Less isn't more - it just isn't

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by verity, Oct 7, 2006.

  1. verity

    verity Guest

    Herein a few pointed questions I wish I could put to digital point 'n
    shoot camera designers from all the major makers.

    1. Why don't you put lugs or connecting points on both sides of the
    camera for a neck strap or wrist strap?

    I like being able to use a neck strap that connects to both sides of
    the camera. Using a wrist strap when I must and being left handed, I
    would really appreciate being able to have the strap attach on the left
    side of the camera (as seen from the rear).

    2. Why don't you include an accessory shoe on P&S digital cameras?

    3. Why won't you include an optical viewfinder with diopter adjustment
    on your new models?

    Like millions of middle-age and beyond photographers, my eyesight needs
    all the help it can get. I *prefer* using an optical viewfinder most of
    the time. I *prefer* not to waste battery power when there's no real
    need to use the digital viewing screen taking pictures.

    Kodak got it right with the Z700, and I was so delighted I bought two.
    Believe me, I'm in no hurry to replace these with newer cameras that
    have only viewing screens.

    4. Why must you come out with so many new models, mostly engaging in a
    race to add more megapixels? Like most who use digital P&S cameras, I'm
    not into creating billboards. I'm not a big fan of adding noise to
    images. And I have better uses for my money than buying ever bigger
    memory cards to handle bloated image files.

    5. What good are in-camera editing features, really?

    I can't speak for everyone, but when out and about taking photos,
    stopping to fiddle around editing images on the camera's tiny screen is
    not something I want to waste time and patience on. Editing photos on
    the PC, where they can really be seen and evaluated, makes much more

    Rather than add more megapixels (and noise), and unnecessary in-camera
    editing features, why not invest in R&D to greatly reduce or eliminate
    noise while increasing ISO sensitivity?

    Why not develop a model or two with interchangeable lenses, including
    an ultrawide equivalent to 21mm or even 18 mm on a 35mm camera, and a
    fixed focal length portrait lens equivalent to 90mm on a 35mm camera?

    Far more than offering a 12 megapixel or 15 megapixel camera, those
    features would set your camera apart from the pack and offer shoppers
    something worthwhile and useful.

    Worth consideration, wouldn't you say?
    verity, Oct 7, 2006
    1. Advertisements

  2. verity

    Paul Rubin Guest

    You might like this:


    Pricey but very well made. You screw one end into the camera's tripod
    socket, clip the other end to your belt loop, and put the camera in
    your pocket.
    Paul Rubin, Oct 7, 2006
    1. Advertisements

  3. verity

    verity Guest

    Thanks for the pocket tether suggestion, but it's not really what I
    have in mind. And yes, it's expensive.
    verity, Oct 7, 2006
  4. verity

    minnesotti Guest

    These and other accessories make the digital camera larger and heavier.
    At the same time, the modern developments in electronics allow to make
    the cameras small. The manufacturers think they have found the optimum
    between the functinality of the cameras and their size. If you really
    need a shoe or other attribues ofless the first importance, then move
    to dSLR and dSLR-like cameras.
    *You* are an old geezer. An old fart, in other words. It's so happened
    that the manufacturers think that they can make more money out of the
    younger people than from the old guys with old-fashioned requirements
    like yourself.
    I do not like that, too, because I would prefer the larger size of an
    individual pixel over the higher pixel count. But, this is like the
    clock speed run in the computers of the end 1990s. People are generally
    happy to have a speedier computers now than what they had 8 years ago,
    because this creates richer environments (think about the games in 3D)
    even if the primary reason for the higher clock speed was to run the
    larger bloatware (think of the Windows).
    This is the phenomenon which is typical for the rest of the world, and
    which I call the "creep of pseudo-useful features".

    minnesotti, Oct 7, 2006
  5. verity

    Scott W Guest

    Why not buy a DSLR?

    Scott W, Oct 7, 2006
  6. verity

    Shawn Hirn Guest

    To each his own, but I just keep my Sony DSC-W100 in my pocket or a
    small camera case that I sling over my shoulder.
    The problem is that those small cameras don't have much space, plus it
    would bounce around too much. For about $10, if that, you can buy a
    small camera bag that can hold your camera nicely and an extra battery
    and memory cards.
    Lack of space. If you need accessories, why buy a P&S. One of the major
    reasons why P&S cameras are purchased is their compact design.
    Accessories obviate that advantage because they take up more space.
    Again, its a space issue. These days, some P&S cameras do not even have
    an optical viewfinder at all. If you need that kind of functionality,
    you probably should just turn on the camera's display OR get a larger
    Great! My 45 year old eyes know what you are talking about! I just turn
    on the LCD on my camera. It works fine and I still get a couple of
    hundred images out of it, even with the LCD on.
    Its all a quest to make more money. I for one love my 8mp Sony DSC-W100.
    I have gotten some fantastic photos out of it!
    I agree about the in-camera editing features. A complete waste to me, as
    is the digital zoom feature. This is true of all digital cameras though,
    not only P&S models.
    Check the latest P&S cameras from Fuji.
    A camera with interchangeable lenses would not be a P&S. There are good
    digital cameras (not SLRs) that offer interchangeable lenses, such as
    Panasonic and Leika.
    Some points. Others make no sense for a P&S such as interchangeable
    lenses and a hot shoe.
    Shawn Hirn, Oct 7, 2006
  7. verity

