Optical Viewfinders availability almost extinct

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by aaronep@pacbell.net, May 29, 2010.

  1. Guest

    Can someone tell me why digital camera makers are no longer offering
    optical viewfinders on their cameras?

    One salesman in retail shop claimed they are not necessary because LCD
    screens are now brighter than in previous years and obviate the need
    for optical viewfinders.

    My own experience has been that Cameras with only LCD screens are
    extremely difficult to use in bright sunlight.

    Aaron
     
    , May 29, 2010
    #1
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  2. <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > Can someone tell me why digital camera makers are no longer offering
    > optical viewfinders on their cameras?
    >
    > One salesman in retail shop claimed they are not necessary because LCD
    > screens are now brighter than in previous years and obviate the need
    > for optical viewfinders.
    >
    > My own experience has been that Cameras with only LCD screens are
    > extremely difficult to use in bright sunlight.
    >
    > Aaron


    Unfortunately, cost-cutting, large lens zoom range, and size reduction
    don't favour the optical viewfinder. You might want to consider a DSLR or
    camera with an EVF.

    Cheers,
    David
     
    David J Taylor, May 29, 2010
    #2
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  3. <> wrote in message
    news:...

    > Can someone tell me why digital camera makers are no longer offering
    > optical viewfinders on their cameras?
    >
    > One salesman in retail shop claimed they are not necessary because LCD
    > screens are now brighter than in previous years and obviate the need
    > for optical viewfinders.
    >
    > My own experience has been that Cameras with only LCD screens are
    > extremely difficult to use in bright sunlight.
    >
    > Aaron


    I agree, and I also prefer an optical eyelevel finder (and it is also
    easier to hold the camera steady with these). There is a possible
    solution (but not for those who favor "compact" over "good
    functionality") with something like the Hoodman LCD loupes (see --
    http://www.amazon.com/s/?ie=UTF8&keywords=hood loupe&tag=
    googhydr-20&index=aps&hvadid=2966091661&ref=pd_sl_173vx3hgfi_b
    for some). Also see -- http://www.hoodmanusa.com/products.asp?dept=1024
    and other solutions at -- http://www.hoodmanusa.com. Not perfect,
    but better than peering at that dark screen out there at the ends of
    your arms...! ;-)
    --David Ruether
    www.donferrario.com/ruether
     
    David Ruether, May 29, 2010
    #3
  4. SMS Guest

    On 29/05/10 8:08 AM, wrote:
    > Can someone tell me why digital camera makers are no longer offering
    > optical viewfinders on their cameras?
    >
    > One salesman in retail shop claimed they are not necessary because LCD
    > screens are now brighter than in previous years and obviate the need
    > for optical viewfinders.


    LOL, no, that's not the reason. The reason is cost. An optical
    viewfinder that adjusts as the lens zooms adds too much cost.

    > My own experience has been that Cameras with only LCD screens are
    > extremely difficult to use in bright sunlight.


    That's your experience and the experience of everyone else on the
    planet. Unfortunately, most people don't even realize the problem until
    after they've purchased a camera without an optical viewfinder.

    The best advice is to find a camera you like with a viewfinder and buy a
    lifetime supply.

    "If you find something you really, really like, buy a lifetime supply;
    because it'll either be changed for the worse or go out of production."
    Quote from Rivendell Bicycle's Web Site
     
    SMS, May 29, 2010
    #4
  5. ray Guest

    On Sat, 29 May 2010 08:08:59 -0700, wrote:

    > Can someone tell me why digital camera makers are no longer offering
    > optical viewfinders on their cameras?
    >
    > One salesman in retail shop claimed they are not necessary because LCD
    > screens are now brighter than in previous years and obviate the need for
    > optical viewfinders.
    >
    > My own experience has been that Cameras with only LCD screens are
    > extremely difficult to use in bright sunlight.
    >
    > Aaron


    $$$$$$$$$$$$

    BTW - if you try an EVF camera with decent resolution (in the viewfinder)
    you may change your mind. Personally, I have no use whatever for the lcd
    screen on the back of the camera - I'd as soon rip the sucker off and
    throw it away.
     
    ray, May 29, 2010
    #5
  6. SMS Guest

    On 29/05/10 9:10 AM, ray wrote:

    > BTW - if you try an EVF camera with decent resolution (in the viewfinder)
    > you may change your mind. Personally, I have no use whatever for the lcd
    > screen on the back of the camera - I'd as soon rip the sucker off and
    > throw it away.


    Yes, an EVF is an acceptable substitute for an OVF. What you should
    never buy is any camera that lacks at least one of those.
     
