Having been a Nikon SLR user from the film days through a couple of generations and into the dSLR era, I had a substantial investment in Nikon cameras and the awesome Nikkor “f-mount” glass. So the shift into mirrorless for me was not a decision made lightly.
When I heard recently about Nikon pre-announcing a future mirrorless camera range I thought for a moment that maybe I should have kept some of those great lenses, especially when I heard that the Nikon President said that the company aims to “put out a very Nikon-ish mirrorless camera which is superior to rivals in quality”
My decision to shift to mirrorless was made not on simply losing the mirror, but instead was about losing bulk and weight for my camera kit. As an underwater, landscape and travel photographer who travels a bit with my gear, any chance to reduce bulk was welcome.
In episode 193 of the Peta Pixel Photography Podcast, host Sharky James (once again) expressed the view that Nikon should put out a mirrorless camera that takes f-mount glass.
I get where Sharky is coming from, but I’m not sure that the absence of a mirror will solve many problems. The f-mount lenses are built with a particular ratio of distance from the rear of the lens to the sensor. Keeping the same awesome but bulky lenses won’t have a huge effect on reducing the size of the camera body. And of course, the (large) lens size remains as is.
Since moving to mirrorless (I use the micro four-thirds, or m43, system) I have been impressed with the power of the cameras and the quality range of lenses from Olympus and Panasonic, as well as a host of other makers. And the cameras and lenses are much smaller.
I do hope that Nikon does something, soon, to deliver a quality camera in the mirrorless space. But simply moving to an f-mount mirrorless body may not really be solving any problems for many photographers.
Real mirrorless innovation is more than just removing a mirror.
- I really loved a couple lenses in particular — the 12–24 wide angle zoom and the 60mm macro were amazing lenses from which I got a lot of pleasure. ↩
- Particularly in an era when airlines are cracking down on cabin luggage carried. ↩
- The name BalancedLight for this blog is in part based on my preference for light-weight camera gear. ↩