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What do MFT manufacturers need to do to take the format to the next level and is it even possible?


Chris_L 5 5.1k United Kingdom
6 Apr 2016 2:02PM
It's great to see new products like the new Panasonic (reviewed here ). There have been a few new models since the GX7, there are tweaks and improvements but sometimes at the expense of another feature, sort of two steps forward one step back.

5 axis IBIS (in body image stabilization) which can team up with lens OIS (optical image stabilization) is headline stuff. This all bodes well for future Panasonic bodies (GH5?) and gives Olympus cause to up their game and consumers will benefit.

I don't think the MFT manufacturers are even close in delivering in the areas where the micro four thirds format is most lacking. Where are the low-noise BSI (Back side illuminated) sensors and the autofocus systems to equal the best mirrorless and to start to challenge the DSLRs?

Maybe it's not technically possible with the smaller MFT sized sensor and might never be?

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sanveer 3 1
6 Apr 2016 4:29PM
I agree. Not sure what all are the reasons for it. But, they need definitely to improve on their AF speed, and accuracy. About BSI sensors, well, Sony makes the sensors for all M4/3rd manufacturers, and I think it is high time the low light improves too. Atleast good photos and video upto ISO 12800. And, Higher Resolution options too (there should be aleast a 24MP sensor too).

But, I guess AF is somehow related to price. Also, I feel the M4/3rd lineup should include AVCHD codec for 10-bit in camera, or internal PreRes for the GH5 (even if it is a $99-$199 Paid Update).
srh 15 54 1 United Kingdom
7 Apr 2016 8:21PM
I presume you're referring to continuous AF for moving objects? My GX8 focuses damn near instantaneously in single shot AF, and I don't see how it could meaningfully any faster. It's also deadly accurate in that AF mode too. I would certainly like to see C-AF improved though.

Simon.
jembo 15 139 United Kingdom
7 Apr 2016 10:03PM
I can't help thinking that some developments that are included are a sort of halfway house to what the ultimate goal is - but the incremental steps are added for two reasons; to see if they work in the real world, and well, if they launch a new model they have to give you something extra. Look how far autofocus has come on since its first inception. And noise reduction, ISO sensitivivity, and the Holiest of Holy Grails - M E G A P I X E L S. And if it means losing some more obscure feature, then so be it. Development. Wonderful. Always makes you wonder what's around the corner. And how much it's going to cost. To be honest I can't keep up with who is making the greatest strides.
Hence I've tidied the darkroom and am back to my Bronnie at the moment currently shooting film.
Progress. Wink
Paul Morgan 18 19.3k 6 England
7 Apr 2016 10:28PM

Quote:It's great to see new products like the new Panasonic (reviewed here ). There have been a few new models since the GX7, there are tweaks and improvements but sometimes at the expense of another feature, sort of two steps forward one step back.

5 axis IBIS (in body image stabilization) which can team up with lens OIS (optical image stabilization) is headline stuff. This all bodes well for future Panasonic bodies (GH5?) and gives Olympus cause to up their game and consumers will benefit.

I don't think the MFT manufacturers are even close in delivering in the areas where the micro four thirds format is most lacking. Where are the low-noise BSI (Back side illuminated) sensors and the autofocus systems to equal the best mirrorless and to start to challenge the DSLRs?

Maybe it's not technically possible with the smaller MFT sized sensor and might never be?



Plenty of compacts use back illuminated sensors but I think that M4/3 will always be behind DSLR`s for focus tracking, not that this bothers me.
ChrisV Plus
12 2.3k 26 United Kingdom
8 Apr 2016 11:03AM
Always is a long time. MFT has made some strides in C-AF from a very poor baseline - the EM1 does have PDAF sensels on the imaging chip while Panasonic has taken a slightly different route with its DfD technology. Neither of these can compete with dedicated phase detect sensors, but they don't suffer from the potential inaccuracies that separate distance sensors present and they also don't render those separate units useless in live [and video] mode, because they're always in that mode.

But the big boys are also moving toward on-chip PDAF and other approaches may eventually see the death of the dedicated distance sensor [or enable it to work in conjunction with live view somehow] and the mirror's days could be numbered. The MFT format as things stand is always going to lag behind in terms of noise control and limitation of DoF - that's physics. There may eventually be novel ways around these problems [multiple exposure/software tricks/image arrays], but they all either have limitations or suggest a change in the system concept.

I think there's always likely to be a price to pay for the convenience of a smaller form factor. From my PoV, the images [from a technical viewpoint] were mostly 'good enough' in these respects when I bought my first DSLR [a Nikon D70] and they're considerably better now - probably [in most regards] rivaling what I could get out of a 5dII [although still unrivaled if I want a really shallow DoF portrait].

