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Old Apr 2, 2006, 9:07 AM   #1
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I'm trying to decide which dSLR to buy. I had considered the Konica-Minolta series because of the anti-shake function built in to the camera body, which means it would have worked the collection of Maxxum lenses I have. But now that Konica-Minolta is getting out of the camera business, I'm looking at other options. I like that the Olympus CCD is self cleaning, and so this puts Olympus in the lead for my consideration (not to mention high Olympus quality in other regards). So, anyone know if there are anti-shake lenses for the Olympus dSLRs? If so, where would I get more information (I didn't find anything on the Oly site when I looked a month or so ago)? Thanks!
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Old Apr 2, 2006, 7:14 PM   #2
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No anti-shake lenses are available for the Olympus yet. It's said that the new Leica lenses announced at PMA for the 4/3 Panasonic body will also work on the Olympus 4/3 bodies. The hope is that the new Olympus pro body (E-3?) supposedly scheduled for the fall Photokina will include antishake, but for now it's the conventional stabilization methods (tripod).


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Old Apr 2, 2006, 8:29 PM   #3
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Is the lens mount for the 4/3 Panasonic body the same as the Olympus 4/3? (I didn't even know that there was a Panasonic 4/3 -- is this something in the planning stages or has it been released? One other question, is there any other camera that has a self-cleaning function. It seems to me that dust and dirt on the CCD would be a hassle to easily & safely clean off. With a film camera, obviously this isn't a problem.
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Old Apr 2, 2006, 11:49 PM   #4
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DrummerCT wrote:
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Is the lens mount for the 4/3 Panasonic body the same as the Olympus 4/3? (I didn't even know that there was a Panasonic 4/3 -- is this something in the planning stages or has it been released? One other question, is there any other camera that has a self-cleaning function. It seems to me that dust and dirt on the CCD would be a hassle to easily & safely clean off. With a film camera, obviously this isn't a problem.
1. The Panasonic is supposed to be released later this year; all 4/3 cameras abide by the same standard, so yes, the lens mount is the same. It was announced at the PMA this year; I think Steve has some previews of it, as do the other conventional digicam sites.
2. No other camera besides Olympus and the upcoming Panasonic has the SWWF cleaning function. And yes, it really does work, and makes it both economically and psychologically an important plus. Some people with other brands deny that cleaning the filter is a hassle, but "your mileage may vary." There are lots of horror stories out there as well.

P.S. Steve's report on the Panasonic can be found HERE.





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Old Apr 3, 2006, 8:10 AM   #5
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Wow, the Panasonic looks like a great camera, at least from the specs. Plus the image stabilizing lens! I think I'm going to postpone purchase till this camera gets to market for reviews (I have several regulardigicams to sustain me till then). Any idea of cost of camera plus the lens?
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Old Apr 3, 2006, 9:30 AM   #6
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I shot with my friends Canon 20D with IS lens. I found them heavy and bulky for hand shooting. After 6 hours of using it, I was tired. You almost need a tripod for them. Sort of defeats the purpose of IS.
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Old Apr 3, 2006, 10:07 AM   #7
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DrummerCT wrote:
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Wow, the Panasonic looks like a great camera, at least from the specs. Plus the image stabilizing lens! I think I'm going to postpone purchase till this camera gets to market for reviews (I have several regulardigicams to sustain me till then). Any idea of cost of camera plus the lens?
The lens (Leica) alone will likely be in the range of $1500, and expect another $1000 (or nearly) for the body (with live view, like the Oly E-330).


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Old Apr 3, 2006, 10:18 AM   #8
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Holy cow.:shock: That's a lot of money for a lens, even if it is Leica branded. Seems like one could buy a "regular" lens and a car load of different kinds of tripods for image stabilization! This is why I liked the IS that was built in to to Konica-Minoltas; however, the problem with KM is their out of the camera business, having sold off assets to Sony(who may or may not continue with in-camera IS, or continue on with the Maxxum lens mount).

You'd think that someone would come out with a *reasonably priced* dSLR body with IS built-in, self-cleaning sensor combination. The technology is there. I suppose it gets into patent issues?


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Old Apr 3, 2006, 10:36 AM   #9
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You pay 2x-3x the non-IS price for IS lens. You also add length and weight to the lens making them front heavy. You will pay more for most lens than the body of the camera. Unless you have a huge budget, learn to use non-IS lens. Look up Canon non-IS and IS lens. That is what made me get the Olympus E-500 over a Canon 20D. The three lens I wanted with $4000+ with Canon IS.
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Old Apr 3, 2006, 10:55 AM   #10
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DrummerCT wrote:
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This is why I liked the IS that was built in to to Konica-Minoltas; however, the problem with KM is their out of the camera business, having sold off assets to Sony (who may or may not continue with in-camera IS, or continue on with the Maxxum lens mount).
I wouldn't worry about it, especially since you already have Maxxum lenses. It's probably best for the long run, thanks to Sony's deep pockets.

