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Old Apr 30, 2003, 7:34 AM   #1
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Default Wide angle lens cameras

Why are there so few wide angle digital cameras (at least 28mm wide in 35mm camera terms). Is it because of perceived lack of demand? Or is it technical? I myself have been waiting out for one for ages but to date, can only find 2 models- Nikon 5000 and the Minolta Dimage 7.

I note however in 35mm film cameras, there are a slew of wide angle cameras available.
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Old Apr 30, 2003, 11:15 AM   #2
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Possibly a "I've got a bigger zoom than you" syndrome.
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Old Apr 30, 2003, 12:49 PM   #3
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don't you have that steve

:P
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Old Apr 30, 2003, 1:05 PM   #4
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Quote:
don't you have that steve
Yep, I'm a big zoom freak, now where's that 10x converter.

Reminds me of a TV cop show called sledgehammer, I think - a right wing cop who pistol whips the victims never mind the crooks.

The cops are outside a house with the villain hold-up inside. Sledgehammer starts to screw a cylinder on the end of his 44 magnum.

Another cop asks "is that a silencer" "no" says Sledgehammer "it's a loudener" absolutely great - my kind of cop.
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Old Apr 30, 2003, 1:36 PM   #5
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My limited experience of buying a Fuji WA adaptor for my Fuji 602, (compared to the 28mm bayonet lens on my old K1000, is the WA adaptor produced so much geometry distortion, I would have to take the zoom in to the same angle as without it, to get reasonable distortion free verticals.

Perhaps other cam/adaptor lens combinations are better. I suspect we are being ripped off lens wise, for digi features which are cheap to put in.

These cams need better glass, that's what costs and puts the price up - less sold =less profit. I think this is the meaning of 'prosumer' which is a grade or two lower than a K1000 with a full set of decent lenses!

There are many features in digicams (e.g auto-focus/white bal) which are there, not to get better pictures, but essential to use cheaper technology. Think about why you need an EVF? We all moan about them. A film cam has an optical through lens path or separate viewfinder, a couple of led's , lots of DOF,or manual focus and split image rangefinding. It does the job!

I remember telling a hi-fi gold plate fanatic once, that I could design & build an enclosure, put any speaker in it - and it will sound a million dollars. Seems film cams are the same. Take a basic body, strap on a high quality lens and shoot decent pics. Not so with digicams and integral lenses. Fly by wire features have taken control of consumer expectations and it's worth re-visiting some of the fundamentals of light, lens and sensor physics to argue the merits of one cam versus another.

Can current digicams really produce better quality pictures, more easily than film cams - or are they just technology looking for a market? Topic for debate!
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Old Apr 30, 2003, 4:03 PM   #6
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I think it's cost/quality issues, especially since we're talking (mostly) about *consumer* digicams.

You have to remember that most consumer SLRs are shipped with 50mm lenses (being the same focal length as the human eye)...if you want a good wide angle you have to pay more bucks. When I bought my SLR I got it with a 35-70mm zoom lens instead of the stock 50mm it was supposed to come with.

I guess another thing with SLRs are the lenses are interchangeable...my camera although it's not made by Pentax uses the Pentax K-type bayonet mount which means that if someone puts out a lens there's a chance for more sales then just the one model of camera.

Digital cameras (non-dSLRs) are stuck with what the lens they came with from the factory...people want more zoom, especially at the tele end. My own digi, an Olympus C-700UltraZoom, has a 38-380mm (optical) zoom...but with that being said there are special lenses called converters which I can add to it to give it more capability. I once saw a site that had a 5x teleconverter to give a total of 1900mm to the camera. Here is a page with some wide angle converters to show what is possible:
http://members.aol.com/pixbydg/waweb/wa.html
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Old Apr 30, 2003, 6:20 PM   #7
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Absolutley infuriating, I searche dhigh and low for a good wide angkle camera i could aford with no luck.
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Old May 1, 2003, 10:31 AM   #8
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I suspect it's a technical issue based on the size of the CCD sensor. Even most of the expensive DSLRs have a "maginification factor" of 1.5 or 1.6. To get a significantly wider view, the lens would have to have a really wide view to compensate for the smaller sensor. All the options are expensive... significantly wider view lenses, add-on lenses or bigger sensors.

Photo stitching is a possibility in some applications, but not a perfect solution.
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Old May 1, 2003, 3:13 PM   #9
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How good are these Oly's with their built in pano mode?
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Old May 1, 2003, 5:25 PM   #10
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Many Oly users don't bother with the built-in pan mode...they use third party software instead for stitching, mainly because you need Oly specific cards (or hack third party cards) to enable the pan mode.

The good thing about the Oly pan mode is it gives you guidelines in the EVF on the left and right sixth of the viewfinder (or upper and lower sixth if you're doing a vertical pan).

Here's some samples from an assignment done in the Oly C-700 group:

http://www.pbase.com/oly_c700/assignment_13_panoramas
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