    SMS, May 29, 2010
    #6
  7. J. Clarke Guest

    On 5/29/2010 11:08 AM, wrote:
    > Can someone tell me why digital camera makers are no longer offering
    > optical viewfinders on their cameras?
    >
    > One salesman in retail shop claimed they are not necessary because LCD
    > screens are now brighter than in previous years and obviate the need
    > for optical viewfinders.
    >
    > My own experience has been that Cameras with only LCD screens are
    > extremely difficult to use in bright sunlight.


    Ever try an electronic viewfinder (NOT the same as the LCD on the back)?
    While they have their disadvantages, being difficult to use in bright
    sunlight is not one of them.

    Optical finders that do more than give a rough idea of where the lens is
    pointed aren't particularly cheap or easy to implement, especially on a
    very thin camera.

    And there's always the option of an entry-level SLR.
     
    J. Clarke, May 29, 2010
    #7
  8. Ray Fischer Guest

    <> wrote:
    >Can someone tell me why digital camera makers are no longer offering
    >optical viewfinders on their cameras?


    Good viewfinders are expensive and people don't want to pay for them,
    and cheap viewfinders are next to worthless and people don't want to
    use them.

    And yes, "people" includes you.

    --
    Ray Fischer
     
    Ray Fischer, May 29, 2010
    #8
  9. ASCII Guest

    SMS wrote:
    >On 29/05/10 9:10 AM, ray wrote:
    >
    >> BTW - if you try an EVF camera with decent resolution (in the viewfinder)
    >> you may change your mind. Personally, I have no use whatever for the lcd
    >> screen on the back of the camera - I'd as soon rip the sucker off and
    >> throw it away.

    >
    >Yes, an EVF is an acceptable substitute for an OVF. What you should
    >never buy is any camera that lacks at least one of those.


    I once bought a camera without either, had ground glass at the focal plane,
    just had to remember to close the shutter and remove the dark slide.
    Then again maybe that was considered OVF? (non reflex)
     
    ASCII, May 29, 2010
    #9
  10. Ray Fischer Guest

    J. Clarke <> wrote:
    >On 5/29/2010 11:08 AM, wrote:
    >> Can someone tell me why digital camera makers are no longer offering
    >> optical viewfinders on their cameras?
    >>
    >> One salesman in retail shop claimed they are not necessary because LCD
    >> screens are now brighter than in previous years and obviate the need
    >> for optical viewfinders.
    >>
    >> My own experience has been that Cameras with only LCD screens are
    >> extremely difficult to use in bright sunlight.

    >
    >Ever try an electronic viewfinder (NOT the same as the LCD on the back)?
    > While they have their disadvantages, being difficult to use in bright
    >sunlight is not one of them.
    >
    >Optical finders that do more than give a rough idea of where the lens is
    >pointed aren't particularly cheap or easy to implement, especially on a
    >very thin camera.
    >
    >And there's always the option of an entry-level SLR.


    Heh. A few days ago I was with a bunch of school kids in a cave and
    took some pictures. The only illumination was their flashlights, and
    the only way I could take pictures was to set the camera on a rock and
    do a five second exposure. Since it was so dark viewfinders (both
    kinds) were next to useless, but since it was an SLR I could see where
    the lens was pointed.

    --
    Ray Fischer
     
    Ray Fischer, May 29, 2010
    #10
  11. Rich Guest

    On May 29, 1:48 pm, (Ray Fischer) wrote:
    > J. Clarke <> wrote:
    > >On 5/29/2010 11:08 AM, wrote:
    > >> Can someone tell me why digital camera makers are no longer offering
    > >> optical viewfinders on their cameras?

    >
    > >> One salesman in retail shop claimed they are not necessary because LCD
    > >> screens are now brighter than in previous years and obviate the need
    > >> for optical viewfinders.

    >
    > >> My own experience has been that Cameras with only LCD screens are
    > >> extremely difficult to use in bright sunlight.

    >
    > >Ever try an electronic viewfinder (NOT the same as the LCD on the back)?
    > >  While they have their disadvantages, being difficult to use in bright
    > >sunlight is not one of them.

    >
    > >Optical finders that do more than give a rough idea of where the lens is
    > >pointed aren't particularly cheap or easy to implement, especially on a
    > >very thin camera.

    >
    > >And there's always the option of an entry-level SLR.

    >
    > Heh.  A few days ago I was with a bunch of school kids in a cave


    Pity them.
     
