What will be the future for cameras?

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by Ric Trexell, Dec 11, 2010.

  1. Ric Trexell

    Ric Trexell Member

    Messages:
    257
    Joined:
    May 26, 2009
    Location:
    Berlin Wi.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    As the digital revolution continues, I'm wondering if the 35mm camera will still be in production in a few years. I'm thinking that the 645's will be taking the place of the high end 35mm cameras. Perhaps a film cartridge like the 35mm cartridges of today made for a medium size film, and new backs that will take that size film will be offered. Then your 645 would take either a film back or a digital back. Even if a new film cartridge was not introduced, the 645 might be the camera of choice in the future. Mass production of these dual format cameras would reduce the price and become competative with the standard digital format camera (based on a 35mm SLR of today) and would have more options. Either way, I look for medium format cameras in some sort to be with us for years to come, but I think the 35mm SLR is going to be a dieing format. That is unless some problems develop in the digital world that would cause people to want 35mm cameras. What do you think?
     
  2. Mustafa Umut Sarac

    Mustafa Umut Sarac Member

    Messages:
    4,518
    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2006
    Location:
    İstanbul
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
    Dont worry , There will always be a investor who wants to kick the death horse. I am worrying about the low prices of Leitz Rangefinders , they go to amateur hands who dont know what he is holding.
    I saw some professional photographers treat the Leica like a toyota. All coating gone , bumps everywhere.
    But I like digital cameras which BBC uses. Antiques Roadshow have a fascinating quality and these cameras are cheaper than M9. I am hoping to use that cameras at the future for example Sony Z1 with Zeiss optics.
    Video cameras are faraway better than photography cameras and I dont I will not see a future at a frozen image.
     
  3. R gould

    R gould Member

    Messages:
    430
    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2010
    Location:
    Jersey Chann
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    They say that 35mm is the biggest selling format, so I think that 35mm cameras will be around for a long while yet, although possibly not new cameras, there are still a few in production from the smaller producers, and a huge second hand market, but I don't see much change in the 120 film and equipment market, again,I think we will rely more on the used market than new, are there any new 645 cameras still made now that both bronica and pentax have stopped production, do Mamiya still produce any film cameras? Richard
     
  4. lxdude

    lxdude Member

    Messages:
    6,921
    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2009
    Location:
    Redlands, So
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I thought I was looking at a post from 10 or 15 years ago.:blink:
     
  5. lxdude

    lxdude Member

    Messages:
    6,921
    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2009
    Location:
    Redlands, So
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    "Low prices"???:blink:
    The higher their price the more they will only be in the hands of people who buy them because they are expensive.

    I don't agree with that, unless you mean in journalism, where videos are being used more and more, because that's what people want. Sometimes a video is more powerful than a still image.
    Though I think really good still photos will always have their place.
    The famous image of the US flag being raised on Iwo Jima has a power much greater than that of the movie taken by the film camera operator standing right next to Joe Rosenthal.
     
  6. brian d

    brian d Member

    Messages:
    396
    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2008
    Location:
    Indiana
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Could'nt agree more, in the movie clip the flag goes up and that's that, kind of ho-hum as far as battle field film clips go, in Rosenthal's photo you catch all the intensity and determination -and fear/stress-of the moment.
    IMHO there are some places where a moving picture will never replace a photograph.
     
  7. aldevo

    aldevo Member

    Messages:
    895
    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2004
    Location:
    Cambridge, M
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I feel pretty confident that the last cameras produced will be for sheet sizes. They are simpler to build and the level of capitalization is much, much lower than for roll/cartridge formats.

    Plus, if the worst should come to pass and film no longer be produced, there are always paper negatives, glass plates for the intrepid, etc. - assuming photosensitized materials remain available (i.e. that your country's central bank has not appropriated all silver by then ;-)). These will work just fine with large format cameras.

    I do not see any real issue regarding camera availability in the short-term. Of greater concern is getting them serviced. I live in a metropolitan area of 3 million peope and there are, perhaps, 4 places that will perform a CLA on a 35mm camera.

    And I would only trust 2.5 of them.

    I'm not sure there is even one that I would trust to work on, say, a leaf-shutter on a Bronica SQ S or PS lens.
     
  8. aldevo

    aldevo Member

    Messages:
    895
    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2004
    Location:
    Cambridge, M
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I agree that the future of still-photo journalism will be in frame capture from video cameras.

