiasco.

        • It is a home-made problem that most people underestimate Nikon now – they can’t build trust in their brand because they see Sony, Fuji, Panasonic, Leica and Olympus leapfrog for many years on mirrorless technology while Nikon hasn’t offered any similar product in that range – even Canon is trying with the M5, so Nikon is at the very last position (beside Pentax).

          The perception that Nikon will offer an outstanding product with it’s first mirrorless release (regardless if APS-C or full frame range) is very low, even here at Germany you can read that a lot in photography forums.

  • Hendrik Mintarno

    My wish list: 1.5x crop mirrorless from Nikon, with all wide aperture prime lenses designed using PF technology (smaller size). That way, we can get the reach up to 300mm lenses with smaller size body and lens.

  • boisneau

    mirrorless or not, perhaps the urgency is elsewhere ? The a9 BSI sensor is a bomb that leaves everyone behind (test, Chasseur d’Image N°395). Nikon can wait a little bit to make a FF mirrorless, but surely not to update its sensors. A D820 with an improved BSI of 7RII would be a very good sign.

  • Nikon needs to design cameras that speaks the language of a photographer. To me FUJI is doing this very well with the X series (for example X-Pro 2 and XT-2). They have a Leica approach but for way less money. I can’t deny that those cameras are attractive to me.

    The X-Pro 2 contains a hybrid viewfinder where you can switch between optical and electronic viewfinder. Would be great if Nikon could make a modern Df2 like FUJI has done.

  • Thom, you are a romantic dreamer. As long as Nikon does not care about so simple things as D600 shutter problems (I mean the oil-pumping incident), the horrible green LCDs, etc. I presume they lack even the basic sensibility about the customers and the market as well. A company like this does not seems to be able to surprise anybody…

    • marymig

      Customer focus is not a Nikon strength.

  • Derryck

    Will i buy? Million dollar question .

    What i do see is nikon is not “there” where the sale happens. I remember beeing in a camera shop where a customer asks for a camera to do birding and nature. I said get a d500, the sales guy said get fuji xt2 .(argument ,it was new tech..) this is a sales guy getting their queue from the internet and nikon is like a “dinasour” on that medium.
    The sales guy had never used (cant blame him because they are not allowed to open the sealed packages) a long lens and was basically getting tips from me what to look for.

    The customer bought the d500, probably he thought this guy is buying a 500mm lens he probably knows better.

    • marymig

      You gave good advice.

  • Azmodan

    Interesting times ahead from Canon and Nikon. We now know Nikon is not asleep at the wheel and is serious about mirrorless (well I’m giving them some slack here) and Canon is confirmed they are looking into a mirrorless with EF mount to probably come out at 2018 Photokina.

    I agree with Thom, I’ver had no problem with Canon and Nikon being late to the game given how many iterations Sony will have gone through before they got it right. Sony didn’t do mirrorless for some higher reasons, they did it because like Fuji, Panasonic, and Olympus they got their behinds handed to them in the DSLR market and had to adapt to survive. To their credits they have done fine jobs and todays mirrorless are pretty damn good for the most part. But even the A9 is far from perfect and I see it more as a technology preview fro what’s to come. I know Canon has just released patents on stacked sensors, so Sony fanboys laughing that Canon are asleep at the wheel and will take years to develop stacked sensors think again.

    I’d much prefer a camera that combines the best features of both DSLR and mirrorless. The A9 has shown e-shutter is the future, but the camera is still stupidly small for the intended market segment. I’d love to see something with a DSLR form factor but A9 internals, so we get bigger grip, battery, more room for cooling/heatsinks, larger buttons with better layout. A 5D4 sized mirrorless with better performance than 1DXII/D5 would be far more appealing than A9 and at least initially they can leverage their huge lens collection

  • Daniel Han

    It’s loose not lose.
    Sorry I had to do that.

  • Gregory Roane

    The EVF needs to be stellar. I appreciate that there will always be some lag, but if it is similar to the P900 in grainy stuttering, then I will wait some more.

    I would love to give my money to Nikon for a mirrorless body that I didn’t feel like I was using a mirrorless body.

  • DaveyJ

    Sure get a Sony A9 with no reviews I have seen yet. I have held the camera, taken a few pictures with it, and at that price it seems absolutely stupid for me to buy one. I’d rather go back and use my great F5 Nikon film camera. But at this price, I say a D750 and a couple of lens looks far better! Myself I chose a D7500 and several lens and feel that it is far more intuitive, reasonably priced, and faster than blazes. As I can put stills and 4K video on a big screen, and have compared images of the SAME subject with the Sony A9, I compeletely fail to see the draw here. If I had that kind of money to throw around, I’d get one just to test it in my real world conditions. However I do feel that anything which duplicates what you can already achieve is Wasteful. I still miss my Fuji GX 617 with all the lens panels. But film is such a chore to work with anymore!

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