    Rich, May 29, 2010
    #11
  12. J. Clarke Guest

    On 5/29/2010 11:08 AM, wrote:
    > Can someone tell me why digital camera makers are no longer offering
    > optical viewfinders on their cameras?
    >
    > One salesman in retail shop claimed they are not necessary because LCD
    > screens are now brighter than in previous years and obviate the need
    > for optical viewfinders.
    >
    > My own experience has been that Cameras with only LCD screens are
    > extremely difficult to use in bright sunlight.


    Go down to Best Buy and take a look at a Canon SX-20IS or a Nikon
    Coolpix P-100. If they're too rich for your blood B&H has Fuji S1800s
    in stock for under 200 bucks.

    All have eye level electronic finders that work just fine in direct
    sunlight. So do a bunch of others from Olympus, Sony, Casio, Kodak,
    Panasonic, Samsung, and others. Even some cheap Chinese crap ("Vivikai"
    for example).

    Or just get an SLR and be done with it.
     
    J. Clarke, May 29, 2010
    #12
  13. Ray Fischer Guest

    Rich <> wrote:
    >On May 29, 1:48 pm, (Ray Fischer) wrote:
    >> J. Clarke <> wrote:
    >> >On 5/29/2010 11:08 AM, wrote:
    >> >> Can someone tell me why digital camera makers are no longer offering
    >> >> optical viewfinders on their cameras?

    >>
    >> >> One salesman in retail shop claimed they are not necessary because LCD
    >> >> screens are now brighter than in previous years and obviate the need
    >> >> for optical viewfinders.

    >>
    >> >> My own experience has been that Cameras with only LCD screens are
    >> >> extremely difficult to use in bright sunlight.

    >>
    >> >Ever try an electronic viewfinder (NOT the same as the LCD on the back)?
    >> >  While they have their disadvantages, being difficult to use in bright
    >> >sunlight is not one of them.

    >>
    >> >Optical finders that do more than give a rough idea of where the lens is
    >> >pointed aren't particularly cheap or easy to implement, especially on a
    >> >very thin camera.

    >>
    >> >And there's always the option of an entry-level SLR.

    >>
    >> Heh.  A few days ago I was with a bunch of school kids in a cave

    >
    >Pity them.


    Oh look - a dumbass rightard chimes in to be an asshole.

    How special.

    --
    Ray Fischer
     
    Ray Fischer, May 29, 2010
    #13
  14. Dave Cohen Guest

    On 5/29/2010 12:57 PM, John Navas wrote:
    > On Sat, 29 May 2010 08:34:54 -0700, SMS<>
    > wrote in<4c01343c$0$1643$>:
    >
    >>> My own experience has been that Cameras with only LCD screens are
    >>> extremely difficult to use in bright sunlight.

    >>
    >> That's your experience and the experience of everyone else on the
    >> planet. Unfortunately, most people don't even realize the problem until
    >> after they've purchased a camera without an optical viewfinder.

    >
    > Nonsense. (What a shock.)
    >


    I've seen people using the lcd finder on models that did have an optical
    finder. And not only on lower end models, I saw someone doing this with
    a G series canon and there didn't appear to be any particular reason for
    doing so (like taking advantage of the swivel lcd). Personally, I'm in
    the 'I like a viewfinder camp'. Maybe it has to do with using film
    cameras for such a long time.
     
    Dave Cohen, May 29, 2010
    #14
  15. M-M Guest

    In article <htrt4r$9cq$-september.org>,
    Dave Cohen <> wrote:

    > I've seen people using the lcd finder on models that did have an optical
    > finder. And not only on lower end models, I saw someone doing this with
    > a G series canon and there didn't appear to be any particular reason for
    > doing so (like taking advantage of the swivel lcd). Personally, I'm in
    > the 'I like a viewfinder camp'. Maybe it has to do with using film
    > cameras for such a long time.



    You cannot shoot continuous on a moving subject (like birds or airplanes
    flying) without an optical VF.



    --
    m-m
    http://www.mhmyers.com
     
    M-M, May 29, 2010
    #15
  16. Ofnuts Guest

    On 29/05/2010 22:30, M-M wrote:

    > You cannot shoot continuous on a moving subject (like birds or airplanes
    > flying) without an optical VF.


    Indeed. And it makes me wonder why the EVF cameras have got a burst
    shooting mode...

    --
    Bertrand
     
    Ofnuts, May 29, 2010
    #16
  17. "Ray Fischer" <> wrote in message
    news:4c015370$0$1646$...

