I was supposed to go to Photokina on thursday. My car had a problem, so this was canceled. Fortunately I found a friend at work who went there on wednesday and who gave me the lift. So, I could take a look on what's new on the market in the next few month.
I must say that there is nothing realy new and on DSLR's as well, the politics to reshape the "old" box and pack more pixels in them has started.
Canon's D20, Nikon's D2X, Canon's Eos1DS mk2 are among those as well as the new Fuji S3. In exception of the 1DS who takes the better features of the 1D mk2 in speed and comfort, the cameras have not brought major new features and most of the changes are useless things.
The perfect camera until yet is and stays the D70. No other camera synchronizes up to 1/500th on flash, has I-TTL feature and so many presets and manual adjustments. In this field, even the D2X cannot challenge the small brother.
On Canon's technical support, a row of 20D users where complaining about focusing bugs with the new gear and it was quiete interesting to hear from the Canon staff that the 20D is indeed a good camera to start with, but for sure a bad replacement for the 10D. They also confirmed that the Cmos of the 20D are different in size from the 1Dmk2 and that both cameras have nothing in common on the chip side. The "new" camera is only a reshaped 10D in a new housing and with same Cmos on which they have pixels added to bring it from 6 mpix to 8 mpix. The "hughe" price for the 20D was complimented and the horrible one for the higher levels criticized as well.
Nikon refused any information and comments concerning the supposed to come new D90 and D50 models and claimed this to be just speculation of magazines. Also, at Nikon people complained about the bad mechanical quality of many of their low end lenses and the fact that the D70 has no vertical grip supplied. The reduced comfort in flash synchro features on high end cameras and some other problems where discussed as well. The new F6 is not a replacement for the F5 but a better replacement of the F100. The new argentic camera has indeed same housing format as the F100 and the vertical grip is optional at Nikon's "civil" prices. Nikon staff confirmed as well that Sigma's lenses are in many cases a better replacement for their own, that some are even better in quality and sharpness and much cheeper.
Sigma showed a hughe package of new D lenses. Even if Nikon refuses to admit, Sigma belongs to them. Both companies are in the same building in Tokio, Nikon on floor 1 to 4, Sigma on floors 5 to 9 and on Photokina, both stands where side by side as well. Nikon was indeed a glass-maker for lenses in the sixties and produced all the glass once for Nikon and Mamyia cameras and some other's. Nikon separated that part of their business to stick to camera manufacturing only. The Glass manufacturing was sold to another company,as they say and that branch belongs to Sigma. Note that still today in Japan, there is only that one single glass factory that makes all the lens glass parts for all the lenses you could buy from Japan and what ever the brand is. So somewhere we all shoot with some of Sigma's secondary company parts in anyway.
Minolta has shown there new Dynax 7 D which is allready old fashion when it comes on the market. Same chip as the D70, Pentax 1stD, Epson's new one and some other brands. Fuji's S3 is a perfect copy of the Nikon D100 with a much better sensor but old fashioned features taken over from the Nikon F80.
So, all in all, nothing new at the west, one would say.
I shot this picture of one of the Adobe show-boys that where posing at Adobe's Premiere Pro show plattform.