    Still-photo journalism puts most of the editorial control in the hands of the photographer. These days the raw footage is purchased by syndicated feeds that distribute it to customers.

    High quality video feed wherein individual frames can be harvested to support the editorial viewpoint of any number of customers would be of great benefit to the syndicates. It would remove most of the editorial control from the individual (or device) performing the capture and place it in the hands of the customer paying for the feed.

    A shift to this format is already taking place and is gathering speed. It would not surprise me greatly if digital still image cameras disappear altogether in the next 10 years. Executives from Sony & Olympus have already said that this is where they believe the future is and that the dSLR is nothing more than waypost along that road.

    Perhaps the still-image film camera may yet outlive its digital counterpart!
     
  9. Moopheus

    Moopheus Member

    Messages:
    1,066
    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2006
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Sure--how many millions of 35mm cameras have been produced over the years? Many are still in use. Also, the one-use disposable camera--the direct descendant of George Eastman's original--remains a popular item at drugstores. Consider this factoid from Kodak's web site:

    "The number of Kodak one-time-use cameras recycled is now approaching 1 billion. When considering competitors cameras that are also collected through our program, the total number of OTUCs recycled exceeds 1.5 billion cameras."

    That's presumably cumulative since about 1990 or so, when they started the recycling program.
     
  10. hpulley

    hpulley Member

    Messages:
    2,214
    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2010
    Location:
    Guelph, Onta
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Last camera made or last film made? It's a tough call... Honestly I don't need any new cameras, there are so many old ones around. People are still using cameras that are 50 or 100 years old so there is no reason to believe that all the cameras will suddenly stop working any time soon. Whether there will be film to run through them is a more pressing concern in my opinion. Working cameras could well outlast film production. I hope not but they could.
     
  11. Jeff Kubach

    Jeff Kubach Member

    Messages:
    6,932
    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2007
    Location:
    Richmond VA.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I haven't bought a new camera in years.

    Jeff
     
  12. Ric Trexell

    Ric Trexell Member

    Messages:
    257
    Joined:
    May 26, 2009
    Location:
    Berlin Wi.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Good points made but...

    There are some good points made that I didn't think about, but this got a little off the point of the original post. While I'm sure there will be 35mm cameras made for some time, and they will last for many years as well as film for them, the camera companies and film companies will want to revamp the whole system so they have something to sell. While FSLR's will be dropping off the list in time, that leaves only digital, (and MF and LF). Once the market is saturated with DSLR's, they have got to go somewhere. Maybe video/still cameras will be the hot item, but digital still has a long way to go for those that like B/W, or don't want to play with their computer to get a picture the way they want it. The only option I see is a dual format camera, and unless they come up with a 35mm/digital camera, the most likely way to go would be a MF/Digital. Since those already exist, I would think they would be the next hot camera. Ofcourse one can't guess the market, but what I'm saying is it would not surprise me if Nikon and Canon and the other big ones drop 35mm in a few years and go with MF/Digital. Right now the 35mm FSLR is facing strong competition from digital and is losing. Right?
     
  13. elekm

    elekm Member

    Messages:
    2,058
    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2004
    Location:
    New Jersey (
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
    The Japanese (with a few exceptions) largely abandoned film about five years ago. They have ZERO interest in old technology. Japanese makers, led by Canon, have shown that they aren't interested in looking backward.

    Much of this is a reflection of the American consumer, which wants cheap and easy.

    There are plenty of used cameras on the market, and still a good choice of film from several manufacturers: Ilford, Adox, Rollei, Maco, Efke and Kodak and Fuji.

    I'm not going to worry too much about the future of cameras. What will happen has happened.

    I don't expect that we'll see (m)any new film cameras out of Japan (except for Cosina).

    At least, we've stopped hearing that insipid phrase, "Going digital," every other day.

    Just shoot, baby!
     
  14. Sponsored Ad
  15. paul ron

    paul ron Member

    Messages:
    1,441
    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2004
    Location:
    NYC
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Land fills will be loaded with lots of digital cameras sicne no one repairs em.

    Film cameras will be in high demand again when people start realizing they bought toys.

    Imagine using a 100 year old LF camera again or a 60 year old MF pocket folding camera? Yeah right!


    .

    .
     
