Rumours that Panasonic is slowing/postponing Micro Four Thirds gear

John King

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I will take you at your word for this one. There are some rather highly opinionated people over there. It's somewhere I avoid on account of it doesn't fit in with my personal internet forum ethos, ie, don't take yourself too seriously, life's too damned short. :dance2:
I agree, Richard.

Over some 60+ years, I have learned a good deal about photography, some of it wrong, no doubt.
However, most of what I know is based on very wide experience, reading and carefully examining books by authors with a lot of credibility in the field - Freeman Patterson, to name just one of many.

The trolls who permeate the entire culture of DPR have no such credibility, and often no photographs to show either. They were actively encouraged by Phil Askey from the day the web site was founded, back in the late 1990s. He sold out to Amazon around 2010, but the attitude remains to this day.

I can sometimes help people, and sometimes cannot. When I can, I try to. I expect that to be taken in good faith, as it is given. I'm not really interested in being hounded for six months or more about the species of owl portrayed in a woodblock print in a photo of one of our cats. This actually happened to me! Turns out I was right - it is a horned owl - and the troll was wrong. Funny that ...
 

RichardC

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The trolls who permeate the entire culture of DPR have no such credibility, and often no photographs to show either. They were actively encouraged by Phil Askey from the day the web site was founded, back in the late 1990s. He sold out to Amazon around 2010, but the attitude remains to this day.

It didn't go un-noticed that some of the individuals with the biggest mouths had the smallest (or no) image collections.
 
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Panasonic is the epitome of a manufacturer making products for the auteur “influencer” market, a video market. That’s the entire point of the GH series. It’s been Panny’s bread and butter. Their production videocams are dominated by Super35 (APS-C) premised on studio feed and actively lighting exposure control. The L-mount is a video cam designed to continue that legacy with superior sensor DR. Panny said exactly that on release.

There is zero $$ in the still photo market. Print publication is dead and stills business practices along with it. Ahead of all DSLR makers Panasonic saw this. All products going forward will all be videocentric because the rump stills photography market is too small. The entire stills photography market is now mostly amateurs with high disposable incomes and no cash flow from image-making, with no subsidies from a “profession“ underwriting product lines.

Pansonic bet it all from the start on video, so where that market goes, so will they.
 

RS86

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Panasonic is the epitome of a manufacturer making products for the auteur “influencer” market, a video market. That’s the entire point of the GH series. It’s been Panny’s bread and butter. Their production videocams are dominated by Super35 (APS-C) premised on studio feed and actively lighting exposure control. The L-mount is a video cam designed to continue that legacy with superior sensor DR. Panny said exactly that on release.

There is zero $$ in the still photo market. Print publication is dead and stills business practices along with it. Ahead of all DSLR makers Panasonic saw this. All products going forward will all be videocentric because the rump stills photography market is too small. The entire stills photography market is now mostly amateurs with high disposable incomes and no cash flow from image-making, with no subsidies from a “profession“ underwriting product lines.

Pansonic bet it all from the start on video, so where that market goes, so will they.

How come their cameras have taken great stills & video thus far, and what is the reason they would start suddenly make only video cameras?

Did you accidentally switch accounts, or are you guys in tandem with this doom & gloom?
 
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How come their cameras have taken great stills & video thus far, and what is the reason they would start suddenly make only video cameras?

Did you accidentally switch accounts, or are you guys in tandem with this doom & gloom?

The consumer P&S Panasonic’s were always the best at video, even if using the complex, proprietary AVCHD format. That was the Panasonic marketing angle.

GH series was less hybrid stills camera and more video cam, a bridge when the dedicated video cam market was destroyed by smartphones and GoPro-style.

Today there is almost no “professional” stills photo market. There are no publications that really pay outside the stock photo companies and wedding, both heavily oversubscribed. The entire wildlife imaging market is video (thanks Sir David). That’s why Panasonic went L-series.
 

speedy

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The consumer P&S Panasonic’s were always the best at video, even if using the complex, proprietary AVCHD format. That was the Panasonic marketing angle.

GH series was less hybrid stills camera and more video cam, a bridge when the dedicated video cam market was destroyed by smartphones and GoPro-style.

Today there is almost no “professional” stills photo market. There are no publications that really pay outside the stock photo companies and wedding, both heavily oversubscribed. The entire wildlife imaging market is video (thanks Sir David). That’s why Panasonic went L-series.
That makes zero sense. Why would Panasonic invest in creating a whole new product line in areas, where in your own words, are already heavily over subscribed? Not only that, but taking on the established players such as Canon, Nikon and Sony.
 

