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New Olympus with "hybrid" mirror technology?

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by With_Eyes_Unclouded, Jul 19, 2012.

  1. With_Eyes_Unclouded

    With_Eyes_Unclouded Mu-43 All-Pro

    Apr 17, 2012
    This is a reccuring rumor, and it surfaced again on 43rumors:

    (FT3) High End OM camera coming within the next 6 months? E-M5 price drop this winter. | 43 Rumors

    If you follow previous reports, they seem to indicate that Olympus is working on a hybrid mirror technology, resembling the one on Sony SLT bodies. The difference being that this would, arguably, be a type of "liquid mirror tech" (sic!) and shall allow 100% light to pass to the sensor at the time of exposure. Also the whole AF system seems to implement a way to "mix and match" PD-AF and the existing CD-AF, during the AF process, as I understand it.

    If those rumors prove correct, they answer a number of questions. For example, what will happen with 4/3 future; Olympus would consolidate the two lines with a camera like this (existing adaptors will allow use of "legacy" 4/3 lenses). They will also not implement PD-AF on-sensor, at least for the next iteration of cameras.

    I'm not sure if this is good news or not. It seems to me as an interim solution, to tell you the truth. OTOH, if it works way better than SLT (meaning, no light loss) this WILL be a gamechanger for :43:, most probably negating one major reservation about performance, namely fast CAF for sports and wildlife.

    What are your thoughts?
    • Like Like x 1
  2. KVG

    KVG Banned User

    May 10, 2011
    yyc(Calgary, AB)
    Kelly Gibbons
    bad ass
  3. usayit

    usayit Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Leica visoflex sucked as an practical implementation...
  4. With_Eyes_Unclouded

    With_Eyes_Unclouded Mu-43 All-Pro

    Apr 17, 2012
    This will allegedly be a translucent, and not a moving mirror of the type we are used to.

    There is also talk about a hybrid viewfinder, but there is no point complicating things like this. An (upgraded) EVF is the best option IMHO.

    Here are relevant (older) rumors about this:

    Oh yes Olympus is working on a translucent camera (See the patent!) | 43 Rumors

    New Olympus patent shows innovative double simultaneus focus system | 43 Rumors
  5. usayit

    usayit Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Ok.. let me append my post.

    The pellicle mirror camera design dates back to the 60s (even earlier?). They sucked too.. unless by some miracle of physics they achieve near 100% transmittance.
  6. hkpzee

    hkpzee Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 5, 2011
    Hong Kong
    Whatever solution that enables PDAF on my m4/3 camera, without loss of light transmission onto sensor is a good solution to me.

    Having said that, I do prefer to have a solution in the form of an adaptor enabling PDAF for my 4/3 lenses so that I don't have to switch camera again, as long as the implementation is not as hideous looking at the Visoflex...
  7. With_Eyes_Unclouded

    With_Eyes_Unclouded Mu-43 All-Pro

    Apr 17, 2012
    I'm quite perplexed about what a final design would look/work like myself.

    Rumors are it will allow 100% light through when the photo is taken. That means a moving mirror, as I understand it, so no mirrorless, by any stretch of the definition.

    But would it be an add-on adapter like the Visoflex, or built in the camera? No clue. Having a mirror (of shorts) does it qualify to be in the "EM" line? It seems to me that Olympus is trying to consolidate the E with the EM line, putting 4/3 kindly to sleep in the process.
  8. MexicoMik

    MexicoMik Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 19, 2012
    I'm not understanding this at all. I was under the impression that there was no "light loss" with mirrorless since all the light goes directly to the sensor from the lens. How would adding some fancy dancy type of mirror be an improvement? I apologize if I'm missing something obvious here but I just don't get it...
  9. With_Eyes_Unclouded

    With_Eyes_Unclouded Mu-43 All-Pro

    Apr 17, 2012
    The translucent mirror in Sony SLT cameras, lets a certain amount of light pass through all the time. This is as a sacrifice for having PD-AF sensors active via the mirror. The Olympus (rumored) solution cuts one stop while focusing but allows 100% light through when the actual exposure is made. At least this is the way I understand it.
  10. meyerweb

    meyerweb Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Sep 5, 2011
    I wouldn't hold my breath. That site's record of accuracy with FT3 rumors doesn't strike me as very high. The only think from that post that I'd take without a very large grain of salt is that Oly is working on a high-end OM-D. The rest is pure speculation on the part of the blogger.
  11. usayit

    usayit Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Translucent is a Sony marketing term and no its not something new...

    The correct term is a pellicle mirror which is semi-transparent (hence not 100% transmitance). The idea has been around for a very long time. I don't recall the first pellicle mirror but the Canon Pellix (60's I believe) and the Canon RT (80s I beleive) all did something similar.... with anorexic success in sales.

    The issue was the loss of light through the mirror. On the other hand, today is time of digital when bumping up the ISO to compensate for the light loss wasn't as limiting as doing so on film. I didn't account for that in my previous posts...

    Honestly... If I wanted PDAF, I would just get a DSLR. Hacking in a mirror of sorts to get a CDAF camera to perform with PDAF is like trying to upscale cheap beer with caviar. Kinda pointless and not really solving the problem. Solve the problem... period. Get CDAF technology to compete with PDAF. Figure out an upgrade path with CDAF rather than cripling the new technology with old. LOOK FORWARD not Backwards.
    • Like Like x 1
  12. MikeB

    MikeB Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 10, 2010
    Atlanta, GA
    Guys, let's be clear: there's no room for any type of hybrid mirror technology in a m43 camera. The spacing between the lens mount and the sensor is just too small. That's the whole point of m43!

    Now, it's possible this technology will show up in a 43 camera, but that's a larger body. Is it worth the tradeoffs to go back to the larger body? I though we'd mostly already decided that here.
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