Thoughts on the Future of the Camera

OM-D E-M5 Mirrorless Camera from Olympus

OM-D E-M5 Mirrorless Camera from Olympus

Technology continues to advance.  Things get smaller, faster, and better…  Well, except DSLR cameras.  They seem to stay the same or even get a little bigger.  Why is that?  Is it because the technology to make them smaller doesn’t exist?  Maybe it is the fact that they have a mirror that needs to flip up out of the way.  Perhaps it is because we photographers like the big cameras.  I know I do… at least for now.

The micro 4/3rd or “mirrorless” cameras are improving amazingly fast.  Some are even coming out with viewfinders that allow you to compose images without using the LCD on the back of the camera.  That particular short coming of the mirrorless cameras has kept me far and away.  One cannot deny the fantastic features they can pack into these small cameras.  While Nikon and Cannon have just gotten their feet wet in this market Panasonic and Olympus have been putting them out and improving them for some time now. 

Disclaimer:  I have not even held a mirrorless camera so take these pros/cons as perceived pros/cons.  Also this is what many in the industry (some respected) are saying:

Pros

  • Light weight
  • Small foot print
  • Doesn’t “appear” to be a professional camera meaning your presence may be tolerated longer at certain places
  • Very fast frame rates
  • 1080p video
  • Decent sensor size with a good megapixel count

Cons

  • Not widely accepted by professionals
  • The camera companies with the highest market share are just getting involved (Canon and Nikon)
  • Slower focusing than higher end DSLRs
  • Few larger than 4/3rds sensor size options
  • Not as many accessories
  • Fewer lens choices.
  • Poor ISO performance above 1600

I am certainly not going to be selling my D4 anytime soon for a mirrorless camera but they are surly something to keep an eye on.

What do you think?  Do you think the DSLR is on it's way out?  Is the mirrorless here to stay?