Mike Wingate

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Panasonic have only been there for 20 years in the “stills” market. However they have a solid history of “video” products. They have been making electric irons and rice steamers for a long time. Their electric kettle was a design masterpiece, but did not last.
 

RS86

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The consumer P&S Panasonic’s were always the best at video, even if using the complex, proprietary AVCHD format. That was the Panasonic marketing angle.

GH series was less hybrid stills camera and more video cam, a bridge when the dedicated video cam market was destroyed by smartphones and GoPro-style.

Today there is almost no “professional” stills photo market. There are no publications that really pay outside the stock photo companies and wedding, both heavily oversubscribed. The entire wildlife imaging market is video (thanks Sir David). That’s why Panasonic went L-series.

Can you please explain what is your point?

That Panasonic will never make a stills & video camera?

That GH6 will take only video? As far as I know GH5 stills department is very good too. Why would they take the stills out in the future?
 

speedy

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Can you please explain what is your point?

That Panasonic will never make a stills & video camera?

That GH6 will take only video? As far as I know GH5 stills department is very good too. Why would they take the stills out in the future?
Beats me. Isn't that why they're called hybrid cameras? I suppose you clutch at any straws you can, when you're desperately trying to push your own barrow.
 

BDR-529

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That’s why Panasonic’s L mount venture’s a strategic misfire. Not only is it likely to fail on its own terms (there’s no business case taking on Canon, Nikon, and Sony where they’re strongest, 135 format) but could take m4/3 down with it.

Panasonic was late but so were Canon and Nikon. They all realized too late that market will shift to mirrorless FF and jumped on that badwagon after Sony had already taken the lead.

Panny has one advantage which you didn't mention. Even Panny GH5 is still the golden standard of ILC video and Panasonic has actively squeezed every possible video feature in their inexpensive bodies bodies as well.

They have clearly realized that not only has market switched from SLR to mirrorless but a huge share of market is now interested in video IQ instead of just still images. Panny is not trying to become #1 or even #2 but just find a corner that will remain profitable for foreseeable future and this is something they could achieve.

If you look at the alternatives, then a fully videocentric 8k GH6 at >$2500€ price point is exactly what Panasonic could be planning. It would not cannibalize demand for well below $2000€ models like S5 and S1 but still find a very profitable niche. Of course 8k camera would also take 41MP still images as well and panny would certainly make sure that they are as good as possible too.

Even at $2500€, GH6 would be an insanely affordable 8k video ILC compared to anything else in the market expecially if Panny was clever enough to make sure that 8k video quality is up to their existing standards.
 

speedy

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What is a "fully videocentric" camera? You're not trying to tell us it won't be capable of taking stills at all are you? Thus requiring two different systems to do what all other hybrids can?
 

John King

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@BDR-529 Why do you think that Panasonic make this camera?

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AG-DVX200 | Professional Camera Recorder | Broadcast and Professional AV | Panasonic Global
 

BDR-529

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What is a "fully videocentric" camera? You're not trying to tell us it won't be capable of taking stills at all are you?

What part of "Of course 8k camera would also take 41MP still images as well and panny would certainly make sure that they are as good as possible too." makes you think that?

I have repeated this several times: every sensor or processor feature that makes video better is also going to improve still image quality.

There are "fully videocentric" MFT-cameras like BGH1 and GH5S but this does not mean you can't take still images with them. It just means that nobody will buy them for that use.

As a matter of fact these two deliver best still image quality of any existing MFT camera. They have very large photosites and dual-ISO sensor which means that low light IQ and dynamic range is best you can get out of any MFT camera at the moment. Still flat zero still image oriented customers buy them due to 12MP image size.

8k video camera is inevitably going to deliver 41MP still images so the only reason why that model would become "videocentric" is the fact that the additional cost and complexity of cine quality 8k video will make the body so expensive (and bulky/heavy due to cooling requirements) that customers who are interested in still images will just buy something else instead.
 

speedy

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What part of "Of course 8k camera would also take 41MP still images as well and panny would certainly make sure that they are as good as possible too." makes you think that?

I have repeated this several times: every sensor or processor feature that makes video better is also going to improve still image quality.

There are "fully videocentric" MFT-cameras like BGH1 and GH5S but this does not mean you can't take still images with them. It just means that nobody will buy them for that use.

As a matter of fact these two deliver best still image quality of any existing MFT camera. They have very large photosites and dual-ISO sensor which means that low light IQ and dynamic range is best you can get out of any MFT camera at the moment. Still flat zero still image oriented customers buy them due to 12MP image size.