    > Heh. A few days ago I was with a bunch of school kids in a cave and
    > took some pictures. The only illumination was their flashlights, and
    > the only way I could take pictures was to set the camera on a rock and
    > do a five second exposure. Since it was so dark viewfinders (both
    > kinds) were next to useless, but since it was an SLR I could see where
    > the lens was pointed.
    > --
    > Ray Fischer


    With the Sony 707 (and 717), so long as the items of interest
    were not too distant for the camera's built-in IR illumination,
    the camera could be set up for viewing in the dark with IR, but
    switching to color at the instant of shooting (with flash). It
    worked well...;-)
    --DR
     
    David Ruether, May 29, 2010
    #17
  18. Robert Coe Guest

    On Sat, 29 May 2010 08:34:54 -0700, SMS <> wrote:
    : On 29/05/10 8:08 AM, wrote:
    : > Can someone tell me why digital camera makers are no longer offering
    : > optical viewfinders on their cameras?
    : >
    : > One salesman in retail shop claimed they are not necessary because LCD
    : > screens are now brighter than in previous years and obviate the need
    : > for optical viewfinders.
    :
    : LOL, no, that's not the reason. The reason is cost. An optical
    : viewfinder that adjusts as the lens zooms adds too much cost.
    :
    : > My own experience has been that Cameras with only LCD screens are
    : > extremely difficult to use in bright sunlight.
    :
    : That's your experience and the experience of everyone else on the
    : planet. Unfortunately, most people don't even realize the problem until
    : after they've purchased a camera without an optical viewfinder.
    :
    : The best advice is to find a camera you like with a viewfinder and buy a
    : lifetime supply.
    :
    : "If you find something you really, really like, buy a lifetime supply;
    : because it'll either be changed for the worse or go out of production."
    : Quote from Rivendell Bicycle's Web Site

    That's why I have a lifetime supply of those fine old heavy-duty keyboards
    that IBM made for their PCs. The one I'm typing on at this moment was made in
    1986.

    Bob
     
    Robert Coe, May 29, 2010
    #18
  19. Bill W D Guest

    On Sat, 29 May 2010 16:30:27 -0400, M-M <> wrote:

    >In article <htrt4r$9cq$-september.org>,
    > Dave Cohen <> wrote:
    >
    >> I've seen people using the lcd finder on models that did have an optical
    >> finder. And not only on lower end models, I saw someone doing this with
    >> a G series canon and there didn't appear to be any particular reason for
    >> doing so (like taking advantage of the swivel lcd). Personally, I'm in
    >> the 'I like a viewfinder camp'. Maybe it has to do with using film
    >> cameras for such a long time.

    >
    >
    >You cannot shoot continuous on a moving subject (like birds or airplanes
    >flying) without an optical VF.


    Now there's a load of crap if I've ever read any. This is precisely when a
    LCD can be of benefit. Particularly when doing macro shots of small flying
    insects. They cannot be followed at all in any optical viewfinder. But
    using an LCD to keep them framed and in focus is a cinch.
     
    Bill W D, May 30, 2010
    #19
  20. Ken Walls Guest

    On 29 May 2010 17:48:32 GMT, (Ray Fischer) wrote:

    >J. Clarke <> wrote:
    >>On 5/29/2010 11:08 AM, wrote:
    >>> Can someone tell me why digital camera makers are no longer offering
    >>> optical viewfinders on their cameras?
    >>>
    >>> One salesman in retail shop claimed they are not necessary because LCD
    >>> screens are now brighter than in previous years and obviate the need
    >>> for optical viewfinders.
    >>>
    >>> My own experience has been that Cameras with only LCD screens are
    >>> extremely difficult to use in bright sunlight.

    >>
    >>Ever try an electronic viewfinder (NOT the same as the LCD on the back)?
    >> While they have their disadvantages, being difficult to use in bright
    >>sunlight is not one of them.
    >>
    >>Optical finders that do more than give a rough idea of where the lens is
    >>pointed aren't particularly cheap or easy to implement, especially on a
    >>very thin camera.
    >>
    >>And there's always the option of an entry-level SLR.

    >
    >Heh. A few days ago I was with a bunch of school kids in a cave and
    >took some pictures. The only illumination was their flashlights, and
    >the only way I could take pictures was to set the camera on a rock and
    >do a five second exposure. Since it was so dark viewfinders (both
    >kinds) were next to useless, but since it was an SLR I could see where
    >the lens was pointed.


    I can still see an image in my LCD and EVF equipped cameras when the
    exposure calls for 5 seconds. In one of my cameras I can even see an image
    when the exposure calls for 1 minute and longer. In that particular LCD/EVF
    camera you can frame and focus with it in total darkness by its IR LED
    lights alone. You're either lying, cripplingly inexperienced, or don't know
    how to buy a proper camera for the job.
     
    Ken Walls, May 30, 2010
    #20
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