  16. phaedrus

    phaedrus Member

    Messages:
    463
    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2006
    Location:
    Waltershause
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Let's not look at it from a purely western perspective. 135 film is still in higher demand in less affluent parts of the world, where not everyone has access to a computer or even mains power. And let's not forget a big domestic market for 35 mm film: speed trap cameras.
    If I may bend the original poster's question a bit, what will be the last 35 mm black & white film produced? I hope it will be Tri-X, but that's just my momentary preference.
     
  17. hpulley

    hpulley Member

    Messages:
    2,214
    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2010
    Location:
    Guelph, Onta
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Actually I was surprised to find film was still popular and easy to have processed in Japan when I was there last year (sadly I didn't go this year). They like the newest things too of course but there was no problem finding places that sold and processed film in Tokyo. Great used camera stores too. Of course most take pictures with their phones but that is true here as well.
     
  18. photo_guy

    photo_guy Member

    Messages:
    3
    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2010
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Both will be around in the future. Three brief points:

    Photography is about physics so until minature sensor cameras can meet or surpass the light capturing ability of large sensor cameras you will see both.

    Large segment of population want smaller and smaller cameras. IMO once you been familiar with benefits of larger cameras, the minature ones are just a novelty.

    Many say that video and still imagery will converge, but just like music videos and CDs, sometimes you just want the music and not a whole production...
     
  19. Alan Johnson

    Alan Johnson Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,382
    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2004
    I believe Shanghai Seagull are still making cameras:
    http://p0owkf.21goods.net
    In emerging markets the cost and effort of importing secondhand cameras from the West probably means that new film SLRs are competitively priced there.
     
  20. theoria

    theoria Member

    Messages:
    53
    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2010
    Location:
    Bucharest
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Kind of hard to beat Leica or even a 35mm SLR at street photography with a 645.
     
  21. mabman

    mabman Member

    Messages:
    830
    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2007
    Location:
    Winnipeg, MB
    Shooter:
    35mm
    In terms of new cameras, I would think the last film-capable mass-produced model would be one that takes both a digital and a film back to maximize the manufacturer's market - likely MF, because there are models that do that already. I don't follow them closely (because I can't afford them anyway), but I'm pretty sure the latest Rollei/whatever it's branded now and at least 1 current Hassy take backs with either.

    I can see LF/ULF cameras being made for some time, because they can be made-to-order and are to some extent already.

    35mm - well, there are so many good (semi-)manual cameras out there already, some needing a bit of TLC, some not - I think the future in 35mm is camera repair :smile:
     
  22. paul ron

    paul ron Member

    Messages:
    1,441
    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2004
    Location:
    NYC
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Then why are DSLRs getting so bulky n heavy?... they weight more than some MF cameras.
     
  23. photo_guy

    photo_guy Member

    Messages:
    3
    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2010
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Pro DSLRs are getting no more heavier than they have been. I've been shooting digital for over 10years and we are far past the days of the Kodak DCS Pro units.


    So when was the last time you held a medium for DSLR? I have both Mamiya and Hasselblad, and I struggle with the Mamiya handholding, but the Hasselblad is out of the question.
     
  24. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

    Messages:
    15,194
    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2005
    Location:
    BC, Canada
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I have a feeling paul ron was referring to medium format film cameras.
     
  25. photo_guy

    photo_guy Member

    Messages:
    3
    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2010
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    I got the impression that some responses referenced film cameras...

    I was looking at big picture, and cameras in general. I've seen so much advancement in photography in last several years, that I myself wonder if still image only units will even be around in 7 years.

    Not just the live view and EVIL type camera tech., but device processors are becoming so powerful- that playing music, recording hi-def, and taking still images will become 2nd nature. Wont be long before cellphones are using chips found in current day digicams.

    At any rate, enjoyed the discussions.
     
  26. Jim Jones

    Jim Jones Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,220
    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2006
    Location:
    Rural NW Mis
    Shooter:
    4x5 Format
    Imagine how horrible a room festooned with video screens instead of still images would be! I have a few thousand feet of 8mm movie film that hasn't been out of its case in decades, and probably never will be. Alas, what a waste of time and money.

    Just as photography didn't eliminate drawing and painting, videos and digital imaging won't eliminate film for artists. Because of photographers and artists interested in image quality, large format might outlast the smaller cameras. The convenience of digital imaging makes it the choice of the multitudes who prefer taking thousands of snapshots instead of making one good photograph.