8k video camera is inevitably going to deliver 41MP still images so the only reason why that model would become "videocentric" is the fact that the additional cost and complexity that cine quality 8k video requires, will make the body so expensive that customers who are interested in still images will just buy something else.
Which is why, personally, I don't think 8K will be coming to m4/3. I hope it doesn't to be honest. It's not what m4/3 was really created for. Panasonic themselves have said that ultimate image quality will be the realm of their 36x24 sensor cameras. m4/3 is the more compact & portable solution. It's already panning out that way, with the S series being the first to be approved for Netflix? or whatever it was, productions. I've got friends that write & produce for online magazines, & m4/3 is what they use. For exactly those reasons. It's comapct, portable, not stupid expensive & does more than adequate stills as well as video. Why would they alienate themselves from that market?
 

pdk42

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I’m really no expert in the camera marketing business. But I’m pretty sure that all the major camera brands work pretty hard at it and do have people who are experts. My own amateur observations do however lead me to believe that the growth and money are more in video than stills. The new OMD Corp had said as much too. As a 100% stills shooter, this probably means that new features won’t be directly addressed at me, but it does seem that there a lot of overlap (especially sensor tech) so it’s not all bad.

On the Panasonic front, I think it’s obvious that they are cooling in their commitment to m43. Hopefully that’ll be good news for OMD since I think the format has a lot going for it.
 

RS86

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Which is why, personally, I don't think 8K will be coming to m4/3. I hope it doesn't to be honest. It's not what m4/3 was really created for. Panasonic themselves have said that ultimate image quality will be the realm of their 36x24 sensor cameras. m4/3 is the more compact & portable solution. It's already panning out that way, with the S series being the first to be approved for Netflix? or whatever it was, productions. I've got friends that write & produce for online magazines, & m4/3 is what they use. For exactly those reasons. It's comapct, portable, not stupid expensive & does more than adequate stills as well as video. Why would they alienate themselves from that market?

For example Aristophanes says that stills market has zero money. Zero.

And while all the other camera makers make hybrid cameras, Panasonic will suddenly stop that.

Or that they will ruin the stills abilities to get 8k video, which is not even necessary for the vast majority of people.

Could they for example focus on other video qualities, like better slow motion 4k or 6k video? Or 12-bit video etc.
 
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BDR-529

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that ultimate image quality will be the realm of their 36x24 sensor cameras. m4/3 is the more compact & portable solution. It's already panning out that way, with the S series being the first to be approved for Netflix? or whatever it was, productions.

OK it sounds like you missed one announcement. Currently the least expensive Netflix-certified ILC is MFT camera: Panasonic BGH-1, which is essentially just GH5S in cube format.

BGH-1 is also the most expensive MFT camera at the moment because even Olympus M1X is currently selling for less. Panasonic has clearly demonstrated that production quality video is the way to create profitable MFT models.

As said, any camera that is capable of high quality video is also capable of high quality still images. It's just the added cost and bulk of production quality video that makes a model "videocentric". It makes no sense to buy these if you really don't need the video and want just still images or basic hybrid model.

Let's say that GH6 with Netflix-quality 8k video is launched at $2900€ and it can also take high quality (by MFT standards) 41MP images. Of course some existing MFT owners would buy it just for still images but the bulk of sales would come from customers who buy it because it's the cheapest way to shoot 8k video.

FF customers would still not consider GH6 if if the only thing they need is just more megapixels for their still images because at that price they could get just that and higher IQ from their own brand as well.
 
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pdk42

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Let's say that GH6 with Netflix-quality 8k video is launched at $2900€ and it can also take high quality (by MFT standards) 41MP images. Of course some existing MFT owners would buy it just for still images but the bulk of sales would come from customers who buy it because it's the cheapest way to shoot 8k video.
Does anyone have the bandwidth and monitor resolution to take advantage of 8k Netflix? And is there really any point? I have a 1920x1080 40” TV and standard HD Netflix is excellent on it. What would 8k, or even 4k, add that is worth all the extra cost?
 

BDR-529

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I'm still none the wiser as to what "fully videocentric" actually means

I can give a simple definition "So much cost, weight and bulk is added to model in order to give it video quality/certification of X that it makes no sense to buy it unless X is exactly what you must have"

BGH-1 and GH5S are excellent example of this. You can take still images with them and they actually deliver highest low light IQ and dynamic range of any MFT camera.

In reality 12MP is more than any still image published only on the internet will ever need but still nobody is buying these for still shooting.
 
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