Reuters suggests “mirrorless” format facing shakeout

Japan mid-tier camera makers face shakeout as smartphones shatter mirrorless hopes | Reuters.

Reuters seems to have gotten this story half right, and half wrong.  See below for the details.

  • Point and shoot market is mostly dying, replaced by consumers with smart phones
  • Says Canon, Nikon and Sony own 60% of the camera market
  • Panasonic and Olympus, two large promoters of “mirrorless” high end cameras, are said to be suffering in the current camera market shake out.  Sony is also a big promoter of mirrorless – the difference is that Panasonic and Olympus use the micro-four thirds sensor format.
  • The mirrorless market is large in Japan but has not had a big success elsewhere (around just 10% of sales in the U.S.)
  • The analysts think consumers want “connectivity” direct from their camera to Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

The Japan Times has a very different spin on this story saying the smart phone is hurting all of the camera makers including Canon and Nikon. And that mirrorless sales grew January through October, Year over Year. The Reuters story points to a drop in sales up through Christmas. Something’s fishy.

Olympus expects to return to profitability in 2014 (they were dealing with an accounting scandal recently). And Canon plans to re-engage the mirrorless market. In other words, the Reuters story seems all mixed up.

I much prefer mirrorless cameras. First, I mostly shoot video and need an electronic viewfinder, and second, since I often shoot 3D, I am carrying not one camera but two or three pairs of cameras. Mirrorless cameras are smaller and lighter, their lenses are smaller and lighter and cost less too.

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Youtube 3D video player broken in Firefox and Internet Explorer

In the past week or so, Youtube has made changes that broke the playing of 3D videos in Internet Explorer and Firefox. Videos appear to display properly in Chrome and Opera browser.

In IE and Firefox, 3D videos display like this, rather than in the full size of the viewer:

YTBroken

Al Caudullo  (3DGuy.tv) has found a work around: Go to each of your 3D videos on Youtube, and edit the “Tags” section and add:

yt:crop=16:9

I did this for all of my 3D videos and this did fix the problem.

Glasses Free 3D Tablet Available

Just $349: The No Glasses 3D Tablet – Hammacher Schlemmer.

Unfortunately, no manufacturer name is provided. But it runs Android 4.1. It does not include a 3D camera, and the built in 2D cameras are lame. And what does “1080p HD display with 1280 x 800 resolution” mean? Am guessing its just a 1280×800 resolution but it down scales 1080p content.

From the specs, this is not terribly impressive as a 3D tablet. I’d skip it for sure.