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Wiggy Mar 5, 2005 9:57 AM

My first thought for a future advancement would be to allow the use of both the viewfinder and the LCD to compose the image before taking the shot (OK, I admit it, sometimes I take corny holiday self-portraits of the wife and myself in front of some great scenery and I'd like an LCD to be able to swivel to show me the shot - I'll never give my camera to someone else and ask them to take the shot!). Surely this could be done by either (and not limiting it to):

1. Introducing a prism before the mirror to split the light entering the lens so it reaches both the viewfinder and the CCD. Obviously it also swings away when the shot is taken.

2. Using a semi-transparent mirror so half the light is diverted to the viewfinder and half passes straight through to the CCD.

Obviously this is less than desirable as you would be using less than the full amount of available light to compose/focus your image whichever view you used but it would most probably be an option to be used sparingly. Either the prism could be swung into position for this option or the mirror could be electronically controlled (i.e. a composite material in the realm of the LCD itself) so that it either reflected all light to the viewfinder, or let light through to the CCD.

A third option could be to swing the mirror away and have all the light strike the CCD and use the LCD to compose the shot.

Some have said that one of the defining features of the human race is their ability to think of something that no other member of their species have ever thought of before (and let's hold the debate on this but concentrate on the idea).

Surely the collective community of this forum can "invent" many incredible possible advances in the field of dSLR - far more than any small group of developers at any of the companies driving the field could think of.

Let's open it up - what would you like to see as a future advance in dSLR?

arthogrefe Mar 7, 2005 8:15 AM

That sure sounds like an Olympus E10 or E20. You can still buy them at a good price.

PeterP Mar 7, 2005 10:39 AM

Hi Wiggy :-)

Actually the Canon EOS 20Da allows the use of the LCD for focusing. It has a mode that swings the mirror up, opens the shutter and sends a signal to the LCD :-)The 20Da is expensive and only available in Japan, BUT it is pretty much the same camera as the 20D so I'm kind of wondering if the 20D's firmware might be fixable.

Your other two options would cut light going to the viewfinder and make it even dimmer. But yourcombined option 1&2 does sounds a bit like the Canon EOS RT that uses a prism instead of a mirror, part of the light goes to the viewfinder part goes to the film plane, so you never lose sight of what you are shooting. The prism does not move so the mirrormovement is gone and there is no big sound and vibration ofthe mirror slap.


steve Mar 7, 2005 10:57 AM

FYI - The Canon 20Da was produced as a request to astronomy (and maybe microscopy)folks so they could get a preview image but still use a hi-res dSLR.

marokero Mar 7, 2005 12:42 PM

The 20Da also doesn't have an infrared blocking filter, so for non-astronomy related photography, you'd get black fabrics that looked brown, skin tones that did not look right (pink and yellow, depending on the amount of IR present), green foliage that appeared washed out, all because of the missing IR filter in front of the sensor.

The E-10/20 did have the beam spliter which allowed for live lcd viewing, I used to have an E-10, and however nice it was to be able to see the lcd for overhead or ground level shots, it wasn't very helpful in showing exactly where the camera had decided to focus. With a ttl optical viewfinder (at least on my D100 w/ 1.5x reduced viewfinder view) I get a similar view as a 19" monitor viewed at two and a half feet away. That's far larger than the largest lcd on any digital camera. Not to say it's perfect, it's not the perfect answer, but it's a good compromise until technology catches up.

What I would like to see though, are the following:

* 1x magnification of viewfinders and 100% view to be common place

* more exotic materials in the construction of camera bodies, like carbon-fiber and duraluminum or titanium, keeping the size of today's DSLR but with a lighter and stronger feel

* even faster write speeds to CF - as the link I posted regarding Compactflash revision 3 denotes, 66MB/s should be plenty for 16-bit raw files that would be ~50MB in size

* more dynamic range - Fuji's S3 is on the right path, but perhaps time has come for 16-bit jpg's?

* more power! battery technology has to improve, and circuitry technology has to become ever more frugal

I think that's it for now. Any manufacturers reading this can get to work now :-)

PeterP Mar 7, 2005 1:20 PM

:-)The 20Da has an IR-cut filter, it is just not as aggressive as the regular IR cut filter and passes the frequencies most commonly needed for astro-photography. The 20Da is quite suitable for normal photography as well. :-)

The 100% viewfinder ismore expensive tomake and is generally reserved for pro-cameras, the non-pro cameras get the the smaller view as a cost cutting measure.

Yes, you can never getenough out of apower source, I only get about 1100 shots to a charge on my 20d in the winter using the dual battery grip.. Have to wait for warmer weather and see if it gets close to the 2000 shots they promise at room temperature.


jkusmier Mar 7, 2005 1:34 PM

Not possible w/ CMOS or a full-frame transfer CCD - no real time capability. I don't think you want an interline transfer CCD in a $3000 dSLR.

PeterP Mar 7, 2005 1:42 PM

Examin the Canon EOS 20Da, Japan only DSLR camera.

English description

An additional feature of the EOS 20Da is that the mirror can be locked up, the shutter opened, and the camera's LCD used for focusing a "live" image (with 5x and 10x magnification options).
Full article text here


Originally Posted by jkusmier
Not possible w/ CMOS or a full-frame transfer CCD - no real time capacility. I don't think you want an interline transfer CCD in a $3000 dSLR.

Wiggy Mar 7, 2005 10:08 PM

jkusmier wrote:

Not possible w/ CMOS or a full-frame transfer CCD - no real time capability. I don't think you want an interline transfer CCD in a $3000 dSLR.
No but I want the developers to make the good CMOS/CCDhave real time capability!

KSV Mar 7, 2005 11:56 PM

I will not value LCD preview on DSLR at all and can advise for those who like it have a look at prosumer market. Same applicable for movie.

What would I like in my dream DSLR camera:

- full size sensor with say 12 mp 32 bit RAW /16 bit JPG resolution and noiseless ISO 6400 :-)

-solid construction - no plastic bodies or lens mounts!

- faster writing speed

- waterproof / dustproof

- and, hey, why it is impossible to make DSLR witch can accept film?!? Film loaded - film camera; no film - digital. How this is sounds? :idea:

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