    Paul Rubin Guest

    Well, there are really tiny ones for which that may make some sense,
    but there are also some that are bigger. E.g. Canon SD500 = tiny,
    Canon A640 = larger and could easily support a shoe. The G6
    (comparably sized to the A640) in fact has a shoe (I don't remember if
    the G7 has one). Some Olympus models in that size class also have a
    shoe. The ancient Nikon Coolpix 900 and 950 (dunno about later
    models) didn't have shoes, but they did have a flash terminal so you
    could mount the camera on a flash bracket and trigger the flash
    without resorting to optical slave triggers. They had pseudo-TTL
    flash metering which worked pretty well and avoided the annoying
    preflash blink. I don't understand why nobody does that any more.
    Paul Rubin, Oct 7, 2006
  8. verity

    Dave Cohen Guest

    Because he doesn't want a dslr!!
    On point 1, there is no reason, none at all. The cost would be minimal
    and it's sorely needed.
    On point 2, size makes a conventional flash bracket questionable.
    However, a mini plug is quite feasible and used in conjunction with a
    suitable tri-pod bracket and flash would be a useful accessory. Might
    cost but for those of us who want to do occasional indoor shoots at
    parties etc would be worthwhile.
    On point 3, my old canon dslr took a clip on lens. A fixed diopter is
    fine. Again, size might be a problem
    On point 4, they can make 'em, we don't have to buy them, but it is nice
    for later purchasers plus the manufacturers need the money.
    On point 5 - Not sure what you mean but most added features not needed
    by a particular individual generally do no harm. I never use movie mode
    or rapid sequence. Self timer can be useful but is poorly implemented on
    the canon A95, should be a button not a function/menu item.
    Dave Cohen
    Dave Cohen, Oct 7, 2006
  9. verity

    Scott W Guest

    Sounds like a DSLR to me, optical viewfinder, not too many options,

    Scott W, Oct 7, 2006
  10. verity

    Bill Funk Guest

    Many P&S cameras have that.
    If the one you have (or like) doesn't have that, you can add it with a
    trip to the hardware store, and some superglue.
    Size, and the idea that if the buyer wants that, he will also probably
    want more functionality as well, and there are already cameras that
    have just that.
    They do, but maybe not on the camera you want.
    The newer long zooms work better with EVFs. Short zoom cameras usually
    have optical viewfinders. I find diopter adjustment on most, too.
    This is mostly because the owners of the companies want their
    companies to make money.
    Sounds crass and materialistic, but there it is.
    Good question.
    Probably because they are insanely cheap to add, and make good
    marketing copy.
    Maybe people want them, too.
    I really think they are doing just this.
    They do; they are called DSLRs.
    Bill Funk, Oct 7, 2006
  11. verity

    DHB Guest

    You may not like any of my answerers but "I think" they are
    generally true. Most can be boiled down to "cost to benefit" ratio!
    Most people in the world are right handed, so for most
    products it's just not "cost effect" to design/build a lefty product.
    Go to a sporting goods store & see how many rifles are stocked or even
    available in a left handed version. So it's not just the P&S camera
    Here it's more of a matter of practicality. Most accessories
    shoes are used for a larger more powerful flash which would likely be
    larger than the P&S camera. Canon's Gx series has 1 & even though
    it's a rather large P&S, it still looks like the camera is the
    accessory to the flash rather than the other way around.
    2 likely reasons may be:

    A> An increasing # of people are now framing their shots with the
    increasingly large 2.5" or larger LCD screens just as many do with
    their camcorders.

    B> The added cost to accommodate those comparatively few people who
    wear glasses *&* prefer to use the optical viewfinder often or nearly
    exclusively. Many P&S makers may not find this to be a large enough
    market segment to justify the added cost.

    This question was already answered by the individual who made
    the comparison between the computer MHz. war (processor speed) & the
    camera MP war (resolution). The majority of people think more is
    better & don't even know about "pixel size" & noise is not usually
    even noticed by most when only printing @ 4x6" or even 5x7" or it's
    metric equivalents. 1 individual once posted here "I don't care how
    many MPs my camera has as long as it's more than the person next to

    The younger generation takes well to technology because they
    are growing up with it, so for them to learn to use these in-camera
    editing tools is not a big deal & it's a firmware feature, so it's of
    almost no added cost to the camera maker to add them.

    Again they are marketing to the majority of consumers, not the
    smaller # of better informed individuals who will likely go to a DSLR
    if they can't find what they want in a P&S.