Sony is one of the largest sensor suppliers in the world, and supplies sensors to most manufacturers for many of their non-DSLR models. If you use an Olympus, Konica-Minolta, Nikon, Pentax, or Canon non-DSLR camera, there's a good chance it's got a Sony sensor in it.

They also supply the sensors for Nikon, Pentax, and Konica-Minolta DSLR models, and by launching their own DSLR lineup, they don't have to worry about buying sensors from someone else, lowering their R&D cost for new products (while still supplementing revenue by selling sensors to the "other guys".

In addition, Sony is number 3 in market share in Digital Camera sales in the U.S. behind Kodak and Canon (and number 2 worldwide).

They've already announced their intent to capture 25% of the DSLR market, too. So, I wouldn't underestimate them, and they've already got a huge distribution network in place to market DSLR models.

Minolta has manufactured 16 Million Lenses in Maxxum/Dynax mount since this mount was introduced in 1985. That's a lot of lenses in the market (and that doesn't even included third party lenses in this lens mount from Tamron, Tokina, Sigma, Vivitar/Cosina, etc.).

Even Canon (which has been making DSLR models for much longer, with a huge number of users), has only manufactured 32 Million lenses in their EF mount.

So, even though we're seeing some short term "panic buying" in the used market impacting supply, what lens is going to be harder to find on the used market...many times the users of Canon DSLR models trying to pick between 32 Million lenses, or a small number of KM DSLR owners in comparison, trying to find deals with 16 Million lenses in the market?

Also, KM is not going out of business. They've just decided to stop selling cameras under the Konica Minolta brand name. They'll still be making cameras and lenses for Sony (as the OEM supplier).

That Sony will be selling cameras and lenses in Minolta mount is not a new thing. That was announced a LONG time before KM decided to stop selling cameras. So, models with a Sony brand name have been "in the works" for quite a while now, and they've announced their intent to launch them this summer.

Sony DSLR models using the Minolta Maxxum/Dynax mount have been in the works since last July.

http://www.steves-digicams.com/digin....html#sony_slr

We've already got a new Nikon models using Sony's 10 and 12 Megapixel sensors, and Pentax has announced a DSLR that will be 10MP (probably using a Sony CCD, as do their existing DSLR models).

I have no doubt that we'll be seeing higher resolution models from Sony that can use Minolta Maxxum Mount lenses, too (and I have no doubt we'll be seeing some new lenses announced, too).

I got a KM DSLR myself (KM 5D), and I wouldn't trade it for another model for my needs.

A news story you may find interesting:

Quote:
Sony Aims For Quarter Share of DSLR Market

Following Konica Minolta Holding Inc.'s announcement of withdrawal from the arena of the imaging business and an agreement to transfer Konica Minolta's assets related to R&D as well as manufacturing of DSLRs to Sony Corp., an official of Sony said on Jan. 20 it would aim for at least a quarter of share in the DSLR camera market in a few years, reports PEN News Weekly.

Sony commands the second-largest share of the digicam market after Canon, but its operations have been focused mainly on compact models, missing lucrative DSLRs and interchangeable lenses to warrant a push. Canon and Nikon dominate the DSLR market with a combined market share of nearly 90 percent.

Through acquisition of the right to use the Konica Minolta's Alpha/Maxxum mount system, access to manufacturing/designing technology and R&D/manufacturing assets (though Konica Minolta retains its patents), Sony plans a big push to high-end digicam market including DSLRs, to chip away at Canon's dominant market position, says PEN News Weekly.

Yutaka Nakagawa, president of Sony's digital imaging business group, told reporters that the company "will target for at least 20-25 percent of the world digicam market, and even a higher share as far as DSLRs are concerned, by making the most of its advantage," ie., its capability to make key devices such as CCDs, lenses and LCDs. He continued: "Because there are only a few players in the DSLR market, we would like to grab an even bigger market share. We wish to nurture our DSLR segment to a business that accounts for more than 20 percent of our total revenue from digicam sales in the near future."

Sony plans to roll out its first high-end DSLR model jointly developed with Konica Minolta this summer. The company plans to entrust manufacture of its DSLRs to Konica Minolta's Malaysian company through capital participation. A certain number of designers and engineers may be transferred from Konica Minolta to Sony, but details are not disclosed, says PEN News Weekly. (Source: Photo Marketing Association's Newsline International)

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