Where I think Panasonic [in particular] have made great strides, it's on the video front and I do hear quite often that the GH4 has supplanted the 5DII as the body of choice for high level motion shooting in the ILC form factor - and at a pretty keen price point. I wouldn't be surprised at all to see them at the forefront of 8k development in future - which obviously will have huge implications for the stills output too [probably even moreso than they've leveraged out of 4k shooting]. They're certainly not standing still.
Chris_L 5 5.1k United Kingdom
8 Apr 2016 1:01PM
The GH4 and Sony A7S (I and II) have completely supplanted 5d II and 5d II for video. The blogs like with titles like EOSVideo or Planet 5D are more likely to write about anything but 5D.

Interestingly I have accidentally bought a full frame Sony! I had a search saved for A7S with ebay sending me emails when they became available. A buy it now Argos refurb with a lens came into my inbox for 830 and I hit buy-it-now as soon as the ebay page opened. Turned out it was an A7 instead of A7s.

I tried cancelling but email fell on deaf ears and it literally just arrived as I was writing this!

I fancy keeping it, Full fram, not much bigger than my Gh4 hmmmmm

Chris_L 5 5.1k United Kingdom
8 Apr 2016 1:27PM
Wow Keeping!

It's meant to be. Second-hand the A7S sells for around 1k without a lens. I bought the A7 in error, it was too good to be true. Body as new with 28-70 OSS lens.

I've taken some jpegs and a short video. I'd left ISO on auto and it's gloomy indoors. First photo on the screen was 3200 ISO and I was knocked out when I read that after viewing it first. I can't wait to shoot raw with it (when I find it in the menu). When I stop pressing the middle pad button to bring the menu up rarr.

I want to get back into full-frame. I like the small size of mirrorless. This thing, by the reviews, beats my old 5D MK II and gives the 5D Mk III a run for its money. I'm impressed with the size, weight, handling and focus speed. It really is meant to be. Dunno whether to sell the GH4 or just some lenses. That has 4k. If I can ever afford to I could get an A7R II or still get one of those A7S jobbies for shooting in the dark. The batteries are the same size lol so I'll save money really!
SlowSong Plus
11 8.2k 30 England
8 Apr 2016 1:33PM
The GH4 has just released an upgrade for video and post focussing. You might want to keep it. Smile
ChrisV Plus
12 2.3k 26 United Kingdom
8 Apr 2016 1:34PM
The A7[s] do look damn tempting, but if I got one it would have to be the A7RII and it's beyond my reach [even without lenses]. There just seems to be too much [perceived] compromise with the other bodies when you look at all the advantages of the top model - which is the first that seems like a clear class-leader in my book. The down side of course is that you're back to [on the whole] big heavy lenses. Battery life is an annoyance, but that's not a deal breaker - neither is the lack of C-AF that isn't up to the level of high end DSLRs.

I did at first dismiss the Alpha 7 series because of the lens weight - and I still think they could improve the camera by making it bigger [bigger battery, LCD top plate, better grip, improved control points] whilst not adding all that much to overall system weight. The A7RII is just such a damn good camera it's forced me to change my mind.
Carabosse 16 41.2k 270 England
8 Apr 2016 2:07PM

Quote:What do MFT manufacturers need to do to take the format to the next level and is it even possible?


Incorporate an MFT sensor into a mobile phone. 9207_1446516808.jpg


ChrisV Plus
12 2.3k 26 United Kingdom
8 Apr 2016 2:36PM

Quote:
Quote:What do MFT manufacturers need to do to take the format to the next level and is it even possible?


Incorporate an MFT sensor into a mobile phone. 9207_1446516808.jpg





Well nearly - Panasonic did put one of their 1" sensors in the CM1 mobile - not sure if it survived!
Chris_L 5 5.1k United Kingdom
8 Apr 2016 2:37PM
Chris V, you're right in pretty much everything you say. Things took a different turn for me because in order to save some cash I bought older lenses which had to be manually focussed on the GH4 / GX7. Easy peasy with focus peaking. It did mean that I had the weight penalty anyway.

I have to compare the A7 with the 5D II. In that respect almost everything is smaller and lighter. I know that I will have to carry two spare batteries at all times. If I stick a 35mm prime onto this thing It's not going to be that different, physically than GH4 with 17mm but the IQ will be way better.
Adey_Baker 5 19 United Kingdom
8 Apr 2016 6:48PM
The latest Panasonic has a newer shutter designed to tackle shutter-sock and this is an area that they all really need to nail before adding too many new features - if they can also incorporate a 'global-shutter' for silent operation without any rolling-shutter issues then so much the better.

Otherwise, any new features may very well be just as possible for any mirrorless system. M4/3rds' main advantages of size and weight should be concentrated on - there are some top quality lenses coming out, but they're getting a bit big and heavy, so more compact, but still high-quality optics should still be high on the list.

Hand-holdable 'high-res' mode would be popular.
Paul Morgan 18 19.3k 6 England
8 Apr 2016 6:53PM
Shutter shock, its just not that great of a problem, I`ve never yet seen it with any of my M4/3 camera`s.

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