Just a heads-up that at 9:30 AM today, Photoxels will go into virtual silence for approximately 5 minutes. Please join us (and millions of other web sites) to observe a moment of silence for the victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School. Thank you.
The other day, I went to see my dentist and was I surprised when she stuck a different intra-oral device into my mouth for an x-ray! No, it was not the usual film and it did not require a few minutes of processing time. As soon as she clicked the button and I heard the familiar buzz, an image immediately appeared on the computer monitor. I was amazed, but really should not be. I should have realized that with fewer and fewer companies still manufacturing film, x-ray imaging would also go the digital route. Apparently it requires one third less radiation than for photographic film, so this is a good thing. The only two complaints I have is that this particular brand of intra-oral device felt huge so that I could not help gagging holding it immobile in my mouth and the corners were sharp and dug painfully into my gums and palate. A little research on the Internet reveals that intra-oral dental x-ray sensor is not new.
Digital radiography in dentistry provides the clinician with the ability to store their images on a computer. This provides two key advantages over film in the form of full screen images that can be enhanced and zoomed in on, aiding diagnostics and providing easier patient communication, as well as allowing dental offices to communicate images electronically, allowing for simpler referrals and, where applicable, easier insurance claim submission.
I would suspect that if she started to take x-ray photos of everyday objects lying around her office and posted these on the Internet, she would quickly become famous. [Hint to other dentist photographers.]
Now if they could only invent a way to numb the gums without needles. I hate needles!
On July 10, 2012, Panasonic hosted editors from Canada, US and Latin America to a one-day media event in Sonoma, California. Photoxels was present for the event. Panasonic execs from Japan, US and Canada presented the new Panasonic line-up for 2012: the LUMIX SZ5, FZ200, LX7 and G5. A number of new lenses were also made available for use on the Lumix G5 interchangeable lens camera.
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One thing the success of mirrorless DSLRs has accomplished is to force the manufacturers of traditional mirrored DSLRs to up their game. There are two camera introductions that we are awaiting: 1) Canon to [finally] introduce their mirrorless interchangeable lens camera, probably based on the same [smaller than APS-C] sensor used in the G1 X, and 2) Nikon to introduce an entry-level full-frame DSLR, the D600 [rumor].
Canon’s introduction will signal that the mirrorless concept is here to stay, and Canon intends to bite a big share out of it. Nikon’s introduction signals that it intends to differentiate itself from the APS-C mirrorless crowd with full-frame traditional mirrored DSLRs targeted to entry-level as well as to pro users.
The problem with both is that eventually mirrorless will also go full-frame. There are no technological barrier in doing so, Leica having already shown the way with the M9. should the [rumored] Leica mirrorless also be full-frame, expect full-frame to become the next battleground between mirrorless and traditional mirrored DSLRs. And we know who’s going to win that battle eventually, don’t we?
Pictures from sporting events can be spectacular. Most of the time, professional photographers capture those “moment in time” photos but at times, amateurs can also capture snapshots of events that pros are not there to witness. The 2012 Summer Olympics organizers cannot, it seems, give a straight answer on whether photos taken at the event can be posted on social media sites and or sold by the photographers, amateurs or pros. Photographers were angered at what seems to be a ban on posting photos that they take at the 2012 Summer Olympics onto social sites (the prohibition is printed right there on the ticket) but the organizers reversed themselves by saying that only “commercial” photography were banned. So both amateur and professional photographers cannot sell or earn any money from the pictures they take at the 2012 Olympics? Not only is this commercially crass, but it is also asinine. Imagine if companies declared that, from now on, any photos of their people, trucks, buildings, events, etc. cannot be used commercially. We simply would’t be able to report the news anymore.
Oh please, how in the world can you say such a thing — even think of it? After all, Canon DSLRs are used by professionals around the world. People make a living using one. Their cameras consistently earn awards. Movies are filmed using their DSLRs. No way. Uh-uh. Not happening.
Canon is the only major manufacturer still clinging to the traditional mirrored DSLR model. Even Nikon recognized the rising popularity — though not the inevitability — of the mirrorless DSLRs. With their 1 Series compact mirrorless, Nikon made a timid foray into the arena, staying well to the perimeter, and may not quite believe in it themselves.
But Canon, ah, Canon doggedly refuses to acknowledge the mirrorless DSLRs are a danger at all. In fact, it’s answer is the large (larger than Four Thirds, smaller than APS-C) sensor G1 X, a point-and-shoot with prosumer ambitions. If you’ve been reading the G1 X reviews we’ve linked to today and the past few days, you’re by now becoming very aware that the G1 X just does not cut it. How do you make a camera in this day and age that is so sluggish that it is good only for landscape photography? How do you justify the sticker price you slap on it so it competes with the compact mirrorless with interchangeable lenses and high resolution EVF? Someone at Canon obviously is suffering from the same “Hold the fort” mentality so prevalent at Kodak as digital gnawed away at their film business.
My money is on the table that Canon will introduce its compact mirrorless sooner than later and, if the minds that brought the EOS revolution still resides there, we may well see a mirrorless revolution at Canon too. Or maybe, we won’t.
How could London Underground mess up their sign so? No DSLR was allowed in their Aldwych Underground Station “due to their combination of high-quality sensor and high resolution” — then they backtracked and said it was for safety, since heavy cameras and tripods could pose a safety hazard as visitors negotiated spiral staircase with over 160 steps; and again now a third time saying that excessive photography (apparently people using DSLRs tend to take excessive pictures) would cause delays because people were held up by visitors taking pictures. So, which one of the three reasons is it? And if any one of those was deemed valid, why remove the ban now?
Let’s examine the 3 reasons given one by one.
1. Compact mirrorless cameras now take high quality and high resolution pictures, so banning DSLRs won’t help one bit.
2. Put a sign that says no one is supposed to take pictures on the staircase. No one is stupid enough to anyway.
3. I believe advanced photographers take less pictures than happy go-lucky snapshooters.
The reasons do not hold water and London Underground has still not come out and tell us the real reason for the original ban. Probably some company wanted to gain exclusive rights to take and sell pictures and postcards there. A perfectly good reason and one that every photographer would accept. But, please no bull.
There is no name more famous in film than Kodak. Nor in cameras… a decade or more ago. In fact, in some developing countries, the very name Kodak became synonymous with cameras, as in, “Don’t forget to bring your Kodak” — meaning don’t forget to bring your camera, whatever brand it may happened to be.
As Eastman Kodak Co. faces the threat of delisting from the New York Stock Exchange, its stock trading at less than $1.00, it is only a matter of time before someone buys its good name and slaps it onto generic digital cameras (which Kodak itself does today).
It is good to pause and ponder that things change. Some of us are still clinging to film, optical viewfinder, the traditional mirrored DSLR, brick-and-mortar businesses, … whatever it is you cut your teeth on, came to grips with, learned, became very good at… it will change and be left behind as new ways and technologies take its place.
Today’s kids grow up on digital, the iPod, iPhone, iPad, USB flash drive. What’s a cassette tape, CD player, VHS player, CRT screen, floppy disk? This year 2012, set yourself a new resolution to embrace change. It’s the only constant.