    Even with DSLR cameras, many if not most people want more MP.
    I remember a lot of disappointment being expressed when Canon upgraded
    the 20D with the 30D but kept the 8.2MP sensor size the same. Many
    said it should have been called the 20D mkII because it was not that
    dramatic of an upgrade. However many more also complained because
    they expected between 10 to 12MP. It would seem that Canon took the
    hint & when they upgraded the 350D with the 400D, they went to 10MP.
    Again, DSLR would likely fill this need better than a P&S.
    However Kodak came out with a dual lens P&S, the v570 with a 23mm WA &
    a 39-117mm zoom lens. You may want to see it here:


    However with lot's of easy photo stitching software products
    out there now, this became's even more of a niche market product.
    Hope this helps answer some of your questions but keep in mind it's
    just "my" opinion about these questions.

    Respectfully, DHB

    "To announce that there must be no criticism of the President,
    or that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong,
    is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable
    to the American public."--Theodore Roosevelt, May 7, 1918
    DHB, Oct 7, 2006
  12. verity

    verity Guest

    minnesotti wrote: "*You* are an old geezer. An old fart, in other
    words. It's so happened that the manufacturers think that they can make
    more money out of the younger people than from the old guys with
    old-fashioned requirements like yourself."

    You can put it that way. Another way to put it is that I am your
    future. I am what, sooner than you can imagine, you too will be.
    verity, Oct 8, 2006
  13. verity

    verity Guest

    Scott asked, "Why not buy a DSLR?"

    Use your common sense. DSLRs are bigger, heavier and a lot more

    I shouldn't have to buy a top-of-the-line Mercedes so I can have a
    good car to run around town in. I shouldn't have to buy a DSLR to be
    able to have an optical viewfinder with diopter adjustment an accessory
    shoe and strap lugs on both sides.

    The idea of a P&S with two dedicated interchangeable lenses is that the
    package would still be very compact and relatively inexpensive, but
    also quite flexible. It would also become quite a collector's item, I'm
    verity, Oct 8, 2006
  14. verity

    verity Guest

    Bill Funk said, "Short zoom cameras usually have optical viewfinders. I
    find diopter adjustment on most, too."

    I mentioned the Kodak EasyShare Z700. Can you name some specific makes
    and models. I'm not seeing that feature on the P&S cameras in the
    stores. Thinking back over the past three or four years, I recall maybe
    one or two others that had that feature, both from Olympus.
    verity, Oct 8, 2006
  15. verity

    verity Guest

    DHB responded, in part: "The added cost to accommodate those
    comparatively few people who wear glasses *&* prefer to use the optical
    viewfinder often or nearly exclusively. Many P&S makers may not find
    this to be a large enough market segment to justify the added cost."

    You might be right, but I think you presume too much.

    In this and other areas of your thoughtful reply, and the replies of
    others, I think a few details are being overlooked or too easily
    written off.

    First, the cost to add a second, left-side lug or lash point to a
    production run of hundreds of thousands of cameas would be negligible.
    Same goes for the expense and space required for an accessory shoe.

    I admit, the cost for an optical viewfinder with diopter adjustment
    would add a few bucks to the camera's cost. I can't imagine it would
    add enough to make a given camera design uncompetitive in the overall
    market of shoppers of all ages.

    I will also point out that those of us past 40 who are coping with
    presbyopia are far from the only people with vision deficits that an
    adjusting viewfinder could help.

    Finally, as I look at the whole field of point 'n shoots, I see an
    awful lot of me too stuff. The Kodak dual lens model is intriguing,
    although pricey. But good for EK, for daring to be different. I may get
    one before it's over with.

    Generally, these camera outfits are what economists call perfect
    competitors. As such, they need to come up with features that set their
    cameras apart, given them an edge that draws attention, the free
    advertising of online buzz and media attention.

    Look at the cute little Rollei digital knockoff. It isn't and never
    will be a mass-market winner. Yet it has garnered incredible attention.
    For that matter, the Kodak dual-lens camera has also.

    So, there are sound business reasons for adopting at least some of my
    suggestions. Yet, the major camera makers will continue to march in
    lockstep, offering model after model that's just like similarly priced
    models from competing companies.

    Thanks for your comments, though. (And I salute your signature quote.
    It's a timely and valuable reminder.)
    verity, Oct 8, 2006
  16. verity

    Bill Funk Guest

    Bill Funk, Oct 8, 2006
  17. verity

    perry lee Guest

    You might want to look at the Fuji S9000. We got ours for under $500
    when the S9100 came out. It has EVF w/diopter, a hot shoe for flash, and
    a connection for remote flash. It even has a connector for cable release
    in the middle of the "shutter release". I use it all the time, and the
    zoom optics are incredible.
    perry lee, Oct 9, 2006
  18. verity

    minnesotti Guest

    The older members of my family live according to the principle "Live
    fast, die young", unfortunately :-(
    minnesotti, Oct 9, 2006
  19. verity

    Joan Guest

    How did they get to be the "older members"?


    : The older members of my family live according to the principle "Live
    : fast, die young", unfortunately :-(
    Joan, Oct 9, 2006
  20. verity

    minnesotti Guest

    They are not getting older anymore :-(
    minnesotti, Oct 9, 2006
    1. Advertisements

Ask a Question

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments (here). After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.